Sensational Seine 2023

8 Days: Paris, Vernon, Duclair, Honfleur, Rouen, and Les Andelys

Highlights:

  • On board lectures on French history or similar
  • Dine on French-inspired dishes while enjoying a summertime light show over the River Seine (July & August sailings)
  • On board wine & cheese tasting with French wines paired with French “fromage” (cheese)
  • Welcome & Captain’s farewell dinner with drinks

6 Sightseeing Tours:

  • PARIS: Bus and walking tour with magnificent views of the Eiffel Tower, the Champs Elysees, the Arc de Triomphe & other major attractions
  • VERNON: Visit impressionist painter’s Claude Monet home in village Giverny
  • DUCLAIR: Excursion to the Norman Abbeys Trail
  • HONFLEUR: Coach tour to Cote Fleurie with Calvados tasting followed by walking tour of Honfleur city center
  • ROUEN: Walking tour with stops at Cathedrale Notre-Dame de Rouen & more
  • LES ANDELYS: Bus tour through districts of Andely, “Petit-Andeley” and “Grand Andely” with stop at Chateau de Martainville.

Included Features:

  • Arrival and departure transfers (included if air purchased through us)*
  • 7-night accommodations aboard the 4+* “Swiss Ruby” in the cabin category of your choice
  • 20 meals including 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches and 7 dinners
  • Free flowing wine/beer/soda/water/coffee/tea daily, with dinner while on board
  • Captain’s Welcome cocktail, Farewell cocktail and Farewell dinner
  • Total of 6 sightseeing excursions including personal audio systems
  • All on board activities and entertainment
  • Free Wi-Fi (subject to signal)
  • Services of professional English speaking Cruise Director throughout
  • Audio units included on all tours and excursions
  • New and enhanced safety protocols applied to all sailings 

Not Included:

  • International airfare (can be priced separately)
  • Port fees and cruise fuel surcharges (listed separately in Pricing & Departures)
  • Transfers if purchasing Cruise Only (must be arranged and paid for in advance)
  • Any travel and document fees including Visa requirements
  • Optional tours as outlined in itinerary (minimum number of people required to operate)
  • Costs of a personal nature such as laundry, telephone, liquor, souvenirs, etc.
  • Tips to Crew, Cruise Directors, local guides and other staff along the route (suggested Tipping amounts will be advised)
  • Any increases in costs due to unforeseen circumstances such as: additional fuel surcharges, exchange rates or Government imposed taxes and fees not known at this time
  • Travel Insurance (strongly recommended)

Click here to see our full terms and conditions.

Day 0 FLY to France (O)

Your exciting journey begins as you board your overnight flights to Europe.

Day 1 PARIS Embark after 5 pm (D)

Passengers are welcome to board our ship at 5:00 p.m. After comfortably settling into your cabins, we’ll introduce our crew at a welcome cocktail before dinner. Then join us on the sun deck for beautiful views as we cruise through Paris “by night” (depending on the water level).

Day 2  PARIS Set sail: 20:30 (B, L, D)

Panoramic Guided Tour of Paris (about 3.5 hours)
Departure by coach with a guide to discover the mythical sites of the capital. Since its foundation as Lutèce on the Ile de la Cité, two thousand years of history have seen ecclesiastics, sovereigns and heads of states leave their mark on the city, building churches, erecting monuments and palaces, creating prestigious museums and outlining sumptuous perspectives. Its distinguished couturiers, perfumers and jewelers have strongly built up Paris’s reputation for taste and elegance. A city of festivities, theaters and famous cabarets, Paris also glows from the sparkle and shine of its well-known revues. Our coach will take you past Bercy, the F. Mitterrand National Library, the Bastille, the Marais, the Latin Quarter, St Germain, the Louvre, the Pyramid, the Opéra Garnier, Place Vendôme, the Concorde, the Champs Elysées, the Arc de Triomphe, the Invalides, the Trocadéro and of course the famous Eiffel Tower. Return to the ship at Quai de Grenelle.

Day 3 VERNON 12:00-18:00 (B, L, D) 

The morning will be spent cruising. In the afternoon depart on a tour of the Claude Monet Foundation in Giverny – the second most visited spot in Normandy after Mont Saint-Michel.

Visit the Claude Monet Foundation in Giverny (about 3.5 hours)
You will leave the boat by coach to travel to the home of Claude Monet. He lived in his Giverny home between 1830 and 1926. His passion for gardening and colors led him to conceive his flower garden as a true art piece. He even said: “It took a while for me to understand my waterlilies… I grew them without thinking of painting them… A landscape doesn’t sink in in one day… And all of a sudden the enchantments of my pond struck me. I took my palette. Since then, I’ve never had any other model.” You can still feel the atmosphere that once reigned in the master of Impressionism’s house when visiting it. You will discover the pink facade while penetrating the garden. Inside, the artist’s particular taste for warm tones will strike you, from the intensity of the blue he chose for his kitchen as well as his small living room, to the yellow walls and furniture in the dining room, where you will also be able to see his private collection of Japanese prints. We’ll be back on board in Vernon late afternoon. Enjoy an evening of entertainment as we start sailing towards Duclair.

Day 4 DUCLAIR 3:00 – Overnight – Depart 9:00 (B, L, D)

This morning will be spent cruising while in the afternoon we will tour the Norman Abbey.

The Norman Abbeys Trail (about 4 hours)
The excursion begins with a visit of the Jumièges Abbey. Built in 654 when Christianity arrived in the region, and subsequently destroyed by the Vikings, the abbey was restored in the 11th century by their descendants. With the arrival of the Romantic period, the abbey became extremely well-known thanks to Victor Hugo who described it as the “most beautiful ruins in all of France”. During our visit we’ll also discover the cloisters and the ruins of the Church of Saint Peter before visiting the Abbey of Saint Wandrille or Wandregisel (exterior only), a highly spiritual monument founded in the same century. The wonderful classical architecture of this abbey blends with the magnificence of its mediaeval heritage in perfect harmony. Unlike Jumièges, a congregation of Benedictine monks settled in this abbey in 1931 and has remained to this day, bringing the community to a substantial number. We’ll return to the ship by coach and set sail towards Honfleur.

Day 5 HONFLEUR 13:00-23:59 (B, L, D)

Today we will enjoy 2 half day tours starting with the Côte Fleurie complete with a Calvados tasting followed by an afternoon guided walking tour of Honfleur.

The Côte Fleurie (about 4 hours)
Departure by coach with your guide. First stop at Deauville, the most glamourous coastal French city, symbol of elegance, prestige and sophistication. Enjoy a stroll along the famous floorboards that were built in 1923 along the beach, allowing women to enjoy the seaside without spoiling their dresses. Pass by the casino (exterior view). Then continue by coach to the delightful setting of the Breuil castle. Located in a lush green setting at the center of the Pays d’Auge, this castle is one of the most beautiful examples of the architectural heritage of this region. Today, the Breuil castle is also home to a prestigious distillery where you will get the chance to discover the various steps to making Calvados before tasting it*. Return to the boat in Honfleur by coach. Lunch on board.

Guided Walking Tour of Honfleur (about 1.5 hours)
We’ll meet up with our guide and set off on our walking tour. Honfleur, the cradle of Impressionism, is located at the mouth of the Seine as it flows into the English Channel. Untouched by the passage of time, this small port has kept the landmarks of its rich past, making it today one of the most visited towns in France. We’ll begin our tour at the Vieux Bassin, one of the most charming sites in the city. The narrow houses squeezed against each other are quite a unique sight. Next, we’ll see Saint Catherine’s Church, the largest wooden church in France. It was listed as a historical monument in 1879 and has been the subject of scrupulous research by many archaeologists and historians. We’ll then head for the original 17th-century Salt Halls (Greniers à Sel), now used for exhibitions, conferences and concerts. Our tour will finish with a visit to Saint Léonard Church. Destroyed during the Hundred Years War, it was rebuilt at the end of the 15th and beginning of the 16th centuries-only to be partially burned down again during the Wars of Religion. We’ll return to our ship on foot.

Day 6 ROUEN 7:00-17:00 (B, L, D)

Enjoy the passing vistas as we sail during the morning. After lunch, its time to explore Rouen!.

Guided Walking Tour of Rouen (about 2 hours)
We’ll leave on foot for a guided tour of Rouen. The historic center of the city and its famous cathedral are only a 5-minute walk from the ship. Stretched along the Seine, Rouen is Normandy’s cultural, historical, and gastronomical capital. The exceptionally complex Notre-Dame Cathedral is renowned for the juxtaposition of all the Gothic periods – especially on the facade, which Monet painted time and again, reflecting its glory in different lights. Destroyed during the Viking invasions in 841 and, partially, in 1944, by allied bombardments, the cathedral continues to be a perpetually evolving structure. We’ll then head to the market place where Joan of Arc was burned alive for heresy in 1431. The Gros-Horloge, or Great Clock, is one of the most emblematic monuments in the city. The Gothic belfry has housed the communal bells and clock of the city since its construction at the end of the 14th century. Finally, we’ll visit the Saint Joan of Arc Church. Located on the Old Market Place, this large monument’s construction ended in 1979 and was built both in honor of the Saint as well as the heroine celebrated by the French on the second Sunday in May. We’ll return to our ship on foot at the end of the afternoon. Tonight relax and enjoy the on board entertainment.

Day 7 ROUEN – LES ANDELYS 6:30 – Overnight (B, L, D)

This morning will be spent cruising followed by a tour of the Château de Martainville.

Visit of the Chateau de Martainville (about 5 hours)
Departure by coach along with your host/hostess. We will cross Le Petit Andelys and pass by the St Sauveur Church (a 16th century church which still possesses a vintage organ). After 40 minutes’ travelling through different villages along the Andelle (river running through the valley), we’ll arrive at Château de Martainville. This château was built at the end of the 15th century by Jacques Le Pelletier, and bought by the State in 1906, then turned into a museum in 1961. In 2 hours, learn about 500 years of rural Normandy history. Travel through the heart of Norman traditions (work suits, headdresses, jewelry, weavings), relive the past through the objects of everyday life (copper pans, pottery, baskets…). Discover the largest collection of Upper Normandy furniture, the “Famous Norman Wardrobes”. Transfer back to Rouen at the beginning of the evening. Then prepare to enjoy our farewell gala dinner and evening!

Day 8 PARIS – Fly Home – Disembarkation 09:00 (B)

Enjoy one last breakfast before bidding your crew goodbye and disembarking with a suitcase full of memories!

Optional Excursions

Chateau Versailles - TBA

Chateau Versailles was residency for the kings and queens of France in 17th Century until the French Revolution. King Louis XIV turned this small hunting lodge into the most extravagant court Europe had ever known. Before the French Revolution, The Palace of Versailles was a glorious symbol of monarch, France’s Royal Family, and the state itself. On this tour you will have the chance to see the art and architectural beauty found in the halls and rooms of the Castle, followed by a stroll through its enchanting gardens.

DISCLAIMER: All optional excursions are shown for information and planning purposes. They are subject to change do to holidays, attraction black-out dates or other reasons. Some, if not all optional excursions may require a minimum number of participants to operate. Prices are quoted in Euros. Final list of availability and costs will be confirmed upon arrival to your vessels at the initial information meeting.

 

M/S Renoir

By adopting the “French chic” spirit, the ship’s design emphasizes elegant and graphic classicism, inspired by the friendship between Coco Chanel and Auguste Renoir. Powder pink colours subtly alternate with dark grey tones which provide the ship with a warm atmosphere. The cabins are spread over two decks: on the upper deck, they have large bay windows with French balconies; on the main deck, they have large windows. Located on the upper deck, the restaurant, where all meals are served during the trip, offers delicate cuisine in a refined setting, where large bay windows allow you to fully enjoy the panorama. On this same deck is also the lounge / bar with a dance floor. Comfortable sun loungers are provided on the sun deck with a large shaded area, the ideal place to relax and admire the surrounding landscapes. On board currency Euro

Cabins

Category A: Upper  Deck with French Balcony 16.5 m2 (177 sq ft) 

  • TV
  • Telephone (for internal calls only)
  • Safe
  • Independent air-conditioning
  • Electricity 220V
  • Wi-Fi
  • Bathroom with shower and toilet
  • Hair dryer
  • Selection of bath products
  • Towels

 

 

Category B: Main Deck with Panorama Windows (windows do not open), 16.5 m2 (177 sq ft) 
  • TV
  • Telephone (for internal calls only)
  • Safe
  • Independent air-conditioning
  • Electricity 220V
  • Wi-Fi
  • Bathroom with shower and toilet
  • Hair dryer
  • Selection of bath products
  • Towels

 


Category C: Main Deck with Panorama Windows (windows do not open), 16.5 m2 (177 sq ft) 
  • TV
  • Telephone (for internal calls only)
  • Safe
  • Independent air-conditioning
  • Electricity 220V
  • Wi-Fi
  • Bathroom with shower and toilet
  • Hair dryer
  • Selection of bath products
  • Towels

 


NEW! Sensational Seine Video.

See all of our ship videos on Youtube.

Travel Tips for Sensational Seine coming soon.

FAQ's

Will I need to obtain a visa for the Sensational Seine Cruise?

No. Visas are not required for US citizens traveling on this program.

Are transfers included?

If you have purchased your air tickets through us, your transfers will be included. However, transfers are still available for those who would like to arrange their own airfare, for a fee. For more information about transfer rates for this program, please call our office at (714) 556-8258 or toll free (800) 795-1633.

Which ship will be used for the 2023 Sensational Seine?

M/S Renoir.

By adopting the “French chic” spirit, the ship’s design emphasizes elegant and graphic classicism, inspired by the friendship between Coco Chanel and Auguste Renoir. Powder pink colours subtly alternate with dark grey tones which provide the ship with a warm atmosphere. The cabins are spread over two decks: on the upper deck, they have large bay windows with French balconies; on the main deck, they have large windows. Located on the upper deck, the restaurant, where all meals are served during the trip, offers delicate cuisine in a refined setting, where large bay windows allow you to fully enjoy the panorama. On this same deck is also the lounge / bar with a dance floor. Comfortable sun loungers are provided on the sun deck with a large shaded area, the ideal place to relax and admire the surrounding landscapes. On board currency Euro

Will I be able to make phone calls and check emails while aboard the ship?

There are no telephone lines for outgoing calls on our vessels. Communication from ship to shore can only be done through the Captain’s radio. However, you may bring your US cell phone to use – just please make sure it is “unlocked” by your US provider in order to use it. Wi-Fi is available for a fee and computers are provided near the bar. The service is free, but the level of signal may vary depending on sailing itinerary and location of ports.

What is the currency should I be prepared to use?

For the rate of exchange to the US dollar, please check online a few days prior to your departure as some of these currencies fluctuate daily. Due to varying foreign currency laws, our ships do NOT have exchange offices on board. Therefore, we highly recommend that you BRING A SUFFICIENT QUANTITY OF EUROS OR DOLLARS in CASH prior to your departure. You will then have ample opportunity to change either Euro/dollar to local currencies.

What methods of payment are accepted on board and on shore?

While on board the ship, all costs are quoted in Euros. Direct payments are accepted in cash (Euros) or signed to your cabin and paid at the end of the navigation by cash or credit card (Visa or MasterCard only). However, a service may be applied to credit card transactions. Personal and Traveler Checks are not accepted.

Due to strict foreign currency laws, here are important notes regarding on shore expenses:
Cash: is accepted and preferred. (Euros & USD)
Credit Cards: are accepted, VISA OR MASTERCARD ONLY! (Limited use outside of urban areas.)
*Credit Card Note: As of May 2014, European credit card processors require credit cards with chips and a 4-digit PIN code. Your USA magnetic strip cards may NOT work at local ATM’s requiring a PIN. Ask your bank for a chip card and/or bring along a debit card with your PIN (or enough cash to cover your expenses!)

If cash is still “king,” any recommendation of how much I should bring?

Although everyone is different, we suggest that you set aside at least 700 Euros/$1000 USD per person – to cover your optional tours and shopping expenses. If you are planning on purchasing more expensive items you may want to bring more.

Are optional tours offered in this program?

Yes, optional excursions will be offered for sale during your cruise. These optional services are priced in Euros. They may be signed to your cabin and paid at the end of the cruise with cash or via Visa or Matercard.

What if I have special dietary needs or food allergies?

Special meal requests are possible. If you have any food allergies or special dietary needs, please be sure to notify our office at least 90 days prior to your departure. We and the restaurant staff will make every effort to arrange for special meals, however, if you have strict dietary restrictions, you may want to bring some non-perishable snacks, crackers, dried fruits, dietary sweeteners, or other items that will compliment the limited variety of special meals.

Anything else I should make sure to pack?

Travel tips for Seine Cruise is coming soon.

Electrical current in hotels and on the ship is 220 volts/50MHZ. In order to use appliances, including shavers, hair-dryers, chargers for movie cameras, etc., you will need to bring:
1) Universal Transformer: to convert from US 110 Volts to 220. (Note: recent electronic equipment such as laptops and cameras MAY automatically convert. Please check your individual item.)
2) Universal Adapter Plugs: Round pins for sockets that are different than at home. Since there are no supplies of converters/ adapters, we recommend you purchase a transformer/ adapter plug set at any electronics or appliance store before you leave.

PLEASE DO NOT FORGET: Medications which are vital to your health. A letter should accompany these from your doctor (signed and dated), certifying that such medications are vital to your health. Dosage should be indicated. Always pack any personal medications in your carry-on luggage, not in your checked baggage. Additionally, those passengers with lighter physical disabilities must report them to us at the time of booking.