Dublin to French Rivers & Bordeaux

Join Braemar on a wonderful voyage from Dublin visiting some wonderful cities and French rivers including the beautiful Seine and the Gironde & Garonne rivers at Bordeaux.

Departing from Dublin this 11-night cruise calls at Belfast before visiting the famous English port of Southampton. From here you cross the Channel and cruise up the beautiful River Seine to enjoy an overnight stay in historic Rouen. You then cruise to Bordeaux to take in the magnificent Gironde & Garonne rivers. Following an overnight stay in Bordeaux, you stop off at Lorient in beautiful Britanny and cruise on to Southampton for your flight back to Dublin.

FROM Dublin
DATE 03 April 2018
DURATION 11 Nights
PRICE From €1,479 pp
One of the best things about Fred. Olsen’s river cruises is that you can enjoy relaxing journeys along picturesque, size-restricted waterways aboard our smaller, ocean-going cruise ships. This cruise is no exception, featuring hours of stunning daytime scenic cruising as Braemar takes you closer to historic, culture-rich cities via beautiful French rivers.

The first of three enchanting cities you’ll visit on this fabulous French foray is Rouen, situated in the heart of historic Normandy. An overnight stay in the ‘City of a Hundred Spires’ will afford you plenty of time to discover an abundance of attractions, including the spectacular Gothic-style Cathédrale Notre-Dame, the iconic Gros Horloge and the exact spot where Joan of Arc was burnt at the stake at Place du Vieux-Marche. Alternatively, you could tour to the Claude Monet House and Gardens; or head to nearby Paris in the evening and uncover the romantic French capital’s world-famous landmarks, including the Eiffel Tower and Arc de Triomphe. Your departure from Rouen is sure to be magical, sailing 60 nautical miles along the River Seine and taking in unspoilt views of lush green countryside and quaint communes dotted along the riverbanks.

You’ll also experience memorable scenic cruising of the gorgeous Gironde and Garonne Rivers as your ship sails into beautiful Bordeaux. Once docked in the centre of the city, a collection of attractions will be just the length of the gangway away; and, as you’ll stop here overnight, there’s no reason to not take them all in. Over 360 historic sites await your discovery in Bordeaux’s UNESCO-listed heart, including Calihau Gate, the 13th century Cathédrale Saint-André, the Grand Théâtre and Cours du Chapeau-Rouge; while the incredible Cité du Vin offers a culinary experience that lovers of French food and wine won’t want to miss. There’s also a chance to tour to the renowned vineyards of the beautiful Medoc region to find out more about how some of the world’s very best wines are crafted. Finally it’s on to Lorient, a city that feels typically French today but was once one of Germany’s most important U-boat bases. Here you can visit the concrete caverns of the Keroman Submarine Base; admire the post-war architecture; and take in the fine selection of galleries and museums, all before Braemar heads back to Southampton.

Day to Day Itinerary:

Day 1: Dublin, Ireland

Boarding the ship in Dublin port, you will soon be settled in onboard the 4* Braemar ready to begin your cruise.

Day 2: Belfast, Northern Ireland

In the vibrant city of Belfast there’s a chance to visit the Harland and Wolff shipyard and the superb Titanic Experience; admire the views from Belfast Castle; or take a tour to the exceptional Giant’s Causeway.

In recent years Belfast has moved away from the troubles of the past and become a modern, vibrant and stylish city. On and around Great Victoria Street there are some excellent restaurants and a wide choice of pubs, while close to Queen’s University are the fascinating Botanical Gardens, which have been established for more than 180 years. The unique Palm House was one of the world’s first cast-iron glass-houses and it houses a wide range of tropical plants, ranging from bananas to rubber.

Alongside the Gardens is the Ulster Museum, housed in a beautiful Renaissance-style building, which tells Ireland’s 9,000-year history through art, ceramics, costume, and archaeology, including prehistoric artefacts from local sites. On the northern edge of the city is the impressive hulk of Belfast Castle, standing 120m above the sea. Built in the mid-Victorian era, it offers wonderful views over the city and out towards the Irish Sea.

Day 3: At Sea

Day 4: Southampton, UK

Known as the cruise capital of Europe, Southampton plays host to over four million visitors a year and boasts an impressive cultural offering, from museums, music venues and art galleries, to award winning parks and the general hustle and bustle of a diverse city with fantastic shopping facilities.

Days 5-6: Rouen, France

Normandy’s delightful 2,000 years old ‘museum city’ and busy river-port on the meandering Seine.

A unique city rich with monuments and museums to visit, there is so much to do, see and explore in Rouen. With narrow pedestrianised streets lined with tall, half-timber houses and a statue marking the spot where Joan of Arc was burnt at the stake, it doesn’t take long to discover this city’s dark history.

Arguably Rouen’s greatest attraction is the incredible Gothic Cathedral which inspired Monet to paint over 30 canvasses. The grand monument is easy to find thanks to its vast spire that soars over a superbly restored medieval Old Town and is not-to-be-missed. Be sure to visit the Church of Saint-Maclou and Church of St. Ouen during your time exploring the city centre. These churches are considered as two of the best examples of gothic architecture in France and are a vitally important part of Rouen’s history.

The city’s beautiful botanical garden – Jardin de Plantes de Rouen – is also worth a visit to see the 600 different plant species and varying types of garden including a rock garden, rose garden and a garden full of medicinal plants.

Day 6: Cruising River Seine

Experience the unspoilt scenic beauty of Normandy as you sail along a winding, size-restricted section of France’s second longest waterway, the picturesque River Seine.

Slicing through the gorgeous lush-green countryside of Normandy’s Parc naturel régional des Boucles de la Seine, this stunning section of the River Seine – connecting the historic cities of Honfleur and Rouen – presents you with simply unforgettable views to enjoy from the comfort of your smaller cruise ship. Simply sit back, relax and take in stunning scenery which has inspired many famous artists over the years, including Claude Monet and Henri Matisse.

Day 7: At Sea

Day 8: Cruising Gironde & Garonne Rivers

The beautiful River Garonne is possibly south-west France’s most important river, and arguably one of the region’s most picturesque too.

Serving a number of important towns and cities, including beautiful Bordeaux, the River Garonne flows through beautiful French countryside, presenting you with stunning views to enjoy from your smaller cruise ship. Just upstream from Bordeaux, the Garonne meets the Dore River and forms Western Europe’s largest estuary, the Gironde.

Days 8-9: Bordeaux, France

Beautiful Bordeaux is world renowned for it’s famous wines, but there’s a lot more to this fine French city than vineyards and claret.

Known as the world’s wine capital, Bordeaux’s appeal as a tourist destination is easy to understand. A large number of visitors from all over the globe visit this beautiful French city every year to get a taste of what makes this wine-rich region so special.

Away from the vineyards there is plenty more to see, do and love in Bordeaux. Stretched along the banks of the rivers of Aquitaine, this ‘City of Art and History’ is home to 362 historic monuments, with some buildings dated back to Roman times. A large portion of the city centre – 1,810 Hectares in fact – is listed as an UNESCO World Heritage Site and an ‘outstanding urban and architectural ensemble’. The site takes around 2 hours to explore and is a must-visit.

While in Bordeaux be sure to visit Place des Quinconces, one of the largest squares in Europe. There are several spectacular churches dotted around the city and other landmarks of note include the neoclassical Grand Theatre de Bordeaux.

Day 10: Lorient, France

A former German U-Boat base, Lorient played a huge role in the Second World War and was a primary target for Allied bombing raids. Today, the rebuilt city is awash with post 1950’s architecture and a number of museums and galleries to discover and explore.

Serving as the location of one of Germany’s most important U-Boat bases in the Second World War, much of this French city was destroyed by Allied air raids. Lorient was subsequently rebuilt after the war and much of the city’s architecture and points of interest date from the 1950’s.

Day 11: At Sea

Day 12: Southampton, UK

Following your arrival in Southampton, you will be transferred to the airport for your flight back to Ireland.

11 Nights accommodation aboard the 4 Star Braemar, operated by Fred. Olsen Cruise Line. (See ship info tab for more information on Braemar)

4* Fred. Olsen Braemar Cruise Ship

A five-deck atrium creates a very light, spacious and airy interior, giving Braemar a very modern feel, while still maintaining the relaxing atmosphere for which Fred. Olsen’s vessels are renowned. Cascading decks at the stern give plenty of room for taking in the air and enjoying the sunshine. Stylish public rooms feature polished wood and gleaming brass, subtle lighting and luxurious fabrics.

Refitted in 2008 and carrying around 900 passengers, the 24,000 tonne Braemar has more then 80 passenger cabins and suites with balconies. Facilities include the comfortable Morning Light Pub and Observatory Lounge, which enjoys spectacular views over the bow – just the places to enjoy a pre dinner drink.

For fine food there is the Thistle Restaurant on the main deck, while on Marquee Deck the Grampian Restaurant offers a more intimate atmosphere in a formal setting. Informal dining is available in Palms Cafe.

During special-interest cruises, activities are available in the Arts and Crafts Room. Two open-air swimming pools, separated by open air jacuzzis on Marquee Deck, together with a Children’s Pool and poolside bar will help you get the most from your time on board.

Coming Soon!

Dates & Prices

03 April 2018 €1,479 Inside Book Now
03 April 2018 €1,739 Oceanview Book Now
03 April 2018 €2,029 Superior Oceanview Book Now
03 April 2018 €3,119 Balcony Book Now
03 April 2018 €2,399 Single Inside Book Now
03 April 2018 €2,989 Single Oceanview Book Now

Price inclusions

  • 11 nights accommodation aboard 4* Fred. Olsen Braemar based on 2 sharing an inside cabin
  • Fine Dining on a Full Board basis
  • All on board entertainment
  • Transfer from port to airport
  • Flight from Southampton to Dublin
  • Taxes and one check in bag of 15kg per person

Booking remarks

  • Inclusive of taxes and service charges as indicated
  • Non-refundable or transferable booking deposit of 15% per person
  • 2% surcharge if balance is paid by credit card
  • Optional Insurance prices on request (conditions apply)
  • Drinks packages available to prebook – only €18 per person per night
  • Gratuities not included and are paid on board
  • These prices are guidelines only and are subject to change and availability. Pricing will be confirmed at time of booking.