This week-long cruise aboard the AMADEUS Diamond, which starts and ends in Paris, combines what is probably the most romantic city in the world with a fascinating journey into the past of the Impressionist masters. Follow the footsteps of van Gogh, Cezanne and Gauguin on this tour along the winding Seine River into Normandy (without doubt one of the most beautiful regions of France), up to Le Havre on the rugged Atlantic coast.
Normandy is also an important part of European history due to events that took place there during the Second World War. Visits to idyllic Normandy villages, the “museum town” of Rouen and the picturesque harbour town of Honfleur are only some of the wonders to be explored on this cruise program.
This afternoon, embark the vessel and get settled into your cabin. This evening, enjoy a Welcome Cocktail, followed by a specially-prepared Welcome Dinner.
Arrive in Conflans, at the confluence of the Oise and the Seine. Visit the little town of Auvers-sur-Oise, an inspiration to many of the famous Impressionist masters, including Cezanne, Pissarro and Daubigny. The most famous of these artists is Vincent van Gogh, whose final resting place is located here. Visit Auberge Ravoux, where Van Gogh lived in a very simple and small room only lit by sky light. Inspired by the picturesque site with its inhabitants and surroundings, Van Gogh painted close to 80 canvases here, which come alive in the winding streets of the village.
This morning we reach Rouen, often called the “Ville musée” (Museum Town). If you enjoy museums, visit one of the many art, history, and antiquities museums scattered through the city. Visit the cathedral that inspired Claude Monet and the modern Church of Joan of Arc with its magnificent 16th-century stained-glass windows. See the “Gros Horloge,” the astronomical clock, and the Parliament of Normandy. Also in Rouen is the “Place du Vieux Marché”, the site where Joan of Arc was burnt at the stake. This afternoon venture down the romantic “Abbey Trail” for a view of countless churches, castles, and abbeys.
Although the harbor of Le Havre was greatly destroyed in World War II, it was rebuilt and continues to be an important port city in Normandy. Explore the Normandy coastline with a walk along Ètretat’s cliff-top paths for a view of steep chalk rocks with impressive needle-like formations, which have inspired many well-known artists. Nearby, is the city of Honfleur, where the Seine meets the Atlantic. This harbor town is regarded as a jewel on the Côte Fleurie and is a wonderful way to spend an afternoon.
Today, visit some of the most important places in recent history – the Normandy landing beaches and the remains of the artificial harbor in Arromanches. Not far from the solemn significance of the landing beaches are charming villages that champion many of the things the French hold dear: good wholesome food and drink, strong local community and beautiful handcrafted things that last. Throughout Normandy, artisans—cheesemakers, metalworkers, potters, lacemakers, bell forgers, and cidermakers—still run thriving trades. After all, Camembert, Livarot, and Pont l’Évêque cheeses all come from Normandy, as do caramels au beurre d’Isigny made with creamy Norman salted butter. Enjoy the smooth, layered flavor of Calvados, an amber-hued brandy distilled from cider and renowned for its sweet aroma. Your Norman journey ends in Caudebec where you board the ship.
Today, your vessel anchors in the little town of Les Andelys in the shadow of Chateau Gaillard, the one time home to Richard the Lionheart. Relax in town or venture farther afield to nearby Giverny, home to Impressionist Claude Monet, until his death in 1926. The beautiful surroundings and vivid flora, were inspiration for some of his most famous works. Return to the ship in Vernon for lunch. The Captain’s Gala Dinner in the evening is a wonderful finish to a fantastic day.
In the early morning, it is once more “Bienvenue” to the French capital. Explore the sights of the Cathedral of Notre Dame, the Eiffel Tower, and the bustling Champs-Élysées. Another interesting area to explore is quirky artists’ district of Montmartre and the Sacré-Coeur, located on the highest hill in northern Paris. Or, round out your Normandy experience with a visit to the spectacular Palace of Versailles. Originally a small hunting lodge, the palace was extended to its current size by the “Sun King” Louis XIV and is now one of Europe’s largest palaces.
After breakfast we bid you “adieu” and hope to see you again soon!
Owing to the variety of available excursions it‘s often difficult to choose between them - so on this cruise we offer you tailor-made and carefully composed sets of excursions that you can book in advance with 15% discount. All excursions can of course also be booked individually at regular rates on board.
|Cruise Highlights||Unit Price||A||B||C|
|Excursion to Auvers-sur-Oise||$A 163.00|
|Rouen walking tour||$A 29.00|
|Excursion along the “Abbey Trail”||$A 107.00|
|Excursion to Étretat||$A 83.00|
|Excursion to Honfleur||$A 83.00|
|Full-day excursion to "Fascinating Normandy" at lunch||$A 285.00|
|Excursion to Chateau Gaillard and Giverny||$A 127.00|
|City tour of Paris||$A 83.00|
|Guided walking tour of the Montmartre district||$A 83.00|
|Excursion to the Palace of Versailles||$A 164.00|
|Onboard Booking Price||$A 522.00||$A 807.00||$A 1,124.00|
|Prices for packages booked in advance||$A 444.00||$A 686.00||$A 955.00|