98143515_amaburgundy_vineyard.jpeg

Please Go Away Experience:

Essence of Burgundy and Provence Wine Cruise

March 28th - April 10th, 2022

Join PGA specialist Trisha Iannazzi for 3 nights in Nice, a 7-night river cruise aboard the AmaWaterways AmaCello from Arles to Chalon-Sur-Saône and 3 nights in Geneva for the ultimate wine lovers getaway through France. Indulge in French flavors on a palate-pleasing itinerary that highlights the essence of France’s Burgundy and Provence. Uncover the Roman history of Chalon-sur Saône and delight in charming Tournus with its towering Romanesque abbey and historic apothecary shop. Visit French châteaux from Burgundy to Provence, taste your way through the French culinary capital of Lyon and visit the Papal Palace in Avignon.

 

While you’ll get more than a taste of Burgundy and Provence during this itinerary, the essence of these destinations will linger on

your palate – and in your heart – for a lifetime!

Cruise Overview:

Wine Lovers Paradise

Amid a backdrop of France’s most regal castles, historic ruins and vineyard-laced hills, enjoy a wonderful River Cruise experience all the while tasting world-class wines sourced from the very spots you’re traveling through.

 

Wine hosts and sommeliers will share their passion for viticulture through discussions and wine tastings on board. On shore, the insightful wine host—always a professional winery owner, winemaker, wine instructor or certified sommelier from a renowned North American winery—will lead guests through discussions and wine tastings on board, accompanying you to local wineries and vineyards where you'll learn first-hand from regional European experts.

 

And all of this comes at no extra cost. Whether you are a wine novice or a self-described oenophile with your own home wine cellar, this is the perfect chance to indulge in one of the world’s most perfect trifectas: travel, wine and elegant cuisine. From romantic cities to foodie havens, AmaWaterways will bring you into the very heart of some of France's most exciting and legendary vineyards.

colors-of-provence_5e5f2a7c87b60.jpeg
 
 
shutterstock_391495360.jpg

Immerse Yourself with Our Special Interest Tours and Experiences

you can further enliven your senses by indulging in complimentary special interest tours with local guides. Enjoy the perfect blend of visits to vineyards with excursions to nearby landmarks and destination hotspots.

 

Along the way, tempt your increasingly refined palate with a glass of locally produced wines — wines such as Provence's renowned Rosés, Côtes du Rhône, Beaujolais, Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Mâcon, and Côtes de Baune will be among either your favorite varietals or new flavors to which you will be introduced.

 

Our cruise also offers a smorgasbord of exciting epicurean tours designed for travelers who relish the idea of honing their culinary skills. Learn how to pair chocolate with wine, learn all about the mustard mill in Dijon and enjoy local specialties.

 

A signature experience available on our cruise is you'll also be treated to unlimited, hand-selected local wines during every onboard lunch and dinner. These change daily and are paired with locally-inspired menus.

Day to Day Itinerary

Day One: Arrival in Nice

After your overnight flight from your departing city you will be met at the airport to be transferred to Le Meridien Nice. 

With a brand-new design and a ‘touch of chic’ inspired by the timeless elegance of the Côte d’Azur, Le Méridien Nice offers the perfect settings to unwind, indulge and relax. Its iconic location at n°1, Promenade des Anglais invites you to embrace the glamour of the French Riviera.The newly renovated 318 rooms including 15 suites feature stunning views over the Mediterranean Sea. Designers Saguez & Gomez took inspiration from the Golden Sixties to re-imagine a new refined and exotic interior design. Discover local flavors at the brand new “Latitude Bar” or at the Rooftop restaurant “La Terrasse” unveiling breathtaking views of the Baie des Anges.At the crossroad of the Promenade and the old town Le Meridien Nice is the ideal location to start exploring the city and the Côte d’Azur.

 

The rest of the day and evening are free.

 

Rest up and relax. When you are ready to explore, the Old town and Promenade des Anglais are both at your doorstep.

shutterstock_422304961.jpg
 
shutterstock_1639411399.jpg

Day Two: Foodie Tour

The Cours Saleya is one of the liveliest areas of Old-Nice where the flower, fruit and vegetable markets take place. Fruit and vegetables, authentic local products from inland Nice are available from this market.

 

Your guide will meet you at the hotel to walk past the Opera House, Justice Palace and other sights on the way to the market where you will be charmed by the lively ambience, colors and scents. 3 food tastings will be included.

 

Following the tour you have the rest of the day free to enjoy lunch, sightseeing and maybe even an excursion to nearby Eze, Villefranche or Monaco.

Day Three: Visit St. Paul de Vence

Depart the hotel for a short drive into the hills to visit one of the gems of Provence, St. Paul de Vence.

 

On arrival we will enjoy a one-hour orientation walking tour and then have free time to enjoy the shops, galleries and ambience

 

The picturesque mountain stronghold of St. Paul de Vence once guarded the ancient Var Frontier. Built on its rocky outcrop and surrounded by its ramparts built on the orders of François 1st, St Paul is certainly one of the most beautiful villages in Provence. Cars are forbidden inside the walls of the old town whose cobbled streets are lined with galleries and shops. This citadel is one of the most visited sites in France. The Fondation Maeght, with its Mirò-filled sculpture garden is a place of pilgrimage for modern art lovers The beauty of the surrounding area, quality of life and exceptional light has inspired numerous famous artists, painters, writers and poets, some of whom took up residence in the village. From the encircling ramparts you get panoramic views of the hilltowns of the Riviera. Walk around the narrow and so picturesque streets of the village, from the Porte Royale to the Porte Sud and you will discover magnificent stone façades from the XVI and XVIII centuries. Lose yourself in the maze of charming streets, the floral exuberance of the gardens, the little shady squares, ancient fountains, gateways and porches, or wonderful windows and you'll see why St Paul is a favorite subject for photographers. One of the many curiosities of the old village of St. Paul is the Gault Gallery of Miniature Archictecture where you can compose your very own Provençal neighborhood from pieces – houses, fountains, towers, ramparts – each made by hand and guaranteed original.

 

At around 12:30PM we will enjoy a wine-tasting at a local Cave and time for an independent lunch.

 

At around 3pm we will drive back to the hotel in Nice and the rest of the afternoon and evening are free for you to enjoy this beautiful city.

 

We highly recommend a visit to Caves Bianchi in the Old Town for some wine tasting. They have been serving up delicious local and other French vintages to thirsty patrons since 1860!

shutterstock_1379221424.jpg
shutterstock_494841310.jpg

Day Four: Visit Aix en Provence

Following breakfast at your hotel, depart for Aix en Provence.

 

Aix-en-Provence is known as the most sophisticated town around and is an intriguing city to explore. It was settled by the Romans in 123 B.C. but achieved its fame when “Good King René,” count of Provence, and his wife chose it as their preferred residence in the 1450’s. It was capital of the Kingdom of Provence until 1847 when it joined France. The cobbled streets of the old quarter are lovely to wander around and at night the illuminated tree-lined Cours Mirabeau is enchanting – reminiscent of Paris with its many sidewalk cafés amongst them "Les Deux Garçons", a local institution. Nineteen 17th-century tapestries from Beauvois are on display in the Museum of Tapestries. Another fifteen Flemish tapestries can be found in the Cathedral Saint Sauveur.

 

Aix is also the birthplace of Paul Cézanne. You can visit the studio he built, Atelier Paul Cézanne, set behind a little wooden gate just north of the old quarter. Although the view out the tall north window is now screened by trees, in Cézanne’s day it framed Mont Sainte-Victoire. Cézanne’s landscapes of the countryside near Aix – over 100 of Mont Sainte-Victoire alone – are today among the works most associated with his great gifts.

 

The tradition of making hand-painted santons, or little saints, dates from the French Revolution, when churches were closed and people began creating nativity scenes at home. Santons Foque (65 Cours Fambetta) is among the most revered of santonniers and sells 1800 different models priced from $10.00 to $1,00.00 or more. You can watch the santons, which begin as chunks of pure clay being modeled by hand. Don’t miss it. Another of Aix’s splendors is the Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday morning flower market in front of the baroque Hôtel de Ville. Masses of lilies, geraniums, irises and lilacs, tulips and daffodils are strewn like a lavish bouquet across the square.

 

Here you will enjoy an orientation tour and free time to enjoy an indendent lunch.

 

At around 2:30 PM we will continue our journey through Provence to Arles to join the AMACello

Day Five: Visit Arles (First Stop)

After your first night aboard AmaWaterways AmaCello you will arrive in Arles. Arles is considered one of the most beautiful cities in France. Let your experienced guide lead you to the top sights, including the Romanesque cathedral and Roman amphitheater; or take a guided bike tour to the Roman ruins. Or, if you wish to delve further into Van Gogh’s Arles, join a special walking tour along with a visit to the Vincent van Gogh Foundation, showcasing his legacy. Or take some time to focus on wellness with a guided bike tour through the town.

Experience options: 

  • Arles walking tour

  • Van Gogh walking tour

  • Arles bike tour

  • Bike tour along the Rhône from the provençal town of Tarascon to Avignon

shutterstock_1167787753.jpg
shutterstock_1760006300 (1).jpg

Day Five: Visit Arles (Second Stop)

Avignon, aptly named the “City of Popes,” was the center of the Catholic Church in the 14th century when its “Palais des Papes” was the equivalent of today’s Vatican. Discover the history of Avignon on a guided walking tour that includes the Papal Palace and the well-preserved medieval walls surrounding the historic center of town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Alternately, you can visit three venues around Avignon to taste regional specialties including macarons, cheese and wine, and tapenades.

Experience options:

  • Walking tour and Papal Palace

  • Tastes of Avignon

  • Tarascon-Avignon Bike Tour

 

This evening enjoy an illuminations cruise of Avignon.

Day Six: Visit Valence

Take your coffee on your balcony or the Sun Deck as you cruise to Valence, a designated “City of Art and History,” where you can see such sites as its 11th-century Cathedral of St. Apollinaris or perhaps its House of Heads (named for the carved heads of its façade and courtyard) on your city tour.

 

The gateway to the South of France and the capital of Drôme, Valence is a charming city in the Rhône Valley. Thanks to its sunny climate, location by the river and City of Art and History label, this is an attractive city in all respects. With its many café terraces, pleasant pedestrian squares, shopping streets and listed monuments, the old city offers a warm and welcoming atmosphere.

 

For a more active adventure, pedal through this bicycle-friendly city or indulge your culinary wanderlust by attending a specialized excursion to a local French cooking school.

 

If you prefer a more relaxing excursion, taste the Northern Rhône’s red Cornas wines. 

Experience options: 

  • Valence city tour

  • Bike tour

  • Cooking school

  • Cornas wine tasting

shutterstock_1649671474.jpg
shutterstock_1825252271.jpg

Day Seven: Visit Vienne (First Stop)

Vienne boasts a Roman past that can be seen in its marvelously preserved ruins. The most impressive roman monument in Vienne is the 'Temple d'Auguste et de Livie' in the original city forum, built during the period 20 to 10 BC and converted into a church during the middle ages. You can ride the charming mini train around the city. The old town in Vienne contains a number of medieval and balconied houses, typically built in the 16th and 17th centuries. Some of the houses are half-timbered, while others are in stone with intricately carved window surrounds and other decorative features.

 

For those wishing to be more active, you can either take a guided bike tour along a portion of the Via Rhôna bike route or a guided hike from the ship to the Monastery at Mount Pipet. The hill in the centre of the town, the Mont Pipet, once formed part of the roman town then later became a further part of the defences of Vienne. The Chapel of the Virgin Mary and a statue, built in the 19th century, now stands on the hill and is the best place for a view across the rooftops of Vienne and to the hills around the town. It is quite a steep climb but worth it for the views down over the amphitheater, the city and the river.

Experience options:

  • Mini Train Vienne Tour

  • OR Via Rhôna Bike Tour

  • OR Mount Pipet Hike

Day Seven: Visit Lyon (Second Stop)

Later in the day, discover dynamic Lyon,"France's Culinary Capital."

 

Commanding a strategic spot at the confluence of the Rhône and the Saône Rivers, Lyon has been luring people ever since the Romans named it Lugdunum in 43 BC. Commercial, industrial and banking powerhouse for the past 500 years, Lyon is France's third-largest city, and offers today's urban explorers a wealth of enticing experiences. Outstanding museums, a dynamic cultural life, and fantastic shopping lend the city a distinctly sophisticated air, while adventurous gourmets can indulge in their wildest gastronomic fantasies. Don't leave the city without sampling some Lyonnais specialities in a bouchon – the quintessential Lyon experience.

 

Enjoy a Lyon City Tour starting in Fourvière Hill, part of the city's historic region that is now designated UNESCO World Heritage Site and home to the 19th-century basilica Notre Dame de Fourvière. Continue on to the old town of Lyon, followed by a guided walk through the Saint Jean district, where you will be introduced to the the city's unique covered walkways, known as "traboules."

 

Or get active on a guided bike tour through the city designed with cyclists in mind.

 

If you are a self-described foodie, our Lyon Tasting Tour is for you, during which you'll have a chance to taste some of Lyon's local delights.

 

 In the evening sit back and see the city illuminated during a scenic nighttime cruise.

Experience options:

  • Lyon City Tour

  • Lyon Bike Tour

  • Lyon Tasting Tour

  • Lyon Illuminations cruise

shutterstock_634845419.jpg

Day Seven: Visit Lyon (Second Stop)

Later in the day, discover dynamic Lyon,"France's Culinary Capital."

 

Commanding a strategic spot at the confluence of the Rhône and the Saône Rivers, Lyon has been luring people ever since the Romans named it Lugdunum in 43 BC. Commercial, industrial and banking powerhouse for the past 500 years, Lyon is France's third-largest city, and offers today's urban explorers a wealth of enticing experiences. Outstanding museums, a dynamic cultural life, and fantastic shopping lend the city a distinctly sophisticated air, while adventurous gourmets can indulge in their wildest gastronomic fantasies. Don't leave the city without sampling some Lyonnais specialities in a bouchon – the quintessential Lyon experience.

 

Enjoy a Lyon City Tour starting in Fourvière Hill, part of the city's historic region that is now designated UNESCO World Heritage Site and home to the 19th-century basilica Notre Dame de Fourvière. Continue on to the old town of Lyon, followed by a guided walk through the Saint Jean district, where you will be introduced to the the city's unique covered walkways, known as "traboules."

 

Or get active on a guided bike tour through the city designed with cyclists in mind.

 

If you are a self-described foodie, our Lyon Tasting Tour is for you, during which you'll have a chance to taste some of Lyon's local delights.

 

 In the evening sit back and see the city illuminated during a scenic nighttime cruise.

Experience options:

  • Lyon City Tour

  • Lyon Bike Tour

  • Lyon Tasting Tour

  • Lyon Illuminations cruise

shutterstock_634845419.jpg
shutterstock_551910784.jpg

Day Eight: Visit Macon

Active centre of the Resistance during World War II, Mâcon is the first town of unoccupied France between Lyon and Paris. The urban and architectural wealth of Mâcon is witness of a past particularly rich in encounters. Mâcon town centre induces you to visit its museums and historical sites.

Known as "The South Burgundy City," you may not know its name but Mâcon is world-renowned for its delightful wines. The Mâcon fine and elegant white wines are elaborated from the Chardonnay vine (name of a local village) with the appellation of Mâcon Village. Among the wines, the Pouilly Fuissé, the Saint Véran, drier and fruity and the Viré Clessé became famous. Stemmed from the black Gamay vine with white juice, the Mâcon red wines with a beautiful bright red color will surprise you with their freshness and their flavors.

 

Join a guided tour through the “South Burgundy City” of Mâcon, learning about its local vineyards, museums, historical sites and perhaps its famous son, the poet and minister Alphonse de Lamartine. Or venture somewhat off the beaten path to Cluny, known for its large abbey, and the nearby castle Berze-le-Chatel, a well-preserved fortress perched on a rocky hill offering stunning views below. Alternately, you can enjoy a guided bike tour to Berze-le-Chatel.

 

Should architecture or religion be one of your main interests, perhaps choose the excursion to the Royal Monastery of Brou, built in the 16th century and boasting a glorious white façade as well as a beautifully tiled roof.

 

Later in the day, bike from Mâcon to Tournus or enjoy a delicious tasting of the region's famous white Mâconnais wines.

Experience options:

  • Mâcon guided city tour

  • Cluny & Berze-le-Chatel visit

  • Bike tour to Berze-le-Chatel

  • Monastère de Brou scenic cruising

  • Mâcon to Tournus bike ride

  • Mâconnais wine tasting

Day Nine: Visit Tournus

The town of Tournus is on the Saône River in the Saône-et-Loire department of southern Burgundy and has a history dating back to the Romans, when the raised position above the river made the location easy to defend. With an attractive and vibrant center, Tournus is a pleasant town to explore - especially the medieval center, with its narrow alleys, old stone houses, artsy shops and restaurants. There are also a couple of monuments of particular importance to see - principal among these, and the highlight of a visit to Tournus, is the 10th century benedictine Abbey of Saint-Philibert de Tournus.

 

The area is surrounded by vineyards and if you want to sample some of the local wines head for 'Les Vignerons de l'Abbaye' just north of Tournus where you can find out about the Burgundy wines and wine tasting. The Nature Reserve of la Truchere-Ratenelle is south-east of Tournus and has a range of different habitats from sand dunes to peat bogs.

 

Today you have a choice of a number of excursions as you explore Tournus.

 

Let your knowledgeable guide lead you through Tournus and to its magnificent Benedictine Abbey of Saint Philibert. Or choose instead to visit the moated Château de Cormatin which dates back to the early 17th-century and features ornate apartments as well as a beautifully manicured garden.

 

As an alternative, venture to the medieval village of Brancion with its preserved gateway, church and market hall.

The village of Brancion is situated between Cluny and Tournus in the southern part of the Saone-et-Loire department of Burgundy. In recent years the village (called Martailly-les-Brancion) has undergone a great deal of improvements and renovations, and is now recommended if you are visiting the region. From the 13th to the 15th centuries Brancion was an important regional centre for the Dukes of Burgundy, and the interesting buildings in the village date from that epoch. Later the village lost its importance and Brancion became a quiet backwater for the following five centuries. At the turn of the millennium the village made a conscious decision to make the most of its important buildings and attractive character, and spent several years on renovations and improvements.

 

Later in the day enjoy scenic cruising or, if you are feeling adventurous, bike to Chalon-sur-Saône 

Experience options: 

  • Tiurnus City Tour and Abbey of Saing Philibert visit

  • Château Cormatin

  • Medieval Brancion

shutterstock_378935914.jpg
shutterstock_1170986689.jpg

Day Ten: Chalon-sur-Saone

Chalon-sur-Sâone is in the Sâone-et-Loire department of central Burgundy, between Dijon and Mâcon. The town has a pleasant centre with medieval houses and a cathedral that merits exploration. The principal attraction in Beaune is the Hotel-Dieu. Found in the heart of the walled old-town of Beaune, the Hotel-Dieu was a hospital in the 15th century, and has now been immaculately preserved and renovated.

 

Located in southern Burgundy at the heart of the Côte Chalonnaise wine region, Chalon-sur-Saône whispers the secrets of its medieval past which you will discover on your historic city Tour. You'll stop at a local market where you can see and taste some of the local fare.

 

Alternatively, choose an excursion in Beaune a walled town nestled in the heart of côte d'Or vineyards where you'll stroll the cobblestone streets and take in such sights as the mosaic-tiled roof of the Hôtel-Dieu de Beaune, founded in the 15th century as a hospital for the less fortunate.

 

Or visit the storybook Château de Couches, a medieval fortress enveloped in the idyllic hills and greenery that once served the Dukes of Burgundy.

 

Later in the day, treat your palate to a tasting of Chalonnaise wines.

Experience options:

  • Historic City Tour

  • OR Beaune Walking Tour

  • OR Château de Couches

  • Chalonnaise wine tasting

Day Eleven: Geneva

Disembark your ship in Châlon-sur-Saône and transfer to your hotel in Geneva.

 

On the way visit stunning Dijon, the wonderfully picturesque capital of the historic Burgundy region. Renowned for its traditional mustard, Dijon also boasts one of the best preserved medieval centers in France with postcard-perfect architecture, including its cathedral of Saint Benigne de Dijon.

 

You'll also stop in the lovely commune of Bourg-en-Bresse, famous for its Gothic Brou Royal monastery, centuries old timbered-framed houses, and its Renaissance-style Cathedral of our Lady.

 

Arrive at your hotel in Geneva.

 

Dinner is included this evening.

shutterstock_418408996.jpg
shutterstock_1238135869.jpg

Day Twelve: Geneva City Tour

Get acquainted with Geneva, the "Peace City," and gateway to the Swiss Alps on your guided walking tour. With traditions in both watchmaking and chocolate making, this beautiful city has a rich history which you will glimpse during your excursion.

 

This afternoon is free for you to independently explore the Old Town, take a cruise on the Lake or maybe an excursion to a nearby vineyard.

Exclusive experience:

Join Trisha and our group for a short walk to the nearby Hotel D'Angleterre to enjoy an exclusive tasting of Swiss Wines, cheeses and Charcuterie in the beautiful Rooftop Observatory with a stunning lake view.

 

The sommelier will take us through several of the fine vintages that are produced in Switzerland and kept in Switzerland. The Swiss consume it all - they do not share this bounty with the outside world!!

The wines will be accompanied by a selection of local Swiss cheeses and fresh baked artisan bread.

 

There will be an additional charge for this experience.

Day Thirteen: Explore Annency

Venture south t0 the "Pearl of the French Alps," Annency, on your morning excursion. Home to beautiful castles, including the Château d'Annency, home to the Counts of Geneva, and natural green spaces with bike trails winding along the lake. Later in the day, visit Chillon Castle, a picture-perfect medieval island fortress with three formal great halls, a chapel and beautifully arched underground rooms that once served as a prison.

 

Enjoy your final evening in Switzerland .... tomorrow we head for home with a suitcase full of treasures and a lifetime of magical memories!

shutterstock_618797216.jpg
shutterstock_1196488009.jpg

Day Fourteen: Fly Home

Transfer to Geneva airport from your hotel for your flights home - arriving the same day.

Pricing Details

From $7,574 per person depending on cabin selected. Includes 3 nights in Nice, 7-day wine cruise on AmaWaterways AmaCello, 3 nights in Geneva, travel insurance, referral fee. 

Deposit: $1,275 per person

Final payment: by 12/20/2021

Cancellation policy: From $200 per person cruise penalty. Planning fee and travel insurance are non-refundable.

PGA Perks

This trip will be hosted by Please Go Away specialist Trisha Iannazzi to make sure your trip is going as planned and you will also have a wine host, wine tastings onboard, special winery visits and much more to enhance your getaway during this exclusive Please Go Away experience.

106219_AmaCello_fa1a638d72c14f139d968510
 

Get our travel tips and insider information on trending destinations and experiences straight to your Inbox.

© 2021 Please Go Away, Fueled by Largay Travel

  • Facebook
  • Instagram