20758
Spain/France
From Barcelona to Paris: Vineyards & Villages of the Rhone
Enjoy bold architecture, classic art and world-class wine as you explore the rich cultural heritage of Spain and France aboard a deluxe, modern vessel.
Rating (5)
Program No. 20758RJ
Length
14 days
Starts at
4,095
Special Offer
Flights start at
900
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14 days
13 nights
31 meals
12 B 8 L 11 D
Getting There
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DAY
1
Departures from the U.S.
In flight
DAY
2
Arrival, Welcome Reception, Program Introduction
Barcelona
D
Abba Balmoral Barcelona

Morning: Arrive in Barcelona and transfer to your hotel. Take this opportunity for personal independent exploration to see and do what interests you most. Please refer to the list of Free Time Opportunities, which can be found in the first Information Packet or on the Road Scholar website. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions.

Lunch: Explore local fare on your own.

Afternoon: Check-in at the hotel and then take some time to rest and freshen up before orientation. We will gather in our private meeting room where the Group Leader will greet you with a warm welcome and introduce everyone. We will review the up-to-date daily schedule and any changes, discuss responsibilities, safety guidelines, emergency procedures, and answer any questions you may have. Please be aware that program activities and scheduled times could change due to local circumstances. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding.

Dinner: Welcome dinner at the hotel.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
3
Gaudi's Barcelona
Barcelona
B,L
Abba Balmoral Barcelona

Breakfast: At the hotel. On this program, breakfasts will offer a typical European style breakfast buffet with breads, cheeses, cold-cuts, yogurt, fruit, cereals, juice, milk, coffee, tea and water.

Morning: This morning we will enjoy a panoramic drive followed by a visit to the Sagrada Familia. This basilica, which is a UNESCO World heritage site, was designed by Antoni Gaudi. Paul Goldberger, an American architectural critic and educator described it as "...the most extraordinary personal interpretation of Gothic architecture since the Middle Ages."

Lunch: At a local restaurant.

Afternoon: We will continue our exploration today with a local expert and visit the Gothic Quarter & El Born - Barcelona's oldest neighborhood.

Dinner: Explore local fare on your own.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
4
Las Ramblas and La Boqueria
Barcelona
B,D
Abba Balmoral Barcelona

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: Enjoy a morning walking excursion in the Ramblas with a local expert exploring the Boqueria market to try some local specialties and mingle with local Barcelonians as they do their market shopping.

Lunch: On your own in Barcelona to explore the city. Your group leader will be happy to offer suggestions.

Afternoon: Enjoy some free time on your own.

Dinner: At a local restaurant.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
5
Transfer Barcelona - Narbonne - Martigues
Martigues
B,L,D
CroisiEurope MS Van Gogh

Activity note: Today's drive from Barcelona to Narbonne will take about 3 hrs (with coffee break), The drive from Narbonne to Martigues takes about 2.5 hrs.

Breakfast: Early breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: After checking out of our hotel in the early morning, we will transfer by coach from Barcelona to Narbonne (3 hr drive by coach with coffee break in between).

Lunch: At a local restaurant in Narbonne.

Afternoon: Visit the halles. The halles is an indoor market, featuring stalls for bakers, pastries, butchers, caterers, fishmongers, greengrocers, poultry merchants, delicatessens, and bars and wine merchants. Afterwards we explore the historic sites of Narbonne before we continue our coach ride (about 2.5 hrs) from Narbonne to Martigue. We will arrive in the early evening and embark the ms Van Gogh.

Dinner: Welcome Dinner on board. Dinner on board is a 3-course sit down meal served at set times prepared fresh on a daily basis. Drinks included are: mineral water, fruit juice, tea, coffee, house wine and beer. Champagne and wines on the special wine list are available for an additional charge. .

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
6
Port Saint Louis - Arles - Avignon
Avignon
B,L,D
CroisiEurope MS Van Gogh

Breakfast: All breakfasts on board are typical European style breakfast buffet with breads, cheeses, cold-cuts, yogurt, fruit, cereals, juice, milk, coffee, tea and water.

Morning: This morning, we will coach to Arles to learn about the games enjoyed by the Romans in the amphitheater, a splendid and complex piece of architecture which still remains standing in the middle of the city. Afterwards, enjoy some free time to explore the market or other sites of interest in Arles.

Lunch: On board. Lunch is a 3-course sit down meal served at set times prepared fresh on a daily basis. Drinks included are: mineral water, fruit juice, tea, coffee, house wine and beer. Champagne and wines on the special wine list are available for an additional charge.

Afternoon: Continue to explore Arles on your own - or - for those who prefer to remain with the group, join your expert local guide for a walking discovery of Arles, including some of the sites that inspired Van Gogh as well as Saint Trophime church.

Dinner: On board.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
7
Avignon - Viviers
Viviers
B,L,D
CroisiEurope MS Van Gogh

Breakfast: On board.

Morning: This morning we can opt to have some free time on our own, or to join an optional excursion: The Palais des Papes. Enjoy a walking discovery of the austere and imposing Palais des Papes where we learn about the history of the papacy in Avignon. If time allows, we can then individually visit the Saint Benezet Bridge, known as "Le Pont d'Avignon", made famous by a children's song.

Lunch: On board.

Afternoon: As we cruise toward Viviers, enjoy a discussion about Provence through the centuries, revealing a melting pot of civilizations.

Dinner: On board.

Evening: Enjoy an evening stroll in Viviers with your Group Leader.

DAY
8
Viviers - Tain
Tain l'Hermitage
B,L,D
CroisiEurope MS Van Gogh

Breakfast: On board.

Morning: This morning we have the opportunity to visit rural Provence and breathe in the country air at the beautiful gardens of La Garde Adhemar. En route to rejoin the boat in La Voulte we will stop to view the scenic village of Cliousclat, one of the most lovely rural villages in France. Afterwards, visit a chocolate factory (tasting included)!

Lunch: On board.

Afternoon: We will begin the afternoon with an discussion about the Wine Regions along the Rhone and the Origin of Wine. Afterwards, we will walk with your local expert from the boat to a small wine cellar in Tain l'Hermitage where we will taste some of the regional wines paired with local specialties.

Dinner: On board.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
9
Vienne - Lyon
Lyon
B,L,D
CroisiEurope MS Van Gogh

Breakfast: On board.

Morning: This morning we will take a short walk along the bridge that connects Vienne and visit the Roman Temple of Augustus. After returning to the ship, we will coach to the Gallo Roman museum and enjoy an on-site lecture about the Roman Vestiges of the Northern Rhone. we will explore the Saint Romain en Gal museum and archaeological site and learn about the everyday life of the ancient Romans. Then we'll continue on to the Chaponost Aqueduct where we will marvel at the amazing beauty and technology created more than 2000 years ago.

Lunch: At a local restaurant.

Afternoon: This afternoon move ahead in time and look at urban development in the Middle Ages and Renaissance as we explore Lyon a World UNESCO Heritage City. Lyon sits at the confluence of two great rivers; the Saône and Rhône. Long at the center of European trade because of its strategic location, the city serves as a midway point between the North and South. Afterwards, take the funicular down to Old Lyon. Explore the city and the architecture, hidden traboules, and alleyways of one of the greatest Renaissance sites in France.

Dinner: On board.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
10
Tournus - Chalon
Chalon sur Saone
B,L,D
CroisiEurope MS Van Gogh

Breakfast: On board.

Morning: Your Study Leader will discuss the history of the powerful Dukes of Burgundy this morning, and the history of France from the Fall of the Roman Empire to 1477.

Lunch: On board.

Afternoon: This afternoon we will explore the monastic city of Tournus and learn about the role of monasteries in the wine trade. Afterwards, we'll travel to a family vineyard where we will have the opportunity to taste the great wines of southern Burgundy and talk with a Cellar Master about his work.

Dinner: Farewell dinner on board.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
11
Disembark / Chalon - Beaune - Paris
Paris
B,D
Les Jardins du Marais

Activity note: The afternoon bus ride from Beaune to Paris will take about 3 hrs.

Breakfast: On board.

Morning: This morning we will leave our ship behind and head towards Paris, driving through some of the world's most selective vineyards. Then we will stop in Beaune for an educational stroll of the fortified city, capital of the Burgundy wine trade, and enjoy an on-site lecture at the famous Hospices de Beaune.

Lunch: On your own. Take this opportunity to have a quick lunch on your own before continuing on to Paris.

Afternoon: As we drive from Beaune to Paris, our Study Leader will talk about life as a French immigrant. Upon arrival we will check in to our hotel in Paris.

Dinner: At a local restaurant.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
12
Paris
Paris
B,D
Les Jardins du Marais

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: Our local expert will introduce us to the Louvre and take us to some of the highlights, and we will have time to explore the museum independently on our own.

Lunch: On your own at the Louvre.

Afternoon: After lunch we explore the Ile de La Cite on foot and see some of the lesser visited streets known as the Ancien Cloître Quartier. No visit to Paris is complete without seeing the cathedral of Notre Dame de Paris. The Jewel of Gothic Architecture, Notre Dame is the heart and life of Paris.

Dinner: At a local restaurant.

Evening: Classical Musical Performance at the Sainte Chapelle: Each evening the Sainte Chapelle hosts various classical musical performances. This evening we join Parisians in an evening musical presentation at one of the most beautiful sites in Paris. NOTE: Due to scheduling of events this presentation may be at another similar venue.

DAY
13
Paris
Paris
B,L,D
Les Jardins du Marais

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: We will join our Group Leader for a visit to Montmartre, including an exploration of the Place du Tertre and Sacre Couer. Afterwards, we will explore the market and food culture of Paris. Discover small shops with a local expert and taste some incredible local flavours in a typical Parisian neighbourhood.

Lunch: At a local restaurant.

Afternoon: This afternoon we will have the chance to visit the famous Musee d'Orsay.

Dinner: At or near the hotel.

Evening: The Paris City Lights excursion by coach takes us by some of the best known monuments of Paris, depending on the time of year we may enjoy the view with the lights illuminating the monuments.

DAY
14
Departure to U.S.
In flight
B

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: Coach or shuttle transfer from the hotel to CDG airport for departures. If you are returning home, safe travels. If you are staying on independently, have a wonderful time. If you are transferring to another Road Scholar program, detailed instructions are included in your Information Packet for that program. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Please join our Facebook page and share photos of your program. Visit us at www.facebook.com/rsadventures. Best wishes for all your journeys!