We are open today until 6:30 pm. Call 020 7590 0615
Avignon Bridge with Popes Palace in Provence, France

French Fête: Lyon to Avignon with Riverside Luxury Cruises

8-day luxury river cruise

Please enquire for the latest prices


Short description

Discover world-leading wine regions and ancient Roman treasures as you sail through Southern France


  • Explore the famed wine region of Burgundy
  • Follow in the footsteps of Vincent Van Gogh in beautiful Arles
  • Get active in Avignon with e-biking and kayaking
  • Join expert guides to explore medieval towns and Roman ruins
  • Visit the Camargue – a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve

In Brief

  • 1 Night Lyon
  • 1 Night Mâcon
  • 1 Night Vienne
  • 1 Night Viviers
  • 2 Nights Arles
  • 1 Night Avignon


Recommended for:
History & culture | River cruise

Sailing from Lyon, this spectacular river cruise showcases the delights of France’s Saône and Rhône rivers. Along the way, expert-led tours will see you dip into the rural beauty of Provence, taste your way through the world-renowned wine estates of Burgundy, and visit the country’s largest wetland reserve in Camargue. Ancient Vienne and Avignon will transport you back to Roman times, as will Arles, where you’ll explore the legacy of its most famous former resident – Vincent Van Gogh. There are also plenty of opportunities to get active with everything from guided walks to kayaking and e-bike tours.

Day by day itinerary

Day 1
Depart UK/Lyon

With included airport lounge access, you’ll depart for Lyon feeling relaxed and refreshed as you look forward to a week exploring the rivers of southern France. On arrival in Lyon, transfer to your waiting ship – Riverside Ravel – where you’ll have time to relax before you set sail towards the storied Burgundy wine region.

Stay: Riverside Ravel

Meals: D

Day 2
Chalon sur Saône, Tournus & Mâcon

Spend a peaceful morning exploring the pretty town of Chalon sur Saône in the heart of Burgundy. Wander among its half-timbered houses, marvel at its Art Nouveau façades and visit the Théâtre Piccolo, which was modelled on the Royal Opera in Versailles. Then, in the afternoon, you’ll pause at Tournus where a guided walk will bring you among its Roman streets and 10th-century abbey. Otherwise, join a hike up to Solutre Rock for gorgeous vineyard views. You’ll end the day in charming Mâcon, where an evening stroll will see you to the town’s Maison de Bois wooden house.

Stay: Riverside Ravel

Meals: B L D

Day 3

Enjoy a full day exploring the town of Vienne, where you’ll have a choice of excursions. An expert-led walk will showcase the city’s variety of highlights, from its Fine Arts & Archaeology Museum to the Gallo-Roman Amphitheatre, one of the largest of its kind in Gaul, the region comprising France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg and parts of Switzerland, Germany and Northern Italy. If you’d like a more in-depth appreciation of Vienne’s Roman heritage, then you might prefer a guided visit to the excellent Gallo-Roman Museum, with its thermal baths, intricate murals and mosaics among a plethora of fascinating exhibits.

Stay: Riverside Ravel

Meals: B L D

Day 4

Arrive in Viviers this morning where you’ll have the option of a guided walk through the town followed by a local music performance. Wandering cobbled streets and narrow lanes, you’ll take in such highlights as the grand town hall, formerly a priest’s palace, the 16th-century Knights’ House, and the 18th-century Hôtel de Roqueplane, now the seat of the diocese. After exploring the smallest working cathedral in France, you’ll head to a local venue for a concert by local musicians.

Alternatively, you might prefer to get out into nature. There’s a trip to see the sprawling lavender fields of Drôme Provençale, or to a truffle farm for a guided tasting and then on to a nearby château, where the terrace provides gorgeous, sweeping views.

Stay: Riverside Ravel

Meals: B L D

Day 5
Viviers, Tarascon & Arles

Leave Viviers in the morning and sail to Tarascon. Here, you’ll have a choice between a walking tour or a visit to the town’s imposing fortress, originally built between the 9th and 13th centuries, and reconstructed between 1400 and 1435. Then, in the afternoon, head to Arles, where an evening walking tour will showcase the town’s Roman ruins, which are beautifully lit as night begins to fall.

Stay: Riverside Ravel

Meals: B L D

Day 6

With its spectacular Roman Amphitheatre, medieval homes and 12th-century churches, Arles is a town whose beauty was once brought to canvas by the legendary artist and one-time Arles resident, Vincent Van Gogh. Explore its treasures on a morning tour, or take the chance to head out and about, perhaps to the pretty hilltop town of Les Baux-de-Provence, nestled in the Alpilles Mountains, or to Aix-en-Provence, where you’ll see the sights that so inspired one Paul Cezanne. Otherwise, head to beautiful Camargue, known for its pink flamingos, sandy beaches and salt marshes, which comprise a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.

Stay: Riverside Ravel

Meals: B L D

Day 7

Your final port of call is Avignon. Here, you’ll have the chance to get active with a kayaking trip on the Gardon River, or an e-bike adventure in the beautiful Rhône Valley. Alternatively, you might discover Avignon’s papal importance with a visit to the Pope’s Palace or discover pretty laneways and the famous St Bénezet Bridge on a guided walking tour.

Stay: Riverside Ravel

Meals: B L D

Day 8
Depart for UK

After a final breakfast on board, leave Avignon behind as you transfer to the airport in time for your flight home.

Meals: B


Meet our experts

Speak to a tailor-made specialist on 020 7590 0615

Meet the team

Why book with Wexas Travel?

At Wexas, we specialise in bespoke travel experiences. Our itineraries are just samples of what we can arrange, and can be changed depending on your precise needs, finances and ideas by our experienced destination specialists.

Contact one of our consultants on 020 7590 0615 to discuss how we can tailor your holiday.

Learn why Wexas is the leader in creating luxury holidays. What is tailor-made travel?

Expert advice & support

Visit us in our London office

Let our travel specialists curate the perfect holiday:

  • Inspirational ideas based on experience
  • Established for over 50 years
  • Tailor a holiday to your precise requirements
  • Personalised quotes and documentation

Every step of the way

Every step of the way

Our services are with you from start to finish:

  • Dedicated personal consultants
  • Free airport lounges on qualifying bookings
  • Care and guidance pre, post and during holiday
  • Full financial security: ABTA & ATOL protected