21095
France
The Best of Northern France: Paris and Normandy
Alongside scholars and local experts, find out how the history, architecture, cafés and cuisine makes these two regions both so unique and both so distinctly French.
Program No. 21095rvs
Length
9 days
Starts at
2,099
Flights start at
800
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9 days
8 nights
14 meals
7 B 4 L 3 D
Getting There
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DAY
1
In Transit to Program
In Flight
DAY
2
Arrivals in Paris, Orientation, Explore Paris by Night
Paris
D
Best Western Premier Opera Faubourg

Morning: Transfers from the airport to the hotel.

Afternoon: Check-in at the hotel in Paris. Unpack and relax until orientation. We will gather in our private meeting room in the early evening 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 near the hotel.

Evening: Enjoy an evening bus tour where you will see the highlights of the city.

DAY
3
L'Ile de la Cité, The Sainte Chapelle, Notre Dame, Free Time
Paris
B,L
Best Western Premier Opera Faubourg

Activity note: Today's activities include use of the metro which is typically accessed by stairs; Elevators and escalators may not be available.

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: This morning we will take the metro (30 minutes with one change) for a field trip where we will explore the heart of Paris: L'Ile de la Cité. You will discover the flower markets and the Sainte Chapelle, one of the most beautiful examples of Gothic architecture. We will end the morning at Notre Dame Cathedral. We will then cross the Seine over to Beaubourg for lunch near the famed contemporary museum and its fountain.

Lunch: At a creperie near Les Halles.

Afternoon: Enjoy Saturday afternoon free to explore Paris, do some shopping in Les Halles or see one of the many museums that are easy accessible. Alternatively, you may join your leader who will head into the Marais for a walk in this historic and dynamic part of Paris. Visit the Musée Carnavalet's permanent collection and end the afternoon at the Place des Vogues. You will then take the metro back to the hotel.

Dinner: On your own in Paris.

Evening: This evening, enjoy a theatre performance in French, with English subtitles, by a local theatre group.

DAY
4
Parisian Market / Orsay Museum / Montmartre
Paris
B,L
Best Western Premier Opera Faubourg

Activity note: Today's activities include use of the metro which is typically accessed by stairs; Elevators and escalators may not be available.

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: This morning we will take the metro (30 minutes with one change) to go on a field trip where we will explore the life of a typical Parisian. We will visit the market at Richard Lenoir. Enjoy the smells and flavors of Paris as you discover this small, popular, outdoor market. We will continue the morning at the Orsay Museum for a self-guided visit using the museum's audio guide system. Orsay has the largest collection of Impressionist paintings in the world.

Lunch: At the Orsay Museum.

Afternoon: We will end the afternoon by taking the metro to visit Montmartre, a neighborhood that was made famous by past artists and continues to be popular with current Parisian artists and writers. In addition, we will see Sacre Coeur and Place du Tertre, while also exploring the back and side streets of the well-known neighborhood.

Dinner: On your own in Paris.

DAY
5
Giverny & Monet's Garden, Rouen & Cathedral of Rouen
Bayeux
B,D
Churchill Hotel

Activity note: Today's activities include four hours of coach travel.

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: This morning the coach will depart the Paris hotel for Bayeux via Giverny and Rouen. (Paris to Giverny - 1 hour). We will take a field trip to explore the beautiful gardens of Claude Monet in Giverny. We will then depart for Rouen (1 hour).

Lunch: On your own in Rouen.

Afternoon: This afternoon we will explore the historic city of Rouen that has been painted multiple times by Monet as he studied the impact of light. Rouen is also a city that offers outstanding examples of half-timbered houses. Next, we will board the coach for Bayeux (2 hours). Upon arrival, you will check-in at the hotel.

Dinner: At a local restaurant near the hotel.

DAY
6
WWII in Normandy, The Landing Beaches, The American Cemetery
Bayeux
B,L
Churchill Hotel

Activity note: Today's activities include travel by coach.

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: The coach will depart Bayeux to explore the landing sites of WWII. We will start the morning at Pointe du Hoc to learn about the preparation to D-Day and the bombing leading up to the troop arrivals. We will continue the morning on the landing beach of Omaha and learn about how the beach head was taken with great sacrifice of the U.S. troops. We will see and discuss many of the remaining gun positions that still survive even today. We will then leave Omaha Beach and pay our respects to the fallen soldiers of the U.S. WWII War Cemetery. Here, we will have a brief ceremony. We will end the morning in Arromanches to see the remnants of the artificial harbor built by the troops to unload the equipment that won the war for the allies.

Lunch: In Arromanches.

Afternoon: We will go on an excursion titled, "Calvados and Cheese: Normandy's Pride." Here you will have the opportunity to sample the region's renowned apple brandy at the Château d'Englesqueville, where the first U.S. monument to honor WWII soldiers was built. Later you will have free time to explore Bayeux. You can see the small but untouched cathedral or discover the Bayeux tapestry, which is a famous embroidered cloth (not an actual tapestry) that depicts the events leading up to the Norman conquest of England in the Battle of Hastings.

Dinner: On your own in Bayeux.

DAY
7
Mont St. Michel
Bayeux
B,L
Churchill Hotel

Activity note: Today's activities include four hours of coach travel.

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: The coach departs this morning for Mont Saint Michel (2 hours), a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This tiny tidal island houses the majestic St. Michel Monastery.

Lunch: At a local farmhouse inn featuring Normandy specialites.

Afternoon: We will take the coach back to Bayeux (2 hours). You will have free time to explore the city a bit more on your own.

Dinner: On your own.

DAY
8
Honfleur, A Coastal Village, Palace of Versailles & Gardens
Paris CDG Airport hotel
B,D
Mercure Paris Roissy Charles de Gaulle

Activity note: Today's activities include four hours of coach travel.

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: We will take a field trip by coach (1 hour) to enjoy unique architecture during a tour of historic Honfleur. Learn why this city has one of the few remaining all wooden churches and its important role in the settlement of new France. You also will have the option to discover the Musée Eugène Boudin. Located in a 19th century chapel and two modern extensions with views over Honfleur and the Seine, the Eugène Boudin Museum is named after Honfleur's most famous painter, and houses some 1200 square metres of permanent exhibitions in nine rooms. On display are works by Eugène Boudin and other great impressionists such as Dubourg, Monet, and Jongkind - many of whom stayed and worked at the Saint-Simeon farmouse on the outskirts of Honfleur.

Lunch: On your own in Honfleur.

Afternoon: We will take a field trip by coach (2 hours) to discover Versailles Palace. Enjoy visiting the inside of the castle and the Hall of Mirrors and later take some time to explore the gardens on your own. The coach will then depart for Paris (1 hour) where you will check-in at your hotel for one night.

Dinner: Farewell dinner at the CDG airport hotel.

DAY
9
Program Concludes
In Flight
B

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: Indvidual shuttles will provide transfers for those returning to the U.S. Note for participants combining this program with 21096: Since these programs are designed to be taken together, your transportation to Aix-en-Provence has been arranged by Road Scholar and is complimentary. Please see details of program 21096 for start time on this day. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Please be in touch via the Road Scholar Social Network, where you can share memories, pictures, and comments. Best wishes for all your journeys.