Shore tour options available for our guests

Shore tour options available for our guests

Recap of the Ship Schedule

SS Catherine                        Time in Port                                    Time aboard/cruising

Sunday, May 29th              

Lyon                                       9:00 AM-6:30 PM                           6:00 PM-1:30 AM+1

Monday, May 30th

Macon (Beaune)                 1:30 AM-5:00 PM                           5:00 PM-1:30 AM+1

 Tuesday, May 31st            

Lyon                                       1:30 AM-11:30 PM                         11:30 PM-6:00 AM+1

 Wednesday, June 1st  

Tain l’Hermitage                 6:00 AM-2:00 PM                           2:00 PM-9:00 PM

Viviers                                   9:00 PM-Overnight

Thursday, June 2nd 

Viviers                                   Overnight-1:30 PM                        1:30 PM-6:00 PM

Chateauneuf/Pape            6:00 PM-6:30 PM                           6:30 PM-9:30 PM

Avignon                                 9:30 PM-Overnight

Friday , June 3rd  

Avignon                                 Overnight-11:59 PM                      11:59 PM-8:30 AM

Saturday, June 4th

Tarascon                               8:30 AM-6:30 PM                           6:30 PM-9:30 PM

Avignon                                 9:30 PM-Overnight

 Sunday, June 5th  

Avignon                                 Overnight-9:00 AM

 Shore tours:

Uniworld includes at least one tour per day.  Northwest Travel Service, in conjunction with Chef Thierry and participating winemakers, will offer a selection of optional tours along the cruise route.  Masterpiece Excursions are offered by Uniworld in addition to their included excursions at an additional cost.  Many of these tours are limited capacity.  Your priority to participate in these tours is determined when you book your cruise.

Generally speaking, additional wine tasting and walking tours are priced at cost and would be in the $50-$150 range.  In most cases, a special wine has been requested to enhance the normal tasting experience. Michelin lunches, as you might expect, will be more expensive.

Most wineries in France expect that you will make a purchase when you visit.  Keep this in mind when booking a visit.  While Uniworld generally charges a corkage fee on board, these fees are waived for Northwest Travel groups.  If you find a bottle you want to bring back to share with your friends, there is no charge to enjoy your bottle in the lounge, on deck, or at dinner. 

Macon/Beaune              Monday, May 30th   

This is our day in Burgundy.  Your options to taste wine are numerous.  You’ve got a couple lunch options with local dishes paired with wine.  You’re also free to explore the town and dine on your own.

1A       Masterpiece Collection               Beaune Hospice and Chateau de Rully

Drive through picturesque hamlets and pristine vineyards to the Burgundy wine estate of Château de Rully, where you’ll meet the owners and indulge in a lunch showcasing regional specialties. You’ll also enjoy a tasting that will bring to life the delicate flavors of southern Burgundy wine and illuminate the passion behind local winemaking traditions.

 1B       Included Tour         Burgundy Landscapes, Beaune and the Hospices              

Beaune may not be a large town, but it brims with history, a wealth of splendid regional architecture and incredible food. Nestled inside medieval ramparts, Beaune was the seat of the warlike dukes of Burgundy until the 16th century. It is best known for two magnificent sights: the Hospices de Beaune and the open-air market.

You’ll recognize the Hospices de Beaune (also known as Hôtel-Dieu) immediately by its fabulous multicolored-tile roof—it’s a symbol of Burgundy. Founded as a charitable institution by the duke’s chancellor in 1443, the hospital became a model for charitable giving in southern France, one with a unique fundraising tradition that continues to this day. Over the centuries, the hospice monks were given wine and vineyards, and they began selling the wine at auction in order to support their charitable work. The wine auction is now world-famous, and the institution remains a working hospital for the poor, with modern facilities standing alongside the historic Hôtel-Dieu. Note: Today’s lunch will be on your own.

1C/1N                        Tour Option             Patriarche Cellars              Morning/Afternoon                    

In the heart of a 17th century convent, you are welcomed by a sommelier-conseil, guided visit of the cellars and commented winetasting of a great selection of 8 Burgundy wines. A bottle is presented to each guest at the end of the visit.

Example of wines you’ll sample at this visit :Blancs-Meursault Narvaux 2018,  Cuvée Emotion

Chassagne-Montrachet 1r cru 2015,  Les Embazées.  Rouges: Chambolle-Musigny 2014, Gevrey-Chambertin 2015, Beaune 1er Cru Les Aigrots 2016, Corton Grand Cru 2014, Clos de la Roche Grand Cru 2013, Hospices de Beaune, Pommard 1er Cru Dames de la Charité 2008

1D/1L            Tour option             Drouhin Oenoteque            Morning/Afternoon

Located in the center of Beaune, this family-owned winery will offer their “Balade” tasting of 6 wines.  This is an example of the wines available to taste in this program.  Some bottles may be substituted, based on availability.  Chablis 1er Cru Mont de Milieu 2017, Côte de Beaune white 2017, Chassagne Montrachet 1er Cru, Morgeot Marquis de Laguiche 2018, Côte de Beaune red 2018, Vosne Romanée 2017, Beaune 1er Cru Clos des Mouches red 2017.

 1E       Included Tour-Mâcon Walking Tour

The man whose impassioned defense of France’s famous tricolor flag guaranteed its continuance as the national symbol was born in Mâcon, your destination today. Alphonse de Lamartine, born a year after the French revolution began, became the country’s first Romantic poet and a celebrated man of letters—and, in 1848, a founder of the Second Republic. You’ll spot his statue opposite Mâcon’s city hall as you stroll from the ship with your guide through this historic riverport city, which has been an important trading center since the Celts founded it 2,200 years ago.

The Romans built a bridge across the Saone here, and you’ll have a great view of its 16th-century successor, the graceful multi-arched St. Laurent bridge, from the square. Ramble down Rue Monrevel for a look at the twin towers of St. Peter’s, the church that replaced Mâcon’s medieval—and irreparable—cathedral and then along bustling Rue Carnot, lined with shops and cafes, to a curious wooden house that predates the bridge: Maison de Bois’ facade is decorated with carved figures of men and monkeys—standing, sitting, holding onto mythical beasts. It’s the oldest house in Mâcon, built around the year 1500, and one of just a few remaining examples of this rustic medieval style of architecture.  Note: Today’s lunch will be on your own.  This tour is exclusive of all other tours today.  The ship is docked in Macon with morning coach transportation provided to Beaune, 90 minutes away. 

1F        Tour option             Lunch at Caveau Chanson          

This will be a 3-course lunch with wine at Domaine Chanson, one of the oldest continuing wine concerns in Burgundy.  You’ll start with a private tour of the cellar, then a tasting of 6 Premieres, then a 3-course lunch paired with a village wine and two Premier Cru wines.

1G/1P            Tour Option             Bouchard Aîné & Fils                    Morning/Afternoon

The tour of “The 5 Senses” offers a one-of-kind tour that is sensorial, fun and interactive, exploring wines through Sound, Sight, Smell, Touch and Taste. A guided tasting of two

white & three red wines.  Three village wines, one premier cru wine, one grand cru wine.  A bottle is presented to each guest at the end of the tour.

1H/1Q           Tour Option             Maison Champy                             Morning/Afternoon

A Prestige tasting at this wine producer established in 1720.  You’ll taste five emblematic wines from Maison Champy in their 15th century cellars.  Your visit will consist of 5 Premier Cru wines, 2 whites and 3 reds.

 1J/1M            Tour Option             Louis Jadot                                       Morning/Afternoon

A visit to the cellars and tasting room of storied producer Louis Jadot.  It’s a bit far to walk from the center, so coach transportation is provided from the center of town.  You’re welcome to join the tour group there, but it’s a bit over 2km from the center to the estate.

 1K       Tour Option             Lunch at Ma Cuisine                     12:00 PM

Join Chef Thierry Rautureau at Ma Cuisine Bistro for a 3-course lunch in Beaune with a wine pairing.  We’ve selected a wine pairing to go with the preselected menu.

The Menu:   You should be at the restaurant a few minutes before noon to be seated.  The address is Passage Saint-Hélène, 21200 Beaune.  Lunch should last a little under 2 hours.

 Monday, May 30th                                                 Mâcon/Beaune

1A Burgundy Wine & Lunch at Château de Rully      8:30 AM-4:00 PM            $185               20/45

1B Burgundy Landscapes, Beaune and Hospices      9:00 AM-4:30 PM            (Included)

1C AM Wine Tasting at Patriarche                                9:45 AM-11:30 AM                      $70                 20

1D AM Wine Tasting at Domain Drouhin                    10:00 AM-11:30 AM          $60                 20

1E Mâcon Walking Tour**                                              10:00 AM-11:30 AM          (included)

1F Wine Tasting and Lunch at Caveau Chanson        10:00 AM-1:00 PM            $190               20

1G AM Wine Tasting at Bouchard Aine & Fils            10:30 AM-11:30 AM          $25                 20

1H AM Wine Tasting at Maison Champy                     10:30 AM-11:45 AM          $69                 20

1J AM Wine Tasting at Louis Jadot                                10:30 AM-11:45 AM          $35                 25

1K Beaune Lunch with wine pairing at Ma Cuisine   12:00 PM-1:50 PM            $165               20/44

1L PM Wine Tasting at Domaine Drouhin                   2:00 PM-3:30 PM            $60                 20

1M PM Wine Tasting at Louis Jadot                              2:00 PM-3:30 PM            $35                 25

1N PM Wine Tasting at Patriarche                                2:15 PM-4:00 PM            $70                 20

1P PM Wine Tasting at Bouchard Aine & Fils             2:30 PM-3:30 PM            $25                 20

1Q PM Wine Tasting at Maison Champy                     2:30 PM-3:45 PM            $70                 20

  • Tours 1A and 1B are full-day programs and are not combinable with other tours.
  • Any one of the morning wine-tasting visits (1C, 1D, 1F, 1G, 1H, 1J) may be combined with any one of the afternoon wine-tasting visits (1L, 1M, 1N, 1P, or 1Q).
  • Tour 1F (Chanson Lunch) may be combined with any one of the afternoon wine-tastings.
  • Tour 1K (Ma Cuisine Lunch) may be combined with an AM or PM wine visit.
  • There are many other opportunities to get lunch in Beaune on your own. It’s suggested that you limit parties to 4 for quicker seating and better service.
  • **Please note that the Macon Walking tour is not combinable with any other tour. This tour takes place in Macon.  All other tours are centered in Beaune, 90 minutes away.  Early morning transportation is provided from the ship to Beaune with late afternoon returns.

Lyon         Tuesday, May 31st  

2A       Tour Option                                     Les Halles de Lyon Morning Market               

Join Chef Thierry on a morning shopping excursion to Les Halles de Lyon-Paul Bocuse

Market, the best-known produce market in the city of Lyon.  Due to demand, this 90-minute program will be offered at 8:30 (Tour2A1), and again at 10:00 (Tour 2A2).  The first group will depart from the ship at 8:00 AM for the approximately 2km walk to the market.  Sample the produce, see exactly how big a kilo is.  Specific instructions for the second tour will be outlined in the cruise documents.

 2B       Tour option             Paul Bocuse Institut-French 101 Cooking Class

Under the tutelage and supervision of two dedicated chefs, you’ll prepare a starter, main course and dessert at one of Lyon’s premier cooking schools.  Once you’ve mastered the course, you and your friends will dine on your creation accompanied, of course, with wine.  This tour was cancelled due to lack of participation.

 2C       Included Tour         Lyon, Capital of Gastronomy Tour                          

No one eats better than the citizens of Lyon, a tradition that harks back more than a century, when women opened unpretentious restaurants, called bouchons, to feed hungry workers. The traditional bouchon serves hearty meat-based dishes, but quenelles—luscious dumplings—and a seasoned cream cheese called cervelle de canut are longtime local favorites too.

While explaining Lyon’s important gastronomic history, your guide will show you the city’s bouchons and specialty food shops and take you into the legendary main market, Les Halles de Lyon Paul Bocuse. There you’ll find stalls brimming with local produce, fish, game and cheeses, all beautifully displayed on black marble countertops—and you’ll have a chance to taste some of these delectable offerings.

Don’t miss the macarons! On the way to these fabulous culinary destinations, you’ll see some of Lyon’s historic old quarter, with its many spectacular examples of medieval and Renaissance architecture, and les traboules, the city’s old passageways.

 2D       Included Tour         Exclusive Silk Weavers walking tour                           

Lyon’s history is entwined with silk, which dominated the city’s economy for centuries—at one time, almost a third of the city’s population were silk weavers. Jump on a tram and head for Lyon-Perrache station with your guide, who will take you into the historic Saint-Jean Quarter, part of the UNESCO-honored Old Town. The Gothic cathedral is probably the most striking heirloom of the Middle Ages, but the tall rose and ochre buildings dating to the Renaissance pay tribute to the importance of the silk trade with Italy in that era.

Enter the courtyard of the Gadagne Museum, which is housed in an early- 16th-century building, and stroll along Rue Juiverie, which has been occupied since Roman times and was once home to Nostradamus. You’ll see some of the traboules, the old passageways that snake between and through buildings, secret shortcuts that silk weavers took to keep their delicate fabrics out of the rain. You’ll pass cozy bouchons, which serve traditional local dishes, and you’ll have a chance to see a Jacquard loom in use.

 2E       Included Tour         Exclusive guided “Go Active” Lyon peninsula bike tour

Get out and about with a bike ride along the river. Lyon boasts a thriving bike-rental scene, which tells you just how popular this mode of transportation is—you will definitely have two-wheeled company as you pedal along the banks of the Rhône on a sunny day.

Your route takes you over the new Raymond Barre Bridge, past the spectacular new Museum of Confluences (so named because it sits at the confluence of the Rhône and the Saône) and along the peninsula, a strip of land with the Saône on one side and the Rhône on the other. Here, houseboats tie up along the banks; swans float on the water; and locals take advantage of the lovely parklike setting. You’ll also have a great view of the Old Town on the other side of the river. This outing gives you a little taste of what it is like to live in Lyon, as well as a little exercise.  This is a pedal bike tour over mostly flat terrain.

2F        Tour option                                     La Mere Brazier Lunch            

It took some time to find an alternative to Bocuse, which is now closed on Tuesdays.  La Mere Brazier was an excellent alternative.  You’ll dine with Chef Thierry at this Lyon Icon.  Lunch is four courses with the following menu.  Selection of course is made at the restaurant.

Florentine Poached Egg with Melanosporum Truffle

Or Artichoke and foie gras “Tribute to Mother Brazier”


Pan-fried scallops and Jerusalem artichoke, hazelnuts and truffle cloud

Or Pike bread with crayfish, Nantua sauce, confit pike and “Grenobloise” condiments


Roast fillet of veal, sweetbreads studded with truffles, smoked jus, chard mille-feuille with marrow

Or Cabbage stuffed with game birds, foie gras and truffles, beetroot soup


Imperial mandarin soufflé, clementine with tarragon, turron ice cream

Or Red lemon parfait, Buddha’s hand ravioli, yuzu sorbet, harlequin opaline

Wine has been selected includes the following:  Aperitif: Domaine du Père Benoît – 2016

Blanc:  Vacqueyras “A White Blood” – Domaine le Sang des Pebbles – 2015 or Saint-Aubin 1er Cru “Murgers of Dog’s Teeth” – Domaine Larue – 2016

Rouge:  Côte-Rôtie “Blonde du Seigneur” – Domaine G. Vernay – 2014 or Volnay 1er Cru “Les Fremiets” – Domaine H. Boillot – 2012     (Wine is served up to 1 bottle for 2 people)

Tuesday, May 31st                                     Lyon

2A1     Lyon Market Stroll with Chef Thierry*             8:00 AM-10:00 AM                      $50                 10/20

2A2     Lyon Market Stroll with Chef Thierry*             9:30 AM-11:30 AM                      $50                 10/20

2B Cooking Class at Institut Paul Bocuse                     cancelled                              $345               20/24

2C Lyon Capital of Gastronomy Tour                            9:00 AM-12:30 PM                      (included)

2D Silk Weavers Walking Tour                                       9:15 AM-12:45 PM                      (included)     30

2E “Let’s Go” Lyon Peninsula Bike Tour                       9:30 AM-12:30 PM                      (included)     25

2F Michelin Lunch La Mère Brazier                               12:00 PM-2:30 PM            $295               18

*Walking departure time from ship or meet at market at 8:30A or 10:00A at a point TBA.

  • Tours 2A and 2F are combinable
  • Tour 2B is an all-day event and is not combinable with another scheduled tour
  • Tour 2F (La Mère Brazier lunch) is not combinable with another tour unless you were to leave an AM tour group to join us at the restaurant by noon.

 Tournon/l’Hermitage          Wednesday, June 1st

3A       Tour Option             Maison Guigal

Depart from the ship by coach at 9:00 AM for a ten-minute drive down the Rhone to the Guigal Chateaux.  Our hosts will split the group into smaller groups of 15 for the tour and tasting.  You’ll tour the production facility, followed by the tasting of 4 wines at le Caveau du Château.  4 wines may be : Saint Joseph (white), Condrieu (white), Côte-Rôtie (red), Hermitage (red).  These wines are subject to change.  There will be a few minutes to visit the museum there after the tasting.  You’ll return to the ship by 12 :30.

3B       Tour Option             Valrhona Chocolate and Wine Pairing Experience            

We’ll leave the ship at 9:00 for the short stroll to Valrhona.  We have an entry to the Cite de Chocolate at 9:00 AM.  After an hour to enjoy your own self-guided tour of this amazing immersion into chocolate, you’ll meet for an hour-long workshop and wine pairing with chocolate.  After the workshop, you’re free to stay at Valrhona for as long as you like.   If you prefer to visit Valrhona on your own, you may purchase an individual ticket at the door for  10.80 €, or about $12.50.

 3C       Included Tour         “Go Active” Hermitage vineyards hike with wine tasting

Are you ready to explore the steepest vineyards on the Rhône? The vines producing the world-famous Hermitage wines grow on precipitous slopes above the river, so steep that terracing is essential. Hike along the paths that parallel the rough courses of stone through the vineyards, each one situated to catch the afternoon sun. After you’ve seen how the grapes—primarily Syrah—are grown, taste the fruit that has been transformed by the vintners’ craft into legendary wine.

 3D       Included Tour         Tournon and Tain-l’Hermitage village stroll with wine tasting

Nestled on opposite sides of the river in the heart of the Côtes du Rhône, the twin cities of Tournon and Tain-l’Hermitage are an ideal destination for connoisseurs of fine wine. Tournon may be a small town, but stirring events took place here: A castle was raised on the hilltop in the 10th century to protect the region, and new fortifications were added over the centuries, including two “new” towers built to defend against Protestant attacks in the 16th century.

You’ll see the handsome houses constructed by wealthy merchants and garrison officers when you walk through the Rue de Doux area, and you’ll pass the 14th-century church—unusual for the number of houses incorporated in its walls—and the oldest secondary school in France. Cross the pretty flower-decked Marc Seguin suspension bridge to Tain-l’Hermitage to visit local wine cellars, where you’ll taste the region’s famous Côtes du Rhône, Saint-Joseph and Crozes-Hermitage wines.

These wines are produced from the Syrah grapes that grow on the steep slopes lining the river. After your wine tasting, you’ll have time to browse through the shops; the Valrhona chocolate factory is always a popular stop.

 3E       Tour Option             Maison Chapoutier                                   10:30-12:00

Maison Chapoutier- 18, avenue du Dr Paul Durand. 26600 Tain L’Hermitage

La Plus Belle AOC Tasting.  A special red wine tasting at one of the region’s premier producers.  The tasting will begin at the winery at 10:30.          This winery is about 15 minutes’ walk from the ship, so plan accordingly.         A selection of red wines to be tasted with this visit:

  • AOC Châteauneuf-du-Pape Croix de Bois
  • AOC Saint-Joseph Le Clos
  • AOC Châteauneuf-du-Pape Barbe Rac
  • AOC Ermitage Les Greffieux
  • AOC Ermitage Le Pavillon

 3F        Masterpiece Tour Option                       Premium Wine Tasting-Hermitage Hill

Your Driver/Sommelier will meet you at the ship.  You’ll drive through the village, up the hill to the vineyards.  You’ll enjoy the great vista over the vineyards, river and villages.  You’ll receive an explanation of the terroir – Quality of the soil – Exposure – Grape varieties.   Wine tasting on site in the vineyard with 4 wines to include 1 Crozes-Hermitage blanc parcellaire “Les Hauts d’Eole”, 1 Hermitage blanc parcellaire “Au cœur des siècles”, 1 St-Joseph rouge parcellaire “Esprit de Granit” and 1 Hermitage rouge.  Before returning to the ship, you’ll make a stop at Cooperative de la Cave de Tain, should you wish to purchase wine.

3G       Tour Option                         Three Star Michelin Experience

Join Chef Thierry at Maison Pic in the city center of Valence for “un Menu Gastronomique”, a unique ten-course dining experience.  You’ll enjoy wine selected to accompany your course.  The ship will meet the group in Valence as it continues south to Viviers.

Wednesday, June 1st                                 Tournon/Tain l’Hermitage

3A Wine Tasting at Maison Guigal                                8:45 AM-12:30 PM                      $105               15/30

3B Valrhona wine and chocolate pairing                     9:00 AM- 11:30 AM        $39                 10/40

3C “Let’s Go” Vineyards Hike/Wine Tasting                10:00 AM-12:30 PM          (included)     30

3D Tournon/Tain-l’Hermitage Villages Tour               10:00 AM-12:30 PM          (included)

3E Wine Tasting Chapoutier-Plus Belles AOC             9:30 AM-11:00 AM                      $160               20/30

3F Premium Wine Tasting on Hermitage Hill              10:45 AM-12:15 PM          $245               4/8

3G Michelin Lunch at Maison Pic***                            12:00 PM-3:00 PM            $760               10/22

  • All morning tours will have you back at the ship for lunch
  • Tour 3G (Maison Pic Lunch) is combinable with Tour 3B or 3E

Viviers            Thursday, June 2nd 

4A       Included Tour         “Village Day” “Intimate Viviers through Music” tour                    

Viviers climbs a hill above the river, crowned by 12thcentury St. Vincent’s Cathedral. It happens to be the smallest cathedral in France, but it contains a marvelous organ. Take a seat under the soaring vaults and listen while a local organist demonstrates just how fine an instrument it is before you begin wandering down through the town with your guide.

Cobblestone lanes, some so narrow you can stand in the middle and touch the medieval houses on either side, twine around the hill, gradually marking the change from the upper town, once the province of wealthy clergy, to the lower town, where the laity lived.

Your local guide will show you the fountain squares in the Old Town, which combines Roman and medieval influences, as well the House of Knights, a handsome 16th-century house built by an unscrupulous tax collector who came to a well-merited bad end. Sycamore trees line some of these stone-paved streets (planted, so they say, to provide shade for Napoleon’s soldiers) and houses here bear the watermarks of floods over the years.   A walk back to your ship via the winding medieval streets is a fitting end to a charming day.

4B       Tour Option                         Domaine Cordis Truffle Farm and Country Lunch                       

Join Chef Thierry on a tour of the truffle farm of Didier Chabert and his daughter Audrey, Domaine Cordis, for an enthusiastic and entertaining lesson about the three types of truffles grown in the Drôme region.  After the tour, we’ll visit a local bistro for a light lunch on our way back to Viviers to join the ship.

4C       Masterpiece Tour Option           La Rabassière Truffle Farm and CDP Wine Tasting

Guests will depart the ship shortly after lunch, traveling to the truffle farm of La Rabassière in Grignan.  You’ll learn about truffles from the 3rd generation of this family-operated company.  Afterward, you’ll visit a premier producer in Chateauneuf-du-Pape for wine tasting before rejoining the ship close to Avignon.

4D       Cote Rotie Tasting                         Join Jeff and Kerry in the lounge for a tasting of Syrah from the Cote Rotie AOC.  While the specific producers won’t be known until the day of, you’ll have at least 3 wines to sample from some of the more established wine makers in the area.

 Thursday, June 2nd                        Viviers-Truffle Day

4A Intimate Viviers “Village Day”                                  9:00 AM-12:15 PM                      (included)

4B Morning Truffle excursion with Lunch                   9:00 AM-2:00 PM            $130               20/48

4C Truffle Farm & CDP Wine Tasting                            1:15 PM-6:00 PM            $125               20/48

4D Cote Rotie Wine Tasting-on board                          2:30 PM-4:00 PM            $30                 10/40

  • Tours 4A and 4C may be combined.
  • Tours 4B and 4D may be combined.
  • Tours 4A and 4D may be combined

Avignon               Friday, June 3rd

5A       Included Tour         Avignon walking tour and Palace of the Popes           

Walking tour through the medieval city of Avignon that will begin at the medieval city fortification wall.  Then, stroll to the main square, Place de l’Horloge, with its colorful café terraces, City Hall and the Opera Theater.  Next, inside visit to Pope’s Palace. Thorough visit of the palace chambers, galleries and public rooms. Be prepared to climb approx. 100 steps during the tour. After Pope’s Palace, make your way through to the Place Pie and Les Halles covered market. Fresh ingredients are displayed here.  Return to the Clock Tower Square.  Passengers have the choice to stay in town or return to the ship for lunch.

 5B       Included Tour                     Excursion to Pont du Gard, Roman Aqueduct             

The Pont du Gard became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1985. This magnificent tri-level aqueduct bridge has spanned the River Gardon since 19 BC, when it was constructed as part of the system that carried water from Uzès to Nîmes.   An expert guide will explain the history of this engineering marvel and reveal the technological secrets that have enabled it to resist floods and storms for millennia.

5C       Included Tour                     Kayak Tour down the Gardon River

Spend a fun and relaxing afternoon paddling five miles down the clear tranquil waters of the Gardon River.  Accompanied by a sound of chirping cicadas, you’ll paddle from Collias to

Remoulins, under the arches of the 2,000-year-old, UNESCO-designated Pont du Gard.

5D/5E             Tour Option             Cycling in Avignon

Bicycle Touring of old Avignon and the village of Villeneuve-les-Avignon with old fashioned pedal types (5D) or Electric-assist bikes (5E).  The tour will depart from the ship for a leisurely 3-hour ride.  It’s relatively flat, with only 2 short hills of 70m.  You’ll make brief stops along the way as your guide provides information about monuments and historic sites.

5F/5H            Tour option             Chateau La Nerthe Wine Tasting

“Terroir” Visit.  Guided visit of the historical cellars and commented tasting of 7 wines

selection including 5 Châteauneuf du Pape to appreciate iconic terroirs

of the domain.

 5G/5J             Tour Option             Domaine Mousset Wine Tasting

Visit to Domaine Mousset for a Chateauneuvoise Tasting of 4 wines with olives and crackers.  Your visit is followed by free time in the village of Chateauneuf-du-Pape to visit the many tasting rooms there.  Expect to return to the ship by 6:00 PM

5K                   Tour Option             Domaine Pegau      Wine Tasting

Prestige tasting at this 4 hectare estate, created in 1987 by Laurence, the daughter of the owners of Feraud and Fils estate next door.  The domaine, generally open only in the morning for tasting, has made an exception to welcome our group.

5L                    Tour Option             Pierre Usseglio       Wine Tasting

A visit to the cellar and a tasting of five wines from this family owned estate, in operation since 1948.

Outside of these two wineries that accommodate group tasting, you have many opportunities for food and drink in the village.  Vinadea is the place to go if you’re looking for a specific bottle to purchase.  There are numerous producers in the village where you can taste and purchase wines.

 Friday, June 3rd                               Avignon

5A Avignon Walking Tour with Pope’s Palace            9:15 AM-12:30 PM                      (included)

5B Pont du Gard Roman Aqueduct Visit                      9:30 AM-12:30 PM                      (included) 10/48

5C “Let’s Go” Kayak Ride on the Gardon River          9:30 AM-12:30 PM                      (included)     30

5D Afternoon Bike Excursion of Avignon-Pedal        2:00 PM-5:00 PM            $48                 6/12

5E Afternoon Bike Excursion of Avignon-EBike         2:00 PM-5:00 PM            $65                 6/12

5F Chateauneuf Wine-Chateau la Nerthe                   2:00 PM-3:30 PM            $45                 6/15

5G Chateauneuf Wine-Domaine Mousset                  2:00 PM-3:30 PM            $35                 10/20

5H Chateauneuf Wine-Chateau la Nerthe                  4:00 PM-5:30 PM            $45                 6/15

5J Chateauneuf Wine-Domaine Mousset                    4:00 PM-5:30 PM             $35                 10/20

5K Chateauneuf Wine-Domaine Pegau                       2:30 PM-4:30 PM            $35                 10/16

5L Chateauneuf Wine-Pierre Usseglio                          2:00 PM-4:00 PM            $35                 10/16

  • Tours 5A, 5B, and 5C are combinable with 5D or 5E
  • Tours 5A, 5B, and 5C are combinable with either or both of the afternoon wine tastings.

Arles/Tarascon         Saturday, June 4th

6A       Included Tour                     Arles Walking Tour                                              

Meet up with local guide and walk downtown.  Stop for a view from the pier that Van Gogh immortalized in Starry Night over the Rhône.  Stop in front of the Roman Amphitheater. Next stop is the Town Hall Square, a complex including the

fountain, City Hall, and St. Trophime Church. Afterward, learn about the hospital where Vincent van Gogh once sought treatment. Stroll through the courtyard.

Free time to shop, go olive tasting or sightsee. On the way back to the ship, cross Forum Square.  Motor coach back to ship, docked in Tarascon.

6B       Tour Option             Restaurant l’Aupiho at Domaine de Manville                        

An outstanding country restaurant located a short drive from Arles on the outskirts of the village of Les Baux de Provence.   This restaurant attained it’s 1-star Michelin rating just 4 years ago.  We’ll dine al fresco if the weather is agreeable.  Otherwise, we’ll stay indoors to enjoy a 4-course lunch with wine pairing. This small group will travel by coach from Arles, enjoy lunch, then return to the ship which will be docked in Tarascon that afternoon.  Once again, Chef Thierry will dine with you.   This option includes transportation, lunch with wine pairings.

6C       Masterpiece Tour Option           Olive Farm with Carrieres des Lumieres                           

You’ll visit a working olive farm, sampling freshly pressed oil in the Provencal countryside.  After your visit, continue to Les-Baux-de-Provence for an immersion in a sound and light show at Carrières des Lumières, located inside a repurposed limestone quarry.

 Saturday, June 4th                                     Arles/Tarascon

6A Arles Walking Tour                                                      9:00 AM-12:15 PM                      (included)

6B Michelin Lunch at Restaurant l’Aupiho*                11:30 AM-2:30 PM            $285               20/30

6C Masterpiece Excursions: Olive Farm with Immersive Art & Music Experience at Carrières des Lumières                                    1:30 PM-5:30 PM            $99                 20/45

  • Tour 6A is combinable with 6C.

 Evening Dining:

The SS Catherine boasts a small lounge in the after portion of the ship that we’ll use for a semi-private dining experience for 6 of our 7 nights on the river.

Each night one of our wine experts or Chef Thierry will host a small group of 22-24 guests in the Bar du Leopard.  As part of the tour selection process, you will also be asked to prioritize your selection for your Bar du Leopard dinner.

Please indicate your top two choices for dinner from this list.

  1. Chef Thierry Rautureau
  2. Larry Stone-Master Sommelier, and CEO of Lingua Franca Winery, Salem Oregon
  3. Kerry Shiels-Winemaker at Cote Bonneville Winery-Sunnyside, Washington
  4. Jeff Lindsay-Thorsen-Winemaker at WT Vintners-Woodinville, Washington

Avignon-Disembark      Sunday, June 5th

The cruise line has been provided with your schedule as we disembark.  The staff on board will ask you to confirm your departure plans a few days before we arrive in Avignon on Sunday.  You’ll be provided with colored bag tags and a departure time from the ship.