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Wonders of Bordeaux and Rhône

Bordeaux to Lyon
15 Days Request Quote
Trip Code: EUBCR15
  • Trip Highlights
  • Map & Itinerary
  • Travel & Accommodation
  • Pricing & Availability

Trip Highlights

Dine at a French Chateau

Enjoy the rare privilege of being entertained in Chateau Royal de Cazeneuve amongst the vineyards of Bordeaux

Welcome To Grignan Castle

Embark on a tour of Grignan Castle then enjoy a Cocktail Reception while sampling a range of regional produce

Decadent French Fare

Savour glorious French cuisine at Michelin-starred chef Paul Bocuse's L'Abbaye de Collonges restaurant in Lyon

Inclusions

  • Unique experiences in up to 15 destinations
  • Expert APT Cruise Directors
  • Complimentary beverages served on board*
  • Finest dining - a total of 40 meals
  • Room service and champagne on arrival for select suites
  • Transfers, port charges and tipping

Map & Itinerary

Save As Pdf
Europe Map 2017 EUBCR15

Bordeaux to Lyon

Be met on arrival and transferred to your ship, docked on the Garonne River. Enjoy a Welcome Reception as anticipation builds for the trip ahead.

Stay: Seven Nights: an Aria River Ship

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  • Dinner

Today, arrive in the walled village of Cadillac, founded in 1280. Perhaps explore the village on a guided tour that includes the Bastide de Cadillac and the Old Town, before exploring the tiny medieval village of Saint-Macaire. Alternatively, you may choose to visit Château de La Brède in Sauternes for a guided tour. This well-preserved castle, surrounded by a moat and English gardens, was once the home of the great philosopher Montesquieu. Afterwards, head to Château Smith Haut Lafitte for a tour, during which you’ll get to taste Sauternes’ world-famous dessert wines. This evening, visit Château de Cazeneuve, once home of the Kings of Navarre and later King Henri IV of France and his wife Queen Margot. The castle is currently occupied by the Sabran-Pontevès family, descendants of the original owners. Lovingly restored to its former glory, the castle features royal quarters fitted out with authentic period furniture, as well as a storehouse, medieval underground wine cellar and bakery. Outside, the landscaped grounds include a former prison, troglodyte caves and a nymphaeum. Enjoy a private tour before sitting down to dinner in the impeccable Grand Salon, while enjoying the traditional music from a Baroque band.

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  • Dinner

Take in the stunning sights as your ship threads its way along the spectacular Gironde estuary, which cuts through the rolling countryside and along the historic vineyards of Aquitaine. Disembark your ship in Pauillac and journey through the famous Médoc wine region. Set to the north of Bordeaux, the Médoc’s flat, fertile grounds produce some of the most prestigious and expensive wines in the world. During a visit to a local cooperage, see how wooden wine barrels are produced, then be guided by your very own expert oenologist as you embark on a sensory wine tasting journey. Learn about Bordeaux’s various grape varieties while you sample some white and red wine. You will also gain insight into the importance of preparation, temperature and ventilation of wine and learn about what constitutes their rankings. Back on board, enjoy a Gala Welcome Dinner.

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  • Dinner

Step ashore to discover the town of Blaye with a walk around its 17th-century citadel. Overlooking the Gironde, this impressive structure was built by order of Louis XIV, King of France, to prevent enemies from sailing to Bordeaux. In the afternoon, you may like to travel to Cognac for a tour through this rural town. Stop at Château de Cognac, a French cognac house founded in 1795 by Jean-Baptiste Antoine Otard, for a tour of the storehouses, as well as a tasting. Alternatively, sail to the beautiful town of Bourg and take a walking tour to discover the delightful town centre, medieval ramparts and picturesque harbour. Both groups will later return to the ship.

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Alight in Libourne and travel to World Heritage-listed Saint-Émilion. Established in the Roman period, the village boasts idyllic cobbled streets, a Romanesque church, the iconic 13th-century Tour du Roy tower and historic vineyards. The tower is an important site for the Jurade, a local organisation responsible for ensuring the quality of Saint Émilion wines and promoting them around the world. Head beneath the streets to discover the subterranean Monolithic Church that was constructed in the early 12th century, then explore the underground cellars of Les Cordeliers, where exclusive sparkling wines have been made and aged in this 14th-century cloister since 1892. Finish the experience with an exquisite glass of the sparkling wine and a selection of Saint-Émilion’s renowned and rather delicious macarons.

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Perhaps join a guide for a tour of Bergerac to discover the wonderfully restored Old Town, with its charming stone buildings, tree-lined squares and pleasant half-timbered houses. Another option is a guided tour through Libourne. See the charming port area then stop at a caviar estate for a unique insight into how this rare delicacy is farmed. The experience culminates with a caviar tasting. Back on board, enjoy the Captain’s Farewell Dinner.

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At the heart of the most extensive wine producing region in France lies the city of Bordeaux. Considered the cultural gem of the region, much of this beautiful city is now World Heritage-listed. In recent years, however, numerous historic sites have been revitalised with modern concepts. The best example of this is the stunning Miroir d’eau water mirror that you will be able to see outside the Place de la Bourse as part of your city tour. Other highlights of the tour include the tower of Pey-Berland and the Pont de Pierre stone bridge. With the ship docked overnight in Bordeaux, perhaps step off the ship after dinner to explore the city by night independently.

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Disembark your ship for the final time in Bordeaux this morning. Travel by coach to Arles, taking in beautiful landscapes of southern France along the way. Upon arrival, your river ship will be waiting for you on the picturesque Rhône River.

Stay: Seven Nights: one of APT’s luxurious Aria River Ships

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  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

Set in the heart of the Alpilles regional country park, Les Baux-de-Provence is a World Heritage-listed site that is often referred to as one of the most beautiful villages in France. Take a moment to explore its castle ruins, followed by some free time to explore at leisure. Later, visit a working olive mill and farm in beautiful Saint Rémy de Provence. Here, discover the age-old Provençal tradition of olive growing during a tour and a tasting. Alternatively, embark on a tour taking you to the ancient Roman relics of Arles. You will then have the afternoon at leisure to further explore.

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Arrive in Avignon, once an important centre of the Catholic Church, where a local guide will take you on a discovery of the city. Pay a visit to the Palace of the Popes, the world’s largest Gothic palace which served as a fortress, a church and a residence to the Popes that once governed the Christian world. In the afternoon, travel to the Pont du Gard, a Roman aqueduct that stands some 50 metres above the Gardon River.

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Disembark in Viviers today and visit a truffle farm and head out with dogs in search of the elusive truffles, followed by a delicious tasting of this rare treat. Then, embark on a tour of Grignan Castle and enjoy a Cocktail Reception while enjoying a tasting of the region's finest local produce. The famous castle dates back to the 12th century, built on a rocky outcrop overlooking Grignan. Re-board your ship later and enjoy a delicious dinner on board as you cruise towards Tournon and Tain-l’Hermitage.

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Choose your sightseeing activity in Tournon today. You may wish to experience the natural beauty of the Ardèche Mountains on a glorious rail journey aboard the historic Ardèche Steam Train. Alternatively, visit the remarkable Eden Park Garden and delight in spectacular views of Tournon with the picturesque river stretching out below. Re-board your ship and continue cruising to the town of Vienne. After a delicious dinner on board, you may wish to step out for a lovely evening stroll as you lose yourself within this quaint and enchanting village.

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The charming town of Belleville is the ideal starting point for your discovery of the Beaujolais region. Perhaps explore the natural area known as The Dombes, home to more than one thousand ponds. You’ll visit a farm to taste local delights, then stop in the town of Châtillon-sur-Chalaronne where those who are feeling adventurous can sample the local specialty - frog legs. Or, enjoy some time at leisure in the village of Oingt, then partake in a delightful tasting at a family-owned winery. Tonight, experience French cuisine at its finest during dinner at L’Abbaye de Collonges, a famous restaurant owned by acclaimed Michelin-starred French chef Paul Bocuse. Operating for more than 50 years, the main dining room ‘La salle du Grand Limonaire’, features an organ equivalent of an 110-musician orchestra.

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Arrive in Lyon, a beautiful and dynamic French city shaped by the two rivers that run through its centre, the Rhône and the Saône. Perhaps learn about the city’s historic areas on a guided tour. Then visit a silk workshop in the Croix-Rousse district where Lyon’s silk weavers worked during the 15th century at a time when the city became an important trade centre. Alternatively, learn why Lyon is considered the gastronomic centre of France on a culinary tour. This evening, sit down to a glorious Farewell Dinner on board your luxurious river ship.

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Disembark your ship in Lyon and transfer to the airport for your flight.

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