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Hey there! Join me as I take you on a first-hand experience of APT’s ‘Rhone Treasures', South of France’ itinerary…

The ship:

Aboard MS Amacello, I was lucky enough to have a cabin to myself and thoroughly enjoyed the good sized room and big bed that was perfect for a great night’s sleep after the abundant short excursions on offer.

Cabins get made up with bottle of water in the morning, and in the evenings, return to a chocolate on your pillow & the next day’s program on your bed.

APT river cruises are all inclusive, meaning that all your meals, drinks & shore excursions have been paid for in the cruise price. Yay. :)

The food:

You will not be short of options on an APT River Cruise with a superb variety of excellent meals available.

From buffet breakfast through to freshly cooked omelettes – you won’t start your day hungry!

Lunch has two options on offer – opt for either a light lunch in the lounge or a full course lunch in the main restaurant

And then dinner is a choice of three courses, as well as the chance to dine at the chef’s table. Located in a small & intimate room, the chef cooks a set menu of amazing food that’s paired with great wines, all prepared right before your very eyes.

Whatever you choose, be assured that the food is amazing, and of course being in France, there’s always a cheese station with meals! Do be prepared to gain a few kilos as it’s hard to resist the fab food & delicious French wines that the staff are only too happy to top up as soon as yours nears the bottom.

The shore excursions:

As mentioned earlier, these are all included in your package, with a choice of two, sometimes even three a day. And enjoy the welcome back aboard with cold towel, bottled water & scrummy peach or fruit ice tea.

My shore excursion highlights:

Pont du Guard – A Roman aqueduct that once supplied gallons of water to the baths & fountain of Nimes. Incredible to think it was constructed without any modern day tools!

Grignan Castle – After a visit to a local truffle farm & taste of these rare delicacies, it was off to an APT signature experience at Grignan Castle.After a guided tour of the castle (famous 17th century writer, Marquise de Sévigné, was a regular visitor), we enjoyed a private cocktail reception in the castle.

Ardeche Steam Train – The autumn colours made this train journey through the Ardeche Mountains very picturesque.

Chatillon-sur-Chalaronne – A great way to try France’s delicacy of Frog’s legs & Snails. We visited a local snail farm to learn how they local farmers grow & prepare the snails – and then we got to try them! It was off to a little village famous for their frogs legs to try in a quaint local pub.

Another bonus was the inclusion of one of APT’s signature dinners at famous French Michelin starred restaurant, L’Abbaye de Collonges - incredible meal, unique venue & music from a pipe organ!

We also enjoyed a city tour by coach of Lyon and saw the old town & famed food market of Les Halles. What an amazing place filled with all the local French delicacies you could ever dream of - from butchers selling salami, local Beaujolais wines, Patisserie Macarons, to all the cheese you could ever desire… I can say this with much confidence as we tasted so many of the local meats, cheese & of course, wine.

The staff:

Amazing – always friendly, smiling & willing to help

Post cruise:

After seven great days aboard MS Amacello, it was time to say goodbye. I had one last night in Lyon before flying home, which is a great city to explore & so easy to get a round.

My recommendations…

  • A visit to the Basilica atop of Fourviere Hill - amazing church constructed in the late 19th Century, plus great views over the city.
  • Catch a short tram ride down to explore the old quarter & all the secret, hidden passageways.
  • After a day exploring, sit outside at one of the many restaurants for some very French outside dining
  • And definitely fit some shopping in!!!

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