An all-inclusive gastronomic delight through the waterways of the Champagne region.
About the Tour
Cruising down the famous Champagne route of France on the elegant Raymonde hotel barge, with excursions to the birthplace of Dom Pérignon and Meaux, this tour is a gastronomic delight. We also enjoy a grand tour of Paris during this all-inclusive journey.
- Rail travel on board the high-speed Eurostar
- 6-night cruise aboard the MS Raymonde
- 17 meals including a Gala Dinner
- All-inclusive selection of complimentary beers, wines and soft drinks
- Excursion to a Champagne house with a tasting
- Guided tours of Hautvillers, Paris & Château Thierry
- Visit to the Jean de la Fontaine Museum
- Exclusive meeting point at our dedicated Departure Office in St Pancras
- Transportation by deluxe motorcoach
- Services of a professional tour escort and knowledgeable local guides for touring
Day 1 - To Paris and the Raymonde
Meet your group and Tour Manager at our dedicated Departure Office at St Pancras where we board the Eurostar for Paris. Upon arrival we transfer to board our hotel barge, the Raymonde, for a six night cruise on the Canal Latéral à la Marne. Overnight ship. (D)
Day 2 - Paris
Today we enjoy a guided tour of the splendid French capital. We see many of the major attractions such as the Place de la République, the Grand Boulevards, the Opera House, the Place de la Madeleine, Place Vendôme, and the Louvre. We finish our excursion on foot, discovering the prettiest arcades in Paris at the Palais Royal, where old world charm meets the new vibrant side of the city. We set sail this afternoon for Lagny-sur-Marne where we moor overnight. Overnight ship. (B, L, D)
Day 3 - Meaux and Cheese Tasting
We cast off early today to begin cruising to Meaux. As we travel, perhaps make use of the bicycles on board by taking a ride alongside the Raymonde if weather permits. We sail slowly, and you have access to the boat at all times. After lunch on board, we arrive in Meaux for a sightseeing tour that includes the magnificent cathedral, the Bishop's Palace, as well as the Gallo-Roman ramparts. We also take in the striking Bossuet Garden, believed by many to be one of Le Nôtre's earliest works.
Later on we visit the Brie de Meaux exhibition room where we are shown a film demonstrating how one of France's most famous and popular cheeses is made. After this we taste some of this locally made, distinctive soft cheese for ourselves. We return to the boat following our busy day for a relaxing dinner on board. Overnight ship. (B, L, D)
Day 4 - Chateau Thierry
This morning is spent sailing, passing Champigny and Drachy, through the heart of the Seine-et- Marne countryside and its Champagne vines. In the afternoon we arrive into Château Thierry and depart on foot for a tour of the Jean de la Fontaine museum, situated in the poet's family home. We follow this with a tour of the town that became the site of two major battles first during the Napoleonic wars and then in WWI. We take time to see the castle walls and the Hotel Dieu where Jean de la Fontaine once lived. Overnight ship. (B, L, D)
Day 5 - To Dormans
This morning we continue on towards Dormans. We can then take an excursion to Reims. Reims' most famous landmark is the city's cathedral - Notre-Dame de Reims. Noted as one of Europe's most important Gothic buildings, the 13th century cathedral is today a UNESCO World Heritage site. Discover the beautiful stained glass windows, majestic sculptures and impressive architecture during our visit to this pretty city today, where we enjoy a guided tour as well as a visit to the cathedral. The ship overnights in Dormans. Overnight ship. (B, L, D)
Day 6 - The Champagne Route and Dom Perignon
This morning we depart Dormans and sail towards Épernay. After lunch onboard we take an excursion along the famous Champagne Route including a visit to the village of Hautvilliers - the birthplace of Dom Pérignon, a Benedictine monk who created the Champagne method of producing this distinctive sparkling wine. We continue our education with a delicious tasting at one of the leading Champagne houses in the area. We return to our ship for a fantastic gala dinner. Overnight ship. (B, L, D)
Day 7 – Return to London
After a buffet breakfast, we disembark our barge for the last time at Épernay and transfer to the Gare du Nord railroad station in the center of Paris. Here we catch the Eurostar service to London St Pancras International. On arrival our tour concludes. (B)
The high speed Eurostar trains link St Pancras International in London with Paris and Lille in France as well as Brussels in Belgium.
Eurostar's Standard Class coaches feature two seats on either side of the central aisle, most of which is arranged in an 'airline' seating configuration with drop down tray tables. There are two tables for four per carriage. Passengers traveling in Eurostar Standard Class coaches can take advantage of the Bar-Buffet which sells a range of snacks, meals, hot and cold drinks - including Champagne!
The Raymonde is the perfect place to relax and watch the idyllic countryside float by as we sail along the peaceful waterways of France. Built with comfort in mind, soak up the views from the well-equipped sun deck, a spacious open-air gathering area with plenty of shade, perfect for relaxing. The sun deck creates a warm, inviting atmosphere from which to view the passing pastoral landscapes, or enjoy a complimentary drink whilst unwinding in jacuzzi.
Tour Dates & Prices
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