Grand Tour of France (4780)

14 Day Tour from Paris to Paris

2017 Tour Details View 2016 Tour Details »

Get to know France from the inside on this exciting vacation. From Paris, head north to Rouen, then Honfleur, Caen, and the Normandy’s historic D-Day landing beaches from World War II. On to Bayeux, then the enduring beauty of Mont St. Michel, Angers with its cathedral, and the glorious Loire Valley. Travel through the countryside, famous for its cognac and champagne production, and visit Poitiers, a picturesque town of Roman heritage, as well as seaside La Rochelle. Spend a night in Bordeaux and continue through the Dordogne to the cliffside village of Rocamadour before reaching Toulouse. An orientation tour shows you medieval Carcassonne on the way to Nîmes, Pont du Gard, and Avignon. Visit Arles, made famous by Van Gogh, and enchanting Aix-en-Provence. Next up: the magnificent French Riviera, summer home of the glitz and glam. Take the Route Napoleon, visiting a perfume workshop in Grasse, then carry on to Lyon on the banks of the Rhône and Saône Rivers. Stop in delightful Beaune, Burgundy’s wine capital, then return to Paris, the “City of Light,” with included sightseeing of the main attractions and leisure time to soak in the romantic atmosphere.
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 Destinations & Sightseeing

Individual headsets

Inside visits and special features:
Shown in UPPERCASE in the tour description including admission charges where applicable.

Sightseeing:
Visits to Rouen, Honfleur, Caen, Normandy Landing Beaches, Bayeux, Mont St. Michel, Angers, Loire Valley, La Rochelle, Cognac Museum, Bordeaux, Rocamadour, Toulouse, Carcassonne, Nîmes, Pont du Gard, Avignon, Arles, Aix-en-Provence, French Riviera, Grasse, Lyon, Beaune

Scenic Highlights:
Loire Valley, Perigot Noir, Dordogne, Cognac, French Riviera, Burgundy wine country, Route Napoleon

NOTES:
December 20 Departure – New Year in Paris including Reveillon dinner
On Tuesday departures, overnight is at Blois instead of Amboise. Itinerary changes as follows:
Day 4: Mont St. Michel–Angers–Blois. (B)
Day 5: At leisure in Blois or optional excursion to Chenonceau & Amboise Castles. (B,D)
Day 6: Blois–Poitiers–La Rochelle–Bordeaux. (B,D)

The following UNESCO World Heritage Sites can be seen or visited on this vacation:

  • Arles, Roman and Romanesque Monuments
  • Mont Saint Michel and its Bay
  • Palace and Park of Versailles
  • Pont du Gard (Roman Aqueduct)
  • Historic centre of Avignon

Transportation:

Transportation:
Touring by private, first-class, air-conditioned motorcoach

 Meals

 Meals & Itinerary

Buffet breakfasts daily; 5 dinners

 Itinerary

Inside visits and special features are shown in UPPERCASE in the tour description.

Day 1 Arrive in Paris, France

Check into your hotel. Tonight, meet your Tour Director and fellow travelers.

Day 2 Paris–Rouen–Honfleur–Caen

Drive first to the historical capital city of Normandy, Rouen, one of the largest and most prosperous cities of Medieval Europe and walk through its center, rich in gothic architecture. Next, stop in lovely HONFLEUR known for its old, beautiful, picturesque port, characterized by its houses with slate-covered facades, before reaching Caen for an overnight.

Breakfast
Dinner

Day 3 Caen–Normandy Landing Beaches–Bayeux–Mont St. Michel

Time to see Caen before a visit to the legendary beaches where the Allied troops landed more than 70 years ago. The highlights are Arromanches, St. Laurent, and the AMERICAN CEMETERY at Omaha. Next, journey to Bayeux, where you can admire the famous tapestry depicting William the Conquerors' epic battle in 1066 (entrance fee extra). Then, southwards to the unique beauty of Mont St. Michel, which stands on an island reached by a causeway.

Breakfast

Day 4 Mont St. Michel–Angers–Loire Valley

Time this morning to enjoy a visit of MONT ST. MICHEL before a mid-morning departure to Angers to visit its CATHEDRAL. Then, along the banks of the Loire River to reach your hotel for two overnights. A chance this evening to join an optional dinner at a local restaurant.

Breakfast

Day 5 Loire Valley

Time at leisure or join an optional excursion to see some of the most spectacular castles of the Loire, steeped in the history of noblemen and kings since the 11th century. Gothic spires, medieval turrets, great fortresses, and beautiful châteaux make for splendid panoramas.

Breakfast
Dinner

Day 6 Loire Valley–La Rochelle–Cognac–Bordeaux

Travel on the comfortable Autoroute L’Aquitaine. Next stop is the picturesque town of La Rochelle, situated on the Atlantic coast. Continue eastwards into the world-famous Cognac region to visit the HENNESSY MUSEUM in Cognac. Then, journey to Bordeaux for an orientation walk.

Breakfast
Dinner

Day 7 Bordeaux–Dordogne–Rocamadour–Toulouse

Today, drive into the heart of one of France’s most scenic regions, the Dordogne. Stop in the dramatically located medieval town of Rocamadour, perched high upon a cliff. Southwards by way of Cahors to Toulouse for an overnight.

Breakfast
Dinner

Day 8 Toulouse–Carcassonne–Nîmes–Pont Du Gard–Avignon

Drive this morning along the Autoroute des Deux Mers for an orientation walk in Carcassonne. Then, continue eastwards to Nîmes, an elegant city famed for its busy boulevards shaded by lotus trees. Get a view of the Maison Carrée, one of the best-preserved Roman temples in the whole of France. Short picture stop at the famous PONT DU GARD before reaching Avignon for an overnight.

Breakfast

Day 9 Avignon–Arles–Aix-En-Provence–French Riviera

South this morning to visit Arles, the most famous of all the Provence towns, known all over the world by the paintings of Van Gogh. Visit the famous Roman AMPHITHEATER. Stop in Aix-en-Provence to see its main street, the COURS MIRABEU, lined with plane trees and its 17th-century palace, houses, and fountains. Finally, to the French Riviera on the shores of the Mediterranean. Don’t miss the optional evening excursion.

Breakfast

Day 10 French Riviera

Take the time today to enjoy all the amenities of the French Riviera. Tonight, there is an opportunity to see the Principality of Monaco on the optional excursion “Monte Carlo by Night.”

Breakfast

Day 11 French Riviera–Grasse–Lyon Area

First to Grasse for a visit to a PERFUME WORKSHOP. See more of Provence and follow one of France’s great panoramic routes, the one Napoleon took on his return from Elba in 1815. From Grenoble, join the expressway to the Lyon area.

Breakfast
Dinner

Day 12 Lyon Area–Beaune–Paris

Travel through the picturesque vineyards and fields of Burgundy to medieval Beaune, the region's wine capital since Roman times, where you visit the famous HÔTEL-DIEU before returning to the French capital and “City of Light,” Paris. Don't miss the optional evening cabaret show, a real Parisian spectacle.

Breakfast

Day 13 Paris

In the included sightseeing with a local expert are many of the best-known Parisian sights: La Sorbonne, Arc de Triomphe, Opéra, Madeleine, the Eiffel Tower, the Pyramid near the Louvre, the Invalides, and Champs Elysées. Optional excursions are also available to the Palace and Gardens of Versailles and, to celebrate the success of your tour, a French farewell dinner might be just the ticket.

Breakfast

Day 14 Paris

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning.

Breakfast

 Tour Director

With Cosmos, there’s no better way to get to know your destination than through the eyes of your Tour Director. Averaging over a decade... we’d like you to meet a Tour Director, who is representative of the type of expert that will be with you on your vacation.

CLARA CRAWFORD

Years of Experience: 4

It would delight me to show you France - the most visited country in the world. This is a place of enormous variety in its history, natural beauty, and the magic of Paris! Add to this the fantastic food, wonderful wines, and musical language and you'll truly fall in love with the country and its people!

 Accommodations

PARIS Ibis La Villette (ST) or Novotel Porte d'Orleans (F) or Novotel Paris 17 (F)
CAEN Mercure Côte de Nacre (ST) at Herouville St. Clair
MONT ST. MICHEL Hotel Vert (ST) or Ibis Avranches Baie du Mont St. Michel (ST) at St. Quentin sur le Homme LOIRE VALLEY Novotel (F) at Amboise or Villa Bellagio (ST) at Blois
BORDEAUX Mercure Centre Meriadeck (ST)
TOULOUSE Radisson Blu Toulouse Airport (F)
AVIGNON Ibis Pont de l'Europe (ST) or Ibis Styles Sud (ST)
FRENCH RIVIERA Park Inn (ST) at Nice or Campanile Nice Airport (ST) or Ibis Styles (ST) Nice Vieux Port or Ibis (ST) at Mouans Sartoux
LYON AREA Lyon Ouest (ST) or Parkest (ST)
PARIS Campanile Porte d'Italie (ST) or Novotel La Defense (F)

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