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Paris to Normandy for WWII Historians with London

11 days with Avalon Waterways  Rating: Deluxe

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River Cruise Itinerary
Day 1 Arrive in Paris, France (Embarkation)
Welcome to Paris, France’s capital on the Seine River, the “City of Light,” where romance fills the air. This afternoon, board your river cruise vessel and meet your crew at an evening welcome reception. Before dinner, your ship glides out of Paris. (D)
 
NOTE: Flights into Paris must arrive by 2:30 pm. Guests must be on board ship by 5 pm.
 
Day 2 Vernon–Les Andelys
This morning in Vernon, choose between a guided visit of Giverny and a visit to Bizy Castle. Claude Monet lived at GIVERNY for almost 43 years (1883-1926), and viewed his flower and water gardens as works of art—just like his paintings. See his collection of Japanese prints, his charming house, and his biggest sources of inspiration. Or, visit BIZY CASTLE, built in 1740 and nicknamed “Normandy’s Versailles.” It is known for its famous stables—inspired by those at Versailles—and its magnificent courtyard and water garden. This afternoon, while your ship is sailing to Les Andelys, situated on a bend of the Seine and one of the most beautiful places in France, enjoy the on board lecture by our expert. Join a Local Guide for a GUIDED WALK of the town, visiting the PARISH CHURCH OF LE PETIT ANDELY. Imposing Château Gaillard, built by England’s King Richard the Lionheart as a fortress in 1196, is seen above the town. Constructed in only a year, it is a masterpiece of medieval military architecture. (B,L,D)
 
Day 3 Caudebec
Today, join a guided excursion along the “NORMANDY VILLAGES ROUTE” to see some of Normandy’s charming half-timbered houses with their sloping thatched roofs, often sporting blue wooden doors and window shutters, or along the “NORMANDY ABBEYS ROUTE,” a short drive from Caudebec. More than 100 abbeys once covered this region, which has a microclimate suited to growing fruit such as apples, pears, plums, and cherries. The afternoon is free to explore on your own or to join an optional excursion to pretty coastal Honfleur. (B,L,D)
 
Day 4 Caudebec
Make your choice today between an included full-day excursion to the historic NORMANDY LANDING BEACHES—with poignant sites such as Omaha Beach, the Pointe du Hoc monument, and the American Cemetery—or a “TASTE OF NORMANDY” for an in-depth look at this picturesque, mainly agricultural region. The most important products are dairy, apples, and grain. Camembert cheese is a specialty, as is CALVADOS, a strong apple brandy you’ll have the chance to taste at a local distillery. And for a touch of history, visit the famous BAYEUX TAPESTRY. (B,L,D )
 
Day 5 Rouen
Rouen, capital of Upper Normandy, is an important commercial city perhaps best known for its connection to Joan of Arc, who lived, was imprisoned, and burned at the stake in the marketplace of this town in 1431. Enjoy the included GUIDED WALK through the medieval quarter with its half-timbered, glazed-tile houses, and take photos of the intricate Gros Horloge astronomical clock, dating back to the 16th century. Visit the gothic CATHEDRAL, which was once the tallest building in the world and the subject of a series of paintings by Claude Monet or join the included WALKING TOUR focused on the French resistance, the daily life of the Rouennais during the occupation and the sites that were heavily bombed. The afternoon is free to explore on your own after which, upon departure for Conflans, you may participate in our onboard lecture. (B,L,D)
 
Day 6 Conflans
After breakfast you may either join our included guided excursion to AUVERS-SUR-OISE, the quaint little town where Vincent Van Gogh lived and died, or to Napoleon and Josephine’s CHÂTEAU DE MALMAISON just outside Paris. Requiring extensive renovations, this large country estate was purchased by Josephine Bonaparte in 1799 while Napoleon was fighting in Egypt. It was her aim to make it “the most beautiful and curious garden in Europe, a model of good cultivation.” (B,L,D)
 
Day 7 Paris
Known as one of the world’s most romantic and lively cities, Paris is a delight for all your senses. Your included CITY SIGHTSEEING shows you magnificent must-see sights, such as Notre Dame Cathedral, the unique Louvre Museum with its glass pyramid as a contrast to its ancient architecture, the commemorative Arc de Triomphe, and the Eiffel Tower. Alternatively, you may wish to join a GUIDED WALK through historic Île St. Louis with its narrow one-way streets and Île de la Cité, the center of Paris where the medieval city was founded and home to NOTRE DAME CATHEDRAL. In your free time, stroll down the Champs-Elysées with its lavish cafés, or perhaps visit the world-famous Louvre or Montmartre with its gleaming white Sacré Coeur Basilica and bevy of artists on Place du Tertre. Paris is also well known for its colorful nightlife, and an optional outing to one of Paris’ famous cabaret shows might make the perfect finale to your Seine cruise vacation. (B,L,D)
 
Day 8 Paris-London, England
Say goodbye to the Avalon portion of your vacation after breakfast. An included transfer delivers you to the train station, where you join your Monograms package. Travel to London by HIGH-SPEED EUROSTAR TRAIN (standard class). Your Local Hosts will be on hand to help you make the most of your time. (B)

Day 9 London 
Morning guided sightseeing includes all of London’s famous landmarks. Drive past the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben; Westminster Abbey, where Prince William and Kate Middleton were married; Whitehall’s mounted horseguards; the Prime Minister’s Downing Street; and Piccadilly Circus. Take photos of the London Eye, the giant Ferris wheel situated on the river bank, and the Shard, the tallest building in Western Europe. Then, visit ST. PAUL’S CATHEDRAL (except on Sundays). Sir Christopher Wren’s masterpiece with its world-famous dome is an iconic feature of London’s skyline, and the awe-inspiring interior holds fascinating stories about its history. The final highlight is the ceremonial pageantry of the Changing of the Guard (if held). (B)

Day 10 London
Your Local Hosts will help you make the most of your day. You could take a flight on the London Eye for fantastic views over the city, or visit Windsor Castle, one of the official residences of Queen Elizabeth II, for a tour of the magnificent State Apartments. In the evening, see one of the dozens of celebrated West End shows, or enjoy dinner at a traditional London pub, followed by a relaxing night-time cruise on the Thames River. There are so many possibilities to make your stay unforgettable. (B)

Day 11 London
Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (B)
Tour Map
River Cruise Highlights
  • Cruise: deluxe 7-night cruise in an outside stateroom with Avalon’s exclusive Comfort Collection BedsSM
  • Paris (Embarkation): onboard welcome reception
  • Vernon–Les Andelys: choice of excursions to Giverny or Bizy Castle; guided walk in Les Andelys, visit the Parish Church of Le Petit Andely; onboard lecture
  • Caudebec: choice of excursion along either the “Normandy Villages Route” or the “Normandy Abbeys Route”
  • Caudebec: choice of excursions to Normandy landing beaches or “A Taste of Normandy”
  • Rouen: guided sightseeing, see the Astronomical Clock and visit the cathedral or guided sightseeing focused on the French resistance; onboard lecture
  • Conflans: choice of excursions to visit Auvers-sur-Oise or Napoleon and Josephine’s Château de Malmaison
  • Paris: choice of guided sightseeing or “Heart of Paris” walk, visit Notre Dame Cathedral; in the afternoon included visit at Museum of the Order of the Liberation
  • London: 3 nights hotel accommodation with buffet breakfast; Monograms Local Host Service & Destination Guide with city map; guided sightseeing, inside visits and special features are shown in UPPERCASE; high-speed Eurostar train from Paris to London (standard class*) with porterage for one suitcase; transfers to/from train stations.
  • Special onboard and onshore experiences presented by entertainers, artisans, and experts, designed to enrich your cruise.
  • Join in a fascinating Pastry or Chocolate Tasting.
All This Included
Combine time in France’s marvelous capital with discoveries of quaint towns along the Seine and in the picturesque Normandy region. Embark in Paris, sailing to Vernon, for a choice of guided visits to either Claude Monet’s stunning gardens at Giverny or magnificent Bizy Castle. Continue to Les Andelys with its Château Gaillard, built by England’s King Richard the Lionheart in 1196, and enjoy guided sightseeing. Then, on to Caudebec, where you choose between an included excursion to the poignant Normandy landing beaches or a fascinating “Taste of Normandy.” Visit Joan of Arc’s historic Rouen or join a walking tour focused on the French resistance, and in Conflans, choose between a visit of Vincent van Gogh’s Auvers-sur-Oise or Napoleon and Josephine’s elegant Château de Malmaison before heading back to Paris. During your last day on the Seine, a Local Expert will show you some of the famous sights, such as the Arc de Triomphe, Eiffel Tower, and more! And as this is a cruise with a WWII theme, you’ll enjoy onboard lectures by our WWII expert. Trade your “Bonjours” for “Cheerios” as an included high-speed train transfer whisks you to London for three exciting nights. Your Monograms package includes hotel reservations, guided sightseeing, daily breakfast, a destination guide to familiarize you with the city, and best of all—the services of a Monograms Local Host® to welcome you and lend a helping hand throughout your stay. This “friend in the city” can answer your questions, offer suggestions, and help make your vacation what you want it to be. During your guided sightseeing tour with a local expert, see the sights you cannot go home without seeing—Parliament, Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, Piccadilly Circus, and more. Enjoy VIP access to St. Paul’s Cathedral, the wedding site for Lady Diana and Prince Charles, and witness the Changing of the Guard (if held). You’ll also have plenty of free time to maybe join the blood-curdling London Dungeon tour, take in a West End theater show, indulge in Afternoon Tea at one of the city’s grand hotels, and sample a pint in a real British pub. Day trips are available out of the city to mysterious Stonehenge, Bath to see the Roman ruins, or Shakespeare’s Stratford-upon-Avon. Monograms offers over 40 exciting activities and excursions, so you have loads of options.
  • Panoramic windows throughout.
  • Elegant, contemporary design.
  • Remarkable service.
  • Included excursions with Certified Local Guides; sightseeing as outlined in the day by-day itinerary; inside visits and special features are shown in UPPERCASE.
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi throughout the ship.
  • 24-hour self-serve beverage station.
  • Premium coffees, cappuccinos & lattes.
  • Upscale bar serving premium spirits.
  • Fitness Center with state-of-the-art equipment.
  • Comfort Collection BedsSM.
  • Premium L'Occitane bath products.
  • Large bathrooms - showers with glass doors.
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with movie channels.
  • Spacious 3-door closets for ample storage.
  • Complimentary bottled water daily.
  • Choice of regional, Western and vegetarian dishes.
  • Daily early- and late-riser breakfasts.
  • Full buffet breakfast with sparkling wine.
  • Complimentary juices with breakfast.
  • Made-to-order egg station at breakfast.
  • Daily full breakfast buffet with hot/cold menu items.
  • Complimentary soft drinks with lunch.
  • Daily lunch buffet with pasta and carving stations.
  • Alternate grill fare at the Sky Bistro (weather permitting).
  • Chef-inspired regional recipes.
  • Four-course dinners with open seating.
  • Nightly choice of appetizers, soups, salads, entrées, desserts or cheese.
  • Complimentary wine (including regional) at dinner.
  • Complimentary soft drinks or beer with dinner.
  • Night Fare served at 10:30 pm.
  • Well-stocked library with books, cards and games.
  • Headsets for shore excursions.
  • Professional Cruise Director.
  • Friendly, English-speaking crew.
  • Non-smoking interior.
  • Light dinners and wines in the Panorama Bistro on Suite Ships®.
  • And, much more.
Accommodations on this Tour
Cruising: Outside cabin onboard Avalon Creativity 
Paris: Marriott Opera Ambassador
London: Park Plaza Westminster Bridge

Pre and Post Add-ons
Extra nights per person in Paris:
in single room from $303 to $777, in twin room from $251 to $404

Extra nights per person in London:
in single room from $192 to $298, in twin room from $99 to $152
Notes
  • Cabin upgrades available.
  • Supplement to upgrade to standard premier on Eurostar train Paris-London: $190.
  • Please call for single accommodation price. Triples not available.
  • Port charges of $168 are not included.
  • Gratuities to Local Guides & Excursion Drivers are included.
  • 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 ask your Vacations To Go travel counselor for more information.
Terms and Conditions

* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines. Sorry, we are unable to offer air from countries other than the U.S. However, for those international customers who are able to arrange their own transportation to the trip origination city, we are able to offer the land/cruise portion of the package at the price quoted.



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