Home THE JOURNEY Cruise Mastering the Art of French Cruising with Avalon Waterways

Mastering the Art of French Cruising with Avalon Waterways

Avalon river cruise boat on the Rhine River

Avalon Waterways is saying “je t’aime” to France next year with two new rivers (for a total of five), six new cruises and 33 percent (33%) more capacity to meet demand. This heightened French connection comes on the heels of the excitement surrounding the Paris Olympics, high-demand in France in 2024 as well as the company’s recent survey revealing that France is on top of cruisers’ “Wish Lists” with 37 percent (37%) of 16,600 respondents choosing it as the No. 1 destination they want to cruise.

Bonjour Bordeaux! “In 2025, we’re adding another Suite Ship to the rivers of France and cruising Bordeaux for the first time on the Garonne and Dordogne Rivers,” said Pam Hoffee, president of Avalon Waterways. “This week-long Bordeaux itinerary can be combined for new, longer cruises on the Seine, Saône, Rhône and Rhine Rivers, creating an incredible, in-depth opportunity to enjoy France and Western Europe, as a whole.”

From the historic halls of castles and Châteaux to romantic cellars and kitchens where wine bouquets and bon-vivant cuisine tempt the palate, Avalon is bringing Bordeaux to life for the first time for cruisers in new ways thanks to Active, Discovery and Classic excursions on its new France-focused itineraries. 

The all-new France cruise being unveiled by Avalon Waterways in 2025 is Bonjour Bordeaux: Châteaux, Wineries & Charming Villages. This 8-day cruise starts and ends in Bordeaux with visits to Cadillac-sur-Garonne, Cussac Fort Médoc, Blaye, Bourg and Libourne. This new itinerary can be extended for two- and three-week cruising options. They are: NEW French Masterpiece: Paris, Normandy & Bordeaux; NEW France, Uncorked: The Rhône, the Seine & Bordeaux and NEW Vineyards, Châteaux & Bordeaux.

Van Gogh Your Own Way.The company also offers its signature, Active & Discovery cruises throughout France with Active & Discovery on the Rhône and Active & Discovery on the Seine. With an average of 23 included Avalon Choice excursions on these 8- and 9-day itineraries, cruisers can tailor their French vacation to their interests.

“Every Avalon cruise invites cruisers to be choosers,” said Hoffee. “That’s especially true on our ‘Active & Discovery’ itineraries. Guests can sip, swirl and spelunk their way through the South of France on wine-focused excursions; indulge in French cuisine on foodie walking tours or partake a painting class in Arles. They can even enjoy an after-dark ghost tour in Viviers along the Rhône. On the Seine, the options are as extraordinary, inviting guests to shake things up in a Benedictine cocktail workshop, bike through Paris or canoe past half-timbered homes in Vernon. No one does cruising like this.”

La Vie Est Belle. Avalon’s full menu of French cruises for next year is incredibly robust, featuring 50 itineraries on three Suite Ships: the Avalon Artistry II; Avalon Poetry II and Avalon Tapestry II.  Options include classic cruises like Paris to Normandy’s Landing Beaches and Burgundy & Provence; Wine Cruises like Rhine & Rhône Revealed for Wine Lovers and even Music Cruises such as Grand France for Jazz Lovers.