Cruising the Seine, plus Paris & London - Southbound Aboard ms Sapphire

Travel from London to Paris to experience these great cities as never before. Start with a two-night stay in London at one of the world's top hotels, then set off on a 7-night river cruise aboard ms Sapphire... winding through fishing ports, medieval towns, picturesque haunts of Impressionist painters, Normandy's D-Day beaches and more...



Journey from London to Paris by way of a River Seine cruise aboard ms Sapphire filled with Tauck exclusive experiences... Private tasting tours, from wine to cheese to chocolate... discover treasured Parisian landmarks, steeped in history, culture and art... and return home with tales of adventures that become more exciting with each retelling.

Wind through fishing ports and medieval towns, tasting Normandy cuisine, visiting the D-Day invasion beaches of Normandy, finding the deep essence of calvados, pausing in ancient abbeys and the picturesque haunts of Impressionist painters, dining at a chateau in Rouen, exploring cobblestone lanes, walking in Monet's garden at Giverny, visiting Van Gogh's muse in Aubers-sur-Oise, a visit to a private castle, and incomparable Paris... well, riverboating seems like the only way to go! Private tasting tours, from wine to cheese to chocolate... a presentation by Sir Winston Churchill's granddaughter, Celia Sandys... stop in London, and you'll have a tale of two cities you'll want to tell over and over again...



Journey from London to Paris by way of a River Seine cruise aboard ms Sapphire filled with Tauck exclusive experiences... Private tasting tours, from wine to cheese to chocolate... discover treasured Parisian landmarks, steeped in history, culture and art... and return home with tales of adventures that become more exciting with each retelling.

Wind through fishing ports and medieval towns, tasting Normandy cuisine, visiting the D-Day invasion beaches of Normandy, finding the deep essence of calvados, pausing in ancient abbeys and the picturesque haunts of Impressionist painters, dining at a chateau in Rouen, exploring cobblestone lanes, walking in Monet's garden at Giverny, visiting Van Gogh's muse in Aubers-sur-Oise, a visit to a private castle, and incomparable Paris... well, riverboating seems like the only way to go! Private tasting tours, from wine to cheese to chocolate... a presentation by Sir Winston Churchill's granddaughter, Celia Sandys... stop in London, and you'll have a tale of two cities you'll want to tell over and over again...



Traveling Well Includes:
  • TAUCK EXCLUSIVE - Presentation by Celia Sandys, granddaughter of Sir Winston Churchill
  • TAUCK EXCLUSIVE - Private dinner (with music) at Chateau Bizy
  • Private visit to the Churchill War Rooms in London
  • All gratuities to ship staff, drivers, local guides, Tauck Directors and Tauck Cruise Director
  • All private Tauck shore excursions and distinctive inclusions - $3,188 Value!
  • Two nights in London at The Savoy, one of the world's most prestigious hotels

  • Day 1 - Arrive London

    Tour begins: 6:00 PM, The Savoy. A transfer is included from London's Heathrow Airport to The Savoy, one of the world's most prestigious hotels, situated on the banks of the Thames in the heart of the city; check-in begins after 4:00. Settle in at The Savoy, a luxury landmark since 1889; as the hotels boasts, 'you'll follow in the footsteps of Sir Winston Churchill, Frank Sinatra, Claude Monet and Katharine Hepburn at this iconic hotel reinvented for the 21st century where an unashamedly old fashioned glamour sparkles with a new lustre.' Join us for a Tauck Exclusive at our special welcome reception and dinner this evening - a presentation by acclaimed author and television presenter Celia Sandys, granddaughter of Sir Winston Churchill - at the hotel's renowned Simpson's in the Strand.



    Lodging: The Savoy

    Meals: D

    Day 2 - Private visit to the Churchill War Rooms

    Morning sightseeing gives you a good introduction to the major landmarks (such as Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace, Trafalgar Square and more) followed by a visit to one of London's most iconic sites, St. Paul's Cathedral. The afternoon is free to spend as you explore your as you please before a truly special experience - a private visit to the Churchill War Rooms - the underground nerve center where Winston Churchill strategized World War II campaigns and the Allied route to victory.



    Lodging: The Savoy

    Meals: B

    Day 3 - Under the Channel to France & embark cruise

    Depart London this morning for passage to France, by way of high-speed train under the English Channel. Within a couple of hours you'll arrive at the Paris Nord station, and from there a transfer takes you to the Seine, where your riverboat awaits. Settle in, then join us for dinner aboard ship. Please note: Departure of October 8 will feature a private, after-hours guided visit to the Musee du Louvre in Paris on night 3; on this departure, the choice of morning museum visits on Day 4 will not be offered. Ask at booking for details.



    Lodging: ms Sapphire

    Meals: B, D

    Day 4 - C'est Paris... an overview & a choice of museums

    Begin your day in the city that Ernest Hemingway aptly called a 'moveable feast' with an orientation tour revealing Paris icons like the Arc de Triomphe, the Champs Elysees, Place de la Concorde, the Grand Palais, the Opera Garnier and the Eiffel Tower. Then you'll have your choice of an included visit to one of Paris' legendary museums, choosing from some of the city's best (subject to opening times and days): Musee du Louvre, the historic landmark and world's largest art museum that's home to some of the greatest masterpieces on Earth; Musee d'Orsay, a former 19th-century Beaux-Arts railway station that today features a superb collection of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist works; or Les Invalides, home to Napoleon's Tomb and the Musee de l'Armee (France's national war museum), for a look at events surrounding World Wars I and II. The afternoon is free to spend as you please in Paris or aboard the riverboat (which stays docked in Paris all evening), offering a chocolate demonstration and tasting prior to cocktails and dinner. Please note: Departures of May 13 and September 13 will feature a private, after-hours guided visit to the Musee du Louvre in Paris on night 4; on these departures, the choice of morning museum visits will not be offered. Ask at booking for details.



    Lodging: ms Sapphire

    Meals: B, L, D

    Day 5 - Chateau de Versailles or Montmartre

    You have a choice today of an excursion outside Paris to Versailles, or a visit to Montmartre. Explore the Chateau de Versailles, the stunning palace of the Sun King, Louis XIV on a guided visit, viewing its sumptuous salons, halls, and apartments, including the Hall of Mirrors, the private Opera House and the Chapel; if you wish, join your Tauck Director for a stroll through the Chateau's magnificent gardens. Alternatively, a local guide leads you on a walking tour of Montmartre, Paris' historic hilltop district - a 19th- and early 20th-century Belle Epoque haven for many of the world's famed artists, home to the Basilica of the Sacre-Coeur and a still-thriving arts scene today.



    Lodging: ms Sapphire

    Meals: B, L, D

    Day 6 - Auvers-sur-Oise & Vincent van Gogh

    With your riverboat docked in Conflans-Sainte-Honorine, drive to the town of Auvers-sur-Oise, where Vincent van Gogh spent his last days. The town has hardly changed since, so you'll be able to recognize scenes from his paintings, including the view of the town hall, seen from the upper window of his room at the inn. You can also visit his room, No. 5 at the Auberge Ravoux, which has never been rented since he died in 1890. This afternoon, sail for Vernon, enjoying a Tauck Director lecture in the lounge en route; arrive in Vernon after dinner.



    Lodging: ms Sapphire

    Meals: B, L, D

    Day 7 - Monet's Giverny & an evening at a chateau

    Leave your riverboat for a visit to Giverny and Impressionist painter Claude Monet's house and exquisite gardens. Personally designed by the artist as subjects for his paintings, Monet's gardens have been restored and maintained as he originally intended - complete with the Japanese bridge, the pond of water lilies, and exotic flora - so that you'll feel like you've entered a Monet landscape. While in Giverny, you can also explore the Impressionist Museum at your leisure, and, if you choose, set off on a bicycle trip from Giverny to Vernon. After lunch aboard ship, spend the afternoon exploring Vernon as you please - it's a fabulous place for walks. Smaller towns and villages are home to a wealth of cultural treasures, and offer you the chance to immerse in daily life; half-timbered houses, and wrought-iron shop signs line cobblestone streets that retain their Middle Ages character. This evening, you'll visit Chateau Bizy, 'the Versailles of Normandy' that was once home to Louis XV, for a Tauck Exclusive reception and dinner with music in a setting of Baroque splendor.



    Lodging: ms Sapphire

    Meals: B, L, D

    Day 8 - Medieval Rouen

    This morning, cruise to Rouen, which Victor Hugo called 'the city of a hundred bell towers'. Once the prosperous medieval capital of Normandy, Rouen still bristles with spires and entices with Gothic churches, impeccably restored half-timbered houses, and picturesque cobblestone lanes. Joan of Arc was tried and burned at the stake here in 1431 and her presence is immortalized everywhere in monuments, churches, and even in chocolate-almond confections called 'Joan of Arc's tears.' On a walking tour you'll see the Notre Dame Cathedral that inspired artists and writers, the Astronomical Clock, the Chateau Rouen, and the Saint Joan Tower. Enjoy free time to explore the city's historic center on your own before returning to the riverboat to enjoy the chef's Signature Dinner tonight, followed by onboard entertainment, as you sail for Le Havre.



    Lodging: ms Sapphire

    Meals: B, L, D

    Day 9 - etretat & Honfleur or Caen & Bayeux

    You have a choice of sightseeing today on France's Normandy coast - between excursions to Etretat and Honfleur, or Caen and Bayeux. On the first choice, head to Etretat on the Alabaster Coast, where sheer white cliffs plunge to the blue sea, and the elements have carved astonishing giant arches from the cliffside rock; take an orientation tour of the town, a magnet for artists in the 19th century, and visit the beach and the cliffs. Continue on to Honfleur, an old picturesque trading port where 17th-century houses line the harbor and cobblestone backstreets beckon - a favorite haunt of painters past (like Boudin, Courbet, Monet and Jongkind of the ecole de Honfleur, which gave rise to the Impressionist movement) and present - to explore as you please and have lunch. Or, in the port city of Caen - renowned for historic buildings from the reign of William the Conqueror, and for the heavy fighting that took place there after the WWII D-Day invasion - visit the Memorial de Caen, with its Peace Museum and memorial gardens. Then it's on to medieval Bayeux on the Aure River, where you'll view the famous Tapisserie de Bayeux (Bayeux Tapestry), an 11th-century tapestry depicting the 1066 Norman invasion, and stop for lunch. Back aboard the riverboat, enjoy a lecture on D-Day by a local expert.



    Lodging: ms Sapphire

    Meals: B, L, D

    Day 10 - WWII history on the beaches of Normandy

    Leave the ship in Le Havre for a tour of the beaches where World War II's pivotal D-Day landings occurred on June 6, 1944. See Omaha Beach and Pointe-du-Hoc, where American troops scaled sheer cliffs with ropes and fire ladders to reach enemy artillery batteries, and visit the American Cemetery and Memorial at Colleville-sur-Mer, on a bluff overlooking the beach; the tranquil setting and its history will not fail to move you. Reboard your riverboat in Caudebec-en-Caux to continue your cruise; enjoy evening cocktails before dining onboard as you wish.



    Lodging: ms Sapphire

    Meals: B, L, D

    Day 11 - Les Andelys, cider & Calvados

    Your riverboat arrives at Les Andelys, named for two fishing villages at a scenic bend in the river where the imposing ruins of Chateau Gaillard rise on a cliff. The castle was built in 1198 by Richard the Lionheart, Duke of Normandy, to defend against an invasion from the King of France. A marvel of engineering, the fortress was constructed in only a year, using thousands of workers; it was thought to be impervious, but fell after a siege in 1204. The ruins in their picturesque setting overlooking the Seine are still there to inspire, as they have generations of painters like Nicolas Poussin, as you explore the grounds on a guided visit. Next, ramble in the classic twin French villages below, with their medieval lanes, colorful half-timbered houses and gardens. Travel a short distance from town to visit a ciderhouse (another Tauck Exclusive) to learn how the many variations of Norman apple cider - and Calvados, an apple brandy renowned in this region - are made... and of course enjoy a tasting of both. Return to the riverboat and cruise to Paris; tonight, join the Captain for a farewell reception followed by dinner.



    Lodging: ms Sapphire

    Meals: B, L, D

    Day 12 - Journey home

    Tour ends: Paris, France.Fly home anytime. Transfers are included directly from the riverboat to Charles de Gaulle Airport, Gare de Lyon Station, Charles de Gaulle Station and Gare du Nord. You should allow 3 hours for flight check-in at the airport.



    Lodging:

    Meals: B

    Call (847) 455-8897 for more information or to book today! Mention code 14851481

    Cruise Line
    Tauck River Cruising
    Offer
    Offer valid through 6/30/2020
    Duration
    12 Days
    Cruise Ship
    ms Sapphire

    Click for more information on this ship.

    DayPortArriveDepart
    Day 1London  
    Day 2London  
    Day 3London  
    Day 4Paris  
    Day 5Paris  
    Day 6AUVERS-SUR-OISE  
    Day 7Vernon  
    Day 8Rouen  
    Day 9Etretat  
    Day 10Caudubec-en-Caux  
    Day 11Les Andelys  
    Day 12Paris  
    Dates/Pricing

    Click Quote or call us to get additional information on your chosen travel date. Special offers or competitive pricing may be available!

    DatePrice / DescriptionQuote
    04/15/2021Quote
    05/12/2021Quote
    06/06/2021Quote
    07/22/2021Quote
    08/16/2021Quote
    09/12/2021Quote
    10/07/2021Quote
    Disclaimer
    * Land / cruise price per person in U.S. dollars, based on double occupancy, includes cruise fare, most meals, port charges, shore excursions, applicable fuel surcharges, and gratuities to Tauck Directors, Tauck Cruise Director, ship staff, local guides & drivers, and on all included meals.

    Itinerary Changes - 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. Further, museums and attractions may be subject to closure due to state, local or religious holidays.
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