The trip of a lifetime, Paris and an Ama Waterways River Cruise Paris to Normandy on the Seine!
Paris, the most beautiful city in the world, coupled with a serene sail on the Seine to the historic Normandy Beaches has been an experience I have planned for several years.
Nov 1-4, 3 nights, Paris – An easy flight to Charles de Gaulle Airport with a quicker than expected arrival process. Patrick with Chabe Limousine Service met us at Baggage Claim providing a dialog about the sites during the 40 minute ride to Paris. Three nights at the small, boutique Hotel Bel Ami located on the Left Bank, only three blocks from the Seine, gave us easy walking access to the various sites. Cafes and Bistros on every corner including the historic Les Deux Magots a block from our hotel.
Paris Sightseeing: To-ot Bus – a “hop on-hop off” ride. A good circuit providing an overview of the sites in Paris. Eifel Tower – Pre-purchase a guided tour to jump the long lines. Louvre – Pre-purchase of a guided tour is a must!. Too many people, long lines and too much to see without a guide. Musee d’Orsay for Impressionist Art and the Military Museum at The Hotel National de Invalides are interesting. The River Seine at Night is enchanting with lights highlighting the monuments and buildings that border the Seine. Paris is known as the City of Lights. I found the French people in Paris to be very welcoming, accommodating and friendly. English was understood.
Nov 4-11, 7 nights, Ama Waterways Paris and Normandy River Cruise – Ama Dante
This sailing date was a Wine Cruise with a Wine Host from Napa – 3 different seminars in the Lounge with regional French wine tastings, including the Champagne Region.
I found the Ama Dante to be clean, attractively decorated, well laid out and extremely easy to navigate. No noticeable noise from adjoining staterooms. Plenty of storage with drawers, closets and shelves. Laundry service was fast and inexpensive. No need to take lots of clothes as it is a casual cruise – layering is recommended. The bathroom was compact but comfortable enough. While the water was potable, bottled water was also supplied daily. All the staff and crew were engaging, knowledgeable, eager to please and very competent. Every evening digital or printed details for the next day were available. The Cruise Manager provided guidance and answers to all questions. The Captain was visible and approachable. Food and drink was plentiful and good with breakfast, lunch and dinner included. Dining seating was not assigned resulting in access to a variety of guests from different countries. A reservation-only Chefs Table was available every evening with a 7-course dinner including wine pairing. Entertainment was available every evening. Extra costs included some spirits and wines (however a variety of wines were included at lunch and dinner), laundry and gratuities on and off the ship.
The Highlight of the trip for me was a full-day excursion to the American Sector of the historic
Normandy Beaches Included, a visit he cemetery at Colleville-sur-Mer with over 9000 graves, Omaha Beach, the artillery battery at Lounges-sur-Mer and the village of Arromanches where the remains of the floating harbor used during the Allied Landings can be seen. British and Canadian sector tours offered for those guests on the cruise as well. A sobering yet awe-inspiring experience.
by Molly Sumption, Caribbean Honeymoon / Sandals Expert, Seattle & Portland / subscribe to RSS feed