Tauck reports the introduction of a new river cruise on the Rhone that celebrates and explores the rich culinary traditions of France. The new 10-day “A Taste of France” itinerary begins with a two-night hotel stay and exploration of local food culture in Paris, followed by a seven-night river cruise through the Rhone Valley aboard Tauck’s MS Swiss Emerald riverboat. Tauck said it has crafted the new itinerary in collaboration with Churchill & Turen, Ltd., the luxury travel agency.
“The foods and wines of France are world renowned, and our new river cruise is a fantastic introduction to what makes France such a culinary treasure,” said Tauck CEO Dan Mahar. “We’ve combined our 87 years of experience showcasing the world’s premier destinations with the insights and access of Churchill & Turen, all with the ease and elegance of river cruising.”
European river cruising has been among the fastest-growing categories of travel over the past several years, Tauck says, because it offers the ability to experience multiple locations with the convenience of unpacking just once.
Tauck’s “A Taste of France” (from $5,390 per person, double occupancy, plus air) begins with guided culinary-themed sightseeing in Paris and a two-night stay at the Hilton Arc de Triomphe. In Paris, guests will enjoy a Tauck-exclusive, hands-on introduction to French sauces with a tasting at the new Alain Ducasse culinary school, Ecole de Cuisine.
They’ll also attend a workshop and blind tastings highlighting “The Joy of Chocolate” led by Chloe Doutre-Roussel, author of “The Chocolate Connoisseur,” and visit the former haunts of chef Julia Child and learn about contemporary Parisian life during a walking tour of the Left Bank.
Other culinary-themed experiences include:
· A market visit in Provence with local chefs who will buy ingredients and prepare regional specialties for tasting, such as tapenade, anchoiade and stuffed tomatoes Provencale.
· A visit to Lyon’s famous market, Les Halles, with tastings of local meats and cheeses.
· A memorable Provencal evening featuring dinner, local wines and entertainment in the shadow of Pont du Gard, the incredible Roman aqueduct.
· A wine tasting in Beaujolais.
· A demonstration of French culinary techniques at a cooking school operated by a three-star Michelin chef.
Included in Tauck’s cruise price are all sightseeing, activities and shore excursions, two nights hotel accommodations in Paris, all gratuities, complimentary wine with onboard meals, all taxes and port charges, airport transfers, luggage handling, most meals, and more.
Travelers on “A Taste of France” will cruise aboard Tauck’s MS Swiss Sapphire riverboat. Launched in 2006, the ship was recently enhanced with new décor and other improvements. As with Tauck’s other riverboats, the MS Swiss Emerald accommodates just 118 guests.
The launch of “A Taste of France” comes a year after the debut of Tauck’s first cruises on the Rhone; “French Escapade: Monte-Carlo to Paris” and “French Waterways and Vineyards.” The new “A Taste of France” itinerary mirrors the same framework, with the addition of numerous culinary-themed shore excursions, onboard activities and other components.
Departures for the new culinary cruise are scheduled for April 25, June 28, August 17 and October 20 of this year.