Highlights of France

Paris
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It won’t take long for France to touch your heart, but in 13 days it will capture it outright. Surrender to the allure of the Loire Valley, the sophisticated French Riviera and historic villages, towns and cities from Beaune to Bordeaux. You’ll explore a hidden realm of scenic vineyard-clad landscapes, admire the medieval façades of Carcassonne and get your WWII history fix in Normandy, where the tales of the D-Day Landings come to life.

Departure dates

From 10/05/2024 to 09/10/2024

What's included

Highlights.
12 Breakfast (B)4 Dinner (D): View the Champs-Élysées, Arc de Triomphe and Eiffel Tower: Visit this charming town: Orientation of this gastronomic city: View the Palace of the Popes and the Pont d'Avignon: Visit the Principality: Visit an artist's paradise: Explore the walled city: View St.
Bernadette's Grotto: Visit this seaside resort: Orientation tour: Visit the famous wine village: Visit the Château de Chenonceau with your Local Specialist: Visit and view the abbey: Hear about the D-Day Landings: Visit this picturesque port: View the cathedral: An expert Travel Director and professional Driver: Cherry-picked hotels, all tried and trusted: Many meals and daily breakfasts included: City orientation tours: Audio headsets are provided throughout your holiday to enhance your included sightseeing experiences: Luxury air-conditioned coach with Wi-Fi in most countries: Extensive variety of Choice Experiences: On occasion, hotels of similar standard and location may be utilised.
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An expert Travel Director and professional DriverCherry-picked hotels, all tried and trustedMany meals and daily breakfasts includedCity orientation toursAudio headsets are provided throughout your holiday to enhance your included sightseeing experiencesLuxury air-conditioned coach with Wi-Fi in most countriesExtensive variety of Choice ExperiencesOn occasion, hotels of similar standard and location may be utilised.
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Itinerary / more information

  • Day 1 It's time to explore Paris's grand past, its dynamic present and exciting future. This is one capital city that doesn't hold back and doesn't expect you to either. Dive right into the history, culture and culinary delights of this extraordinary city, from the iconic Iron Lady to croque monsieurs, lazing on the banks of the Seine, or visiting museums and monuments. After checking in there's time to relax or explore the city your way, but you might like to get a head start on your sightseeing by joining an Optional Experience - a Seine cruise and scenic drive taking in many of the major sights.
  • Day 2 The Parisians know a thing or two about beauty, elegance and a life well lived, which your full day in Paris will deliver in abundance. Hit the grand boulevards on a city sightseeing tour through the heart of the city conducted by your Travel Director. See the Arc de Triomphe and Champs ?lys?es then perhaps choose to tread in the footsteps of Picasso and Dal? during an optional visit to Montmartre, exploring the cobbled streets and Artist's Square. This evening, consider a trip to one of the city's renowned cabarets.
  • Day 3 Au revoir Paris. The City of Light will keep shining, but for now our sights are set on medieval Beaune where the official raison d'?tre is the local wine. The beautiful marketplace and 15th-century H?tel-Dieu are yours to explore before later continuing your journey to Lyon. Get your bearings during an orientation tour, then perhaps consider joining an Optional Experience delving into the rich history of the city and the classical French cuisine that helped make it famous.
  • Day 4 Follow the Rh?ne Valley south and enjoy some free time in the Proven?al town of Aix-en-Provence, founded by the Romans over natural hot springs. The last leg of your journey southwards stretches out to the shimmering Mediterranean coast, where the Principality of Monaco and the C?te d'Azur await. Keep your cameras at the ready as you drive along its elegant boulevards and attempt to capture the sophistication that seems to ooze from every corner.
  • Day 5 Ooh l? l?! A full free day on the French Riviera. There's no shame in spending the day sprawled out on a sun-lounger with a cocktail, but if you can pull yourself away from the beach you'll want to join your fellow travellers for an optional exploration of Saint-Paul-de-Vence. Life is rather idyllic in this enchanting walled hill-town and, like some of its famous residents, you'll want to linger here a little longer. You never know who you might spot seated in those sleek Ferraris and private yachts that dot the French Riviera.
  • Day 6 Fuel up on a characteristically French breakfast of croissant and coffee before embarking on your next adventure. Today we travel west to the Camargue centre of Arles, where Vincent Van Gogh found inspiration for so many of his paintings. Next, you'll view the magnificent Pont du Gard, an aqueduct carefully constructed in the first century to supply fresh water. Continue to the heart of Provence and the city of Avignon which features one of the world's most incredible religious architectural legacies.
  • Day 7 Like a scene straight from the pages of a children's storybook, Carcassonne stands proudly on a hillside behind fortified stone walls. Its undeniable charm is evident when you come across the town's 12th century architecture and turreted medieval castle. From fairy tales to the foothills of the Pyr?n?es, your next stop is the town of Lourdes where you'll tread in the footsteps of the millions of pilgrims, who have made the journey to pay homage to St. Bernadette and view the basilica on top of the Grotto where she is said to have seen visions of the Virgin Mary. This evening presents an opportunity to join a procession by torchlight with the pilgrims - a truly magical and moving experience.
  • Day 8 The beach is back on the agenda today, so get your hat and sunglasses ready for a trip to the glamorous seaside town of Biarritz on the Atlantic coast. There's no need to think about what to do next. Take your cue from the European royals who have been visiting this resort town since the 1800s and find your new favourite spot on a wicker chair in the sun. If watching local surfers perform their stunts isn't enticing enough, you could choose an Optional Experience into the Basque country. After a good dose of sun, sea and lofty peaks, it's back into the rolling countryside of Les Landes and onwards to our final destination of the day, Bordeaux.
  • Day 9 After a night sampling Bordeaux blends and the city's eclectic mix of street life and well-preserved 18th century architecture, a new adventure awaits. The hilltop village of Saint-?milion is an appealing stop for red wine lovers. This is ch?teau country and there's no better way to explore it than joining an optional wine tasting at an historic vineyard. Continue to your hotel by the city of Tours, known as the gateway to the Loire Valley.
  • Day 10 Indulge your inner king or queen when you embark on a whimsical tour to Chenonceau with a Local Specialist. This enchanting, fairy-tale ch?teau straddling the Cher River is the most photographed sight in the Loire Valley and it's easy to see why. Explore its priceless collections of Renaissance art and furniture and stroll through the exquisite landscaped gardens before continuing to the royal town of Amboise where Leonardo da Vinci is said to be buried. Your encounter with French nobility not quite at its end, you'll view the splendid Ch?teau de Chambord, one of the world's most remarkable ch?teaux. Make the most of your last night back in Tours with an Optional Experience to visit the Old Town and enjoy Touraine cuisine in a traditional restaurant.
  • Day 11 Only the epic sight of a medieval town rising out of the sea could compete with the beauty of the Loire Valley and your visit to Mont Saint-Michel will certainly not disappoint. Hear how the Archangel inspired the Bishop of Avranches to build a church atop this rocky outcrop, then continue your journey to the iconic D-Day landing beaches where thousands of Allied soldiers first landed on French soil, in what became the largest seaborne invasion in history. After a poignant stop at the Normandy American Cemetery at Omaha Beach, you'll continue on to your hotel in Deauville. This elegant resort is renowned for its racecourse, harbour and high-profile international film festival held in September.
  • Day 12 You'll wish you had the talents of Monet during your brief visit to the colourful port town of Honfleur. It's easy to see why this 'most ravishing spot in the world' was immortalised on canvas by many of the world's greatest artists. Next head to Rouen, where Joan of Arc was burned at the stake. Despite this tragic episode, there's much to fall in love with here, from the cobbled streets to Gothic churches and the impressive cathedral. After a busy day engaging with all that history, return to the glittering French capital for the final evening of your adventure. Consider joining an Optional Experience dinner for a celebration of your memorable journey with new friends.
  • Day 13 And just like that, you've seen all the highlights of France. From Paris and beyond, you'll be finishing your trip this morning with a lifetime's supply of memories. Say a fond au revoir to your Travel Director and newfound friends.
  • Prices quoted valid for sale until 29 April 2024 unless otherwise stated or sold out prior.
  • Price is per person and subject to availability. Accommodation (if included) is based on twin share unless otherwise stated.
  • Airfare (including internal flights) is not included unless otherwise stated and, if included, is economy class unless otherwise stated.
  • Local payments, "trip kittys" or food funds may apply and may be payable direct to the supplier on arrival or to your travel agent prior to your departure. Where applicable, these payments are included in the total price quoted.
  • Gratuities are not included unless otherwise stated.
  • Additional conditions and travel restrictions may apply. Please enquire for further details.
  • Prices shown are fully inclusive of taxes, levies and government charges current at time of publication.
  • Additional levies, government charges and other applicable fees may apply and are beyond our control.
  • Seasonal surcharges and blackout dates may apply depending on date of travel.
  • Payments made by credit card will incur a surcharge.
  • Prices shown are for payments made by cash in store or Bpay.
  • These prices are a guide to the best price. Prices are correct as at 24 April 2024 and are subject to change without notice, due to matters outside our control, such as adverse currency fluctuations, fuel surcharges, taxes and airfare increases. Please enquire for further details.

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