No Fly French Riviera & Rhone Cruise 2020 Great Rail Journeys

Discover the immaculate and enchanting charm of Nice and the French Riviera on this dazzling tour before continuing to Lyon for an exquisite 7-night cruise, uncovering the majesty of the Rhone river.

Great Rail Journeys
Berlin - Skyline

Itinerary

Meet at London St Pancras before boarding a Eurostar train to Paris. From here, you'll continue by rail to Nice. On arrival, you'll check into the hotel close to the beautiful Riviera seafront before dinner later on tonight.

Our French Riviera experience begins with a guided tour of Nice, France's glittering jewel on the southern coast of the country. This magnificent city has always been a choice destination for travellers of repute and distinction, as it sits overlooking the glittering coastline. You're are taken through the enchanting streets, seeing the famously affluent mansions of Mont Boron, the historical old town and the chequered floor of the Place d'Opera. On the tour, you'll discover the history of the city, from the days of the Greek settlers who founded Nice, to the modern day. After the tour, you are free. Perhaps head to the beach and soak in the views and the sun, or discover some classic French cuisine at a nearby caf\xE9.

Today, pay a visit to glamorous city state of Monaco, famous as a retreat for the rich and famous of the world. Taking a coach, begin your day at the luxurious district of Monte Carlo where you'll stop at the entrance of the iconic casino, with its palm tree lined fountains. From here, embark on a sightseeing tour of Monaco, seeing the fantastic flowers of the Jardins Exotique, the grand windows of the Place de l'Opera and the beautiful Old Town. On your return to Nice, pay a visit to the elegant Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild, the seaside home of the Rothschild banking family.

After a free morning to relax on the beach perhaps, board the train to Lyon, bidding farewell to the south of France.

Arriving into this colourful old town, you'll be transferred to your ship for a spectacular cruise on the gorgeous Rh\xF4ne.

You'll arrive into Beaune this morning. Deep in the heart of the wine region of Burgundy, Beaune is a classic French medieval town, with impressive town walls, terracotta roofs and fascinating old buildings. Embark on a sightseeing tour, discovering some of the history and sights as you traverse the enchanting streets. Great Rail Journeys have included a tasting of some of the delectable wines which make this town and the Burgundy region so famous. Back on board later, you'll enjoy a leisurely afternoon cruising back to Lyon.

Arriving into Lyon this morning, disembark for a guided tour. One of France's iconic cities, Lyon sits on the meeting point of the Rh\xF4ne and the Sa\xF4ne rivers. The beautiful pinks, oranges, reds and whites of the buildings populating Lyon's riverfront give some indication of the elegance with which the city carries itself. Your tour takes you along the streets and over the bridges to explore some of the fantastic highlights and the extensive history here. The Old Town is a UNESCO World Heritage site, and many of the small shops and traditional businesses here lend a truly French touch to proceedings as you wander by.

After returning to the ship for lunch, enjoy another afternoon at leisure as you cruise to Tournon sur Rh\xF4ne. This is one of the most scenic and panoramic sections of the river and it is well worth taking the time to admire the scenery as the ship continues to sail on through. Rolling hills, dotted with verdant vineyards rise and fall away under the gaze of various ch\xE2teaux and stately homes as we continue through pretty towns and villages.

Early this morning, travel by coach to the railway station to board the excellent Train de l'Ard\xE8che. Offering a memorable steam train journey through the stunning environs of the spectacular Gorges du Doux region, this railway winds up the various foothills and valleys which populate the landscape. Several stone bridges criss-cross the brooks and rivers which snake under the trees, and Great Rail Journeys charming little locomotive takes us to sections of the gorges which no other form of transport can access. Later, the ship continues its course to the 'white city' of Avignon.

In Avignon today, you'll head out on a guided tour of this remarkable city, famous as the seat of the Pope for a brief period in the 14th century. Its striking white papal palaces and its majestic cathedral are just some of the highlights as you walk through the boulevards and squares of Avignon's historic centre which earned UNESCO World Heritage status in 1995. After the tour, you are granted entrance to the Pope's Palace where you'll see its spectacular interiors and the range of holy and religious artefacts collected here. You are free then, until early evening to discover the city at your own pace. After dinner tonight, the ship sets sail for Arles, arriving later that night.

Begin the day with a guided tour pretty Arles, whose enchanting streets provided the inspiration for many of Vincent Van Gogh's most famous paintings. In the afternoon, you are given the choice of two different excursions. Your first option is a visit to the beautiful Camargue Delta where the Rh\xF4ne opens out into the Mediterranean. This is a true treat for nature lovers, as the wetlands and park area here are home to nearly 400 species of diverse bird species, including the instantly-recognisable flock of pink flamingos who reside here. Also of note are the wild horses which roam freely, including a breed which can only be found in this part of the world, the famous Camarguais. Your second option would take you to the iconic arches of the Pont du Gard, an ancient Roman aqueduct of astonishing size which spans the Gardon river, and a UNESCO World Heritage site. Later, return to the ship which sets sail for Chateauneuf du Rh\xF4ne.

Today, pay a visit to the stunning Ard\xE8che Gorge, which is widely regarded as the Grand Canyon of Europe. Nearly nineteen miles in length and made up of snaking rivers and gorges, this natural monument is a striking reminder of the enormity of the natural world, as cliff faces rise high over waterways of striking emerald and forests of deep green. The tour takes you to some of the most impressive sights here including the Pont d'Arc. Afterwards, rejoin the ship at Le Pouzin beginning your return sailing to Lyon and sitting down to the captain's extravagant gala dinner this evening. The following day, we disembark here and travel by rail to Paris. On arrival in the French capital, board the Eurostar service to London.

Price Guide

Date Standard Class (pp) First Class (pp)
24 August 2020 £2,495 £2,795

What's Included

  • Escorted throughout your cruise by an on board Tour Manager and Cruise Director
  • The services of a professional UK Tour Manager from London St Pancras to embarkation, and from disembarkation back to London St Pancras
  • Exclusive meeting point at our dedicated Departure Office in St Pancras
  • All rail and coach travel throughout your tour
  • 3 nights' hotel accommodation
  • 7-night cruise on board the MS Amadeus Provence
  • 25 meals, including 10 breakfasts, 6 lunches and 9 dinners
  • Drinks included with every evening meal on board
  • Tea & Coffee facilities in your cabin
  • Danish Bacon, British Sausage & Yorkshire Tea on board
  • City tour of Nice
  • Time at leisure in Nice to explore
  • Guided tours of Lyon, Beaune and Avignon
  • Journey on the Train de l'Ard\xE8che
  • Unique flexible excursions allowing you to choose how you spend your day with options including: Visit to the Camargue Delta or a visit to the Pont du Gard
  • Choose your cabin number at no extra cost