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French Waterways

10 days with Tauck  Rating: Deluxe

Tauck Offers for this River Cruise

  • Single travelers pay no supplement on river cruises in Category 1 cabins. Click here for eligible departures.
  • Single travelers receive $1,000 per person off the single supplement of select river cruises in certain cabin categories. Click here for eligible departures.

Offers subject to change or withdrawal, availability is limited. Some offers are not combinable.

River Cruise Itinerary
Day 1 Bonjour, Paris
Your cruise begins 6:00 PM, InterContinental Paris Le Grand. A transfer is included from Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport or the Gare de Lyon, Gare du Nord or Charles de Gaulle station to InterContinental Paris Le Grand, located in the heart of the city. Join us tonight for a welcome reception and dinner at Fouquet’s, since 1908 a Paris icon; the brasserie has long been known as a favorite of celebrities. After dinner, the pleasures continue with an "Illuminations Tour" of Paris, providing glittery views of the city’s nighttime lights and a beguiling ending to your first day in Paris. (D)
Day 2 The pleasures of Paris
From the grand boulevards and manicured gardens of the Right Bank to the artsy Left Bank, favorite haunt of writers, dreamers and musicians, Parisian neighborhoods reflect the true essence of the city. Choose between a city orientation tour or a walking tour of Le Marais, with its stately mansions, half-timbered houses, covered passageways, and narrow cobbled streets, including Victor Hugo’s home, the Place des Vosges, Village Saint-Paul and la rue des Roisers, Paris' medieval Jewish quarter. Then, Paris is yours to experience in whatever way pleases you for the rest of the day and evening. Perhaps you’ll visit one of the city’s lesser-known museums… a little jewel of a church tucked away on a quiet side street… or an agreeable sidewalk café for some Parisian-watching. (B)
Day 3 Fast train to Lyon & embark the riverboat
After a morning at leisure in Paris, travel first class to Lyon on the high-speed TGV train. With a 2,000-year-old history, Lyon grew up at the confluence of the Rhône and Saône Rivers; today it is France’s third largest city with a heritage of Roman ruins and Renaissance-era architecture. Known historically for its prominent silk industry, the city’s reputation today is as the gastronomic capital of France, a center of youthful design and futuristic architecture. You’ll board your floating hotel ms Emerald  in Lyon, then join us for a Captain’s welcome reception and dinner to celebrate the start of your cruise in festive fashion. (B, D)
Day 4 Lyon, a tasting lunch and wine tasting
Lyon is considered the "culinary capital of France" – quite a compliment in a country famed for its cuisine and fine vintages. Today includes a tasting at the Les Halles de Lyon, the celebrated indoor food market that's been a fixture in Lyon since 1850 and offers an unbelievable array of breads, cheeses, fresh fruits and vegetables, sausages, wines, chocolates and more. Everything is fresh and delicious, and it's said that the best chefs in Lyon shop here; you’ll enjoy tastings of various goodies paired with appropriate wines! But Lyon is also a city with a venerable history and considerable charm, as you’ll discover when you visit Vieux Lyon, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the first protected historic district in France. Sightseeing also includes the Basilica of Notre-Dame-de-Fourvière, built atop the ruins of an ancient Roman forum. Then it’s off to the celebrated wine-growing region of Beaujolais for a tasting in the countryside before continuing your cruise to Viviers. (B, L, D)
Day 5 Ancient Viviers & an intro to pétanque
The riverboat cruises this morning to Viviers, a walled city with origins in the 5th century on the right bank of the Rhône. Navigate its narrow streets on a walking tour with your local guide, viewing the 12th-century Cathedral of Notre Dame de Rhône and the richly detailed façade of the Maison des Chevaliers, home to an upwardly mobile salt merchant in the 1500s. Then learn to play the popular outdoor game of pétanque; akin to playing a game of horseshoes, it's a pastime meant to be shared with friends. Spend the evening cruising as ms Emerald continues on to Arles in Provence. (B, L, D)
Day 6 Provençal Arles and on to Avignon
It may seem that the Romans were everywhere along the Rhône, and Arles is no exception, as is witnessed by the triumphal arch, circus and baths they left behind – and an arena in which gladiators fought and is still a venue for performances and bullfights today – as you explore the city on a sightseeing tour and time on your own. Look beyond the city walls at the incredible quality of the light here that so enraptured Vincent van Gogh – and the landscapes of yellow rocks, red soil and lilac mountains that inspired in the Dutch artist a newfound creativity, and led to one of the most productive periods of his short life. This afternoon, ms Emerald heads for Avignon; upon arrival this evening, you'll have a chance to take a stroll through this well-preserved medieval city. (B, L, D)
Day 7 Charms of Avignon & a visit to Pont du Gard
Although the fortified city of Avignon was undoubtedly a pleasant place before they arrived, the 13th-century popes, who spent less than a century here when Rome became "tedious" for them, really put it on the map, and cultivated the local wine industry (Châteauneuf-du-Pape). Sightseeing today includes the Palais des Papes, the vast, fortress-like palace that they built for themselves during that time.  After discovering more of Avignon on your own during leisure time this afternoon, visit the Pont du Gard – a famous Roman aqueduct over the River Gardon that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. ms Emerald is docked in Avignon for the evening. (B, L, D)
Day 8 Roussillon & Châteauneuf-du-Pape
This most extraordinary of France cruises takes you into the Luberon region of Provence, welcomed by trees sculpted by the mistral wind, ancient vines, narrow winding roads and tidy stone structures. Here, the village of Roussillon, with its lovely central square, seems to have evaded time itself. Surrounded by richly colored cliffs and quarries blazing against the azure sky, the town sits in the middle of one of the world’s largest deposits of ochre... reflected in the façades of its buildings, their subtle colors offset with brightly painted shutters. Follow a walking path to the old quarry for insights on why the town’s livelihood was once intertwined with this colorful natural pigment. After lunch on board, head to the hillside village of Châteauneuf-du-Pape – once encircled by a wall that included the château built by the popes of Avignon as a summer palace, and home to flourishing vineyards as early as the 13th century – known for growing and producing wine of the same appellation; enjoy a tasting before returning to the riverboat. (B, L, D)
Day 9 Tournon-sur-Rhône & cooking presentation
Tournon-sur-Rhône is a perfect spot to start the final day of your Rhône cruise with a guided walking tour; wind your way up to high ground and admire the views of lush Côtes du Rhône vineyards and dramatic river vistas of this medieval town. Across the river, visit the home of Valhrona Chocolates (subject to Monday closings), respected for quality around the world. Then journey to Valence – a major hub for fresh Rhône Valley produce and home to some of France's finest culinary artists – for an education in epicurean delights. Attend a presentation and wine and cheese tasting at a cooking school in town associated with an award-winning restaurant; learn how seasonal ingredients, contrasting flavors and time-tested techniques can combine to create mouth-watering local specialties. Celebrate one of Tauck's most remarkable France cruises with the Captain’s farewell reception and dinner aboard ship. (B, L, D)
Day 10 Rhône River cruise comes to a close
Your Rhône River cruise Ends: Lyon. Disembark ms Emerald in Lyon by 9:00 AM, then fly home anytime. A transfer from the riverboat to Lyon Airport or Perrache or Part Dieu train station is included; please allow 3 hours for flight check-in at the airport. (B)
Tour Map
All This Included
When it comes to France cruises, it’s hard to imagine a more enjoyable one than gliding along the Rhône through the vineyard country from which come some of the world’s most exceptional wines. But first... meet us on the Champs Élysées for a welcome dinner at a Parisian brasserie long known as a celebrity hangout... walk through a city neighborhood called “Le Marais,” where stylish galleries and peaceful squares line twisting streets that have witnessed the marks of history... travel to Lyon, where eating well is a time-honored tradition. Set off on your Rhône River cruise through one of the first wine-producing regions on Earth, stopping to explore villages along its banks; here ancient roots meet contemporary charm. See a 14th-century palace designed for papal splendor... ochre cliffs, Roman ruins, a medieval abbey, a game of pétanque... and a Roman aqueduct’s design that remains a lasting beauty. En route, taste an aged Beaujolais, a Côtes du Rhône direct from the source, world-renowned chocolates, and superb cheeses. 
  • Gratuities to ship staff, drivers, local guides, Tauck Directors and Tauck Cruise Director
  • Tauck’s private shore excursions and distinctive inclusions valued at $3,026
  • Reception and dinner at Fouquet’s, followed by a city lights tour of Paris at night
  • Travel aboard the high-speed TGV from Paris to Lyon
  • Private wine tastings at the source – Beaujolais and Châteaneuf-du-Pape
  • A walking tour of historic Vieux Lyon and a tasting experience in Lyon’s historic indoor food market
  • Explore walled Viviers, the Gallo-Roman town of Arles and the wine-growing village of Châteauneuf-du-Pape
  • Cooking demonstration and a wine and cheese tasting at an award-winning cooking school
  • Unlimited complimentary beverages aboard ship include regional wine, beer and premium spirits in addition to specialty coffee, water and soft drinks.
  • Airport transfers upon arrival and departure as noted
  • 23 meals (9 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 8 dinners); beer and wine with lunch and dinner on the riverboat; service charges, taxes, porterage, and applicable fuel surcharges
Accommodations on this Tour
Paris: InterContinental Paris Le Grand
Cruising: Cabin onboard ms Emerald
  • Cabin upgrades are available.
  • Single prices Category 2 and above start at 40% over the double price; please inquire at time of booking.
  • Although not expected, Tauck reserves the right to alter the sequence of ports or omit or substitute scheduled ports or attractions at any time without prior notice. Museums and attractions may be subject to closure due to state, local or religious holidays. 
  • 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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