Gourmet Tour of France
Paris, Normandy and the Loire Valley

Here is a sample itinerary you could use for a group of friends.

 

DAY 1 :    FLIGHTS

Depart for Paris.

DAY 2 :  PARIS 

Upon arrival at the airport, meet your driver and transfer to your accommodation in central Paris. Spend a free day exploring the French capital at your leisure. Enjoy people watching in the Marais or explore the cafes and shops of the Latin Quartier.

First night’s accommodation in Paris.

DAY 3 : PARIS  (B,L)

Use your RATP Transport Mobilis Card for all train, bus and metro travel. 

This morning, enjoy your first real taste of Paris with a half-day cooking class! An English-speaking chef will guide you through the preparation and execution of an entrée, a main and a dessert, which will form your lunch at the end of the session. This afternoon, stroll along the famous Champs Elysées to the Arc de Triomphe. You might like to visit the Fauchon Shop and Tearooms and the Maille boutique, which stocks Maille vinegars, oils, mustards and mayonnaises, both on the Place de la Madeleine.

Second night’s accommodation in Paris.

DAY 4 : PARIS   (B)

Use your RATP Transport Mobilis Card for all train, bus and metro travel.

After breakfast, explore l'Ile de la Cite on foot and the nearby cathedral of Notre Dame. You might like to climb the cathedral’s towers and visit its gargoyles! This afternoon, make your way to the “Belly of Paris”, the Comptoir de la Gastronomie at les Halles, where Parisians have been buying traditional, high quality French fare since 1894.

Third night’s accommodation in Paris.

DAY 5 : PARIS  (B)

Spend the morning in the 5th arrondissement, strolling through the Marché Monge. This afternoon, make your way to the docks of the Bâteaux Parisiens for an hour-long cruise on the Seine. Disembark at the Eiffel Tower. You might like to climb the tower to watch night descend over the French capital (at own expense).

Fourth night’s accommodation in Paris.

DAY 6 : PARIS (B)

This morning, meet your chef for an escorted tour of a market. Visit the Musée du Louvre in the afternoon, seeing such masterpieces as the Venus de Milo, Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa and Michelangelo’s The Dying Slave. From here, wander through the Jardins des Tuileries on to the Place de la Concorde. Continue exploring the 7th arrondissement, visiting such shops as Bellota Bellota on the Rue Jean Nicot, which stocks Spanish delicacies and cheeses, and Monsieur Barthelemy Magasine on the Rue de Grenelle, which specialises in cheeses.

Fifth night’s accommodation in Paris.

DAY 7 : PARIS  (B)

After breakfast, travel to the artists’ quartier of Montmartre. Visit the Basilica Sacre Coeur and explore the bohemian streets, including the Place du Tertre. Visit la Mère de Famille on the Rue du Faubourg Montmartre and l’Etoile d’Or on the Rue Fontaine for chocolates, and the excellent tea-rooms Bertrand on the Rue Bourdaloue.

Sixth night’s accommodation in Paris.

DAY 8 :  PARIS  (B)

Enjoy a full day at leisure in Paris. You might like to tour the Parisian markets, such as the Marché St Honoré in the 1st arrondissement, the Marché Maubert in the 5th, and the Marché St Germain in the 6th, or visit La Grande Epicerie de Paris in the heart of the left bank.

Seventh night’s accommodation in Paris.

DAY 9 : NORMANDY  (B)

Meet your coach and driver and depart Paris for Normandy. This afternoon, stop at Pont L’Eveque and visit a Calvados distillery. Your hostess will guide you through the Museum of Calvados and into the cellars for a tasting of various Père Magloire products. Continue on to the Mont St Michel. Visit the Gothic-style Benedictine abbey and the village that grew up in its shadow.

Overnight accommodation in Mont St Michel.

DAY 10 : BRITTANY, LOIRE VALLEY  (B,L,D)

Travel west this morning into Brittany and enjoy a guided tour of an oyster farm, including a tasting in Cancale. Continue on to St Malo and explore the walled city at your own pace. Transfer to the Loire Valley. Arrive into Angers in the early evening and visit a local winery. Learn about the art of wine-making from an English-speaking oenologist. The lesson is followed by a gourmet dinner with your host, which will focus on matching the best wines to your menu.

Overnight accommodation in Angers.

DAY 11 : LOIRE VALLEY  (B)

Depart Angers for Azay le Rideau. Visit the town’s Château, which sits on an island on the River Indre, surrounded by  beautiful parklands. Organise your lunch here (at own cost). En route to Amboise, enjoy a tour of a wine cellar in the Vouvray vineyard and a visit to a snail farm in Montlouis sur Loire. Arrive into Amboise in the early evening.

Overnight accommodation in Amboise.

DAY 12 : LOIRE VALLEY   (B,D)

Travel to Tours this morning and visit the bakery Au Vieux Four, which is located inside house dating back to the 16th century. The owner is a 10th generation baker and will guide you through the tools of bread-making. Enjoy a taste of the regional speciality, fouace, which also dates back to the 16th century. After your visit, explore the pretty town centre at your own pace. Wander the narrow, cobbled streets, see numerous 15th and 16th century timber-framed houses, and visit the beautiful 19th century church, St Martin’s Basilica, which houses the relics of Saint Martin. This afternoon, enjoy your second session of cooking classes with a chef and an English-speaking French cuisine specialist at the restaurant of the 4-star chateau, the Domaine de la Tortiniere. This is also the site of your dinner and accommodation tonight.

Overnight accommodation in Montbazon

DAY 13 : LOIRE VALLEY PARIS   (B)

After breakfast at your hotel, travel to Montrichard for a tour of the Caves Monmousseau. Explore the cellars, which have been hewn out of the chalky rock-face and which cover some 5 kilometers. Your guide will escort you along a designated walkway and talk about the making of sparkling wines according to the Méthode Traditionnelle. After your visit, continue on to Chambord for lunch (at own cost). Visit the Château de Chambord, the biggest of King François the First‘s chateau in the region. Transfer to Paris for your final evening in France. You might like to see a dinner show at the famed Moulin Rouge this evening.

Overnight accommodation in Paris.

DAY 14 : PARIS  (B)

After breakfast, transfer by private coach to the Airport for your flights home.

DAY 15 : FLIGHTS

Arrive home.

Nous vous souhaitons un agréable voyage!

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