Rhône River

For wine lovers a cruise on the Rhône is sure to be an incredible experience. The part of France that the river flows through is regarded as one of the finest winemaking regions in the world. However, it is not just wine that this area is so renowned for and the countryside and food here are also something quite special.

Most cruises along the Rhône start in Chalons sur Saone, which is not actually on the Rhône itself, but a tributary river, the Saone. Immediately, cruise passengers will be treated to a fantastic wine selection in Burgundy, one of the best of the country's winegrowing regions. After tasting wines in this wonderful part of the world, passengers will go on to explore the delightful French city of Lyon.

Lyon is the second largest city in France and is particularly notable for its rich history. There are numerous mediaeval elements surviving in the city's architecture, which make it a fascinating place to explore; the Roman remains are also well worth spending some time visiting. At the end of a busy day of sightseeing, dining in one of the city's incredible restaurants would be a wonderful way to get a real taste of French cuisine at its finest.

Depending on what sort of cruise you decide to take, the stopovers on your itinerary may be geared towards visits to the various wine growing areas. Tournon and Tain L'Hermitage both have notable vineyards close to the Rhône and would be welcome stops for wine lovers. There are numerous opportunities to taste the different wines here and perhaps pick up some bottles to take home with you to enjoy at a later date.

The city of Avignon, also known as the 'City of the Popes,' is another highlight of these cruises. It gets its nickname because it was the home to several popes during medieval times. You will find some incredible buildings here that represent this time in the city's history, including the famous Palais de Papes. Later, your cruise ship will arrive at Arles, the centre of a region of remarkable beauty, which was captured in many of the paintings by Vincent van Gough.

Excursions are the best part of taking a cruise on the Rhône and this does not just include the excursions to the various vineyards for wine tasting. There are numerous small towns and villages, either along the river or nearby, which are all readily accessible from a cruise ship. If you are considering cruising the Rhône you should carefully consider the range of itineraries available in order to ensure you select one that lets you see the parts of this beautiful region of France that interest you.

Cruising on the Rhône is a wonderful way to see a large part of France in a relatively short period. You have plenty of time to explore the vineyards, towns and cities during the day, because the vessels tend to travel during the evening, while you are dining onboard. You can be assured that your ship will have exceptional facilities to make your stay as close to perfection as possible.

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