French River Cruising in Five Nights

Day 1 Southampton

Titan’s VIP door-to-door travel service collects you from home for your journey to Southampton. Embark Balmoral (3.5-star) in preparation for a late afternoon sailing.

Day 2 Cruising the Seine - Rouen, France (overnight)

This morning, we’ll plot a course through the countryside of the Parc Naturel Régional des Boucles de la Seine. Relax up on deck or in the lounge and watch the scenes of rolling valleys, wildflower fields and riverside villages pass by. This section of the Seine connects our two destinations for this voyage. We’ll arrive in the first, Rouen, mid-afternoon. The city is 2,000 years old, so there’s plenty of history to uncover, from Gothic churches to Joan of Arc heritage. We’ll spend the night here, so there’s a full day to explore tomorrow.

Day 3 Rouen

Spend a full day exploring Normandy’s regional capital, with its half-timbered houses and narrow streets. The city’s skyline is pierced by the spire of the Cathédrale Notre-Dame, a beautiful Gothic building that inspired Claude Monet to paint his ‘Rouen Cathedral’ series. The churches of Saint-Maclou and Saint-Ouen are also worth visiting. For something more laid-back, perhaps stroll through the narrow streets to the Jardin de Plantes de Rouen. This lovely botanical garden is filled with 600-plus plant species, and includes a fragrant rose garden. Alternatively, you might like to venture further afield and join a tour to Paris or Monet’s watercolour gardens at Giverny.

Days 4-5 Honfleur (overnight)

We arrive in Honfleur early on day 4 and stay until late afternoon on day 5, so there’s plenty of time to get to know this pretty port city. The old harbour, Vieux Bassin, is one of France’s most picturesque scenes. Tall, skinny townhouses squeeze together along the waterfront, standing watch over bobbing boats as they have done for centuries. Café tables spill out onto the terraces - ideal for a cold cider and a spot of people-watching. Leading back from the harbour is a maze of cobbled streets, leading to galleries, churches and gift shops selling bottles of fruity calvados brandy. Put St Catherine’s Church on your must-see list. Constructed by shipbuilders in the 15th century, it’s the biggest timber-built church in the country. Be sure to snap a picture of the quaint, slightly wonky bell tower.

Day 6 Southampton

We arrive back in Southampton early this morning, disembarking after breakfast. Upon arrival, your Titan vehicle will be waiting for the journey home.