PARIS + BURGUNDY AREA (5 Days, 4 Nights)
DAY1 - City tour Of Paris – Eiffel Tower, Louvre Museum, Lunch in the Marais area, Notre Dame Cathedral, Sacré Coeur, Arc de triomphe, Champs Elysée, Place de la Concorde, Opera Garnier, Dinner in center of Paris.DAY 2 Burgundy Tour - Departure to Chablis: One of the most famous white wines in the world comes from this area– Stop at one of the most famous wine houses of Chablis and taste the world famous Grand crus, 1ere Crus and Petit Chablis and enjoy a panoramic view of the Grand Crus vineyards. After Lunch in a gastronomic restaurant take a walk through the valleys of Grand Crus to explore the prestigious vineyards at your own pace.Later we drive to Vezelay , small village listed in the 'most beautiful villages of France'.with far-reaching views over the 'Monts de Morvan' and on the edge of the Morvan Regional Park, Dinner in a typical countryside restaurant with burgundy wines , drive back to Paris.DAY 3- Visit Montmartre Church , free shopping time in Paris followed by a Fashion show and Dinner at Seine River Cruise.DAY 4 – CHATEAU DE VERSAILLES Followed by Moulin Rouge Show or a Gala Dinner at a venue of your choice.Day 5 – Departure , Transfer to Airport. DAY 1 CITY TOUR OF PARISCity tour of Paris : Climb up to the top of Eiffel tower to have that unprecedented view over Paris, the city of love. “Eiffel tower”, also called “Dame de Fer –Iron Lady” is named after the engineer Gustave Eiffel, whose company designed and built the tower. Constructed in 1889 as the entrance to the 1889 World's Fair The tower is 324 metres (1,063 ft) tall, about the same height as an 81-storey building.Later visit Louvre Museum: a historic monument in center of Paris, France
. Louvre is not only one of the world's largest museums but it is also the world's most visited museum, receiving more than 9.26 million visitors in 2014. The museum is housed in the Louvre Palace, originally built as a fortress in the late 12th century under Philip II. Remnants of the fortress are visible in the basement of the museum. Masterpieces like Mona Lisa" by Leonardo da Vinci, The Nike of Samothrace, Raft of the Medusa" by Théodore Géricault, Sleeping Hermaphroditos and many more will make you travel through the time!!!!
Lunch in the Marais Area: situated in 3rd and 4th arrondisement of Paris , where you get to feel the medieval Paris
Later visit Notre Dame Cathedral : one of the oldest monument of Paris, over 800 years old!!! The Notre Dame Cathedra
l is widely considered one of the finest examples of French Gothic architecture in the world.. The name Notre Dame means "Our Lady" in French, and is frequently used in the names of Catholic church buildings in Francophone countries! Appointed bishop of Paris in 1160, Maurice de Sully decided to give the capital a cathedral worthy of France’s largest city. He wanted to build it in the style of the day, now known as the gothic style. King Louis VII, one of his classmates, encouraged the project. The Church, notable residents of the city, and the entire population participated in construction: some offered money, others offered their labour, while others offered their knowledge. Construction began in 1163, and Notre-Dame would be completed some 100 years later, in 1272. During this time, many craftsmen’s guilds (tailors, sculptors, carpenters, joiners, masons, and glassblowers) worked relentlessly under the supervision of seasoned architects.
Drive to Arc de triomphe – Champs Elysée passing through Sacré Coeur Basilica and famous Pigalle area.
Arc de triomphe was built between 1806 and 1836 is an honour for those who fought for France, in particular, those who fought during the Napoleonic Wars. Engraved on the inside and at the top of the arch are all of the names of the generals and wars fought. There are inscriptions in the ground underneath the vault of the arch which include the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier from World War I where the Memorial Flame burns and have made the Arc de Triomphe Paris a revered patriotic site.
From Arc de triomphe you walk down the avenue de champs elysée admiring the elegant facades, high end beauty stores, stylish cafés and restaurants, and leafy plane trees along the massive saide walks and not to forget the Grand Palais & Petit Palais.
Walk Leading to Place de la Concorde provides the quintessential "Parisian view". From here you can see the Arch in the distance, the massive avenue, the National Assembly, the Madeleine church, the famous Hotel de Crillon, the Grand Palais, the Obelisk of Luxor, and the Eiffel Tower rising behind it all. While the scene is breathtaking, it helps to remember that thousands of people were executed in the center of the square during the revolution, including Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette. The obelisk was a gift from Egypt---. Facing the obelisk is the Hotel de Crillon
---- This is generally considered the most exclusive hotel in Paris.
Visit OPERA PALAIS GARNIER from outside The Palais Garnier is a 1,979-seat opera house
, which was built from 1861 to 1875 for the Paris Opera
. It was originally called the Salle des Capucines, because of its location on the Boulevard des Capucines
in the 9th arrondissement of Paris
, but soon became known as the Palais Garnier, in recognition of its opulence and its architect, Charles Garnier
The Palais Garnier is "probably the most famous opera house in the world, a symbol of Paris like Notre Dame Cathedral
, the Louvre
, or the Sacré Coeur Basilica
. DAY 2BURGUNDY TOUR
Burgundy also known as “Bourgogne” in French is a world famous wine producing region located in central eastern France- Some of the most prestigious and most expensive red and white wines in the world come from this region ( Richebourg, Montrachet, Chambertin, Romanée Conti, Pouilly Fuissé). In the region red wines are mostly made from Pinot noir
and white wines from Chardonnay
grapes, other grape varieties can also be found, including Gamay
, Pinot blanc
, and Sauvignon blanc
One interesting thing to understand here is that “Burgundy” produce these prestigious wines not only because of the quality of grape plant or climatic conditions but because of the particular type of soil which is just found in this area called “Kimmeridgian soil” – limestone clay which is heavy with nutrients from the fossils of shellfish.[Source]
About 200 million years ago, the Burgundy region was part of a vast, tropical sea which created limestone soils, the secret behind the zesty minerality that’s a hallmark of Burgundy wines. In fact, if you venture into the vineyards you can find chunks of limestone or marl (limestone mixed with clay) that have fascinating fossilized sea creatures mixed within.
It is in this spirit that the Kimmeridgian soil is the most famous and important on earth when it comes to fine wine. The quality, longevity and unique features of this particular blend of limestone and clay have driven the wine world for centuries. Battles have been won and lost, fortunes come and gone, and even nations have been created and remade in the time these wines have been famous. And for that, there is no comparison.
The reputation and quality of the top wines, together with the fact that they are often produced in small quantities, has led to high demand and high prices. Some of the top vineyards, which are quite small, are protected behind stone walls and iron gates, so valuable are the grapes that they produce.
We will be leaving early from Paris to get the CHABLIS (Around 3Hours drive), a prestigious wine producing village in Burgundy known for its “Grand Crus”.
Enjoying the beautiful French countryside we arrive at CHABLIS where we take a guided tour of one of the most reputed Wine cellars with a tasting session of Chablis Grand Crus, Premier Crus and Petit Chablis with a breathtaking view of Grand Crus vineyards.
Lunch at a typical countryside restaurant enjoying the delicious local cuisine and Burgundy wines.
After Lunch we head to a short walk through the famous vineyards, discovering the area at your own pace.
Later we drive to VEZELAY – listed in “one of the 'most beautiful villages of France
'”, is 50km south of Chablis in Burgundy. An attractive village, Vezelay is in an imposing position strung out along the crest of a hill, with far-reaching views over the 'Monts de Morvan' and on the edge of the Morvan Regional Park
. The village, founded in the 12th century, is more or less one long, steep street that rises up to Vezelay Abbey at the top of the hill.
Many of the houses along the main street are now cafes, galleries and gift shops but I was pleased to see almost none of the 'tack' along the road that occupies many a tourist town - if you 'need' carved zebras, coloured fluffy toys and lollies saying "je t'aime" you will need to look elsewhere... this is a big plus in Vezelay's favour!
As you stroll along the street you will notice the shells set in the ground - these are the symbol of the French pilgrims
who set off to walk from France to the church of St James at Santiago de Compostella (Spain). One of the four main pilgrim routes starts from the abbey at vézelay.
There are also a few narrow winding streets leading off the main street, hemmed in by ancient houses featuring many examples of the local architecture, and parts of the original village ramparts that still surround Vezelay. When we visited these side streets were curiously quiet and empty despite the large number of visitors in the village just a few metres away - be sure to amble along a couple and take a look.
In addition to being a 'most beautiful village of France', Vézelay and the abbey are listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.
The highlight of the village is without doubt the Abbey of St Mary Magdalene, an awe-inspiring building with soaring decorative vaults. The abbey contains the relics of Saint Mary and was historically the departure point for pilgrims to Santiago de Compostella. The most notable event in the history of the abbey took place when Richard the Lionheart and Phillippe Auguste embarked on the 3rd crusade from this abbey.
After the 12th century the abbey fell into severe disrepair, until it was restored in the 19th century to the splendid abbey that you can now visit. There is a Visitor Centre to explain more about the history of Vezelay abbey about half way along the main street, in an attractive half-timbered building.
After dinner in a traditional restaurant we drive back to Paris, arriving back around 23H00. DAY 3
After a late morning start we drive to Sacré Coeur Basilica ( Montmartre Church) in Paris. Visit Montmartre - One of the most famous ancient districts in Paris: Montmartre with its Sacré-Cœur Basilica can be seen rising high above the Paris rooftops from across the city. The 130 meters (426 feet) high hill is famous not only for its remarkable church, but also for its bohemian past. The village within a city once was the home to artists such as Salvadar Dalí, Claude Monet, Pablo Picasso and Vincent van Gogh. The picturesque Paris neighborhood still draws millions of visitors every year. An automatic funicular railway carries passengers to the top of the hill in a minute for a breathtaking view over Paris.Once up on the hill, take a minute – or a couple more – to take in the magnificent views of Paris. On the steps in front of the church you’ll see lots people chilling around, as this is one of the most popular touristic spots in Paris. And you can quickly see why: the view of the Parisian rooftops and the many landmarks of the city is unlike anything else in the world. Lunch in Montmartre area and later we drive to Galleries Lafayatte (Opera Area) for shopping and relaxing. Fashion show is held every Friday at Galleries Lafayette or we can also arrange for private fashion shows on other days too ( last 30 minutes).In the night we board a seine river cruise for that memorable night view of Paris and its magnificent monuments and golden bridges. Eiffel tower is remarkably beautiful in the night with glittering lights. Dinner on the cruise or a restaurant of your choice. DAY 4 After Breakfast at the hotel we drive to Majestic Palace de Versailles
, royal residence of the Kings of France, Louis XIV, Louis XV and Louis XVI and their courts from 1682 to 1789. The Château de Versailles, which has been on UNESCO’s World Heritage List for 30 years, is one of the most beautiful achievements of 18th-century French art. The site began as Louis XIII’s hunting lodge before his son Louis XIV transformed and expanded it, moving the court and government of France to Versailles in 1682. Each of the three French kings who lived there until the French Revolution added improvements to make it more beautiful. The Hall of Mirrors, the King’s Grand Apartments, the Museum of the History of France. The Château de Versailles, the seat of power until 1789, has continued to unfurl its splendour over the course of centuries. At first it was just a humble hunting lodge built by Louis XIII. But Louis XIV chose the site to build the palace we know today, the symbol of royal absolutism and embodiment of classical French art.Finally, take advantage of the opportunity to delight in Versailles's captivating French-style gardens. Take a walk around the impressive gardens (you might be pushed to cover all 250 acres though) and meander through the landscaped geometric paths and manicured lawns. As Europe’s largest palace garden it’s nothing short of breath-taking and spans down into basins with regal fountains for the complete picturesque setting. Make sure you stop off at the Apollo and Latona fountains to admire the marble statues Lunch in a reataurant around Versilles. Later in the evening attend a French Cabaret show “Lido” or “Mouline Rouge” accompanied with a glass of champagne or a Gala Dinner organized at an exclusive French venue of your choice. DAY 5 DEPARTURES, Transfer to the airport.