It was just what we were looking for. Colorful Rick Steves Pocket guidebooks like Rick Steves Pocket Paris are perfect when you have a week or less. Rick is right- if you are polite and respectful, English will get you by. Spending the night on the island was a real treat and adventure!". Awesome trip! His knowledge of France and it's history, his love of his country and his easy spirit, set the tone for our very energetic exploration of Paris and her beautiful sites, our strolls through quaint little towns and villages, visiting beautiful old chateaus, and learning about and visiting the very sobering beaches of Normandy. "Staying on Mt. This was my second Rick Steves trip, and it was a wonderful experience. Arnaud leads Rick Steves tours in France and offers accommodations and customized cruises on his houseboat located near Paris. We had ample down time or free time to go on our own. The tour agenda was as described, Michaelanne did an excellent job, bus rides and hotels were very good. We also liked the idea that everything is included in the tour and it is limited in size. Thank you!". We loved our guides and their passion for French history and culture. "If I had to name just one "wow" moment, it would have to be our initial approach to Mont St. Michel. Was surprised I so enjoyed some areas I didn't think I would like that much. Please see my partner's evaluation for more comments on this trip. As a single traveler, I was welcomed into the group and never felt "alone". So if all you want is the best of the French Riviera, this compact Snapshot guide delivers everything you'll need to know — for about half the price and half the bulk. We went to St. Sulpice on our own---should be on the tour. Wow!". Our Normandy guide was excellent.". Visiting Paris is always exciting and I stayed and extra two days following the tour. Dale ( the Normandy Guide ) was excellent . He completed 30 missions as a ball turret gunner on a B-24 bomber based out of England. "My favorite "Wow" moment was visiting the Monet Gardens and house in Giverny - his garden and ponds exceeded my expectations in terms of beauty and preservation of his home. Waiters, the hotel owner, local guide and others". It was a bit like a scavenger hunt, following the blue lights to the different venues and then watching the colorful and creative presentation of history related to the site. "Driving up to Mont Saint-Michel, seeing it in the distance, thinking it looked like a dream, a fairy tale city. The locations and day tours were informative and interesting. The tour group was filled with nice, interesting and enjoyable couples so that made it easy. Paris and the countryside were amazing. "Staying at Mont Ste. There's a pond, a … The emotional impact of standing before all the white crosses in the American Cemetary in Normandy, and finding one of a soldier from my home state of Oregon.". Everyone was friendly too. We had gone 4 days early, so we're quite settled by the time we met the group. There was enough independent time to see things on our own. She was more of a friend to all of us tourists than a guide. The community of travelers was again pleasurable and we met 50 interesting people on back to back tours! Many more "wows", but this was my favorite.". Like Leonardo da Vinci. The floral arrangements and gardens were spectacular. "This question needs to be structured. We'll spend the day with a local expert who will give us a powerful tour of the Normandy beaches where, in June of 1944, the Allied D-Day landings took place by sea and air. "Mont St. Michel! Outstanding mix of big-city Paris with less populated regions surrounding the Ile-de-France area. And then to stay overnight, too!! It was amazing, an experience I will never forget. Patrick, our guide kept us well informed and organized. "There were so many on the trip as we went to many towns. I especially enjoyed the excusions in the smaller rural towns and the up close exposure to the real France. Content and cultural/historical experiences were as expected, and the tour was well led. "The cathedrals, especially the interiors, simply stopped me in my tracks. The people, the sights, the food and our guide all combined to make this a trip to remember. "I cannot pick one- there were so many Wows. We especially loved our time at Mont Saint-Michel. Giverny was a favorite of mine.". "Can't say I had any new "wows." Really bonded with the group and enjoyed all the group meals. For more information about transportation options for getting to and from your tour, see your Rick Steves France guidebook. Dinive providence led us to this particular tour! Why - The gardens are a place of overwhelming beauty, tranquility and elegance. ", "The Mont Ste Michel and the Normandy beaches". There were a couple of health issues within the group that the guides took care of very professionally without missing a beat. People mingled with one another and became a cohesive group. Chapelle; glimpsing Mont St. Michael from a distance; seeing the cathedral in the small town of Bourges; but a surprising Wow moment was coming back to Paris together in the bus after touring around and singing the song "Champs-Elysees" with Virginie as we drove down it.". Fast paced but laid back, no hidden costs, very informative and, at times, intensely emotional. I rose early in the morning to see the sunrise from the deserted ramparts before touring the Abbey with the group. 49 $24.99 $24.99. At first I had another date all picked out and deposited, with a quick phone call from your office that there was only one spot left. Normandy Beaches and Giverny were all equally amazing.". The tour guide Antoine was superb. While I throughly enjoyed the people, the "groupness" was challenging at times for me. This is our first tour, and it was full of great experiences. Guedelon was so fascinating, especially as we learn more about the damage the fire at Notre Dame created, and the task ahead of them as they rebuild. Great group/mix of people. Sleep in Paris. And I know the Louvre is one of those boxes that people think must be checked, but spending a part of a day there is ludicrous. "There were WOW moments every day during the tour, which makes it impossible for me to choose only one. Most of the pictures don't show them correctly or show what great beaches they are". I learned so much French history and culture as well. If it's not market day, start with a cave, then canoe and browse Sarlat late (sleep in Sarlat or nearby), Day 9:  Head to Languedoc-Roussillon, lunch and sightsee in Albi, then dinner in Carcassonne (sleep in Carcassonne), Day 10:  Morning in Carcassonne, then on to Arles, with a stop at the Pont du Gard aqueduct (sleep in or near Arles), Day 11:  All day for Arles and Les Baux; visit Les Baux early or late (sleep in or near Arles), Day 12:  Make a beeline for the Riviera, and explore your home base in the afternoon (sleep in Nice, Antibes, or Villefranche-sur-Mer), Day 13:  Sightsee in Nice and Monaco (sleep in Nice, Antibes, or Villefranche-sur-Mer), Day 14:  Make the long drive north to the Alps (sleep in Chamonix), Day 15:  If the weather is even close to clear, take the mountain lifts up to the Aiguille du Midi and beyond (sleep in Chamonix), Day 16:  Allow another half-day for the Alps (in Chamonix or Annecy), then head to Beaune, in Burgundy, for wine-tasting (sleep in Beaune), Day 17:  Spend half of the day in and around Beaune, then move on to Colmar, in the Alsace (sleep in Colmar), Day 18:  Enjoy Colmar and the Route du Vin villages (sleep in Colmar), Day 19:  Return to Paris, visiting Verdun or Reims en route — consider dropping your car in Reims and training to Paris (collapse in Paris hotel), Day 21:  More time in Paris (sleep in Paris), Day 22:  Finish your sightseeing in Paris, with possible side trip to Versailles (sleep in Paris). 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