Avalon unveils an enhanced river cruise experience for travelers on its first departure of the new Active & Discovery on the Rhône itinerary aboard the Avalon Poetry II.
Our new Avalon Choice program has reinvented the river cruise experience with customizable “Classic,” “Discovery” and “Active” options on every river cruise itinerary,” said Pam Hoffee, managing director of Avalon Waterways. “Avalon’s innovative Active & Discovery itineraries take that concept one giant step further with “Classic,” “Discovery” and “Active” excursions to choose from every day. This week marks the launch of the first cruise of this kind on the Rhône River.”
While all Active & Discovery on the Rhône travelers will begin their journey in Arles and end their cruise in Lyon, they have nearly three dozen customizable opportunities from which to create the perfect vacation. Even better? The vast majority of these excursions are included, helping them better experience every day, their way.
Here’s just one way, one cruiser might choose to experience the world on this new Rhône itinerary:
Day 1 – Arles: Arrive and navigate the area using Avalon’s GPS based, AvalonGO app to see and experience what the city has to offer in terms of restaurants, museums, markets and more!
Day 2 – Arles: Spend the morning pedaling through Provence’s magnificent Camargue:
Western Europe’s largest river delta and France’s very own “Wild West.”
[Other options include: Hiking through Camargue Nature Park or a tasting and visit at an oyster farm.]
Day 3 – Arles: This morning, recreate the paint strokes of Van Gogh or Picasso – two artists who flocked to Arles – on canvas. Led by an expert painting instructor, this interactive workshop helps artists create masterpieces.
This afternoon, indulge in the unparalleled beauty and bounty of rural Provence where lush groves, vineyards and fragrant herbs grow in every direction. Spend time on a Provencal farm to see how olive oil is made; then taste it.
[Other options include: Hiking in Val d’Enfer; a bullfighter encounter or an Aigues-Mortes salt marshes discovery.]
Day 4 – Avignon: Enjoy a delightful morning in the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Avignon and join an expert guide for a stroll along the medieval ramparts to the historic center. There, bask in the charm and ambiance of Place of the Popes before heading to the city’s remarkable Les Halles market. Then, relax during a picnic outing.
Provence from the ground is spectacular. This afternoon, experience Provence from above on a helicopter, soaring over one of the prettiest places on the planet to take-in breathtaking Gordes, the “Island City” of L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue, Fontaine de Vaucluse and more.
[Other options include: E-biking through the Gard region; a Musée des Arômes visit; wine-blending workshop or Pont du Gard canoeing adventure.]
Day 5 – Viviers: Sky Deck yoga with the onboard Adventure Host before spending the morning spelunking in Viviers on a unique underground wine tasting adventure. Led by a professional speleologist, hike through the labyrinth of passages past stalactites, stalagmites and brilliant mineral formations before spending time with an oenologist to taste three of the area’s delicious wines.
In the evening, stroll through the twisted cobblestone lanes and abandoned corners of Viviers while listening to the thrilling tales about its ghosts from an expert guide.
[Other options include: A lock tour; crocodile farm visit; hiking through Cirque d’Estre or canoeing through Gorges de l’Ardèche.]
Day 6 – Tournon: Encounter nature at its best on a rail-bike adventure through the rocky cliffs of Gorges du Doux before enjoying an onboard cooking demonstration.
Spend the evening on an illuminated city tour of Lyon, experiencing the magic of the Presqu’ile district, the heart of Lyon.
[Other options include: Valrhona chocolate experience; tour through Roman Tournon or guided vineyard hike.]
Day 7 – Lyon: Join an expert guide and discover the unique atmosphere and authentic flavors of Old Town Lyon. This tour takes travelers and their taste buds through a wonderland of historical, architectural and culinary treasures.
This afternoon it’s time to venture off-the-beaten-path to the rooftops of Lyon. A tour from a different angle, explore public and private places, old and new buildings including religious sites and office spaces, from terrace to terrace.
[Other options include: Urban hiking through Lyon’s ancient traboules; French chef for a day experience; mountain biking in Beaujolais or Saone River canoeing adventure.]
Day 8 – Lyon: The journey ends.
Avalon Waterways also offers travelers enhanced “Active & Discovery” itineraries on the Danube and Rhine Rivers. For more information, visit the website.