Paris is a wonderful city to visit any time of year, but during the holidays it is truly magical. Every Paris neighborhood boasts its own Christmas market, while the city's shopping districts brim with lights and holiday cheer.
Experience Paris’ festive spirit on a 2014 holiday getaway to remember. AAA Members enjoy a $125 per person savings and if you book the Dec. 13 AAA Vacations® departure, get an additional $100 per person savings - that's a total savings of $225 per person!* Plus, enjoy $100 per person shipboard credit.†
Holiday highlights include:
• Take a holiday themed Do as the Locals Do walking tour in Paris.
• Shop for holiday gifts at Paris' two most celebrated department stores.
• Visit several Christmas Markets and enjoy a Taste of Christmas tour.
$125 per person savings
$100 shipboard credit + $100 savings (both per person; 12/13/14 only)†
AAA Vacations® Best Price Guarantee and 24/7 Member Care (12/13/14 only)**
Paris is a dazzling package just waiting to be unwrapped and this splendid itinerary from Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection will help you do just that. Truly all-inclusive, your cruise fare covers everything from a luxurious river view stateroom onboard the alluring River Baroness to prepaid gratuities, all onboard meals with unlimited beverages, 10 fully hosted shore excursions with English-speaking guides, transfers and more. Experience the same exquisite accommodations, award-winning hospitality and world-class cuisine of a five-star boutique hotel while enjoying the convenience of docking right in the heart of town.
You'll have two full days to experience Paris' holiday enchantment. Explore Ile de la Cité, an island in the River Seine home to the Cathedral of Notre Dame. From here, embark on a 'Do as the Locals Do' walking tour that takes you to the same gourmet shops Parisians patronize to sample the season's holiday treats.
Go in search of gifts and bargains at the neighborhood Christmas markets across the river from the Eiffel Tower. A shuttle will run between the ship and the markets both days, allowing you plenty of time to shop for everyone on your Christmas list. And if you don't find the perfect gift at the markets, you're sure to at two of Paris' most celebrated department stores. Stroll down the Champs Élysée and marvel at the spectacular holiday décor of the great department stores in the city where they were invented.
Experience winter in the majestic countryside too with a visit to Rouen, where you can savor a 'Taste of Christmas,' Normandy style. Sample the seasonal delights with a visit to a historic café for tarte tatin and then peruse the artisan ceramics on display at the Rouen Christmas market which takes place directly in front the famous cathedral. Tour the spectacular Palace of Versailles, the universal standard of palatial opulence and home to the Sun King, Louis XVI, and his queen Marie Antoinette. And in Les Andelys, take an invigorating hike up to the ruins of Château Gaillard, built by Richard the Lionheart, for a wonderful view of the winding Seine in her winter splendor. And those sailing over Christmas or New Year’s will be in for an extra-special treat with a wonderful Christmas or New Year’s Eve celebration dinner onboard.
Plan now to end the year in Parisian style with the backdrop of the twinkling lights of the Eiffel Tower brightening up the sky!
• 7 nights in a river view stateroom aboard River Baroness
• All onboard meals including Welcome and Farewell Gala Dinners
• Unlimited beverages onboard including distinctive wines, beers, spirits, cocktails, juices, a selection of coffees and teas, and mineral water
• All gratuities onboard and onshore
• 10 shore excursions, fully hosted by English-speaking local experts
• An experienced Cruise Manager and attentive, all English-speaking staff
• Captivating onboard entertainment, onboard Wi-Fi and cultural enrichment programs
• Airport transfers on Days 1 and 8
Ports of call: Paris, France; Conflans-Sainte-Honorine, France (for Versailles); Rouen, France; Les Andelys, France; Mantes-la-Jolie, France; Paris, France
Day 1 - Arrive in Paris
Arrive at Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport where you will be met and transferred to your ship.
Accommodation: Riverview stateroom aboard River Baroness - 7 nights
Day 2 - Conflans-Sainte-Honorine Featured Excursion: Exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of Versailles Palace
The Palace of Versailles was the official residence of France’s kings and queens from 1682 until the French Revolution in 1789. As you enter the Hall of Mirrors, you’ll immediately understand why Versailles established the universal standard of palatial opulence. It will take a full day to explore the decadent world of Marie Antoinette and Louis XVI with your specialist guide. From the Grands Appartements to the Queen’s Bedchamber, you will be taken on an exclusive tour of this fabled palace—one that gives you a peek behind secret doors. Later in the evening back onboard the ship, enjoy a Captain’s Welcome Reception and Gala Dinner.
Day 3 - Rouen Featured Excursions: Walking tour with Rouen Cathedral choir recital and Christmas Market plus exclusive “Taste of Christmas, Normandy style"
Rouen is one of France’s best-preserved cities and the ideal setting for a Christmas Market. Admire the Medieval quarter with its half-timbered houses and Renaissance clock tower. Walk to Vieux Marché to see the bronze cross that marks the spot where Joan of Arc was executed. In the square near Notre Dame Cathedral, a Nativity scene adds to the festive atmosphere of the marché de Nöel. The scent of mulled cider fills the air as you shop for traditional crafts. Step inside the church to see the Christmas crèche and hear a recital. You may also wish to join a special "Taste of Christmas, Normandy style" outing with a visit to a historic café for tarte tatin served with coffee or chocolat au lait.
Day 4 - Les Andelys Featured Excursions: Les Andelys village stroll and walking tour of Vernon
Take an invigorating hike up to the ruins of Château Gaillard, built by Richard the Lionheart, for a wonderful view of the winding Seine in her winter splendor. The castle was completed in a little more than a year by 3,000 workers and it survived for centuries. Although it was ultimately destroyed, its enchanting ruins are fascinating and reveal much about Richard’s canny grasp of Medieval warfare.
Back on the ship, you’ll enjoy the traditional winter treat of galettes—thin buckwheat crepes—and Normandy’s famous cider. Later in the day, guides will lead you through Vernon, whose 15th-century core has survived the centuries largely unchanged. Admirers of Monet’s work will recognize the late-Romanesque church from several of his paintings.
Day 5 - Auvers-sur-Oise Featured Excursion: “Vincent van Gogh’s Footsteps” walking tour
Vincent van Gogh spent the last two months of his life in Auvers-sur-Oise. While strolling through the village, you will pass the inn where he stayed, the Town Hall and the church—all buildings that inspired him and were immortalized on canvas. You’ll also see the restored home of Dr. Gachet, who tended to the artist. As you follow in Van Gogh’s footsteps, your guide will paint a captivating portrait of the life and work of this troubled Impressionist master.
Note: A Holiday Gala Dinner will be served on the December 6 and 13 departures. For the December 20 departure, a Christmas Dinner will be served. For the December 27 departure, a New Year’s Dinner will be served.
Day 6 - Paris Featured Excursions: Exclusive “Do as the Locals Do” walking tour of the Île de la Cité and Latin Quarter plus Seine “Heart of Paris” cruise with Christmas Markets
Explore the Île de la Cité, which is not just the center of Paris but of France (all distances are calculated from the isle). The island is home to the Cathedral of Notre Dame, with its grimacing gargoyles and impressive façade. The cathedral is considered one of the finest examples of French Gothic architecture and, though damaged during the French Revolution, it managed to survive both world wars unscathed. Cross the Seine to enter the Latin Quarter and, as Parisians do at this time of the year, visit the gourmet shops to savor the season’s fleeting treats.
Then climb aboard a boat for a look at the heart of Paris from the Seine. Later, visit some of the city’s delightful Christmas Markets, which take place directly across the river from the Eiffel Tower. Go ahead and shop with gusto. In the evening, enjoy a Captain’s Farewell Reception and Gala Dinner.
Day 7 - Paris Featured Excursions: Walking tour to the Paris Opera and department stores with Christmas Markets plus exclusive "Paris Winter Illuminations" tour
Begin at the Place de l’Opéra, where you’ll go inside the famed Palais Garnier. Then visit two of the city’s most celebrated department stores, Le Printemps and Les Galeries Lafayette which are lavishly decorated during the holidays. (Don’t miss the view from the latter’s rooftop terrace.) Spend the afternoon at leisure in the city, and take advantage of a shuttle that will run between the ship and the Christmas Markets. Following dinner, take a scenic drive past Paris Illumine Paris (Paris Lights up Paris), the sparkling holiday displays created by the city’s most talented lighting designers.
Day 8 - Depart Paris
Disembark the ship and transfer to Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport for your flight home.
*Prices are per person based on double occupancy, are subject to availability at time of booking, and may change without notice. Price given based on Stateroom Category 3 aboard the River Baroness on the 12/13 and 12/20/14 departure dates; rates for other departure dates may be higher. Does not include port charges of $140 per person. Except for packages including air transportation, unless stated otherwise, airfare, taxes and government fees are not included. Offers valid for new bookings only. Single supplement may apply. Your travel arrangements may be modified or canceled subject to the travel providers’ policies. Blackout dates and other restrictions may apply. We make every effort for accuracy at time of printing but reserve the right to correct errors. AAA Travel strongly recommends the purchase of trip protection insurance. Except for packages including air transportation, fares may not reflect additional fuel supplement or port charges and vary by provider. Ships’ registry: Netherlands.
†Member Benefits are per person and apply to first and second traveler only. Member Benefits are available only with advertised fare and are subject to change without notice.
**Restrictions apply to the AAA Vacations® Best Price Guarantee and 24/7 Member Care. Should you find a valid better rate for the exact same itinerary within 24 hours of booking, AAA will match the lower rate. Ask your AAA Travel Counselor for details.
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