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Normandy, Brittany & The Loire Valley

Duration 8 days

Destinations visited :
  • France
    ,

Enjoy the sights and smells of France during this 8-day guided tour. Travel to Normandy and stand on the 100-foot-tall Pointe du Hoc, overlooking the beaches where soldiers fought in World War II — and walk with a Local Expert through the American Military Cemetery of Saint-Laurent, near Omaha Beach, where Allied Forces landed on D-Day. Drive through the Loire Valley to the glorious fragrant gardens of Château de Villandry, stopping to smell the basil, rosemary and other herbs grown in its gardens. You’ll remember those scents at a celebration dinner featuring a farm-to-table feast and sparkling wine. See Paris’ top attractions, from the glistening pyramids of the Louvre to the gothic Notre Dame Cathedral, then watch as the City of Light illuminates at dark.

Take a look at your day-by-day itinerary or contact us on 0207 620 8952 to find out more.

DAY 1

Welcome to Paris.
Your complimentary, private transfer takes you to your local departure airport. On arrival at Charles de Gaulle Airport, transfers leave for the hotel at 08:30, 11:00 and 13:30. After checking in, the capital’s grand boulevards and world-famous landmarks are yours to explore. At 17:30, join your Travel Director and fellow guests for a Welcome Dinner at Le Sud, a local brasserie with a Mediterranean-inspired menu.
Hotel: Le Méridien Etoile, Paris.
Meal: Dinner with Wine

DAY 2

Rouen, Honfleur and Deauville.
Follow the River Seine to Rouen, capital of Normandy, to admire its ancient cathedral – a masterpiece of the Gothic style and the subject of a series of paintings by Claude Monet. Wander through the narrow streets beneath the Great Clock to the Old Market Square. Here, a superb modern church commemorates the burning of Joan of Arc on this very spot in 1431. Continue to the charming fishing town of Honfleur and to your luxurious hotel located in the chic seaside resort of Deauville.
Hotel: Hotel Barrière L’Hôtel du Golf, Deauville, Normandy.
Meal: Breakfast

DAY 3

Normandy Beaches and D-Day Landings.
2019 marks the 75th anniversary of D-Day, which occurred on the 6th June 1944. Following the route of the Rangers and visiting the bunkers and the Rangers Memorial at Pointe du Hoc. Then with a Local Expert, spend a few reflective moments at the American Military Cemetery of Saint-Laurent near Omaha Beach before a visit to the D-Day Museum to see the remnants of the artificial port in the bay of Arromanches. There are poignant reminders of World War II as you travel past Juno and Gold beaches, which both played a part in the Normandy landings. This evening you are treated to a sumptuous dinner, which promises creative cuisine, seasonal ingredients and local wines.
Hotel: Hotel Barrière L’Hôtel du Golf, Deauville, Normandy.
Meal: Breakfast,Dinner with Wine

DAY 4

Mont-Saint-Michel and Saint-Malo.
Journey through Bocage country for an exploration of the hilltop abbey of Mont-Saint-Michel with your Local Expert. The abbey stands on an island and is reached by a causeway across the shining sands. Behind the outer ring of defences huddles the small town – it’s one street containing shops, cafes and hotels. Continue along the Emerald Coast to stunning Saint-Malo, situated on the Rance Estuary and one of the most charming places in France. A Local Expert will take you on an exploration of the City of the Corsairs. Walk through the maze of streets of Intra Muros, the walled city, to the cathedral, the burial place of Jacques Cartier and other celebrated voyagers. At your leisure, you can wander around the ramparts of the thick city walls, offering fantastic views over the old town and the bay. By night, the town’s medieval maze of winding streets is abuzz with quaint bars and restaurants.
Hotel: Hôtel Le Nouveau Monde, Saint-Malo.
Meal: Breakfast

DAY 5

Scenic drive along the Loire Valley to the Chateau de Rochecotte.
Head south to follow the valley of the Loire, passing the moated Angers Castle. Cross the Loire to Saumur, where a local vintner will guide you through tastings of the region’s delicious wines. Journey to the fairy-tale Château d’Azay-le-Rideau, considered one of the best representations of French Renaissance architecture. Having recently undergone extensive restorations, take your time to admire the subtle blend of French tradition and innovative Italian decor within this 16th century icon of the Loire Valley. Continue to your chateau hotel, where you can relax like royalty in sumptuous surroundings.
Hotel: Château de Rochecotte, Saint Patrice, Loire Valley.
Meal: Breakfast

DAY 6

Villandry Experience.
With a Local Expert, head to Château de Villandry, the jewel of the Loire, to visit the glorious gardens. Ensure you don’t miss the water, ornamental and kitchen gardens – a stunning sea of fragrant green herbs, silvery cabbages, and purple basil. Return to your own superb chateau for relaxation and free time. At night, your Celebration Dinner starts with a glass of local sparkling wine and continues with excellent service and delicious Farm-to-Table dishes in the most wholesome setting, ensuring the memory of your meal will linger long after you’ve returned home.
Hotel: Château de Rochecotte, Saint Patrice, Loire Valley.
Meal: Breakfast,Dinner with Wine

DAY 7

La Beauce and Chartres to Paris, City of Light.
Travelling through the vast wheat fields of La Beauce, Chartres Cathedral looms large on the horizon. Auguste Rodin called it the ‘Acropolis of France,’ and once inside you can marvel at the beautiful stained-glass rose window which floods the cathedral with colour and light. From here, return to the French capital, where your Travel Director introduces you to all the fabulous sights including the magnificent Notre-Dame Cathedral and the immense facades of the Louvre. Behold the vast Place de la Concorde, where the guillotine once stood, then travel down the Champs Elysées to Napoleon’s Arc de Triomphe. After dark, the City of Light really lives up to its name when the monuments, buildings and bridges are lit up in all their glory. For that special touch of excitement and glamour don’t miss the chance to experience one of the world-famous cabaret shows.
Hotel: Paris Marriott Rive Gauche Hotel.
Meal: Breakfast

DAY 8

Au revoir Paris.
Your departure transfer will arrive at Charles de Gaulle Airport at 08:00 or 11:00. On arrival at your home airport, your driver will greet and escort you to your waiting car for your private transfer home.
Meal: Breakfast

Authentic Dining

  • Paris: Enjoy your Welcome Dinner at Le Sud, a local brasserie with a Mediterranean and similarly inspired menu.
  • Loire Valley: At Château de Rochecotte you will enjoy a delicious Farm-to-Table Dinner, prepared with fresh, locally sourced ingredients.
  • Saumur: Fun and informative, discuss the grape varieties and local terroir while sampling wines of the Loire Valley.
  • Loire Valley: Your chateau hotel enjoys a high standard of creative cuisine and is featured in many prestigious food guides. Experience it for yourself with an elegant Celebration Dinner of fresh, seasonal produce and wine.
  • Dining Summary: 7 Breakfasts (B) and 3 Dinners with Wine (DW) all with tea or coffee.

Stay in Style

  • Normandy: L’Hôtel du Golf is located just 10 minutes from Deauville Beach, known as a weekend getaway for Parisians. With it’s Tudor-style facade and tasteful, modern interiors, relax in comfort during your stay. Perhaps play a round of golf on one of the three 9-hoole courses, known as some of the most beautiful in France.
  • Saint-Malo: Hotel Le Nouveau Monde is a 4-star hotel, perfectly located in the heart of Saint-Malo, facing the sea and close to the old town.
  • Saint Patrice, Loire Valley: Stay two fabulous nights at the Château de Rochecotte in the Loire Valley, the former private estate of Prince Tallyrand and the Duchess of Dino. Sit with a drink on the terrace and enjoy the beautiful setting or take a stroll through the magnificent gardens.

Top Rated Highlights

  • Bastille Day: Celebrated across France on 14 July, Bastille Day commemorates the end of the French monarchy. Witness the remarkable display of fireworks lighting up the warm summer sky and perhaps join in one of the traditional balls.
  • Rouen: See the cathedral, the Great Clock, the Old Market square and Place du Vieux-Marché where Joan of Arc was burned at the stake.
  • Honfleur: See this charming fishing town.
  • Normandy Beaches: Join an emotive journey tracing the story of the D-Day landings – the 75th anniversary will be commemorated on the 6th June 2019. See the remains of the artificial Mulberry Harbour at Arromanches and with a local war historian, visit the American Military Cemetery at St-Laurent-sur-Mer, the D-Day Museum and the bunkers at Pointe du Hoc.
  • Mont-Saint-Michel: Savour your first sight of the fortified island of Mont-Saint-Michel. Cross the causeway for a guided tour with your Local Expert through the maze of halls and vaults of the abbey.
  • Saint-Malo: Your Local Expert guides you trough the intertwined streets of the walled city to arrive at the cathedral. Later enjoy the chance to walk along the fortifications and explore the cities nightlife at your leisure.
  • Angers: Enjoy exploring the western gateway to the Loire Valley in the little town of Angers and see its imposing chateau.
  • Loire Valley: Enjoy a scenic drive through the Loire Valley, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is known as the Jardins de France thanks to a wide variety of beautifully-manicured gardens that decorate the grounds of elegant estates. Accompanied by your Local Expert, visit France’s finest formal gardens that surround Villandry Castle, standing beside the Cher River.
  • Château d’Ussé: During your visit to Château d’Azay-le-Rideau, take your time to admire the subtle blend of French tradition and innovative Italian decor within this 16th century icon of the Loire Valley.
  • Chartres: Inside magnificent Chartres Cathedral, marvel at the stained-glass windows, a riot of rich blues and reds, justly considered the finest medieval glass in France.
  • Scenic Drives: Fall in love with the French countryside as you travel along the River Seine and through Normandy, Brittany and the Loire Valley.

Included Insight Services

  • Our highly-skilled Travel Director will ensure your journey is seamless, serving as your expert guide, consummate organiser, and friend overseas.
  • Enjoy the comfort of Insight’s luxury, air-conditioned, 40-seat coach with double the standard legroom and onboard washroom.
  • Personal radio headsets give you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights, without missing any of your Local Expert’s fascinating commentary.
  • We carry your bags for you and promptly deliver them to your hotel door.
  • Hotel and restaurant tips are included – you’ll never have to worry about how much to give, nor search for foreign currency. We also include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.
  • Stay connected with friends and family with our complimentary coach and hotel Wi-Fi (where available).
  • From time to time, your Travel Director will enchant you with an Insight Flourish, which is a local specialty representing the destination.
  • If your arrival and/or departure flights are as per the itinerary start and end dates, then transfers are available at scheduled times. If your flights are outside these times, or you have booked additional nights accommodation with Insight Vacations, you may purchase transfers or make your own way from/to the airport.
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Sat 01 Jul 2023 Sat 08 Jul 2023 £2,395
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Sat 30 Sep 2023 Sat 07 Oct 2023 £2,425
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Normandy, Brittany & The Loire Valley

Enjoy the sights and smells of France during this 8-day guided tour. Travel to Normandy and stand on the 100-foot-tall Pointe du Hoc, overlooking the beaches where soldiers fought in World War II — and walk with a Local Expert through the American Military Cemetery of Saint-Laurent, near Omaha Beach, where Allied Forces landed on D-Day. Drive through the Loire Valley to the glorious fragrant gardens of Château de Villandry, stopping to smell the basil, rosemary and other herbs grown in its gardens. You’ll remember those scents at a celebration dinner featuring a farm-to-table feast and sparkling wine. See Paris’ top attractions, from the glistening pyramids of the Louvre to the gothic Notre Dame Cathedral, then watch as the City of Light illuminates at dark.