Your itinerary

Look forward to an extraordinary cultural tour: Discover nine UNESCO world heritage sites between Paris, the Atlantic and the Mediterranean coast. Not to mention the delights of Paris, Loire valley châteaux, historic Bordeaux and the spectacular fortifications at Carcassonne. Stroll through Arles, the “Rome of Provence”, admire the Palais des Papes in Avignon and the town’s famous bridge, the Pont d’Avignon.

Day 1: Arrival & Paris (UNESCO world heritage site)UNESCO World Heritage Site

Arrival in Paris. Our tour leader will warmly welcome us at the airport of this French metropolis. On a stunning city tour, we will see the key attractions in the “City of Love”. They include the Notre Dame Cathedral, the world-famous Eiffel Tower, the Champs Elysées and the impressive Louvre. Afterwards, an optional boat trip on the River Seine will allow you to see France‘s capital city from a very different perspective. Overnight stay in the Paris area.

Day 2: Orleans & highlights of the Loire Valley (UNESCO world heritage site) UNESCO World Heritage Site

The first stop today is Orleans, the birthplace of Joan of Arc, who is remembered as the “Maid of Orleans”. The enormous cathedral in the centre of the historic old town is also dedicated to her. Afterwards, we arrive at the largest and most beautiful castle in the Loire Valley: Chambord (admission included). During the subsequent panoramic journey through the Loire Valley (UNESCO world cultural heritage), we will see the splendid castles of Chaumont and Amboise, and then meander along through Tours. The marketplace with its half-timbered houses is among one of the prettiest in France. Overnight stay in the Tours or Poitiers area.

Day 3: Atlantic coastline, La Rochelle, panoramic ferry trip, Médoc peninsula and red wine tasting

Crossing western France‘s stunning landscape, we travel to La Rochelle on the Atlantic coast. The town is home to one of the most beautiful mediaeval harbours in Europe. In the afternoon, we will take the ferry from Royan to the famous Médoc peninsula. This is where some of the world‘s finest wines are grown, and we will see fascinating castles such as Mouton Rothschild, Margaux and Lafitte. We will sample some wines during a red wine tasting in one of the castles or manors before we arrive in the global capital of wines in the evening: Bordeaux. Overnight stay in the Bordeaux area.

Day 4: Bordeaux (UNESCO world heritage site) & ArcachonUNESCO World Heritage Site

This morning we discover Bordeaux. The historic city centre, also known as the “Port of the Moon”, was declared a world cultural heritage site by UNESCO in 2007. Equally impressive are the famous stock exchange square on the River Gironde and the opera house. The modern wine museum is also worth a visit. On an optional trip to Arcachon, you can marvel at the lagoon on the Atlantic with the largest oyster farms in the world. Relax and enjoy the picturesque landscape on a boat trip. Overnight stay in the Bordeaux area.

Day 5: Route of Santiago de Compostela, Canal du Midi & Toulouse (2x UNESCO world heritage site)UNESCO World Heritage SiteUNESCO World Heritage Site

Today, we leave the Atlantic behind us and travel east to the tiny village of Moissac on the route of Santiago de Compostela and visit its monastery (admission included). We follow the trail of the pilgrims (UNESCO world heritage site) and reach Toulouse. The “Pink City” on the famous Canal du Midi (UNESCO world heritage site) is one of France‘s most beautiful cities. The cityscape features the Saint Sernin Roman basilica, the Place du Capitole and numerous palaces and monasteries. We can take you on an optional tour of the city, if you ask. Afterwards there will be enough time to explore the city on your own. Overnight stay in the Toulouse area.

Day 6: Carcassonne (UNESCO world heritage site) & NîmesUNESCO World Heritage Site

Today, our journey continues towards the Mediterranean. En route, we stop off in Carcassonne (UNESCO world heritage site). We will wander through the world-famous city fortified by 40 towers and a city wall. We will then travel to the ancient Roman city of Nîmes, with its awe-inspiring amphitheatre and Roman temple. After a stroll around the city, there will still be enough time to explore on your own. Following that, we strongly recommend taking part in the optional trip to the beautiful Camargue region. On this trip, you‘ll visit a bull breeder and enjoy a splendid evening meal. Overnight stay in the Arles or Nîmes area.

Day 7: Arles, Avignon & Lyon (3x UNESCO world heritage site)UNESCO World Heritage SiteUNESCO World Heritage SiteUNESCO World Heritage Site

In the morning we will wander through Arles with its Roman and Romanesque statues (UNESCO world heritage site). The “Rome of Provence” was made famous in particular by the painter van Gogh, who lived here for a while. We will also see the amphitheatre. After this we will arrive in Avignon. The “City of Popes”, with its mighty papal palace (UNESCO world heritage site) and Bridge of Avignon, is the birthplace of the singer Mireille Mathieu. Afterwards, we continue through the Rhône Valley to Lyon. Here, we will take a short tour of the city, looking at the city centre with its Place Bellecour and the historic old town (UNESCO world heritage site). Overnight stay in the Lyon area.

Day 8: Homeward journey

Today you will climb aboard the modern TGV fast train from Lyon to the airport in Paris for your flight home. Fellow travellers become great friends and many plan more travelling adventures together.

Package includes:

  • Direct flights to and from Paris with Air France, incl. hotel transfers, airport and security charges
  • 7 overnight stays in a double room in selected comfortable hotels, incl. 7x French breakfast buffet
  • Fascinating cultural tour in our modern, air-conditioned coach discovering France‘s most famous highlights!
    Look forward to a spectacular range of excursions + admissions (according to itinerary), including 9 UNESCO world heritage sites:
    • Paris (UNESCO)
    • Orleans
    • Loire Valley (UNESCO)
    • Red wine tasting Médoc peninsula
    • La Rochelle
    • Atlantic coastline
    • Bordeaux (UNESCO)
    • Route of Santiago de Compostela (UNESCO)
    • Toulouse
    • Canal du Midi (UNESCO)
    • Carcassonne (UNESCO)
    • Nîmes
    • Arles (UNESCO)
    • Avignon (UNESCO)
    • Lyon (UNESCO)
  • 1 panoramic ferry trip to the Médoc peninsula &
    1 trip by the TGV fast train from Lyon to Paris
  • Qualified, English-speaking tour guide

On request, you can book our additional tours and services at special reduced prices:

Discovery package:

The package includes a boat trip on the River Seine in Paris, a visit to Arcachon with boat trip, a city tour around Toulouse and a trip to the Camargue, including evening meal: only £ 159 per person.

Single room surcharge

£179 per person (subject to availability)

Including a spectacular range of excursions + admissions, including 9 UNESCO sites !

Comparison of temperatures

 JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Paris67131518222625241584
London68911152021201915107

Location:

The largest European country by area is located in West Europe. France is very varied in terms of its scenery; from the mountain ranges of the Alps and Pyrenees, to the river valleys of the Loire, Rhône and Dordogne to the Côte d’Azur and the regions around Normandy and the Atlantic coast.

Form of government:

Parliamentary democracy with a two chamber system; state president Emmanuel Macron (since March 2017)

Capital:

Paris (approx. 2.2 million residents)

Religion:

predominantly Roman-Catholic

Language:

French

Climate:

Four main regions: Atlantic region – temperate maritime climate; continental region – pronounced temperature differences (particularly in the east); Mediterranean region – moderate, warm maritime climate; alpine region – harsh mountain climate

Local time:

France is part of the Central European Time zone where GMT+1 applies, along with daylight saving time.

Making telephone calls:

The country code for France is 0033 with the zero cancelled before the area code. If you are calling the UK from France, please dial 0044 and the area code without the zero.

Entry requirements for British citizens:

France is a contracting party to the European convention on the free movement of people between the member states of the Council of Europe from 13/12/1957.
British nationals do not need a visa to enter France. Your passport should be valid for the proposed duration of your stay. Nationals of other countries are advised to inquire at the French Embassy about the entry requirements applicable to them.
Whilst we endeavour to provide guidance where necessary, we can not be responsible for any problems encountered (whether at any point of entry or elsewhere) in the event that passport and visa requirements are not satisfied.

Tour guides:

Your expert tour guides will be able to provide you with detailed information about the country, people, history, culture, etc., and offer advice and assistance for organising your trip. They can also help with room allocation and look forward to welcoming you with initial information. Here you will find out all you need to know and useful information about the trip. We have put together a varied programme including numerous highlights, enabling you to experience the culture and diversity of landscape that France has to offer, and learn all about the country and its people. Although your trip already includes a comprehensive package, you also have the option of choosing added extras. We recommend booking the following packages:

Discovery package: The package includes a boat trip on the River Seine in Paris, a visit to Arcachon with boat trip, a city tour around Toulouse and a trip to the Camargue, including evening meal: only £ 159 per person.
Gourmet package: The package includes 7x evening meals (3 course menu): only £ 149 per person.

Currency/Banks/Credit cards:

France is a member of the EU and of the European Monetary Union. This means that the Euro is the official currency. Exchange rate (as at September 2018): 1 GBP = 1.12 EUR; 1 EUR = 0.89 GBP.
Purchases can be made in cash and also with the most common credit cards and sometimes also with an EC card. Cash withdrawals can be made using either a credit card or EC card. In some circumstances a fee may be charged by the relevant bank. You can find out more on this from your bank.

Customs regulations:

Private individuals who are travelling within the EU can purchase and take with them an unrestricted quantity of goods, provided these are intended for personal use and are not being sold on. Any currency taken with you above 10,000.00 € (or equivalent value in another currency) must be reported to the French customs at least five days before the start of your trip. Information on customs regulations for importing products into the UK is found on the British Customs Web site: www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk.

Country-specific safety and security:

Particularly in larger tourist centres, it is recommended that you take precautions to protect yourself from pickpockets and against petty crime. It is recommended that you securely deposit money, ID cards, driver’s license, air tickets and other important documents (for instance in the hotel safe) and only take with you as much cash as you will require for that particular day (and your EC or credit card). Travellers should keep an eye on their valuables in crowded locations and at tourist hotspots, in airports (including in the security area), train stations, on the underground, bus etc.
On 1 November 2017 new anti-terror legislation was introduced in France which allows the French security authorities to take different measures with the aim of combating terrorism. In this context, in certain areas such as underground and mainline train stations, and in the areas near the border, there may be increased checks on individuals and their baggage. At entrances to certain institutions (e.g. museums) checks may be performed on hand luggage.

Medical information:

Vaccinations: The standard vaccinations for children and adults in accordance with the information provided by the National Travel Health Network and Centre should be checked before undertaking any travel and updated if necessary (see https://nathnac.net/).

Medical care: If you are a UK citizen and are in possession of an EHIC card, you are entitled to treatment (provided this is urgent in nature) at doctors, dentists, hospitals etc. in France. Proof of cover must be provided in the form of the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) or cover note (which is obtained from your medical insurance company if you have separate medical insurance). Irrespective of this, it is strongly recommended that you acquire travel health insurance for the duration of your stay abroad, to cover any risks which would not be covered by the EHIC or your standard medical insurance policy (e.g. return transport home in the event of illness, treatment by a private doctor or in a private clinic).
Customers should ensure that they are physically and psychologically fit for undertaking the selected trip and make the necessary queries concerning the level of physical and psychological fitness required. Please observe that the excursions are accessible by foot only and that the buses used for the roundtrip are not customised to transport wheelchairs or similar devices.

All information is subject to change/Last updated: September 2018

kappadokien-kundenstimmen

“Very well organised trip throughout. I absolutely loved it. I‘d definitely go again.“

Petra S. from O., travelled 19.06.2017²


² RSD Travel Ltd. and RSD Reise Service Deutschland GmbH belong to a European group of tour operators that organises tours for customers from a number of European countries. The survey focused on tourists who travelled with RSD in 2017. These comments were made by customers who have travelled with our group of companies.

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