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German trench ruins in Vauquois France

The Great War

Example 7 Day Cruise aboard MS Raymonde
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Explore the reaches of the First World War on this 7-day France Canal cruise. Begin in Paris, the City of Lights, and sail for Lagny Sur Marne, Saint Jean les Deux Jumeaux, and more. As you sail, stop to explore vineyards and attend wine tastings, then visit Epernay, known for its overgrown trenches and historical part in the war. As you sail, admire the lush rolling hills and charming port cities which line the interior waterways of France.

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Paris
Day 2 : Paris / Lagny Sur Marne
Day 3 : Meaux / Saint Jean les Deux Jumeaux
Day 4 : Saint Jean les Deux Jumeaux / Chateau Thierry
Day 5 : Chateau Thierry / Dormans / Epernay
Day 6 : Epernay / Chalons en Champagne
Day 7 : Chalons en Champagne

Ship

MS Raymonde

Places Visited

  • Europe
  • France
  • Chalons en Champagne
  • Chateau Thierry
  • Dormans
  • Epernay
  • Lagny Sur Marne
  • Meaux
  • Paris
  • Saint Jean les Deux Jumeaux

Activities

Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level

Relaxed

Trip Snapshots

German trench ruins in Vauquois France Sprawling vineyards of France Gothic cathedral entrance Monument Butte de Vauquois France The gothic Notre-Dame Cathedral towers over the streets of Paris

Day 1 Paris

Board the MS Raymonde in Paris at 6 PM and settle into your cabin. Attend a welcome briefing and meet the crew before sitting down for dinner. The ship stays in Paris overnight.

Day 2 Paris / Lagny Sur Marne

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Enjoy breakfast on board before leaving by coach for a walking tour of Paris - The City of Lights. Visit Les Invalides and the Musée de l'Armée, which retraces history from 1871 to 1945, including the two World Wars. The museum has over a thousand objects showing the diversity of its collections: French and foreign uniforms, including some having belonged to illustrious military leaders (Foch, Joffre, de Lattre, Leclerc) and objects used by ordinary soldiers in daily life. While in Paris, the ship will cruise to Lagny-sur-Marne. Rejoin the ship there and enjoy lunch before cruising towards Meaux. Arrive in the evening and enjoy dinner on board.

Day 3 Meaux / Saint Jean les Deux Jumeaux

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
In the morning, tour the Battlefields of the Marne and the Museum of the Great War. The circuit of the Battlefields of the Marne takes you through several of the most important combat areas. Follow the events in chronological order and the direction of the troops as they advanced during the war. The Museum of the Great War houses one of the most unique collections in Europe and proposes an innovative vision of the Great War through modern techniques. Consisting of approximately 50,000 objects and documents, the collection allows visitors to appreciate the worldwide dimensions of the conflict, including 200 complete uniforms. Return to the ship for lunch and continue cruising towards Saint-Jean-Les-Deux-Jumeaux.

Day 4 Saint Jean les Deux Jumeaux / Chateau Thierry

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Cruise through the morning and enjoy breakfast and lunch on board as you pass by Champigny and Drachy. In the afternoon, travel by coach for a visit to the Remembrance Museum of Belleau. Encounter the permanent exhibition presenting the American Military Cemetery and the chapel built on the site of the trenches (Belleau Wood). In another room, find temporary exhibitions about the First World War. Continue on to visit the Aisne-Marne Cemetery at the foot of the wood, where 2,289 soldiers fell fighting during the summer of 1918. Return on board for dinner and remain in port overnight.

Day 5 Chateau Thierry / Dormans / Epernay

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Enjoy a leisurely breakfast and lunch on board as the ship cruises towards Dormans. In the afternoon, join a tour on the famous Champagne Tourist Route. Partake in a guided tour of the village of Hautvillers, once home to the famous Dom Perignon, the legendary Benedictine monk who is frequently (but erroneously) credited with having invented sparkling champagne. Pay special attention to the unique 140 wrought iron signs hanging through the village - they tell a story about the inhabitants. Continue to a prominent champagne house and enjoy a tasting. During this time, the ship will cruise to Epernay. Rejoin the ship in the evening for dinner on board.

Day 6 Epernay / Chalons en Champagne

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Take in the scenery as you cruise the Marne throughout the morning. Arrive in Chalons-en-Champagne in the early afternoon and leave by coach for a tour of Verdun. Begin the tour with a visit to Fort Douaumont, the largest and highest fort on the ring of 19 defensive forts protecting the city of Verdun up through 1915. Continue on to the Douaumont ossuary, where the bodies of 130,000 World War soldiers from each side are at rest together for eternity. Finish the visit with the "Tranchée des Baïonnettes" (bayonet trench), a monument financed by the American George Rand. In the evening, return to the ship for a gala dinner.

Day 7 Chalons en Champagne

  • 1 Breakfast
Enjoy one last breakfast on board before disembarking the ship at 9 AM.

MS Raymonde

Per person starting at
$2,781
Standard cabins on the MS Raymonde
Select a Date
Lower Deck
11 spacious cabins with window and private en-suite facilities. All cabins are equipped with rivate en-suite facilities (shower and WC), TV, radio, telephone (for internal calls only), safe and independent air-conditioning.

Notes

20% discount on children between 2-10 years
30% discount for 3rd person in triple cabin

Includes:
*All meals on board
*Drinks including water, wine, beer, fruit juices, tea, and coffee
*Drinks served at the bar excluding champagne and wines on the wine list
*All excursions
*Welcome cocktail
*Onboard entertainment
*Gala dinner and evening
*Travel assistance and repatriation insurance
*All port fees

Excludes:
*Drinks on the wine list
*Champagne at the bar,
*Drinks served during excursions or transfers
*Cancellation and baggage insurance
*Personal expenses

Included

  • 6 Breakfasts, 5 Lunches, 6 Dinners
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