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Provence and The Elegant Rhône

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You are viewing the 2025 itinerary. Select your departure year
20252026
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Discover the timeless elegance of France's beautiful Rhône and Saone rivers, admiring the beauty of Southern France's landscapes while cruising in luxury

Travel among a group of like-minded travelers led by a professional tour manager

2025 Tour code: LRR25

About the tour

Discover the timeless elegance of France's beautiful Rhône. Join our exclusive cruise aboard the MS Amadeus Provence, where you'll uncover a rich tapestry of experiences, with a unique focus on the region's culinary prowess.

Indulge in the finest Burgundy wines in Beaune, savor the gastronomic delights of Lyon, and explore the City of Popes, Avignon. From the steam-powered allure of the Train de l'Ardèche to the enchanting landscapes of the Ardèche Gorge, every experience is a wonderful discovery.

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Unforgettable Experiences

Beaune
Beaune
Discover the charming town of Beaune on a sightseeing tour and sample local wines.
Lyon
Lyon
Explore the highlights and history of Lyon on a guided tour.
Train de l'Ardèche
Train de l'Ardèche
Journey on the Train de l'Ardèche through stunning landscapes.
Pont du Gard
Pont du Gard
Experience the fabulous Camargue Delta and its wildlife or visit the striking Pont du Gard.
Ardèche Gorge
Ardèche Gorge
Tour the beautiful Ardèche Gorge, the ‘Grand Canyon of Europe’.

What’s included

Itinerary

Day 1 - Boarding our luxurious ship in Lyon

We meet at London St Pancras where we join the Eurostar to the French capital of Paris, before connecting with the regional service to the picturesque city of Lyon. Here we board our luxurious ship, the MS Amadeus Provence. We have time to settle into our cabins before we enjoy a welcome cocktail, which you could take on the sun deck as we admire Lyon's colorful townhouses and cosmopolitan streets. Later, we enjoy dinner together before setting sail for Chalon-sur-Saône.

Day 2 - Arrival in Beaune and Burgundy wine tasting

We arrive into Beaune this morning. Deep in the heart of the Burgundy wine region, Beaune is a classic French medieval town with impressive town walls, terracotta roofs and fascinating historical buildings. We embark on a guided tour, discovering the sights and wandering the enchanting streets.

We enjoy a tasting of some delectable wines which make this town and the Burgundy region so famous. Beaune is one of the most important of France's wine centers and is surrounded by fields bedecked by vineyards growing Pinot Noir, Pinot Blanc and Chardonnay grapes. Back on board later, we enjoy a leisurely afternoon cruising back to Lyon.

Day 3 - Guided tour of gastronomic Lyon

Arriving in Lyon, we disembark for a guided tour this morning. One of France's iconic cities, Lyon sits on the meeting point of the Rhône and the Saône rivers. The beautiful pinks, oranges, reds and whites of the buildings of Lyon's riverfront give a hint of the city's elegance.

On our tour we explore some of Lyon's fantastic highlights and extensive history. The Old Town is a UNESCO World Heritage site and the city was historically renowned for its silk weaving industries. However, Lyon has recently reinvented itself as the capital of French gastronomy. At the center of the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region, Lyon is perfectly placed to make excellent use of local produce. It was also the location of many restaurants run by iconic chef Paul Bocuse, who was prominent in the development of Nouvelle Cuisine.

We return to the ship for lunch, then enjoy an afternoon at leisure as we cruise to Tournon sur Rhône. This is one of the most scenic and panoramic sections of the river, and it's well worth taking the time to admire the scenery from the spacious sun deck. Rolling hills and verdant vineyards rise and fall, under the gaze of various châteaux and stately homes.

Day 4 - The steam-powered Train de l’Ardèche

Early this morning, we travel by coach to Tournon sur Rhône's railway station to board the wonderful Train de l'Ardèche. We take a memorable journey through the spectacular Gorges du Doux region, as the railway winds through the scenic foothills and valley. Stone bridges crisscross the brooks and rivers which snake under the trees, and our charming locomotive takes us to sections of the gorges which no other form of transport can access. Later, our ship continues its course to the city of Avignon.

Day 5 - Exploring Avignon, the City of Popes

In Avignon today, we set out on a guided tour of this stately city, known as the seat of the Pope in the 14th century. Its striking white papal palaces and majestic cathedral are just some of the highlights we see walking through Avignon's historic center, which earned World Heritage status in 1995. We also enter the Pope's Palace, admiring its spectacular interiors and a collection of holy and religious artefacts. You are then free until early evening to discover the city at your own pace. After dinner tonight, our ship sets sail for Arles.

Day 6 - Arles, the Camargue Delta or Pont du Gard

We begin the day with a guided tour of pretty Arles, the inspiration for many of Vincent Van Gogh's most famous paintings. Van Gogh produced more than 180 pieces during his time in Arles, including 'Starry Night over the Rhone' and 'Café Terrace at Night', the location of which can be found in the Place du Forum.

This afternoon, you have the choice of two excursions. Your first option is a visit to the beautiful Camargue Delta, where the Rhône opens out into the Mediterranean. This is a treat for nature lovers, as the wetlands and parkland are home to hundreds of bird species, including pink flamingos and wild horses.

Your second option takes you to the iconic arches of the Pont du Gard, an ancient Roman aqueduct which spans the Gardon river, another World Heritage site. Later, we return to our cruise ship and sail for Châteauneuf-du-Rhône.

Day 7 - The Ardèche Gorge, ‘Europe’s Grand Canyon’

Today we visit the stunning Ardèche Gorge, also known as the 'Grand Canyon of Europe'. An area of snaking rivers and deep gorges, this is a dramatic example of the natural world. Sheer cliffs rise above waterways of sparkling emerald and deep green forests. Our tour takes us to some of the most impressive sights in the gorge, including the Pont d'Arc. Afterwards, we re-join the ship at Le Pouzin, where we begin our return sailing to Lyon. This evening, we are invited to attend the captain's gala dinner.

Day 8 - London

After breakfast, we disembark and say goodbye to the wonderful crew who have made us so welcome throughout our cruise. We transfer to Lyon's railway station for a journey to Paris, where we catch the Eurostar to London St Pancras International. On arrival in London, we say goodbye to our fellow travelers and new friends with whom we have shared some incredible memories.

Additional information

Departure times

Departure times vary based on selected rail vacation. This information will be provided in your final documents. For more information please speak with your rail specialist.

Ship

MS Amadeus Provence