Board the Amadolce and enjoy 2 nights in Bilbao and 2 nights in San Sebastian leading up to a 7-night roundtrip Bordeaux cruise, followed by 2 nights in the Loire Valley and 1 night in Paris. On your roundtrip Bordeaux cruise enjoy one of the world’s undisputed wine regions. Iconic châteaux, timeless vineyards and delicious wine tastings are plentiful as you visit Cadillac, Pauillac, Saint-Émilion and Libourne. This trip is a must for anyone interested in the best of French culture, lifestyle, wine and food.
Travel to Guernica, subject of one of Picasso’s most renowned paintings
Dive into the contemporary art within the world-famous Guggenheim Museum
Discover the charms of the “City by the Bay of Biscay.”
Explore Bordeaux, classified as a “City of Art and History.”
Travel to the Basque town of Guernica, infamously bombed by German and Italian air forces during the Spanish Civil War – and the subject of one of Picasso’s most renowned paintings. Immerse yourself in culture and visit the open-air market where you’ll find a variety of local specialties, from cheese to peppers to fish. Later in the day, take an informative walking tour through Bilbao and learn how to order Basque tapas, known locally as pintxos, and revered for their small size and big taste.
Day 3: Bilbao | San Sebastian
Take a deep dive into the contemporary art within the world-famous Guggenheim Museum, a work of art itself. Designed by architect Frank Gehry, the museum features a daring and innovative façade and showcases work by such artists as Andy Warhol, German artist Anselm Kiefer, and Basque masters Eduardo Chillida and Jorge Oteiza. Later in the day, transfer to San Sebastián and check into your hotel. In the evening, take a stroll through Old Town, the second oldest neighborhood in the city, where distinctive architecture and pintxos bars beckon, made even more romantic by the evening light.
Day 4: San Sebastian
Discover the charms of the “City by the Bay of Biscay.” Known in the Basque language as Donostia, San Sebastián was once a prominent fishing village and was burned to the ground in 1813 after being occupied by Napoleonic troops. However, by 1887, after rebuilding, the city flourished as a popular tourist destination and spa resort. Later in the day, enjoy some free time in the city renowned for holding the second highest number of Michelin stars per square meter.
Day 5: San Sebastian | Arcachon, France | Bordeaux | Embarkation
Take in the romance of Bordeaux as you pass iconic sights on a scenic morning cruise. Later in the day, dock in Libourne, a gateway to one of Bordeaux’s most elite wine regions. Join an excursion to Saint Émilion, known for its celebrated vineyards, and while here, explore the monolithic church carved out of one piece of limestone rock, and then go under the church to discover its catacombs and caves. Afterwards, enjoy a Grand Cru Classé wine tasting at either Château de Ferrand or Château de Pressac. If you prefer a more active adventure, pedal through the vineyard-rich countryside to Saint-Émilion and then to Château Soutard for a Grand Cru Classé wine tasting. Or explore the countryside and get closer to the iconic grapes of Libourne on a vineyard hike. You can also choose to tour the magnificent Château Vayres, one of the most prestigious historic buildings of Aquitaine.
Spend time discovering the Bastide town of Libourne on a walking tour or stroll through the colorful, open-air market, tasting some of the region’s specialties. Or, you can get your heart pumping by venturing deeper into town on an invigorating bike tour or hiking through one of Libourne’s renowned vineyards. Later in the day, set sail for Blaye, where you’ll enjoy an evening at your leisure.
Once in Blaye, you can join a tour of its 17th-century citadel, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. For a more active excursion, take a bike ride from Blaye through the idyllic French countryside. While in the ancient village of Bourg, take a walking tour and visit the Carriage Museum, which houses a wonderful collection of horse-drawn vehicles. Later in the day, experience the hospitality of this charming medieval village with an exclusive wine festival. Meet the local wine growers and taste the fruits of their labors as well as enjoy live French music and dancing.
Pauillac, a lovely village on the Left Bank of the Gironde Estuary, is gateway to the famed Médoc region, renowned for producing some of the world’s finest Bordeaux wines. You will see some of the most beautiful and famous wine estates, including Château Latour, Château Mouton Rothschild, Château Lafite Rothschild and Château Pichon Longueville. You’ll then visit either Château Gruaud Larose or Château Léoville Poyferré for a tasting of Grand Cru wines.
Visit the impressive Castle of Roquetaillade, an amazingly preserved masterpiece of medieval military architecture owned by the same noble family for 700 years. Or, travel to the Sauternes wine region to either Chateau de Rayne Vigneau or Chateau Guiraud to taste the highly prized golden-hued sweet wines produced here. In the evening, enjoy a spectacular illumination cruise, gazing at the iconic structures of Bordeaux as they glow against the night sky.
The breathtaking capital of the wine world, Bordeaux is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and classified as a “City of Art and History.” You’ll have an opportunity to experience much of the rich culture and architecture on a city tour followed by a visit to the immersive and interactive Bordeaux Wine Museum, housed in an awe-inspiring building. Bike enthusiasts will wish to join a tour along the city’s amazing network of bicycle paths.
Day 12: Bordeax | Disembarkation | Tours | Amboise
Disembark the ship and transfer to Château before arriving in the Loire Valley, where you will check in to your Amboise hotel.
Day 13: Amboise
Visit three of the Loire Valley’s regal châteaux starting with the Château de Chenonceau, one of the most beautiful castles in France. This château has been referred to as the “Women’s Castle” since it is the only castle in the region that has been built, inhabited and saved by women during the Renaissance. Château du Clos Lucé was Leonardo da Vinci’s last home where he completed some of his most famous works under the patronage of the King of France. The Château d’Amboise, perched on a promontory overlooking the Loire River, was the first Renaissance château built in the Loire Valley and features extravagant residences, gardens and a Gothic chapel, where Leonardo da Vinci is buried.
Day 14: Amboise | Paris
Check out of your Amboise hotel and, en route to Paris, visit two more majestic châteaux. While Château de Chambord, located at the heart of Europe’s largest enclosed wooded park, began as an unassuming hunting lodge, it is now the biggest château in the Loire Valley with 426 rooms, 77 staircases and 282 fireplaces. Next, either marvel at the residence of seven kings and ten queens of France at the famous Château de Blois where you'll discover the secrets of the French court, or enjoy free time. Afterwards, transfer by motorcoach to your hotel at Charles De Gaulle Airport.
Day 15: Depart Paris
Bid farewell to Paris and prepare for your flight home.
Violin Deck, 255 square feet, sitting area, floor-to-ceiling windows with French balconies, bathroom with bathtub and shower.
- 7 nights luxury accommodation in an outside stateroom (most with French balconies)
- Computer for internet access
- Entertainment-On-Demand in all staterooms featuring free high-speed internet access, movies, a music library and English language TV stations
- Personalized service from a highly trained Cruise Manager during both cruise and land programs
- Internet and Wi-Fi access
- Regionally inspired cuisine made with locally sourced ingredients
- The Chef’s Table specialty restaurant
- Welcome Cocktail, Welcome Dinner, La Chaîne des Rôtisseurs Dinner, Captain's Cocktail and Gala Dinner
- La Chaîne des Rôtisseurs exclusive dining experience
- Unlimited fine wine, beer and soft drinks with lunch and dinner
- Unlimited sparkling wine and fresh juice with breakfast
- Sip & Sail Cocktail Hour with complimentary wine, beer, spirits and soft drinks
- Tapas, snacks and refreshments served daily in the Main Lounge
- Immersive tours in every destination
- Gentle, regular, active and late-riser tour options
- Bike tours and hikes
- Special Interest Tours
- Knowledgeable guides
- Personal headset for easy exploration
- Airport transfers with purchase of air from the expedition company
- Land Program
- 2 nights hotel NH Collection Riá de Bilbao (orsimilar), including city tour, Guggenheim Museum,Mercado de la Ribera, Guernica and daily breakfast
- Transfer from Bilbao to San Sebastian
- 2 nights hotel in San Sebastian at the NH Collection Aránzazu (or similar), including city tourand daily breakfast
- Transfer from San Sebastian to ship in Bordeauxwith stop in Bayonne
- Transfer from Bordeaux to Tours via motorcoach
- 2 nights Château in the Loire Valley, including city tour,châteaux visits and daily breakfast
- 1 night hotel in Paris at the Pullman Charles deGaulle (or similar), including daily breakfast
Kate was great to work with in the planning stage. She was prompt, helpful, and efficient. Our tour guide, Edwin, was knowledgeable and passionate. We were very happy to have traveled with Adventure Life, it made the trip easy and a true pleasure. We could concentrate on enjoying the experience rather than the details of travel.