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Burgundy France Tour of Scenic & Historic Sights


Tournus, Beaune, & Chateau de Pierreclos Winery

Abbey Church, Hotel Dieu Hospital, & Avalon Scenery

Vineyards, Wine Tasting, Castle, & Chapel

Globus, Avalon Waterways, River Cruise, & Saone River

Vineyard in Burgundy, France.

Vineyard in Burgundy.

Tours

We use the best tour operators to book all kinds of tours to France including independent tours, hosted tours, escorted tours, and packages. Contact us to book your travel. We book travel worldwide. Check out our Special Promotions.

River Cruise Monaco/Nice to Paris

We were on a Globus Avalon small-ship river cruise tour that started in the French Riviera and Monaco, where we spent one night on the tour. From Monte Carlo we were taken to Arles, France on the Rhone River to board the Avalon Scenery for our seven-night cruise through Southern France. We were headed north in the Rhone River and then the Saone River. For details of our river cruise including shore excursions go to the different regions in the following order: Provence, Rhone Valley and Alps, and Burgundy, which is explained here. From Beaune we were taken by motor coach to Dijon. From there we took a high speed bullet train to Paris, where we spent two nights. From Paris we did an excursion to Versailles. For details of the ship and onboard activities go to Avalon Scenery. Contact Us for more information.

Chateau de Pierreclos Winery

Chateau de Pierreclos winery in Burgundy, France.

Chateau de Pierreclos winery in Burgundy.

Over night the Avalon Scenery moved to Macon where it docked in the Saone River. We were now in Burgundy, anyone interested in wine? After breakfast we headed out in the motor coach with a local guide on a chardonnay wine tasting excursion. The ride through the countryside was beautiful. There were many farms and many had fish-farming ponds. Along the way we stopped to see and learn about vineyards. One is pictured at the top of this page. There was also a mountainous rock that presented a photo opportunity. We arrived at the Chateau de Pierreclos, pictured above, and had a tour of the buildings.

Chateau de Pierreclos chapel in Burgundy, France.

Chateau de Pierreclos chapel in Burgundy.

The castle complex contains an elegant tower which contains a small chapel. After viewing the property we were taken to the wine cellar, seen below. Our local guide told us about the different kinds of wines. We then sampled a number of the different wines produced at the winery. Everyone had a good time.

Wine tasting at Chateau de Pierreclos in Burgundy, France.

Wine tasting at Chateau de Pierreclos in Burgundy.

Abbey Church of St. Philibet

Abbey Church of St. Philibet in Tournus, France.

Abbey Church of St. Philibet in Tournus.

After the wine tasting tour we were taken back to our ship and it sailed to Tournus. While there we had a nice walk to the Abbey Church of St Philibet, which is shown above. The nave of the abbey dates from the 10th century. It is seen below.

Abbey Church of St. Philibet nave in Tournus, France.

Abbey Church of St. Philibet nave in Tournus.

Hotel Dieu Hospital in Beaune

Courtyard of Hotel Dieu Hospital in Beaune, France.

Courtyard of Hotel Dieu Hospital in Beaune.

The Avalon Scenery sailed to Chalon Sur Saone where we would leave the ship after spending 7 wonderful nights onboard. We were taken by motor coach to Beaune for our last shore excursion from the ship. In Beaune we had a tour with a local guide of the magnificent Hotel Dieu, which is now a special museum. It was actually a hospital, and was established in 1443. When you walk though this amazing place you would think that it was built for royalty, or at least the rich and famous. But instead it was built for the poor and has been referred to as the “palace for the poor.” The courtyard is shown above.

Nurse in Hotel Dieu Hospital in Beaune, France.

Nurse in Hotel Dieu Hospital in Beaune.

We saw many rooms including the sleeping quarters attended by nurses. Some large rooms had many beds, but there were smaller rooms, as seen above, where there was only one bed.

Kitchen in Hotel Dieu Hospital in Beaune, France.

Kitchen in Hotel Dieu Hospital in Beaune.

There was a large kitchen, and part of it is illustrated above with a model. The laboratory of the hospital is shown below. They also had their own pharmacy.

Laboratory in Hotel Dieu Hospital in Beaune, France.

Laboratory in Hotel Dieu Hospital in Beaune.


Art collection on display in Hotel Dieu Hospital in Beaune, France.

Art collection on display in Hotel Dieu Hospital in Beaune.

The Hotel Dieu has a collection of art objects on display, shown in the picture above. In another room they display a number of religious paintings. There is also a chapel. It was a fascinating place to visit, and has been replaced by a more modern facility. From Beaune we were taken by motor coach to Dijon where we boarded a bullet electric train which took us to Paris.

Avalon Waterways Scenery

Avalon Waterways Scenery at Dock.

Avalon Waterways Scenery at Dock.

The Avalon Scenery was built in 2008. There are four decks and the ship is 361 feet (110 meters) long. Staterooms are all on the outside and with great views on the upper decks. There are 67 deluxe staterooms and 2 suites on the Scenery. On the Sky Deck you find the Navigation Bridge, Whirlpool, Sky Bistro, Lounge Chairs, and Shade Awnings. On the Royale Deck is the Observation Lounge, Panorama Lounge, Bar, Internet Corner, Reception, Atrium, Elevator, Hair Salon, and Club Lounge. The Sapphire Deck has the Galley, Dining Room, and Fitness Center. The staterooms include a bed, toilet, sink, shower, closet, and writing desk.

Cruise Director

Cruise Director Tony Williamson.

Cruise Director Tony Williamson.

All of the day-to-day organizing on the ship is done by the cruise director, no small task. Tony Williamson was our cruise director, and he did an outstanding job. This is typical of Globus guides or tour/cruise directors.

Shore Excursions

When sightseeing the sights that most people want to see are included as part of the cruise package. Some cruise lines have only one guide for everyone on an excursion. But we were divided into small groups, each group with its own guide. All of the guides are local to the cities, cathedrals, castles, or any other sights. The guides all spoke fluent English and radio headsets were worn so that there was never any difficulty in hearing what was said. It is a great way to both learn a lot and see fascinating sights. Optional tours, which not everyone wants to take, are also offered at additional cost. You can skip an optional tour and instead have free time to explore on your own.

The Wheelhouse

Crew member describing the operation of the Wheelhouse.

Crew member describing the operation of the Wheelhouse.

The Captain invited us to have a tour of the wheelhouse. In the picture above one of the crew members is explaining how the ship is controlled in the wheelhouse.

River Cruising

The upper deck.

The upper deck.

Unlike an ocean cruise a river cruise has scenery on both sides of the ship at all times. One of the best places to see the scenery is the sky deck, shown above. Another good location is at the very front of the ship next to the observation lounge.

Sailing the Rhone River.

Sailing the Rhone River.

The above picture was taken while we were sailing in the Rhone River. A river cruise is similar to a motor coach tour with the important difference that your room, restaurant, and other facilities move with you. So you are not packing every day or two.

Dining

Chef describing how food is prepared in the galley.

Chef describing how food is prepared in the galley.

The chef gave us a tour of the galley, shown above, where all of the food is prepared. The food served is of high quality. There are both regional specialties and Western favorites offered.

Chef serving lunch.

Chef serving lunch.

For breakfast and lunch there are tasty buffets with lots of choices. In the picture above the chef is preparing a dish for lunch.

The dining room at dinner.

The dining room at dinner.

Dinner is served at tables with open seating. The meals include a selection of appetizers, soups, entrees (vegetarian choice offered), and deserts. Coffee and tea are complementary with all meals. Regional wines, both red and white, are complementary with dinners. The picture above shows one portion of the dining room. We are seated on the left of the first table with some of the many friends that we met on the cruise. There were people on the cruise from English speaking countries including the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and England. The service on the ship was outstanding.

Club Lounge popular in the afternoon for tea and coffee.

Club lounge popular in the afternoon for tea and coffee.

The club lounge, seen above, was a popular place in the afternoon for tea and coffee. It was also a great place to meet people or to just relax or read the latest news, as newspapers were produced on the ship.

The Panorama lounge.

Panorama lounge.

The panorama lounge, seen above, is the center for most activities on the ship. There were numerous lectures about what we were going to see as well as interesting remarks about the different regions we visited and their history. Some of the talks were given by speakers that joined the ships for a few hours. But most of the talks were given by our cruise director, Tony Williamson. There was also nightly piano (keyboard) music and dancing in the lounge, and at some ports entertainers came onboard.

River Cruise Monaco/Nice to Paris

We were on a Globus Avalon small-ship river cruise tour that started in the French Riviera and Monaco, where we spent one night on the tour. From Monte Carlo we were taken to Arles, France on the Rhone River to board the Avalon Scenery for our seven-night cruise through Southern France. We were headed north in the Rhone River and then the Saone River. For details of our river cruise including shore excursions go to the different regions in the following order: Provence, Rhone Valley and Alps, and Burgundy, which is explained here. From Beaune we were taken by motor coach to Dijon. From there we took a high speed bullet train to Paris, where we spent two nights. From Paris we did an excursion to Versailles. For details of the ship and onboard activities go to Avalon Scenery. Contact Us for more information.

Photos by Sunny Breeding. Photo of Sunny & Rebecca at the dinner table taken by Andrea, a crew member. We sell images and prints.