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11 day ultimate cruise through Southern France & hidden treasures of Corsica

BORDEAUX - CUSSAC-FORT-MEDOC - BLAYE - LIBOURNE- SAINT-EMILION - BORDEAUX- NICE - AJACCIO - BONIFACIO - PORTO VECCHIO - BASTIA - L’ÎLE ROUSSE - NICE

This exclusive cruise package will reveal the hidden treasures of this beautiful region of France.  Cruise in PREMIUM ships and experience exceptional service, the finest French cuisine, local wines, and authentic shore excursions for that ultimate experience.

From the world-famous wine region along the Garonne and the Dordogne estuaries to the unique and diverse architectural heritage, you will uncover all that Southern France has to offer.

Explore the picturesque Island of Corsica, a captivating destination with its unspoilt and rustic landscapes which has a distinct character and charm all of its own.  

Trip code : TWBOQ_NAO22

Duration : 11 days

Destination : FRANCE

Travel Dates :25th July 2022- 5th August 2022

CRUISE HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Explore the main sights of the Gironde in just 5 days
  • Discover the Grands Crus wines of the region
  • Explore Blaye and Vauban's citadel
  • Discover Saint-Emilion, and the history of the medieval village
  • Discover Corsica from north to south
  • Cruise along the coast of the Gulf of Porto, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Discover the island’s major areas Calvi, Bonifacio, and Porto-Vecchio
  • Follow the footsteps of Napoleon in Ajaccio and visit the Îles Sanguinaires
  • Explore the natural wonders of the Calanques de Piana and the picturesque perched villages in the Balagne Region
  • Explore Cap Corse and the nature reserve on the Archipelago of Lavezzi
  • Visit Saint-Florent, the Corsican Saint-Tropez
  • Enjoy a Corsican-themed evening on board
  • Benefit from interesting onboard lectures
  • TASTE BEAUTIFUL, DELICIOUS TOP-NOTCH CUISINE

 

 

On arrival in Bordeaux you will be welcomed at the airport and transferred to the cruise ship.

Passengers are welcome to board our ship at 6:00 p.m. After comfortably settling into your cabin, we will introduce our crew at a welcome cocktail.

Tonight, we depart by coach for a guided tour of Bordeaux "by night", taking in all the main monuments. A UNESCO World Heritage site, Bordeaux has been awarded the precious label in the "cultural site" category. Half of the city, from the boulevards to the banks of the Garonne has gained recognition for the quality of its architectural heritage.

Overnight onboard MS Cyrano de Bergerac.

Today we will cruise down towards Cussac-Fort-Médoc.

Departure by coach from Pauillac to discover the Médoc, prestigious wine-growing region. A corner of the world that produces the most prestigious red wines on the planet, tightly wedged between an ocean and an estuary. A mild, humid microclimate which has been favorable to the development of the vines. We will go through most of the Médoc appellations (Saint Julien, Margaux, Haut-Médoc). On the famous Châteaux Route, we will stop to taste the famous wines of the region. On the way you will see major domains such as Châteaux Laffitte-Rothschild, Latour and Mouton Rothschild. Return to the boat at the end of the afternoon.

After dinner enjoy an evening of entertainment.

Overnight onboard MS Cyrano de Bergerac.

We start sailing early this morning towards Blaye, whose Citadel built by Vauban is not to be missed.

We'll leave by coach with a tour guide for a journey along the Route de la Corniche Fleurie. You'll see the old, traditional fishing huts on stilts and the remarkable limestone cliffs. We'll also stop in Bourg to take in the impressive views and walk to the market center where you'll be able to taste the local figs. After we return to Blaye, we'll have a guided tour of the citadel built by Vauban, including the monastery and several army barracks. We'll finish up our tour with a tasting of the famous Blaye "praslines."
We'll return on board and cruise on the Gironde all the way to the estuary. Enjoy an evening of dancing.

Overnight onboard MS Cyrano de Bergerac.

Today we will cruise to Libourne, a town rich with history and full of character located at the confluence with the Isle and the Dordogne Rivers.

On arrival we depart by coach from Libourne for the excursion to Saint-Emilion. We take a guided tour of the underground monuments in Saint-Emilion village. Your guide will tell you all about the history of the medieval town. You will then visit an exceptional troglodytic site with, undoubtedly, its most original monument, the Monolithic church. Hewn entirely in limestone, it is the largest in Europe. You will then depart for a visit of a family-owned wine-growing estate, where you will be welcomed by the owner, who will explain the stages of the wine-making process in Saint-Emilion. A commented wine-tasting* session will complete the visit. Return to Libourne by coach. 

Tonight is our festive gala dinner and evening.

Overnight onboard MS Cyrano de Bergerac.

This morning we cruise back to Nice before disembarking at 11:00 a.m. You will then be transferred to the Bordeaux airport for your short flight to Nice. On arrival in Nice you will be greeted at the airport and transferred to the port to board your cruise boat.

Passengers are welcome to board at 5:00 p.m. We then depart for a tour of Nice. Throughout the centuries, Nice has attracted people from all over the world because of its lovely climate and unrivaled beauty. The city has a thousand surprises in store: monuments, churches, gardens and footpaths, museums, artists, local crafts, and internationally renowned cuisine with the unmistakable flavors of garlic, olive oil, and basil. The best way to get to know Nice is by strolling through it and experiencing sites such as the Cours Saleya or the elegant old quarter lined with boutiques and restaurants. After our excursion, we’ll return on board the ship.

Tonight we introduce our crew at a welcome cocktail, then enjoy dinner and an evening of activities on board. Our ship will cruise to Corsica overnight.

Overnight onboard MV La Belle des Océans.

Today we visit the national museum Maison Bonaparte. Napoleon Bonaparte, the French military leader and emperor, was born in this house on August 15, 1769. The museum retraces the history of the Bonaparte family in Corsica as well as the series of exiles they experienced. This is a great opportunity to learn about the former emperor's life. The visit will begin on the third floor, where you’ll learn about Corsican life at the end of the 18th century, Bonaparte’s parents, his childhood, and his last visit to Corsica on his return from Egypt in 1799. The rooms on the second floor exhibit the decor under Napoleon III. Other exhibits address Bonaparte’s death, the legends built around him to glorify his actions, and Napoleon III’s visits to Ajaccio during the Second French Empire.

This afternoon, we discover the sights and scents of Corsica. We’ll cross the maquis—the Corsican underbrush exploding with a potpourri of flowers and plants—for a visit to Corsica PAM in Ocana. Paul and Jean-Pierre Caux built their essential oil business from scratch in the village they grew up in. The lovely surroundings and the panoramic view from the terrace are a great place to discover the secrets of their famous oils. We’ll then visit the honey farm Jardin des Abeilles to learn more about beekeeping. An informative walk in the forest and along the Prunelli River brings you to the center of the maquis, where you’ll be able to breathe in the earthy scents emanating from the heather, arbutus, fig, box, holly, and alder trees. At the end of our tour, you’ll enjoy tasting a selection of honey from the farm.

At the end of the day, we'll begin to cruise to Bonifacio. We'll enjoy dinner and an evening of entertainment.

Overnight onboard MV La Belle des Océans.

 

This morning, we’ll set out on a guided tour of Bonifacio. Bonifacio is rich with a history told along its small streets and paths, the thousand-year-old fortress, and the sturdy stone homes perched high above the sea waves. The descent (and subsequent ascent) of the King of Aragon’s Stairway will provide some of the best views on the trip (187 steps).

In the afternoon, we take an excursion to the nature reserve on the Archipelago of Lavezzi. The islands are scattered with sculpted granite boulders and impressive cliffs.

In the evening, we’ll have dinner at a traditional inn in the heart of the Corsican inland. Whether we sit by the fireplace or under the immense cork oak trees, we’ll be welcomed by the owners who will explain their history and their love for this island. Corsican music and songs will accompany dinner—a delicious, in-season composition made of local products.

Overnight onboard MV La Belle des Océans.

This morning, we depart for a guided tour of Porto-Vecchio. The old town includes the ruins of a 16th-century citadel and gorgeous views of the marina.

In the late afternoon, we'll begin to cruise towards Bastia. Take advantage of a quiet moment to catch some rays poolside or to enjoy a treatment in our wellness salon. More active passengers can keep in shape in the fitness center, and history buffs can attend the lecture in the lounge: Pascal Paoli - Island Patriot.

Overnight onboard MV La Belle des Océans.

Today discover Cap Corse, which is located to the north of Bastia and Saint-Florent, Cap Corse is a 25-mile-long promontory with several attractive fishing villages, gorgeous coastline, and a couple of good beaches. We’ll cross through some of the most charming villages on the island, including the adorable fishing village of Erbalunga, lovely Santa Severa, the typical village of Luri, and beautiful grove-lined Pino. We’ll stop off in Patrimonio for a tasting of wine, cold cuts, and cheese at the Montemagni estate. Although Corsica has a mostly Mediterranean climate, it experiences great contrasts in weather because of its location and mountains. Its wine, though, truly benefits from the warm summers and exceptional sunshine.

At the end of the day, we’ll continue to cruise towards l’Ile-Rousse, where you are able to join us for a lecture in the lounge: The Bonapartes: A Corsican Family.

Overnight onboard MV La Belle des Océans.

This morning, we take a guided tour of Calvi and its citadel. You’ll discover its large marina and immense bay surrounded by unique landscapes and often snow-capped mountains. We’ll then head towards Notre Dame de la Serra to get a magnificent view of the gulf. Our tour will continue at the citadel. The symbol of the town of Calvi, it was built during the Genoese occupation.

We’ll then spend the afternoon crossing the Mediterranean to Nice. Join us for a lecture in the lounge: How Corsica Became Part of France.

As we set sail from Corsica, join us on the Sun Deck for a cocktail and take in one last glimpse of the beauty of the island. Don’t think of it as a goodbye, but as a reason to go back. Tonight is our festive gala evening.

Overnight onboard MV La Belle des Océans.

DAY 11

Enjoy breakfast on board this morning before disembarking at 9:00 a.m, you will then be transferred to the airport. End of our services

INCLUSIONS:

  • 4 nights on board PREMIUM ship MS Cyrano de Bergerac    
  • 6 nights on board PREMIUM ship MV La Belle des Océans  
  • Classic excursion package included on both cruises
  • All meals included on board your cruise ships
  • Meals: 10 Breakfast, 9 lunches and 10 dinners
  • Expert services of local guides throughout your trip
  • Refined French cuisine
  • 2 x Gala dinner and evening
  • 2 x Welcome cocktail
  • DRINKS INCLUDED with meals and at the bar during the cruise
  • Official welcome from the captain and crew
  • Headsets are included for all excursions
  • Free Wi-Fi in lounge and bar onboard cruise ship
  • Entertainment on board CroisiEurope Cruise ship
  • All touring and transfers in air-conditioned vehicles
  • Travel assistance and repatriation insurance
  • All port fees included
  • Locally based professional drivers and English-speaking tour guide
  • Transfer from airport in Bordeaux to cruise ship
  • Transfer from cruise ship in Bordeaux to Bordeaux airport
  • Flight from Bordeaux to Nice (Economy)
  • Transfer from Nice airport to cruise ship in Nice
  • Transfer from cruise ship in Nice to Nice airport

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