Europe & Baltic
(Champagne River Cruise)
Experience Versailles with your private guide and embark on a relaxing voyage aboard a refined river barge, cruising the rivers and canals of Champagne, from Paris to Epernay, taking in the sights, history and flavors of the Champagne region as you cruise. Since the reign of the Emperor Charlemagne, the Champagne region of France has been one of the great agricultural regions of Europe, and now thanks to a type of sparkling wine to which the region has given its name, the word Champagne is known worldwide. The region starts around 75 miles from Paris, around the city of Meaux and stretches along the beautiful River Marne to the city of Epernay, home of such renowned Champagne houses as Moet & Chandon. There is a plethora of vineyards spread across the undulating plains as far as the eye can see, brilliant green with the new leaves of spring, turning to gold as the grapes ripen in the autumn.
Available Cruise Departure Dates (2013):
Jun 2 (Panache Barge)
Aug 4 & 11 (La Nouvelle Etoile Barge)
Sep 1,8,15,22,29, Oct 6 (Savoir Faire Barge)
Enjoy a private airport transfer in Paris in a private vehicle with a professional driver.
Westminster (4*) hotel is located close to the Place Vendome and the Opera house, 5 minutes walk from the Tuileries Gardens. This is an elegant district offering a wide variety of prestigious designer boutiques and jewellers. This is an attractive and elegant, 6 storey Parisian style hotel. The lobby is spacious and luxurious, with an impressive marble reception desk and comfortable Louis XV style central seating area. The public areas are bright and elegant. This is a very nice and traditional Parisian hotel, with a brilliant location. The hotel offers 80 rooms and 21 suites, each individually decorated by the famous interior designer Pierre-Yves Rochon. The "Westminster Fitness Club", overlooking the rooftops of Paris offers sauna, steam room, exercise room, relaxation room and Orlane beauty treatments.
Enjoy a half day visiting the Palace of Versailles with a private car and English speaking driver. A superb Baroque palace known to the world as a symbol of civilization and pleasure, the Palace of Versailles dates back to 1038, and was the official residence of the Kings of France from 1682 until 1790. Used by Louis XIV initially as a hunting lodge he had the property expanded to become the magnificent site of French classical architecture complete with extensive manicured gardens that it is today. The interior showcases magnificent examples of baroque furnishings, a rare collection of objects d'art and houses special exhibitions. At the end of the tour you will be dropped at accommodation or in a central location of your choice in the city. (Includes entrance). Please let your Advisor know if you would like to have a Guide accompany you for this excursion and this tour can be re-priced for you.
Today you are met at the hotel and transferred to the barge moored in the heart of Paris.
Welcome aboard!Take some time to get settled in to your cabin, and enjoy a wonderful champagne welcome.
Time to relax and cruise past Notre Dame and the Eiffel Tower. Moor the night in the Latin Quarter where you will enjoy your first gourmet dinner on board.
La Nouvelle Etoile is an ultra deluxe barge with very spacious accommodation for only 8 passengers, offering a wonderful blend of traditional elegance and sophisticated, state of the art facilities. The elegant, air conditioned and teak-lined dining area and saloon, with an attractive bar and piano, feature warm and inviting furnishings. On deck there is a spacious sun deck with comfortable loungers and hot tub. Other facilities include internet access, exercise room and 8 bikes. The air conditioned suites, each over 200 square feet, have satellite TV and large en-suite bathrooms with double sinks. The barge’s attentive crew of five is comprised of an experienced Captain, Master Chef, Tour Guide and two Housekeepers, all of whom will ensure your cruise is truly memorable.
This morning you'll cruise out of Paris onto the River Marne. After lunch you'll visit the magnificent Chateaux of Vaux-le-Vicomte. Rejoin the barge in Meaux in time to stroll around and visit the cathedral.
Enjoy a morning cruise from Meaux to La Ferte and an afternoon visit to Coulommiers, one of the centers of Brie cheese-making. You will enjoy a tasting of the various Brie's of a master cheese maker, along with wines from his excellent cellar.
You are now in Champagne and on your way to Charly-sur-Marne. Stop to enjoy the wonderful champagne of a small family vineyard before an afternoon cruise to Chateau Thierry, the scene of American battles in World War I. Optional visit to Belleau Wood battlefield.
The Marne takes you through covered hills dotted with small wine villages to the delightful little town of Damery. You'll take an afternoon visit to the cellars of Moet et Chandon for a private wine tasting.
Today you leave the River Marne for a small canal leading to Epernay. Visit the Abbey of Hautvillers where the monk Dom Perignon first made champagne. Enjoy an afternoon drive to Reims Cathedral followed by a wonderful farewell celebration, and your last gourmet dinner on board.
This morning, bid farewell to the captain and crew as you disembark from your barge.
Upon disembarkation, you'll be transferred back to your hotel in Paris.
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