The Seine: Paris to Normandy

Highlights & InclusionsItineraryPricing Information Terms & Conditions
Departure Date: June 5, 2019
Duration: 12 Days / 11 Nights
Price from: $4,195
Single Room Supplement: Please call
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In order to bring you the greatest selection of destinations and itineraries, Gutsy Women Travel has worked with our partner GCCL to reserve space on this 2019 guided vacation. This trip is open to men and women, and will operate with a larger group size than our traditional Gutsy Women departures.


Highlights & Inclusions

  • Be sure to mention booking code G9-25972 to receive all the Gutsy benefits!
  • Airport transfers are included when you purchase our operator's International air to coincide with trip's day by day agenda.
  • Accommodations for 10 nights aboard the M/S Bizet with wireless Internet access in all common areas and cabins, and 1 night at the Novotel Convention & Wellness Roissy CDG or similar
  • 29 meals: Daily breakfasts, 8 lunches, 10 dinners—including 1 meal in a local restaurant—plus all onboard house beer, wine, and soft drinks
  • 9 included tours with personal headsets and 7 exclusive Discovery Series events—French language lesson • Je Sers visit • Impressionists discussion • Painting class • Home-Hosted Visit • Cooking demonstration • French cheese tasting
  • Local Program Directors, a Grand Circle Cruise Line exclusive: These dedicated experts are with you (and no more than 47 travelers) every step of the way to provide insider’s knowledge and the perspective that will enrich your experience
  • Gratuities for local guides and motorcoach drivers
  • All port charges: a value of $165 per person
  • Baggage handling for 1 piece of luggage per person, including tips
  • 5% Frequent Traveler Credit toward your next Grand Circle trip


Itinerary

See the lovely landscapes and charming villages that inspired the great impressionist artists of the 19th and 20th centuries. Begin your trip in romantic Paris, the City of Lights, where you’ll explore the monuments, churches, and buildings that are familiar to you from film and photographs. Continue your odyssey with a cruise through the heartland of France aboard the award-winning M/S Bizet. Admire the beautiful landscapes covered with dense forests, fertile pastures, and the orchards where the apples in the region’s famed calvados originates. Explore the villages and landscapes that so enchanted Van Gogh, Monet, Renoir, Pissarro, and Cezanne—and visit the town where Joan of Arc was imprisoned and burned at the stake. You also travel to the famous beaches of Normandy, visit the World War II Peace Memorial Museum, and pause at the somber field that is the American Military Cemetery. This is an in-depth exploration of one of the richest regions of France.

DAY 1 Depart U.S. Depart today on your flight to Paris, France.

DAY 2 Paris, France


OVERNIGHT: Novotel Convention & Wellness Roissy CDG or similar Arrive this morning or afternoon in Paris. You are met at the airport and transferred to your airport hotel, located 18 miles from the Paris city center. If you began your European explorations early with our pre-trip extension in London, England, you will join the main group today.

You have the balance of the day to relax after your overseas flight. Later, celebrate the start of your France River Cruise with a Welcome Drink and briefing with your fellow travelers and Program Director.

DAY 3 Paris • Caen Peace Memorial Museum • Honfleur • Embark ship • Captain's Welcome Dinner


MEALS: B D
OVERNIGHT: M/S Bizet

From Paris, you will transfer to the well-preserved port town of Honfleur, founded in the eleventh century. If you began your European explorations early with our pre-trip extension in Brittany & Mont St. Michel, France, you will join the main group today.

En route, visit the Peace Memorial Museum in Caen, a state-of-the-art facility that does an outstanding job of presenting the events of World War II, including D-Day, very vividly. Your visit here will be an excellent way to put into context what you're going to see when you visit Normandy's beaches later in your trip. You'll have time here for lunch on your own.

You'll arrive at and embark your ship in the mid-afternoon, with time to settle into your outside cabin, your private retreat for the next ten nights of your Seine River Cruise.

This evening gather with your fellow travelers and Program Director for our first Port Talk: During your Seine River Cruise, you'll receive daily briefings about the next day's discoveries, so that you can make the best use of your free time there. Then, celebrate the beginning of your trip together with a Welcome Drink and Captain's Welcome Dinner in the dining room.

DAY 4 Honfleur • Optional Bayeux tour • French language lesson


MEALS: B L D
OVERNIGHT: M/S Bizet

After breakfast, enjoy a walking tour of Honfleur. Situated on a Seine estuary opposite Le Havre, the town was once one of the most important ports in France. It was from here that many voyages of discovery were launched, including the journey of native son Samuel de Champlain—who would go on to found Port Royal in Nova Scotia and the settlement of Quebec in Canada.

The port changed hands frequently between France and England during the Hundred Years' War (1337-1453) and was finally won back by France in 1450. In the 1800s, Le Havre displaced Honfleur as a major port.

After lunch on the ship, you are at leisure to explore Honfleur on your own.

Or, join an optional visit to the Tapestry Museum of nearby Bayeux, which showcases a remarkable piece of embroidered fabric—230 feet in length—depicting events of the 1066 Norman invasion of England. Study elaborate scenes created with wool yarn of russet and gold, and learn the history that inspired this fascinating work of art.

The ship remains in port tonight, where you will have the opportunity to learn a few essential French phrases during a language lesson.

DAY 5 Honfleur • Normandy beaches


MEALS: B L D
OVERNIGHT: M/S Bizet

The D-Day landings, code-named “Operation Overlord,” were the largest military operation in recorded history. The beaches of Normandy bore the brunt of the invasion. Beginning at 6:30 am on June 6, 1944, nearly 7,000 boats hit the beaches along the coast of Normandy. Those vessels carried tens of thousands of soldiers from the United States, Great Britain, Canada, and many other Allied nations, all of whom arrived determined to carry out General Eisenhower's order, “Full victory—nothing else.”

After a box lunch at the village of Arromanche, continue to the American Military Cemetery. You'll see the monument that honors the fallen, and visit the cemetery of Colleville sur Mer, where 9,386 American soldiers rest.

You'll have the opportunity to walk down to Omaha Beach for an up close look of where the first Allied footing was achieved in German-occupied France. When they arrived on the beaches on D-day, the Allies were met with a deafening barrage of German gunfire. As the Nazis fired from secure pillboxes dug high above the open beach, Allied soldiers were mowed down while exiting the boats and wading to shore. In time, some doggedly made it to the ridge overlooking the beach, finding shelter from the hail of enemy bullets. More than a thousand Allied troops died on Omaha Beach alone.

Then continue on to Pointe du Hoc—a place all Normandy veterans know well—where Allied forces scaled 328-foot cliffs as they sought to silence German artillery.

Your evening is at leisure onboard the ship.

DAY 6 Honfleur • Caudebec • Optional Cliffs of Etretat tour


MEALS: B L D
OVERNIGHT: M/S Bizet

Early this morning (depending on the tide), depart Honfleur and cruise to Caudebec, passing under the Honfleur's 90-foot-tall Tancarville Bridge en route.

After lunch onboard, disembark the ship for an afternoon at leisure discovering charming Caudebec and its historic main square.

Or, join a half-day optional excursion to the beautiful cliffs on the Normandy coast at Etretat. You'll discover the treasures of Etretat including the clifftop Chapel Notre Dame Garde. Return to the ship for dinner onboard this evening.

Return to the ship for dinner onboard this evening.

DAY 7 Rouen • Home-Hosted Visit


MEALS: B L D
OVERNIGHT: M/S Bizet

After breakfast, disembark for a walking tour of Rouen. The capital of Normandy, Rouen is an important French commercial city with a distinguished history dating to pre-Roman times. But it is more infamous as the city where Joan of Arc was imprisoned, tried for heresy, and burned at the stake in 1431. Here you'll see the 14th-century abbey where she was sentenced to death, and visit the Market Square where her execution took place. You'll have free time to explore after your tour, and you might visit the Joan of Arc Museum, containing a fascinating history of the French heroine of the Hundred Years' War.

Savor regional dishes during lunch in a local restaurant, followed by time in the afternoon to do as you please in Rouen. Perhaps you'll visit its wonderful Gothic Notre Dame Cathedral, whose facade has graced more than 30 Monet paintings. The great painter rented rooms across from the cathedral in 1892, and he painted several canvases simultaneously, capturing nuances of light and weather that played across its Gothic facade.

This afternoon, join a local family for an exclusive Discovery Series Home-Hosted Visit for the opportunity learn more about life in rural France as your share a sweet—and local—treat.

Enjoy dinner onboard this evening.

DAY 8 Rouen • Cooking demonstration • French cheese tasting • Les Andelys • Painting class • Vernon • Impressionists discussion


MEALS: B L D
OVERNIGHT: M/S Bizet

This morning as you cruise toward Les Andelys, take in views of Chateau Gaillard, an imposing fortress from the era of Richard the Lionhearted. You may also join an onboard cooking demonstration and French cheese tasting during two exclusive Discovery Series events.

After lunch onboard, you'll reach the village of Les Andelys where you'll disembark for an included walking tour. Later, use your free time to explore Les Andelys on your own. Or, join us for a watercolor painting class onboard.

After dinner onboard this evening, enjoy a presentation about the Impressionist period during another exclusive Discovery Series event. Your ship arrives in Vernon where it remains docked overnight.

DAY 9 Vernon • Giverny • Optional cider farm tour


MEALS: B L D
OVERNIGHT: M/S Bizet

After breakfast, disembark for an excursion into the countryside to see the lovely landscapes that inspired Claude Monet. He first witnessed the village of Giverny while looking out a train window in 1883, and the unique light of the Seine Valley kept him in residence for 43 years. He stayed here until his death in 1926, and you'll find his grave in the family vault at the town's Romanesque church.

Explore the artist's home and gardens, left by his son Michel to the Academie des Beaux-Arts in 1966 and now a museum dedicated to the great painter. The house is furnished as it was when the leader of the Impressionist School lived here, including his precious collection of Japanese engravings.

The gardens have been replanted, and as you stroll through them, you'll see with your own eyes the landscapes that have graced countless Monet paintings. You'll spot the familiar Japanese bridge and water garden shaded by weeping willows, its pond still full of the water lilies that so permeated his work. "I want to paint like the birds sing,” Monet said. Perhaps you'll agree that the idyllic setting in Giverny would lend itself to his dream.

Please note: This tour is available on April through October departures only. On March and November departures, we offer a walking tour of Vernon instead.

Later, enjoy time on your own in Vernon. Or, join an optional afternoon visit to a local apple orchard with over 19,000 trees. Following a ride through the orchard, you'll have time visit the small museum featuring antique farming processing equipment. And during your tasting, you'll learn about the more than a dozen cider varieties produced onsite such as the alcohol-free petille pomme framboise made with apples and raspberries, as well as a semi-dry coral-colored rosé cider.

DAY 10 Vernon • Je Sers visit • Conflans


MEALS: B L D
OVERNIGHT: M/S Bizet

During this morning's cruise to Conflans, you'll travel through a region beloved by the Impressionists. The Seine, the Epte, and the Oise—three French rivers referred to as the "Rivers of Light"—neighbor each other in this area, and it was here that artists flocked to paint landscapes and scenes that have become so recognizable around the world.

This afternoon, disembark for a visit to the floating chapel of Je Sers (“I Serve”). This converted barge, supported in part by Grand Circle Foundation, is home to an active church, and has become the heart of a local service-oriented program, with a food bank, clothing dispensary, tutoring, and lodging for community members and those seeking asylum. During this exclusive Discovery Series event, you’ll tour the Conflans-based facility, meet Je Sers staff, and interact with some of the group’s clients.

Dinner is onboard tonight.

DAY 11 Conflans • Paris


MEALS: B L D
OVERNIGHT: M/S Bizet

Early this morning, we cruise to Paris from Conflans. Upon arrival, spend the morning exploring Paris, being introduced to both the city's classic highlights and more intimate neighborhoods. First, set off on a panoramic drive, witnessing the Eiffel Tower from different perspectives as you travel along the famed Champs-Elysees. View the Arc de Triomphe (commissioned by Napoleon in 1806 and completed in 1836) which stands at the end of the Champs-Elysees at a large central roundabout where twelve elegant, tree-lined avenues converge. Then, get a sense of daily life in Paris during a walking tour of one of the city’s residential neighborhoods.

Then you'll have the afternoon free to make your own discoveries. Dinner is included onboard tonight.

DAY 12 Paris • Captain's Farewell Dinner


MEALS: B L D
OVERNIGHT: M/S Bizet

This morning, explore Montmartre, one of the most famous and lively of the city's 20 arrondissements (districts) on a walking tour. Spend some free time following your included walking tour exploring the charming streets of this romantic neighborhood, and view the famed Sacre Coeur Basilica, with its dramatic perch on the top of the Montmartre hill. Delight in the views of Paris below, and watch the street artists at work or browse the local shops for a special keepsake to bring home.

The afternoon is yours in Paris to spend as you please. This evening, enjoy your Captain's Farewell Dinner with your fellow travelers.

DAY 13 Disembark ship • Return to U.S.


MEALS: B After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your flight home. Or further your discoveries with our Loire Valley, France or Paris, France post-trip extensions.

Accommodations

Pricing Information

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Arrival DateSingleSharedDouble
Jun 5, 2019 Please call n/a $4,195
Class A single cabin $995
Class C single cabin $595
Class A double cabin $400
For further information call (866) IM GUTSY (464 8879) or
email reservations@gutsywomentravel.com.
24/7 booking capability is available via this via the "Request to Book" button listed above.

Be sure to mention booking code G9-25972 to receive all the Gutsy benefits!

Savings have been reflected in pricing noted online & subject to availabilty, so book soon!

Pricing is based on lowest priced cabin category, is subject to change as this price is a lead in price that is subject to availability. Upgrade opportunities are available and will be added to inquiry cabin selection request shortly. Please call (866) 464 8879 to discuss single supplement discounts available to GWT customers.

For pricing on cabin upgrades please speak to our river cruise specialist at time of booking.

In order to qualify for the GWT Past Traveler Discount of 5% on the land portion of the trip, you must advise the reservation specialist at time of depositing on your 2019 trip which GWT trip you traveled on (date/name of departure and year) over the past 5 years.

Please note this departure is not exclusive to women but will be comprised of Gutsy Women Travel participants co-sharing the overall trip capacity with members of GCCL resulting in a larger group size compared to the traditional Gutsy Women Travel trips designed exclusively for women.

Single Room - one person, traveling solo in single accommodation
Double Room - two people, traveling together in same accommodation

Air travel arrangements for Gutsy Women's trip participants are made independently as most women are traveling from various gateway cities within or outside North America. Our river cruise specialist can assist you in securing the best airfare routing available as well as travel protection.

For further information and reservations call (866) IM GUTSY (464 8879) or
email reservations@gutsywomentravel.com.
For online 24/7 booking capability is available via this website.

Please note: Every effort has been made to produce this information accurately. We reserve the right to correct errors. All prices are subject to change. Departure dates and prices shown may be updated several times daily, and apply to new bookings only.