Viking River Cruises, Emerald Waterways and Uniworld are among the cruise lines offering wine-themed river cruises, and all are worth checking out if you’d like to experience European wine regions at a nice, slow, casual pace.
Yet another option is Avalon Waterways, which has cruise ships featuring an array of facilities and conveniences. You can tap into the complimentary Wi-Fi to keep in touch with family and friends back home, stay perfectly in style with a visit to the hair salon, and keep up with daily workouts at the fitness center. In short, Avalon ships are built with an impressive collection of amenities to enhance one’s journey all along the way.
Here’s a look at two of Avalon’s wine-themed river cruises in 2015…
- Grand France Wine River Cruise (16 days from Paris to Cote d’Azur, departing October 20) — This vacation showcases France’s scenery, history and culture as you sail along its beautiful rivers.
Embark in Paris and head northwest along the Seine River into the picturesque Normandy region. Dock at Conflans and choose between a guided excursion to Vincent van Gogh’s Auvers-sur-Oise or Napoleon and Josephine’s elegant Chateau de Malmaison. Next up: your choice of a guided visit to Claude Monet’s stunning gardens at Giverny or remarkable Bizy Castle. Then it’s on to Joan of Arc’s historic Rouen, where you choose between an included excursion to the poignant Normandy landing beaches or a fascinating “Taste of Normandy.”
Continue to Les Andelys — home of Chateau Gaillard, built by England’s King Richard the Lionheart in 1196 — and enjoy free time to explore this medieval town on your own. Return to Paris, where you’ll disembark and travel south to fascinating Beaune for a wine tasting.
In Chalon-sur-Saone, board your second cruise ship and sail on to medieval Tournus, Macon, the twin cities of Tournon and Tain l’Hermitage, Viviers, Avignon, and Arles, as well as France’s gastronomic capital of Lyon, where you have time to explore this fascinating city. Your vacation ends with an overnight in the stunning Cote d’Azur on the French Riviera.
- Burgundy and Provence Wine River Cruise (11 days from Cote d’Azur to Paris, October 29) — Opportunities abound on this grand vacation to learn about France and to taste its sumptuous wines and cuisine.
Your adventure begins with two overnights and guided sightseeing in Paris, the “City of Light.” Travel south to fascinating Beaune for a Burgundy wine tasting, then board your ship in quaint Chalon-sur-Saone and set sail for lovely Tournus, Macon, France’s gastronomic capital of Lyon, as well as medieval Tournon, charming Viviers, Avignon and Arles. Before disembarking your ship in Arles, sail through the peaceful Camargue area.
Your vacation ends with an overnight on the French Riviera, also known as the Cote d’Azur. This cruise vacation has it all — historic sites, charming towns, spectacular cuisine and more.
Tomorrow: Two wine cruising options on the legendary Danube.