Detailed Itinerary Colors of Provence (Christmas)
CRUISE YEAR

7- Night Cruise


Day 1
EMBARKATION – LYON, FRANCE
Board the ship for your Colors of Provence cruise. (D)

Day 2
LYON
Discover dynamic Lyon, starting in Fourvière Hill, part of the city’s historic region that is now a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site and home to the 19th-century basilica Notre-Dame de Fourvière. Continue on to the old town of Lyon, followed by a guided walk through the St. Jean district, where you will be introduced to the city’s unique covered walkways, known as “traboules.” Your time in Lyon also includes time to browse the Lyon Christmas Markets and watch the city sparkle in festivities and tradition. Alternately, join a guided bike tour through the city designed with cyclists in mind. In the afternoon, enjoy the rest of your day at your own leisure to explore the city. Travel to the Beaujolais wine region—known as the Pays d’Or or “land of the golden stones.” Indulge in a wine tasting at a traditional winery and learn about the history and techniques of their vineyard. Explore the Provençal holiday traditions in Oignt where you will see crèche displays made of santons, terracotta figurines depicting the nativity scene set in Provence. (B,L,D)

Lyon
Day 3
VILLEFRANCHE
Enjoy free time in Lyon. Pop into an outdoor café for an authentic French breakfast or visit one of the city’s many amazing museums during your leisurely morning. Bid Lyon adieu and set sail for Vienne. (B,L,D)

Lyon
Day 4
VIENNE – TOURNON
Situated between the wine regions of Beaujolais and Côtes du Rhône lies Vienne with a Roman past that can be seen in its marvelously preserved ruins. Follow the footsteps of the ancient Romans on a walking tour to see the amazingly well-preserved Augustus and Livia Temple, the Saint Maurice Cathedral, a Gothic church that took more than 500 years to build, and St. Pierre Abbey—one of the oldest surviving churches in France, and now an Archaeological Museum. For those wishing to be more active, you can either take a guided hike from the ship to the Monastery at Mount Pipet or a guided bike tour along a portion of the ViaRhôna bike route. (B,L,D)

Vienne
Day 5
TOURNON
Lovers of wine and chocolate will want to visit Le Château de Tournon for a presentation and tasting on the pairing of red wine and chocolate. For a more active adventure, take a hike through the vineyards of Tain l’Hermitage, followed by a visit to a local winery where you’ll sample some of the wines. You’ll also have many opportunities to taste the Provence’s regional specialties, including its traditional 13 desserts of Christmas throughout your journey. (B,L,D)

Tournon
Day 6
TARASCON - ARLES
Provençal town Tarascon is known for its medieval architecture and charming tales – especially the legend of the Tarasque monster. Join a guided walking tour where you’ll visit the Roman ruins of Arles such as its Roman Amphitheater and the Church of Saint Trophime, famous for its Romanesque architecture. Alternatively, you can enjoy a bike ride along the Rhône, through town to the Langlois Bridge, a famous subject from several Vincent Van Gogh paintings. And for those who wish to delve further into Van Gogh’s Arles, join a special walking tour along with a visit to the Vincent van Gogh Foundation, showcasing his legacy. During the afternoon, you’ll visit the enchanting medieval fortress, the Castle of Tarascon – a fortress designed to protect but surprises all with its elegant interior, fit for royalty. Or venture to the medieval hilltop village, Les Baux de Provence and then delve deeply into the Carrières de Lumières, where you’ll be treated to a spectacular presentation of art, sound and history projected on the former limestone quarry walls of caves. In the evening, enjoy an illuminations cruise around Avignon. (B,L,D)

Tarascon
Day 7
AVIGNON
Depending on your interests, you have three choices of excursions for the morning. Avignon, aptly named the “City of Popes,” was the center of the Catholic Church in the 14th century when its “Palais des Papes” was the equivalent of today’s Vatican. Discover the history of Avignon on a guided walking tour that includes the Papal Palace and the well-preserved medieval walls surrounding the historic center of town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You can visit three venues around Avignon to taste regional specialties including macarons, cheese and wine, and tapenades or you can enjoy a bike tour. You will have time to enjoy the Carpentras Christmas Markets with its famous crib exhibition, holiday performances and delicious regional specialties. During the afternoon, you can go to another UNESCO World Heritage Site, the impressive Pont du Gard, a Roman aqueduct that is a masterpiece of ancient engineering. You can also go in search of the highly prized “Black Diamond” truffles with a farmer and his trustworthy canine companion. (B,L,D)

Avignon
Day 8
ARLES – DISEMBARKATION
Bid farewell to Arles and prepare for your flight home. (B)

Please note: the port of Arles may be changed to Avignon on select early season departures in 2023; guests will be notified of this potential change prior to departure. Arrival airport will not need to be changed.

Day 1
ARLES – EMBARKATION
Board the ship for your Colors of Provence cruise. (D)

Please note: the port of Arles may be changed to Avignon on select early season departures in 2023; guests will be notified of this potential change prior to departure. Arrival airport will not need to be changed.

Day 2
ARLES
Considered one of the most beautiful cities in France, Arles enchants all with its tantalizing history, formerly a Roman center of trade. Join a guided walking tour where you’ll visit the Roman ruins of Arles such as its Roman Amphitheater and the Church of Saint Trophime, famous for its Romanesque architecture. Alternatively, you can enjoy a bike ride along the Rhône, through town to the Langlois Bridge, a famous subject from several Vincent Van Gogh paintings. And for those who wish to delve further into Van Gogh’s Arles, join a special walking tour along with a visit to the Vincent van Gogh Foundation, showcasing his legacy. During the afternoon, you’ll visit the enchanting medieval fortress, the Castle of Tarascon – a fortress designed to protect but surprises all with its elegant interior, fit for royalty. Or venture to the medieval hilltop village, Les Baux de Provence and then delve deeply into the Carrières des Lumières, where you’ll be treated to a spectacular presentation of art, sound and history projected on the former limestone quarry walls of caves. In the evening, enjoy a short cruise to Avignon where you will see Pont d’Avignon bridge, illuminated against the night sky. (B,L,D)

Arles
Day 3
AVIGNON
Avignon, aptly named the “City of Popes,” was the center of the Catholic Church in the 14th century when its “Palais des Papes” was the equivalent of today’s Vatican. Depending on your interests, you have three choices of excursions in the morning. Discover the history of Avignon on a guided walking tour that includes the Papal Palace and the well-preserved medieval walls surrounding the historic center of town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Or, you can visit three venues around Avignon to taste regional specialties including macarons, cheese and wine, and tapenades. Alternately, you can enjoy a bike tour through the city. During the afternoon, you can go to another UNESCO World Heritage Site, the impressive Pont du Gard, a Roman aqueduct that is a masterpiece of ancient engineering. (B,L,D)

Avignon
Day 4
VIVIERS
Take in the quaint surroundings of Viviers, a charming commune that sidles up to the right bank of the Rhone. From Viviers, you can also go in search of the highly prized “Black Diamond” truffles with a farmer and his trustworthy canine companion. (B,L,D)

Viviers
Day 5
TOURNON
Take an exclusive private train ride past magnificent landscape carved along the Gorge du Doux, stopping at the charming little station of Colombier le Vieux-Saint Barthélemy le Plain, where the train maneuvers in preparation for its return journey. Alternatively, lovers of wine and chocolate will want to visit Le Château de Tournon for a presentation and tasting on the pairing of red wine and chocolate. For a more active adventure, take a hike through the vineyards of Tain l’Hermitage, followed by a visit to a local winery where you’ll sample some of the wines. You’ll also have many opportunities to taste the Provence’s regional specialties, including its traditional 13 desserts of Christmas throughout your journey. (B,L,D)

Tournon
Day 6
VIENNE – LYON
Situated between the wine regions of Beaujolais and Côtes du Rhône lies Vienne with a Roman past that can be seen in its marvelously preserved ruins. Follow the footsteps of the ancient Romans on a walking tour to see the amazingly well-preserved Augustus and Livia Temple, the Saint Maurice Cathedral, a Gothic church that took more than 500 years to build, and St. Pierre Abbey—one of the oldest surviving churches in France, and now an Archaeological Museum. For those wishing to be more active, you can either take a guided hike from the ship to the Monastery at Mount Pipet or a guided bike tour along a portion of the ViaRhôna bike route. Later in the day travel to Lyon, considered the “Food Capital of France.” Take a walking tour that starts in Fourvière Hill, part of the city’s historic region that is now a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site and home to the 19th-century basilica Notre-Dame de Fourvière. Continue on to the old town of Lyon, followed by a guided walk through the St. Jean district, where you will be introduced to the city’s unique covered walkways, known as “traboules.” Your time in Lyon also includes time to browse the Lyon Christmas Markets and watch the city sparkle in festivities and tradition. You can also visit the famous indoor market hall Les Halles de Lyon – Paul Bocuse, named after the late chef renowned for his Michelin-starred l’Auberge du Pont de Collonges restaurant. There you’ll have a chance to sample of the delicacies offered by butchers, bakers, chocolatiers and cheesemongers while taking in the colorful sights and enticing aromas around you. Alternately, join a guided bike tour through the city designed with cyclists in mind (B,L,D)

Vienne
Day 7
LYON – TREVOUX
Visit a traditional Beaujolais winery and learn the history and techniques of their vineyard. Plus, enjoy a tasting of their specialty. Explore the Provençal holiday traditions in Oignt where you will see crèche displays made of santons, terracotta figurines depicting the nativity scene set in Provence. (B,L,D)

Lyon
Day 8
LYON – DISEMBARKATION
Disembark the ship and bid farewell to Lyon as you prepare for your flight home. (B)

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