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French Savoir Vivre: Lyon to Lyon River Cruise

8 Days
Prices From:
US$ 1,818

Enjoy a relaxing week’s cruise through one of France’s best known wine producing regions together with visits to old Roman cities such as Avignon with its famous bridge, Arles and others. Have a visit to the Camargue Nature Park and France’s “Grand Canyon”.

Please see LEFT BAR for ship details and other cruise info.

This exciting cruise to the southern part of France begins and ends in Lyon. It is here you will board the Amadeus Symphony, an elegant cruise boat with 69 cabins. Once on board, relax and start with a welcome on board cocktail party. After dinner, sail north overnight to Macon.

The next morning, disembark and take an optional tour of the Macon wine region including a visit to the Regional Wine Museum to learn about the history of Burgundy wines. In the afternoon, you can take an optional tour to the Cluny Abbey ruins. This was once home to 10,000 monks and served as the spiritual centre of Europe. Later sail along the Saone River.

Arrive the following morning at Chalon-sur-Saone, the second largest city in Burgundy. Here consider an optional tour to Beaune, the wine capital of Burgundy to sample some of the excellent local wines. In the afternoon, an optional tour is available to the medieval town of Brancion with its 12th Century church and to Cormatin with its 17th Century moated castle located on an island. Later sail south back to Lyon.

Today take an optional tour of the third largest city in France. . The old town is a UNESCO World Heritage site. See the Notre Dame de Fourviere Basilica, the Roman Amphitheatre and Vieux Lyon quarter. In the afternoon sail south along the Rhone River to Avignon.

The next day brings the opportunity to explore Avignon, once the home of Popes, seven in all. You can visit the gothic Papal Palace and also see the famous Pont d’Avignon. Continue to the Pont du Gard, a 2000 year old Roman viaduct, 50 kilometres/30 miles in length. Also visit the Roman town of Uzes.

The next day take an optional tour to the Camargue Nature Park, home of the famous Camargue wild horses and rare bird species. Afterwards, return to the ship anchored at Arles, the Roman city known for its Amphitheatre which seated 25,000 spectators in its day. Rejoin the ship and sail to the medieval town of Viviers.

The following morning, consider an optional tour to the Ardeche Gorge, France’s “Grand Canyon” which is 300 metres/950 feet deep. Later rejoin the ship and return to Lyon.


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8 Days
Prices From:
US$ 1,818

Itinerary View Trip Map

Day 1


Please make you own way to the boat and ensure you arrive in time for the 4:00pm check in. The crew of the MS Amadeus Symphony await and are on hand to help you with check-in. Then there's time to explore the cruise ship before you're invited to the panorama bar for a cocktail reception. In the evening an elegant welcome dinner is served in the restaurant before the Amadeus Symphony sets sail for Macon. The boat will leave port around 10:00pm.

Meal Plan Dinner
Duration7 Nights

MS Amadeus Symphony

More Info

Location View map
  • starstarstarstar

    MS Amadeus Symphony

    The Amadeus Symphony offers its passengers on board unforgettable and relaxed luxury cruises on the charming waterways in Europe. Spacious cabins and suites fitted with every conceivable comfort, some with panoramic windows, combined with a professional service, hospitality and additional facilities turn this ship into ...

    The Amadeus Symphony offers its passengers on board unforgettable and relaxed luxury cruises on the charming waterways in Europe. Spacious cabins and suites fitted with every conceivable comfort, some with panoramic windows, combined with a professional service, hospitality and additional facilities turn this ship into a very special oasis of well-being.


    • Bar(s)
    • Business Centre
    • Gym/Fitness Centre
    • Laundry Service
    • Pool (s)
    • Restaurant

    More Details

Day 2


In the morning the vessel reaches the town of Macon in southern Burgundy.

You can enjoy an optional excursion into the surrounding Maconnais wine country before lunch to explore the magical vineyards and be captivated by the Mediterranean charm of this unique region. The programme also includes a visit to the regional wine museum which provides plenty of information about the history of wine production in Burgundy. Then it's time to return to your Amadeus vessel for lunch before taking an optional guided tour of the Cluny Abbey ruins in the afternoon. During the Middle Ages up to 10,000 monks lived at this site which was largely destroyed during the French Revolution. The abbey was once the spiritual centre of Europe, as is reflected by the remains of the five-aisled church building. In the evening you return to the vessel and set sail from Macon upstream along the Saone.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 3

Chalon Sur Saone and Tournus

On the third day you reach Chalon-sur-Saone, the second largest city in Burgundy and the northernmost point of your trip.

The best way to explore the beauty of the region is the optional 'Beaune and Burgundy' excursion, which takes you to the world-famous wine-growing regions of Pommard, Chassagne and Puligny in Beaune (known as the 'wine capital of Burgundy'). There's also a chance, of course, to sample the regional wines after the tour! Those who wish can take an optional trip in the afternoon to the mediaeval town of Brancion further south which is home to an intact 12th century church. From here it's on to neighbouring Cormatin, where the world-famous Cormatin moated castle is situated on an island on the river Grosne. Built in the 17th century, the protected monument attracts over 70,000 visitors each year. At the end of your trip, a comfortable coach will transport you back to Tournus where the Amadeus Symphony awaits, ready to set sail back to Lyon.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 4


Early in the morning, you reach Lyon - the city where the Saone and Rhone rivers meet. Lyon is France's third largest city after Paris and Marseille and is renowned for its exquisite cuisine and the beautiful old town which was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1998.

During an optional morning tour of the city you can explore the city's monuments and sights, including the imposing Notre Dame de Fourviere basilica, the Roman theatre and the 'Vieux Lyon' quarter. Around midday the vessel will leave the city and head off along the Rhone towards Avignon where you arrive the next morning. The wealth of Lyon and its worldwide mercantile contacts attracted banks from the Far East to the city as well as encouraging the creation of banking institutions by the Lyonnais themselves. This led in turn to investment in land in Algeria, Madagascar, and Southeast Asia: the port of Haiphong was created with Lyonnais investment. The afternoon on board is ideally spent on the sun desk, offering fantastic views of the delightful river landscapes of southern France.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 5


This morning you arrive in Avignon, the town of the popes. No other town in France had such an enormous significance for the clerical world during the Middle Ages as Avignon.

Your optional excursion this morning includes a walk of Avignon. You can discover the history of the town and the lives of the 7 popes who once resided here during a tour of the winding alleyways and a visit to the Gothic Papal Palace. A visit to the world-famous 'Pont d' Avignon' is also a must during this walking tour of the town. The bridge is the subject of a popular folk song and once spanned the river Rhone. Of the 22 bridge arches which once existed here, only 4 remain. The afternoon optional tour also focuses on an architectural masterpiece, taking you to the 'Pont du Gard' monument 25 km away: this three-level aqueduct was originally 50 km long and was constructed over 2,000 years ago in Roman times to transport water to the town of Nimes and other Roman provinces. After the tour pay a visit to the romantic town of Uzes before heading back to your vessel.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 6

Avignon and Arles

After all of these cultural highlights this morning is all about exploring the green surroundings.

After breakfast, you have the option of taking a comfortable coach from Avignon to the Camargue Nature Park built in 1970 and covering an area of approximately 86,000 ha. Each year the unique flora and fauna of the landscape attract numerous visitors to this conservation area, which is renowned in particular for its semi-wild bulls, unique Camargue horses and rare bird species. Afterwards, the coach will take you back to Arles where your vessel is waiting to welcome you back on board for lunch. In the afternoon you have the option to enjoy a tour of Arles. This small French community has a beautiful historic centre and is renowned in particular for its preserved amphitheatre built by the Romans in around 90 AD and once seating over 25,000 spectators. Afterwards it's time to return to the vessel where you set sail for the medieval town of Viviers after dinner.

Arles boasts of a rich history, having been founded by the Gauls, who even made the city their capital. During the course of centuries, Arles was home to archbishops, became part of the Kingdom of the Franks and later on capital of the Kingdom of Burgundy. In the two hours of our city walk, you will pass by many ancient or roman sights and monuments and see why the UNESCO has chosen to make Arles a World Heritage Site. A visit to the roman arena is a must while being in Arles.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 7


You arrive in Viviers in southern France during breakfast.

This is the starting point for an unforgettable optional trip to one of the world's most spectacular natural monuments - the Ardeche gorge. It is often referred to as the 'Grand Canyon of Europe' and, with a depth of up to 300 metres, impresses both tourists and sports enthusiasts alike. The entrance of the gorge is indicated by the 'Pont d' Arc' - a 60 metre high natural stone arch which is the largest natural bridge in the world. Specially designed viewing platforms offer spectacular views of this unique natural wonder. Don't forget to take some photos before you return to the Amadeus Symphony which has now made its way to Le Pouzin. Your last evening on board involves a special culinary highlight as the captain invites you to a gala dinner. While away the evening in the panorama bar or Amadeus Club and enjoy the views of the beautiful Rhone river landscapes as your vessel heads north.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 8

Lyon Departure

After breakfast, you arrive back in Lyon where your tour of southern France comes to an end after an adventure-packed week (approximately 8:00am). The Amadeus Symphony team thank you for your stay and wish you a pleasant trip home!

Meal Plan Breakfast

Other Information


2016: 13, 27 Oct.

2017: 13, 20 Apr; 11 May; 1, 15, 22 Jun; 13, 20 Jul; 3, 10, 17, 31 Aug; 7, 21, 28 Sep; 5, 12, 19, 26 Oct.


  • 8-day river cruise with large, outside river-view staterooms, most with French balconies or walk-out balconies
  • Complimentary state-of-the-art audio headsets for all excursions
  • Services of an experienced Cruise Director
  • Onboard Concierge Service, dedicated to the independent experience seeker
  • Gourmet dining with all meals included (buffet breakfast, lunch, dinner and midnight snack) in the elegant Panorama-Restaurant, which accommodates all guests in one seating
  • Free-flowing quality red and white wines from Europe's famous wine regions with every dinner on board
  • Coffee and tea after lunch and dinner
  • 24-hour complimentary coffee, tea, hot chocolate and water
  • Cocktail Reception, Welcome Dinner and Captain's Gala Dinner
  • Special onboard entertainment including lectures, cooking demonstration, onboard music performances and nightly piano music in the Bar
  • Complimentary use of onboard bicycles
  • All English language on board in a non-smoking environment (smoking permitted only on the Sun Deck)
  • All port taxes and local taxes


  • Travel Insurance
  • International and domestic airfare & airfare taxes
  • Visa fees if applicable
  • Meals and beverages not specifically indicated
  • Optional excursions
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Gratuities


* Shore excursion packages should be purchased in advanced in order to ensure availability. They can be purchased onboard once sailing at a higher cost (prices and availability subject to vary).

Package A: Macon and the Beaujolais, Beaune and the Burgundy including wine tasting, City tour Lyon and City walk Avignon with Pope palace.

Package B: Maconais and Museum of wine, Cluny Abbey, Beaune and the Burgundy, City Tour Lyon, City Walk Avignon with Pope palace, Nature Reserve Camargue, and Valley of the Ardeche.

Package C: Maconais and Museum of wine, Cluny Abbey, Beaune and the Burgundy, Medieval Brancion and Cormatin, City Tour Lyon, City Walk Avignon with Pope palace, Roman aqueduct Pont du Gard and Uzes, Nature Reserve Camargue, City Walk Arles, and Valley of the Ardeche.


Prices are "from" per person based on twin/double share accommodation and for travel in low season. Seasonal surcharges and blackout dates may apply. Limited seat/spaces and all pricing is subject to change and availability. Rates for single or triple travellers are available on request - please enquire.

26 Oct 2017
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