23536
France

Joyeux Noël! Discover Strasbourg’s Christmas Markets by Barge

Sip on hot mulled wine. Sample fresh gingerbread. Watch the twinkling lights. Make this a holiday to remember on a special learning adventure in Strasbourg’s Christmas markets.
Program No. 23536RJ
Length
8 days
Starts at
3,499
Flights start at
750
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8 days
7 nights
14 meals
6 B 3 L 5 D
DAY
1
In Transit to Program
In Flight
DAY
2
Arrive Paris, Check-in, Orientation, Welcome Dinner
Paris
D
Les Jardins du Marais

Activity note: Hotel check-in 2:00 p.m.

Afternoon: Orientation: The Group Leader will greet everyone and lead introductions. We will review the up-to-date program schedule, discuss roles and responsibilities, logistics, safety guidelines, emergency procedures, and answer questions. On 'Chartered Exclusively for Road Scholar' programs, Road Scholar participants are the only passengers on board the vessel. This creates a unique learning experience for all. Barges do not have specific docking locations since they are designed to drop anchor anywhere. All docking locations and field trips are subject to change as weather and river conditions may affect the itinerary. River conditions could affect the progress of the ship, making it run late and sometimes miss docks because it is not safe. Therefore, the cruise itinerary should always be regarded as provisional. Additionally, the time available in each docking location is set by the cruise line and the cruise line reserves the right change the itinerary without prior notice. Whenever possible, the Road Scholar daily schedule indicates dock arrival and departure times. Road Scholar delivers a robust educational program in each port, and this may mean that free time in port is limited. The barge you will stay aboard is a ‘hotel’ ship for overnight accommodation and meals. The barge will be docked in Strasbourg and remain docked here for the duration of the program, except for a cruise around Strasbourg. Periods in the schedule designated as “Free time” and “At leisure” offer opportunities to do what you like and make your experience even more meaningful and memorable according to your personal preferences. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions. Program activities, schedules, personnel, and indicated distances or times may change due to local circumstances/conditions. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding.

Dinner: At a local restaurant near the hotel, enjoy a plated welcome meal, plus a glass of wine. Other beverages available for purchase.

Evening: At leisure. Continue getting to know your fellow participants, settle in, and get a good night’s rest for the day ahead.

DAY
3
Discover Paris, Opera Garnier
Paris
B,D
Les Jardins du Marais

Activity note: Use of Paris metro; unavoidable steps, crowds and standing when seats are not available; walking up to 4 miles on uneven terrain/cobblestones throughout the day; getting on/off motorcoach; standing for up to 2 hours at a time.

Breakfast: At the hotel, buffet offering cold and hot choices plus water, coffee and tea.

Morning: We will depart on foot and by metro for the Opera Garnier. With a local expert, we will discover the talent of architect Charles Garnier, on an exploration through his famous Paris Opera house, one of Paris’ most iconic monuments. Napoleon III commissioned a new Paris opera house in 1861 to be designed by Charles Garnier as part of his extraordinary reshaping of the capital during the Second Empire. The primary home of the Paris Opera, it is considered the most famous opera house in the world. With the Group Leader, we will stroll down the grand boulevards to enjoy the festive and animated window displays as well as the seasonal lights and decorations at the Place Vendome and Place Madeleine.

Lunch: This meal has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to enjoy what you like. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions.

Afternoon: We will meet up at the hotel briefly before departing by motorcoach for an orientation drive through Paris. With expert commentary along the way, we'll stop to see some of Paris' highlights, including the Eiffel Tower and Notre Dame.

Dinner: At a local restaurant.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
4
Musée d'Orsay, Chateau Vaux-le-Vicomte
Paris
B,L
Les Jardins du Marais

Activity note: Walking up to 2 miles on uneven terrain/cobblestones; standing for up to 1.5 hours at a time; getting on/off motorcoach; unavoidable stairs in the Paris Metro.

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: We will head out on the Paris Metro to the Musée d'Orsay. Here, we will enjoy a self-guided visit using the museum's audio guide system. The Orsay Museum has the largest collection of Impressionist paintings in the world.

Lunch: At the Musée d'Orsay restaurant

Afternoon: We will return to the hotel before departing by motorcoach for a special visit of the chateau Vaux-le-Vicomte. This magnificent chateau will be decorated for the holidays, displaying tables laden with gourmet delicacies and twinkling Christmas decorations. We will return to Paris in the early evening.

Dinner: On your own to enjoy what you like

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
5
Transfer via TGV to Strasbourg, Discover Strasbourg
Strasbourg
B,L,D
Madeleine

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach; getting on/off TGV (high speed train); climbing 3-12 steps with railings to reach reserved seat on train; participants are responsible for handling their own luggage; restrooms are on board the train; approximately 2 hours to Strasbourg; once in Strasbourg, walking up to 2 miles on cobblestone and uneven ground; standing for up to 2 hours on uneven terrain.

Breakfast: Early meal at the hotel or on the train depending on available train times.

Morning: We take a motorcoach to the train station in Paris to transfer to Strasbourg by high-speed rail (TGV).

Lunch: Upon arrival in Strasbourg, at a local restaurant.

Afternoon: On foot, we will explore the city of Strasbourg with a local expert. We will take a motorcoch to board the barge in Strasbourg.

Dinner: On board.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
6
Alsace Culture & Traditions, Strasbourg Christmas Markets
Strasbourg
B,L,D
Madeleine

Activity note: Walking on cobblestone and uneven terrain for up to 5 miles total throughout the day; standing up to 2 hours at a time; expect crowds at the Christmas markets.

Breakfast: On board.

Morning: On board, we will enjoy an expert lecture on Alsace's culture and Christmas traditions. Learn about how this culture is a unique blend of French and German traditions. We'll depart on foot to see the famed cathedral and the astronomical clock as it strikes 12 noon.

Lunch: On board.

Afternoon: We will visit the oldest Christmas market in France. If you would like, have a taste of traditional mulled wine. Many other traditional treats and refreshments are available at this market for purchase.

Dinner: On board

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
7
Riquewihr, Colmar
Strasbourg
B,D
Madeleine

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach, walking up to 3 miles on uneven terrain and cobblestones; standing for up to 1.5 hours during visits.

Breakfast: On board.

Morning: We will depart by motorcoach for Riquewihr, where we will enjoy a wine tasting of loca wines as well as a sampling of regional delicacies. We will continue on via motorcoach to Colmar.

Lunch: On your own in Colmar.

Afternoon: We will explore the streets of Colmar, famous for its medieval and renaissance era half-timbered houses with a local expert. We will see the city's old town and holiday decorations. We will return to Strasbourg by motorcoach.

Dinner: Farewell meal on board with evening cruise through Strasbourg.

DAY
8
Program Concludes, In Transit from Program
In Flight
B

Activity note: 9:00 a.m. Disembarkation.

Breakfast: On board. This concludes our program. 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!






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