In the footsteps of the Impressionists from Paris to Normandy
The Seine meanders picturesquely in wide loops through the Ile de France and Normandy to the sea, an umbilical cord that connects Paris with the sea. The fearsome Normans gave the region its name. But today the image of a homely, rural idyll is associated with the country: thatched farmsteads, cattle on lush green orchards and half-timbered villages like postcard motifs complement each other with romantic ruins, magnificent châteaux and steep chalk cliffs to create a unique landscape painting. No wonder that numerous painters and poets were inspired here and that the Impressionists paid homage to outdoor painting.
It is wonderful to return to the comfortable cabin on board the ship by e-mail after an eventful day of cycling! In the evening, the on-board restaurant is not far away, where you can relax and enjoy your dinner while Paris and Normandy leisurely pass you by in front of the windows.
The highlights of the trip are the historic city of Rouen and the coastal town of Étretat, which lies between steep chalk cliffs. A visit to the picturesque water lily garden of Monét and the varied city tour in Paris round off the landscape and cultural experience along the river.
*All distances are approximate. The itinerary is subject to change, at times without prior notice. Some waterways may be subject to occasional closures due to drought, storms, floods, canal or lock repairs, or other unforeseen circumstances that make navigation unsafe or impossible. The captain reserves the right to make any changes deemed necessary.
DAY 1: ARRIVAL & PARIS WAY OF LIFE
At 5 p.m. our tour guides will welcome you on board in Paris for embarkation. After you have moved into your cabin in peace, your tour guide will explain the itinerary to you. At 9 p.m. it is time to cast off and the VIVA sets course towards Normandy.
DAY 2: THE CAPITAL OF NORMANDY: ROUEN
You left the Ile de France overnight and wake up in Normandy in the morning. Enjoy the ride on board in the morning. Your ship traverses the wide loops of the Seine, past pretty villages, lush green meadows and thickly overgrown hills. You begin your stay on land in Normandy with a guided tour of the old town of Rourn in the afternoon. Rouen oozes medieval flair with a clock tower and a magnificent cathedral. The mighty towers of the cathedral tower over the roofs of the city. Historically tragic happened on the square “Du Vieux Marchée”: Here Jeanne d’Arc, the Maid of Orleans, was burned as a witch. Your ship will stay overnight in Rouen, so you can still stroll through the medieval streets of Rouen. A very special spectacle awaits you in summer. As soon as the sun has set, the cathedral is illuminated with a light show, which is accompanied by suitable music (June 1st to September 15th). We recommend that you watch this free performance after dinner. It is only a 15-minute walk from the ship to the cathedral portal.
DAY 3: MIGHTY MONASTERIES | Approx. 28 miles / 45 km
After breakfast on board, your e-bikes will be ready for departure not far from the jetty. You drive out of the city on small streets. Today you cycle on the "Route of the Romanesque Monasteries". You will cross two of the most beautiful river loops in the heart of Normandy. On the way you will reach the magnificent ruins of the monastery of Jumièges. The 11th century Benedictine abbey is one of the most impressive ruins in France. Their paramount importance can still be felt today. At lunchtime, your tour guides will prepare a delicious picnic for you. Romanesque and romantic goes back along the Seine to the gates of Rouen. With a short transfer in the afternoon we will bring you into the city to the ship. In the evening your ship continues towards the Atlantic.
DAY 4: PICTURESQUE ALABASTER COAST | Approx. 38 miles / 60 km
In the morning we take you to the wonderful Côte d´Albatre, the most spectacular section of the Norman coast. The small seaside resort of Étretat lies magically between the steep chalk cliffs. The breathtaking beauty of this landscape opens up to you on a cliff path (easy hike). The imposing, needle-shaped formations have already inspired many great artists, including Boudin, Monet and Manet. After a leisurely break you cycle on charming little streets, through Norman villages, past large farms with white cattle and small châteaux to Tancarville. From here the transfer will bring you back to the ship in Caudebec-en-Caux.
DAY 5: LIONHERZ RITTERBURG ON WHITE CLIFFS & MONET'S HOME | Approx. 31 miles / 50 km
Your ship arrives at Les Andelys early in the morning. Here the Seine loops wide and has washed steep cliffs out of the limestone. The mighty ruins of Richard the Lionheart tower above the river and offer us a romantic view of the small half-timbered village at the foot of high, white cliffs. From Les Andelys you cycle first along the Seine and then back over a high path to the graceful ruins of Richard the Lionheart. Your guide explains the importance and dramatic decline of the castle. Walk the last few meters back to the ship. At noon our ship casts off and continues towards Vernon.
In the early afternoon, your ship arrives at Vernon Pier. Today we start with the e-bike at the postcard motif of the old half-timbered mill in Vernon. First you cycle a bit upstream on a former railway line to Giverny to Monet's water lily ponds and gardens. The world-famous impressionist lived here for 50 years and his green and pink house is still there as if the painter had just left it. It is densely overgrown by a wonderful garden that the artist created himself and that has inspired him to many of his pictures. After a stroll through the extensive complex, we follow the course of the Seine on side paths to the impressive La Roche Guyon castle, which protrudes deep into the white limestone. From his garden you have a wonderful view of the Seine. Your guides will explain the history of the chateau to you. In the evening you have time to enjoy the amenities on board while the A-ROSA VIVA is in Vernon until the next morning.
DAY 6: SAVOIR-VIVRE ON THE SEINE
Enjoy a full day on board the VIVA today on your leisurely cruise on the meandering Seine through the Ile de France to Paris. In the afternoon, listen to an informative talk from your guide about the country and its people and let yourself be pampered on board. Overnight and dinner on board.
DAY 7: PARIS & ORANGERIE URBAN QUARTERS | Approx. 17 miles / 28 km
In the morning you will experience the green Paris by bike and reach the Tuileries Gardens.
In the middle of the gardens is the orangery, which houses the impressive water lily cycle by Monet and shows other exhibits from the Impressionists. During a detailed tour, you will learn more about the painter Monet and his contemporaries. In the afternoon, the final highlight awaits you with a visit to the Musée Rodin. Paris has countless museums, many of which are among the most important and famous in the world. For our day in Paris we have selected a charming gem for you. The small Rodin Museum shows the unique art of France's most famous sculptor. The age of modern sculpture began with Auguste Rodin. Together with his student and lover Camille Claudel, he created works whose intense sensuality touches the viewer deeply. One of his masterpieces is “The Kiss”, whose passion, frozen in marble, is so lively and moving that it fascinates every visitor. Rodin's pupil and muse Claudel was shattered by her sensitivity, which gave her the creative power for immortal works of art, but made her despair of life. A pretty, small park adjoins the museum, which shows other important sculptures by the master such as “The Thinker” and “The Citizens of Calais”. In the evening you will be served an excellent final dinner on board.
DAY 8: AUREVOIR PARIS OR EXTENSION
After breakfast on board, disembarkation takes place in Paris. We would be happy to recommend a hotel for an extension in Paris.
Of course, it is advisable to extend another night (or two) in Paris in order to experience this lively and fascinating city even more extensively.
We reserve the right to make changes to the timetable and program!
Due to high and low tide, maintenance work and waiting times at locks and bridges, there may be changes to the timetable at short notice. In rare cases of high or low tide or force majeure, parts of the route may have to be covered by bus or train and, in individual cases, hotel accommodation may be necessary.
EBIKE TRIP - ROUTE ASSESSMENT: The total distance by e-bike and on foot is 189 km. The bike routes mostly run on cycle paths with little traffic or on small side streets. For the hike on the coastal path, we recommend comfortable running shoes with a good grip.
What’s Not Included
The A-ROSA VIVA is a state-of-the-art cruise ship with plenty of space that entered service in 2010. With a length of approx. 130 m, the ship offers a generous design of the public areas: a spacious sun deck, whirlpool, outdoor SPA area, sauna, indoor and outdoor restaurant, putting green, etc. on the upper deck, plus a bar, café, lounge and fitness area on the ship. The cabins are spacious, modern and comfortably furnished, equipped with individually adjustable air conditioning, bath / toilet, TV and hairdryer. The windows in cabins of category C and D (with a French balcony) can be opened. The restaurant offers a buffet with live cooking for all meals and a multi-course menu is served one evening.
Ship details of the A-ROSA VIVA
THE BEST ESCAPE OF EVERYDAY LIFE: ON THE SHIP
THE CULINARY OFFER
Full board plus:
FEEL AT HOME ON HOLIDAY: THE CABINS
IT FEELS LIKE A HOLIDAY ON HOLIDAY: THE SPA-ROSA
A-ROSA protection and hygiene concept
You have any Questions?
CONTACT US: 069 - 69 30 54
terranova Zimmermann Touristik KG
Martin-May-Str. 7 60594 Frankfurt a. M.
Tel.: +49 188.8.131.52