Sail through the dramatic Rhine Gorge, the most beautiful stretch of the Rhine River dotted every mile with ancient castles. Stop in Breisach, Germany, the gateway to Germany’s Black Forest. Lyon is a showcase of medieval and Renaissance architecture. Continue to the city of Tournon beautifully nestled among vineyards. Join a guided walk of this medieval treasure with Roman ruins and a fascinating 16th-century castle. In Avignon, visit the Palace of the Popes and take pictures of the bridge in the famous song “Sur le pont d’Avignon.” This remarkable river cruise will then arrive in Arles, the capital of the Provence region and famous for its 1st-century Roman Amphitheater.
See Heidelberg Castle to see the ruins of the renaissance treasure
Experience the Vogtsbauernohf open-air-museum in the magical Black Forest
Discover why Lyon is known as the gastronomic capital of France
Take a tour to the fortress city of Avignon visit the Palace of the Popes
Classic: Enjoy free time in Koblenz this morning before sailing through the Rhine Gorge to Rüdesheim. Sail past the legendary rock of the Lorelei where the siren of mythology sang songs to lure ill-fated sailors.
RÜDESHEIM Discovery: Take a guided tour of the incredible Mechanical Music Museum for a one-of-a-kind instrumental experience. Based on departure, enjoy a local special treat.
Enjoy live entertainment on board the ship this evening.
Classic: Join a city sightseeing tour, including Strasbourg’s gothic, stained-glass cathedral with its celebrated ancient murals and astronomical clock, as well as the magical La Petite France District.
Also, choose to join a guided optional excursion to the historic Maginot Line—an impressive installation of pre-WWII defensive fortifications designed to protect the eastern border of France, or visit Alsace’s wine country today.
Alternatively, take some free time in Strasbourg to visit a museum or stroll across the city center.
Discovery: Join a full-day guided tour to the magical Black Forest to experience the Vogtsbauernohf open-air-museum, visit an authentic water mill and see a traditional butter-making demonstration.
Discovery: Visit to Badische Winzerkeller, the largest German wine producer in Europe. Discover Germany’s southernmost wine country in Baden—ideally situated between the hills of the Black Forest and the Rhine River. Learn about the vintners’ process in the vineyards here and enjoy a wine tasting.
Choose to join a guided optional excursion to visit the charming village of Colmar in the morning, with its half-timbered medieval and early renaissance buildings.
Day 8: Basel | Disembark | St. Jean de Losne | Embark
Classic: Join a guided sightseeing tour to survey Lyon from Fourvière Hill with its numerous churches. Also explore the Old Town with its maze of medieval alleyways, and the lively cafés, monuments and famed fountain of Place des Terreaux.
Spend free time biking through Lyon’s town squares, over bridges and along the banks where the Rhône and Saône rivers meet.
Discovery: Be our guest for a WWII & French Resistance Lecture on board the ship.
On the next day: Classic: Join a culinary walk through the city to discover why it is known as the gastronomic capital of France.
The rest of your day is free to explore, relax, or shop in France’s third-largest city. Take a bike from the ship and explore local produce markets and parks, or take a leisurely tour of the city’s more than 100 murals.
Classic: Take a morning guided walking tour to explore Tournon—one of France’s oldest medieval cities. See its 16th-century castle and Roman ruins between the Rhône River and the granite slopes of the Hermitage.
VIVIERS Classic: Explore the pale-stone buildings of Viviers on a late afternoon guided walking tour of this charming village. See its Romanesque cathedral and Old Town with a mix of historical Christian, Roman and medieval influences.
Classic: Enjoy a guided walking tour of Arles, the captivating city of the Provence region. Visit the Roman Amphitheater in this visually stunning city.
Discovery: Attend a painting workshop to learn the style and techniques of Vincent van Gogh. Create a unique painting in the style of the classic master who took inspiration from the Provence light and landscape in Arles.
Consider a guided optional excursion to the Carrières de Lumières (Cathedral of Images) and be immersed in a truly unique experience of art, sound and light in the old quarries of Val d’Enfer.
Take advantage of any free time remaining with a stop in Café Van Gogh for a glass of wine, to relax and watch the world go by.
Day 15: Port St. Louis | Disembark
The cruise ends with breakfast this morning. Flights should not leave Marseille airport before 10 am.
Daily four-course a la carte dinner in the Panorama Dining Room with choice of appetizers, soups, salads, entrees, and desserts. Includes selections of regional recipes, Western dishes, and vegetarian options.
Enjoy a tasting menu with a view in the Panorama Bistro - a less formal "sit-down" atmosphere while lingering over several satisfying selections
Captain’s welcome & farewell receptions and dinners with sparkling wine and canapés
Panorama Lounge featuring premium spirits and Avalon specialty cocktails, along with local entertainment special guests
Cocktails available on the Sky Deck
Fresh fruit available throughout the day
In the event of water level problems or any problems of a technical nature, it may be necessary to operate the itinerary by motorcoach or to alter the program.
Included visits and special features are subject to change. If a change is necessary, a substitute will be offered.
Please check visa requirements with your local consulate(s); responsibility for obtaining visas rests with the traveler.
Avalon has designedincluded activitieswith a choice of experiences.
Initial deposit is $450, and most travelers will call our office and pay the deposit with a credit card.
Final payment is due 100 days prior to departure by check, money order, Visa, MasterCard, Discover/Novus, and American Express. All final payments by credit card may be subject to a surcharge and maximum of $20,000 charge
The trip was terrific with great planning on your part. Most of the adventures were not mainstream and somewhat off the beaten path which made it especially enjoyable!! We felt taken care of and you all were readily available to respond to questions and issues. I would highly recommend your company and friends have already expressed interest based on our pictures and excitement.