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Cruise the Rhone river in charming Lyon

Active & Discovery on the Rhone

Southbound - Example 8 Day Cruise aboard Avalon Poetry II
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This cruise on the Rhone river begins in the culinary capital of France, Lyon and admire the lovely views of the French countryside. Stroll Avignon’s papal palace or attend a wine tasting in an underground cave. With so many included choices, you’ll find the perfect way to spend your day—from a ghost tour in Viviers to a guided bike ride through the Gard region to a chocolate factory tour. Bike through Camargue Regional Nature Park to spot flamingos, or take a painting workshop in Arles. Have the classic sightseeing and relaxing activities in each destination, along with your choice of included arts, culture, and cuisine excursions

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Lyon, France | Embark
Day 2 : Lyon
Day 3 : Tain L'Hermitage | Tournon
Day 4 : Viviers | Lock Bollène
Day 5 : Avignon
Day 6 : Arles
Day 7 : Port Saint Louis
Day 8 : Port Saint Louis | Disembark

Highlights

  • Join an evening drive of Lyon visiting incredible landscapes
  • Explore one of France’s oldest medieval cities
  • Discover the legends, tales and ghost stories through a tour in Viviers
  • Visit an authentic Provencal farmhouse for a delightful experience

Ship

Avalon Poetry II

Places Visited

Activities

Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level

Relaxed

Trip Snapshots

Cruise the Rhone river in charming Lyon Overview of Tournon, France Stop in Avignon on your cruise of the Rhône river. The Palais des Papes dominates the Avignon skyline Arles overview

Day 1 Lyon, France | Embark

Welcome to France. Your suite ship is ready for boarding. Flights into Lyon must arrive by 3:30 pm. Guests must be on board ship by 5 pm.

Discovery: Join a guided tour for an evening drive of Lyon, lined with incredible landscapes, from Fourvière Hill for a city bird’s eye view, to Presqu’île district, for catching the heart of Lyon and its ever-changing river bank view.

Day 2 Lyon

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Active: Take a guided urban hiking through Lyon’s secret passageways (Traboules) for a glimpse into the city’s 19th-century silk trade, OR:

Discovery: Take a guided culinary walk through Lyon to discover architecture and local specialties in a festival of colors, aromas and taste exclusive for Avalon guests, OR:

Discovery: Join our cooking class to learn to make your own Lyonnaise specialty.

This afternoon, you might take an off-the-beaten-path guided optional tour through private and public terraces for panoramic views of Lyon, starting on the roof of the Basilica de Fourvière.

Day 3 Tain L'Hermitage | Tournon

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Active: For a unique experience and panoramic views, join a guided excursion this morning on a rail-bike along the descent of the Gorges du Doux, OR:

Active: Join a guided hike in the picturesque vineyards surrounding the twin cities of Tournon and Tain-l’Hermitage, OR:

Discovery: Have a true “chocolate experience” with a tour of the Valrhona Chocolate Factory and Museum, OR:

Classic: Take a guided sightseeing tour of Tournon, twin city to Tain-l’Hermitage and one of France’s oldest medieval cities. You’ll see its imposing 16th-century castle.

Discovery: Join a cooking demonstration and learn how to prepare a Lyonnaise treat while sailing to Viviers.

VIVIERS
Discovery: For a different perspective on the town, join us on a nighttime guided tour of Viviers, discovering the legends, tales and ghost stories of this enchanting town.

Day 4 Viviers | Lock Bollène

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Active: Immerse yourself in the scenery with a guided kayak Trip in the Gorges de l’Ardèche on the spectacular canyons of this Rhône tributary OR find inspiration from the amazing landscape of the region with a guided hike through the Natural Reserve of Cirque d’Estre OR Join a guided visit for a surprising underground Wine Tasting under the direction of an expert Speleologist (cave guide) and an oenologist.

Classic: Visit the awe-inspiring water facility at Bollène and tour the power plant of this immense lock along the Rhône.

Cruise through the soaring walls of the Lock Bollène on your way to Avignon this afternoon.

Day 5 Avignon

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Active: Join a leisurely guided e-bike ride through Gard region; after all, no need to pedal on the way back, OR:

Discovery: Visit an authentic provencal farmhouse for a delightful experience to fill your senses as you see how essential oils are created, OR:

Classic: Take a guided sightseeing tour of Avignon, including a visit to the world’s largest gothic fortress, the 14th-century Palace Of the Popes. Also, explore Les Halles’ covered market.

This afternoon, you may choose to join a guided optional tour of the famed wine cellars of Châteauneuf-du-Pape for a wine tasting, or you may opt for a guided optional excursion on a kayak through the waters of Pont du Gard, the highest of all elevated Roman aqueducts.

You may choose to spend free time to explore Avignon known as the heart of Provence. Take a leisurely stroll or a bike ride through the tree-lined streets and leafy squares within Avignon’s medieval walls.

Day 6 Arles

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Active: Experience the legends of Val d’Enfer with a Guided Hike; an area taking its name from the unique white limestone rock formations. The excursion includes an unforgettable audio/video experience of light, images, and music at the Carrières de Lumières, OR:

Discovery: Attend a painting workshop to learn the style and techniques of Vincent van Gogh. Create your own painting in the style of the classic master who took inspiration from the Provence light and landscape in Arles, OR:

Classic: Join a guided sightseeing tour of Arles to get to know this charming town, including a visit with a local bullfighter to learn about the secrets and traditions handed down through generations.

This afternoon, join an optional excursion or enjoy free time to shop, stroll, or just relax in a lovely park along Arles’ Boulevard des Lices. Later, enjoy onboard live entertainment.

Day 7 Port Saint Louis

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Enjoy a morning cruise to Port-Saint-Louis on the sky deck of your ship.

Active: Take a guided bike ride through the Camargue Natural Park with an eye out for more than 400 bird species including pink flamingos along the trails of the Mediterranean’s Rhône delta, OR:

Discovery: Enjoy a taste of local life with a visit to an oyster farm in the Camargue Natural Park on a guided tour to enjoy an oyster tasting and learn how this delicacy is farmed.

Classic: Visit one of France’s most popular and pristine nature reserves on this memorable visit to a traditional black bull ranch in Camargue Regional Nature Park!

Day 8 Port Saint Louis | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
Your cruise ends with breakfast this morning. Flights should not leave Marseille airport before 10 am.

Avalon Poetry II

Deals

Flexible Rebooking Policy
Travelers currently booked on departures from March 14-June 30, 2020 can rebook to any voyage departing before December 31, 2022, with no rebooking fees. Plus, receive a travel credit of $200 per person redeemable for future travel. 
Applies to all departures up to Dec 31, 2020

Flexible New Booking Policy
For new reservations made from March 24, 2020, forward travelers have the option to cancel their trip up to three days prior to departure and normal cancellation penalties will be waived. Deposits remain non-refundable. Some restrictions may apply. Contact us for more details.
Applies to all departures up to Dec 31, 2020

Per person starting at
$3,849
Select a Date
Cat. E
Avalon Deluxe Stateroom: 172 SQ. FT. Comfort Collection Beds, Bedside tables with reading lamps, L'Occitane bath products, Under-bed luggage storage, Complimentary bottled water, Individual climate control, Mirror in the bathroom, Full shower with glass door, Vanity, Memory foam mattress, European-style duvets.
Select a Date
Cat. D
Avalon Deluxe Stateroom: 172 SQ. FT. Comfort Collection Beds, Bedside tables with reading lamps, L'Occitane bath products, Under-bed luggage storage, Complimentary bottled water, Individual climate control, Mirror in the bathroom, Full shower with glass door, Vanity, Luxurious mattress, European-style duvets.
Select a Date
Cat. B
Panorama Suite: 200 SQ. FT. Comfort Collection Beds, Bedside tables with reading lamps, L'Occitane bath products, Under-bed luggage storage, Telephone, In-room safe, Contemporary design, Marble countertops in the bathroom, 6-person sitting area, Writing desk, Sofa, Memory foam mattress, European-style duvets.
Select a Date
Cat. A
Panorama Suite: 200 SQ. FT. Comfort Collection Beds, Bedside tables with reading lamps, L'Occitane bath products, Under-bed luggage storage, Telephone, In-room safe, contemporary design, Marble countertops in the bathroom, 6-person sitting area, Writing desk, Sofa, Luxurious mattress, European-style duvets.
Select a Date
Cat. P
Panorama Suite: 200 SQ. FT. Comfort Collection Beds, Bedside tables with reading lamps, L'Occitane bath products, Under-bed luggage storage, Telephone, Well-stocked minibar, In-room safe, Contemporary design, Marble countertops in the bathroom, 6-person sitting area, Writing desk, Sofa, Memory foam mattress, European-style duvets
Select a Date
Royal Suite
Royal Suite: 300 SQ. FT. Comfort Collection Beds, Bedside tables with reading lamps, L'Occitane bath products, Under-bed luggage storage, Telephone, Well-stocked minibar, Marble countertops in the bathroom, Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Window with Open-Air Balcony, Full shower with glass door, Luxurious mattress toppers, European-style duvets.

Notes

Throughout the Ship:
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi
  • Panoramic windows
  • Elegant, contemporary design & decor
  • Friendly, English-speaking crew & Cruise Director
  • Sky Deck with whirlpool, shade awnings, game area, and premium lounges
  • Covered Observation Lounge
  • Club Lounge with 24-hour self-serve beverage station with complimentary cappuccinos, lattes, tea, hot chocolate & premium coffees, as well as treats throughout the day
Suites & Staterooms:
  • Comfort Collection Beds with choice of mattress firmness
  • Egyptian super-combed cotton linens
  • Bathrobes & slippers
  • Premium L'Occitane bath products
  • Large bathroom featuring a shower with glass door
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with free movie channels
  • Individual climate control and in-room safe
  • USB Ports
  • Complimentary bottled water daily
  • And, much more.
Health & Fitness:
  • Bikes
  • Canoe, kayak and jogging excursions
  • Maps for hiking, biking, and jogging routes
  • Fitness and wellness activities
  • Fitbits®
  • All through your Avalon Adventure Host
Dining:
  • FlexDining for more venue and seating options, including flexible seating times in our Panorama Dining Room
  • Avalon Fresh healthy cuisine options at every meal
  • Complimentary sparkling wine with breakfast; wine, beer, or soft drinks with every lunch and dinner
  • Early and Late Riser breakfast options
  • Daily full buffet breakfast with made-to-order egg station, hot and cold menu items
  • Daily lunch buffet with pasta or carving stations
  • Alternative light lunch at Sky Grill on the Sky Deck (weather permitting)
  • Daily Afternoon Tea featuring tea, coffee, sweet treats & sandwiches
  • 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
Notes:
  • 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 designed included activities with a choice of experiences.
Payment & Cancellation Policies
Travel Agents
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Our guide and driver were very good with their knowledge and were very helpful with our questions. It was a very pleasant visit that would have been impossible to do on our own. Hotels and restaurants were fantastic. The special places we got to go to, like the kitchens, were great. Enjoyed the entire trip!
Meyer Smolen

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