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Daily Overview

Day Destination Activities
1 Nantes EMBARKATION

Welcome cocktail and dinner on board

2 Saint-Nazaire Explore the famous Saint-Nazaire shipyards

Evening cruise on the Erdre River

3 Nantes Guided tour of Nantes’ many landmarks and castles

Dinner and entertainment on board

4 Muscadet Wine Route Follow the Muscadet Wine Route—including tasting Dinner and entertainment on board
5 Angers Guided exploration of the town of Angers

See the Cadre Noir de Saumur, a UNESCO Site

6 The Loire Châteaux Tour the Loire Valley’s most impressive castles

Dinner and entertainment on board

7 Ancenis Visit to the Corniche d’Angevine

Gala dinner

8 Nantes Breakfast

DISEMBARKATION

Detailed Itinerary

DAY 1 / NANTES / EMBARKATION 

Your ship awaits in Nantes. After boarding in the evening, settle into your cabin before heading to the lounge bar, where you can meet the crew while you enjoy a welcome cocktail. Tonight, dinner is served on board.

 

DAY 2 / SAINT-NAZAIRE / NANTES 

Following breakfast, explore Saint-Nazaire, an ancient port sure to fascinate history and naval buffs. Here, you’ll explore the Escal’Atlantic, which retraces the story of iconic ocean liners using real film footage, artifacts, and special effects. Later, see the vast, industrial Saint-Nazaire shipyard, which is among the largest in Europe and internationally recognized as both a historic and a modern-day hub for shipbuilding. Today, many of the world’s most impressive ocean liners are built here. You’ll witness firsthand the astonishing logistics required to construct and assemble a cruise ship—a feat akin to building a floating city.

Spend the afternoon relaxing as you float towards Nantes. In the evening, embark on a cruise of the Erdre. Learn the rich history of this river, which was called “the most beautiful in France” by King Francis I, as you spot the many castles on its embankments.

 

DAY 3 / NANTES / ANCENIS 

This morning, set off on a tour of Nantes. In the medieval quarter of Bouffay, marvel at the narrow streets on your way to the Gothic-style cathedrals of St. Peter and St. Paul. Île Feydeau, a wealthy, 18th-century neighbourhood, is an “island” on land. See the Graslin Theatre and the famous Passage Pommeraye shopping centre before exploring the Castle of the Dukes of Brittany—a Renaissance-era Breton monument with an aura of old-world charm. Spend the afternoon cruising to Ancenis and arrive in the evening. Dinner and entertainment are provided on board.

 

DAY 4 / ANCENIS / ANGERS 

This morning’s excursion will take you along the Muscadet Wine Route. As you pass delightful villages, you’ll witness the longstanding tradition of wine-making in the region. Next, tour La Chapelle-Heulin, stopping at the Château de la Cassemichère. In this pastoral paradise, discover the history of the vineyard, visit the cellars, and taste the dry white wine, which has fruity and floral notes. After, head for Clisson, a 15th-century medieval village with Italian origins and flavour. Return to the ship for lunch, and relax as you take in sweeping views of the Loire Valley during an afternoon spent cruising.

 

DAY 5 / ANGERS  

World-renowned for its rich cultural heritage, Angers is also an economic centre whose inhabitants enjoy a high quality of life. Here, you’ll visit the 13th-century fortress of King René, which is home to the most significant collection of medieval tapestries still in existence today: the Apocalypse Tapestry. After, cross the city of canons with its numerous relics of Gothic-style architecture before arriving in la Doutre, in the heart of Angers.

In the afternoon, you will visit the Cadre Noir de Saumur, which was listed by UNESCO as a landmark of Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2011 for its unique and time-honoured tradition of horsemanship. Established in 1825, riding techniques are based on a harmonious relationship between man and horse. Following a tour of the stables and tack room, explore the fortified town of Saumur.

 

DAY 6 / BOUCHEMAINE / THE LOIRE CHÂTEAUX 

Today, travel by coach to see the castles of the Loire Valley. Your first stop is the Château d’Azay-le-Rideau. Built on an island in the middle of the Indre river, the construction was financed by Gilles de Berthelot, a wealthy patron of Francis I who wished to blend innovative Italian architectural elements with the traditional French style. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, this exceptional château is a pinnacle of Renaissance refinement.

Next, head to Villandry, where after lunch you’ll enjoy a stroll through the multi-level gardens, followed by a visit to Rigny-Ussé to see the Château Ussé. With its fortified towers, turrets, and steeples, this magnificent construction is reminiscent of a castle out of a fairy tale. It’s no surprise that that this site is said to have inspired Charles Perrault’s The Sleeping Beauty. Mooring overnight in Bouchemaine.

 

DAY 7 / BOUCHEMAINE / ANCENIS / NANTES 

Embark on an excursion along the Corniche Angevine. Setting off by coach, you’ll be graced with spectacular views of the river and town along the Loire Angevine levee road. Continuing along the Corniche Angevine road, pass quaint villages and gaze upon the Loire.

Rejoin the ship at Ancenis in time for lunch and spend the afternoon cruising along the tranquil Loire, where you’ll have the pleasure of observing the greenery along the river’s embankments. Shaped over centuries, this is one of the last untamed regions of France. In the evening, celebrate your last night on the ship with a gala dinner.

 

DAY 8 / NANTES / DISEMBARKATION 

Following a buffet breakfast on board and a farewell from the crew, disembark in the morning in Nantes and continue on your journey.

Dates & Prices

Itinerary Code
(Name of Itinerary)
 Itinerary Start Date  Ship name  Route Duration (Nights) Main Deck Pricing PP Upper Deck Pricing PP Suite Main Deck Pricing PP Suite Upper Deck Pricing PP
RREU-06
(A Royal River)
4/16/2017 MS Loire Princesse Nantes/Nantes 7 $3,050 $3,600 N/A N/A
4/28/2017 MS Loire Princesse Nantes/Nantes 7 $3,050 $3,600
5/20/2017 MS Loire Princesse Nantes/Nantes 7 $3,240 $3,790
6/6/2017 MS Loire Princesse Nantes/Nantes 7 $3,240 $3,790
6/18/2017 MS Loire Princesse Nantes/Nantes 7 $3,240 $3,790
6/30/2017 MS Loire Princesse Nantes/Nantes 7 $3,240 $3,790
7/12/2017 MS Loire Princesse Nantes/Nantes 7 $3,240 $3,790
7/24/2017 MS Loire Princesse Nantes/Nantes 7 $3,240 $3,790
8/5/2017 MS Loire Princesse Nantes/Nantes 7 $3,240 $3,790
8/17/2017 MS Loire Princesse Nantes/Nantes 7 $3,240 $3,790
8/29/2017 MS Loire Princesse Nantes/Nantes 7 $3,240 $3,790
9/15/2017 MS Loire Princesse Nantes/Nantes 7 $3,240 $3,790
10/7/2017 MS Loire Princesse Nantes/Nantes 7 $3,050 $3,600
10/19/2017 MS Loire Princesse Nantes/Nantes 7 $3,050 $3,600

Prices are per person based on double occupancy and include the classic excursion package.

RREU-06 Port Charge: N/A

RREU-06 Single Supplement:

  • Main Deck: $957
  • Upper Deck: $957

Inclusions

  • The cruise on a full board basis, commencing with dinner on Day One and ending with buffet breakfast the final day
  • Drinks included on board are unlimited mineral water, wine, beer and fruit juice only, with tea or coffee after each meal, served by CroisiEurope during on-board meals; all drinks taken at the bar (except Champagne and drinks on the wine list)
  • The excursion to the Castles of the Loire
  • An air-conditioned twin main deck cabin with en suite shower/wc
  • Onboard entertainment
  • The services of our hostess on board
  • Welcome cocktail
  • The Gala evening
  • Insurance covering emergency aid and repatriation
  • All port taxes

Ship Details

MS Loire Princesse

BuiltLengthDecksCabinsPassengersCabin Size
201490m2489614m² More Details

Travel Tips

The Loire

Travel Documents / Visas

1. Passport

Canadian citizens must have a passport that is valid for at least 6 months after the last date of travel to enter France (EU).

Citizens of other countries should consult with their travel agent or our office.

2. Visa

No visa is required for France for leisure stays of up to 90 days.

Packing List

A handy checklist of what to bring on your trip can be downloaded here.

Insurance

We very strongly recommend the purchase of appropriate travel insurance for any trip outside of Canada. Information on travel insurance options can be found here.

Smoking

Not permitted anywhere indoors. There are designated areas on the outside decks.

Weather

April / May – cool days in the 10’s and low 20’s. Occasional rain but seldom steady.

June to September – warm days in the mid 20’s and cool evenings. Mostly dry.

October – cool days in the mid to high 10’s. Occasional frost but mostly dry.

Arrival / Departure

Upon booking, we will provide detail instructions on how to meet your ship on embarkation day. If you have not made any pre or post tour arrangements with us, you will have to arrange your own transportation to and from the port of embarkation. We are happy to provide advice or to assist in arranging transfers.

The ship will not be ready for check-in before mid-afternoon. If you have luggage that you need to deposit so you can enjoy some free time in port, the purser may be able to accommodate you provided we know in advance.

The cruise will finish in the morning (usually around 9am) on the final day. It is necessary to have settled your onboard account and to have disembarked by this time as instructed by the cruise director on the day before.

Money

The currency is the EURO. It is uncommon for local shops and restaurants to accept any other currency.

Credit cards are acceptable for larger purchases in retail shops, but often not in restaurants or cafés.

ATM’s accepting most international debit and credit cards can be found in abundance.

Gratuities (Tipping)

As always, gratuities are at your own discretion. If you feel the service has met or exceeded your expectations, the ship suggests an amount of EURO $ 5-10 per person per day.

Laundry

Unfortunately there are no laundry facilities on board so bring what you need for the cruise.

Excursions

Most of our programs include a full complement of excursions. Some additional excursions may be available on board at an extra cost. Please check with us or consult the purser onboard for additional information.

Excursions will usually involve a lot of walking, often on cobblestone streets. If you have difficulty walking any distance, please let us know in advance and we will advise how best we can accommodate you.

Regrettably, most of our excursions are not suitable to those confined to a wheelchair.

Activity Level / Strenuousness

Light – At most, participation in the shore excursions requires the ability to walk reasonable distances and some stairs.

Food

Breakfast, lunch and dinner are all included in your cruise fare so you shouldn’t be too hungry. It is worthwhile to sample the local cuisine though. Goat cheese is a local favourite as is “rillettes” (pâté), and sablé – a tasty local biscuit.

If you are a wine lover, the Loire Valley is of course famous for its Sauvignon Blanc, Sancerre and Chenin Blanc grapes.

Your shipboard staff all speak English of course, but when you are wandering through the shops in small villages, the local folk may have little English. Time to brush up on that high school French or bring along a phrasebook or translation app.

Medical Facilities

There are no medical personnel onboard the ship. However, the purser can contact onshore medical people for emergency and non-emergency situations and rapid evacuation can easily be facilitated in the most urgent cases.

Phone & Internet

There is a phone in each cabin. As is typical, the charges for overseas calls are relatively high.

Free Wi-Fi is available in the main public areas of the ship but not necessarily in all cabins. As internet is provided through a mobile network, bandwidth (speed) will vary depending on the number of concurrent users, the proximity to a cell tower and other factors.

If you would like to have regular data and phone connection, we suggest either arranging an overseas roaming plan with your mobile operator, or pick up a local SIM card if you have an unlocked phone.

Health / Vaccinations

There are no vaccinations required to travel to France. As always, we recommend being in good health prior to any long distance travel. Consult your physician with any specific concerns in regard to this program.

Safety & Security

Despite recent events, France is extremely safe. Particularly the small cities and towns on this voyage, you should have nothing to be concerned about. This being said, being constantly aware of your surroundings and not taking unnecessary valuables with you is always recommended. Leave your passport, extra money and any other belongings you do not need during the day in the safe in your cabin.

You can access current information about the security situation in France by referring to the Canadian government travel advisory site at https://travel.gc.ca/destinations/france 

Suggested Reading

The Cathedral Builders of the Middle Ages

The Road from the Past

Chateaux of the Loire Valley

The Most Beautiful Villages of the Loire