France River Cruises
Meandering through the beautiful countryside on a river boat is an idyllic way to experience France. This slower paced mode of travel, away from the noise of traffic, lets you be a part of the charming rural scene. River boats also stop right in the heart of towns and cities - very convenient for exploring places of interest at your leisure.
France by river boat...You can discover France by river boat on sailings with our preferred partners, AMA Waterways, Avalon Waterways, Uniworld and Viking River Cruises. These companies offer a selection of cruises on the Seine, Rhône, Saône and Rhine rivers:
- The Seine from Paris to the Normandy Beaches - Sail round-trip from Paris on this eight day cruise. Spend two nights in Paris and call at Conflans, Vernon, Rouen and Les Andelys. Excursions include Monet's home and gardens at Giverny, the famous Château Gaillard, the splendid Gothic Cathedral in Rouen and a tour of the D-Day landing beaches.
- The Rhône and Saône through Burgundy and Provence - Sail between Arles or Avignon and Chalon-sur-Saône for a delightful eight-day experience in Southern France. Call at Viviers, Tournon, Vienne and Lyon. Enjoy wine tours of the Burgundy and Beaujolais wine regions. Extend your cruise to include a land stay in Paris or the Côte d'Azur. Avalon Waterways offers a wine cruise on the October 30, 2011 departure with special lectures and tastings at no additional cost while June 26, 2011 is a Jazz theme sailing.
- Rhine River cruises call at Strasbourg - Discover the capital of the Alsace region and home of the European Parliament. Strasbourg sits on the border of France and Germany and has many points of interest. It is also a good jumping off point for visiting the Alsace wine region.
- Back to back and longer sailings
- 15 or 16-day Grand France sailings combine the Seine, Rhône and Saône cruises mentioned above.
- Add Paris to Central European river cruises with a connection between Paris and your river boat by high speed train. Examples are Budapest to Paris, for 19 Days; Prague to Paris for 12 days; Amsterdam to Paris for 12 or 13 days and the ultimate Paris to Istanbul, covering 10 countries in 31 days.
- Land extensions - Hotel stays in Paris, the Côte d'Azur and charming Aix-en- Provence let you enjoy more of France before or after your cruise.
The River Cruise Lifestyle
Think of river boats as floating boutique hotels and you'll have a good idea of what they are like. The interiors have grace and style while the food and service is outstanding. They offer levels of luxury in line with cruise ships. You'll certainly be pampered as you sail serenely through France seeing all the highlights along the way.
Consider the many advantages of river cruising:
- Central locations - River boats dock conveniently downtown. Step ashore in the heart of town when you're ready to explore. Cruises from Paris include two overnights on board before you sail so you can visit Paris without having to book a pre-cruise hotel.
- Outstanding excursions - Included excursions are a real plus and a major advantage of taking a river cruise. Informative local guides lead complimentary sightseeing tours in each town. Additional excursions are available for purchase. Quietvox headsets ensure tour members can always hear the guide.
- English speaking staff & guides - Tour guides and staff speak English on the cruises offered by our preferred partners, Avalon Waterways, Uniworld and Viking River Cruises.
- Scenic cruising - Relax and enjoy the scenery away from busy highways and traffic noise. River boats feature plenty of picture windows in public areas and open deck space where you can sit back and take in the view. Many staterooms have picture windows while suites have French doors or wall-to-wall panoramic windows.
- No motion sickness - Since you aren't on the open sea and river boats are very stable, there's no problem with motion.
- Friendly companions - There is a great camaraderie on board these small vessels which in France carry from 132 to 150 passengers. River cruises are known for being very friendly.
- Convenience - Unpack once and the river boat is your floating hotel. This is one of the real pleasures of any type of cruising.
River Cruises certainly offer excellent value with so many items included in the fare: Wine, beer and soft drinks with dinner, soft drinks with lunch (new for 2011 from Uniworld), an excursion in each town and on some sailings, airport transfers on arrival and departure days. Packages can be built to include air from your closest gateway, pre and post cruise land stays and transfers making your river cruise a more all-inclusive experience.
If you're looking for an easy and convenient way to travel, away from busy highways and traffic, a river cruise could be just right for you. You'll see the region's highlights, the scenic countryside and enjoy great food, wine and pampering along the way. Sounds great doesn't it? Why not consider a France river cruise for your next vacation?