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Join two culinary experts on this fascinating eight-day river cruise to discover France’s premier gastronomic region

For up-to-date advice on travel and COVID-19, see our homepage. We are delighted to bring you a new 2022 date for this popular tour.

The Rhône region is the epicentre of Gallic gastronomy and, as such, is one of Europe's ultimate destinations for foodies.

Rich Burgundy wines, fine cheeses, zesty rosé from Provence… you'll taste it all (and much more) on our new eight-day cruise through southern and eastern France. And that's not all! You'll also be joined by acclaimed chef Michel Roux Jr and food writer Tom Parker Bowles for an entertaining and insightful series of food events and excursions.

After setting sail from Arles, you will travel up the Rhône river, stopping at Avignon, Viviers, Tournon-sur-Rhône and Chalon-sur-Saône to explore these charming destinations and feast on the region's best bites.

You'll tour Roman monuments, visit vineyards, and enjoy all-inclusive food and wine in the ship's fantastic restaurants. Along the way, Michel will host an exclusive cooking demonstration, sign copies of his latest book and share his culinary secrets in a special Q&A session.

"I can't wait to join you on the Rhône for this wonderful holiday. I will help you discover the secrets of French cuisine in a region famous for its gastronomy."

Michel Roux Junior

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Michel Roux Jr
Michelin star chef and TV personality

Michel Roux Jr is one of the world's great chefs, taking over Le Gavroche in Mayfair, London, from his father Albert Roux and earning two coveted Michelin stars. A regular TV personality, Michel has made numerous appearances on ITV's Hell's Kitchen with Gordon Ramsay and BBC Two's MasterChef. He has also co-presented BBC Two's Food And Drink, appeared as a mentor in The Chef's Protege, presented Channel 4's Kitchen Impossible and hosted BBC's Saturday Kitchen.

Tom Parker Bowles
Food critic and writer

Tom Parker Bowles is one of the UK's most popular and engaging food writers and critics. As well as appearing as an expert judge on numerous TV food programmes, Tom is The Mail on Sunday's highly respected food and restaurant critic.

Price includes

  • Return flights from the UK
  • All internal transfers
  • See Michel Roux Jr in action during an exclusive cooking demo
  • Join Michel on a visit to a renowned gourmet food market in historic Lyon
  • Test your culinary skills at home with a signed copy of Michel's latest cookbook
  • Spend seven nights in a luxury Emerald Stateroom onboard Emerald Liberté
  • Hear from food critic Tom Parker Bowles during a fascinating talk
  • Go on tours of the beautiful and historic Arles, Avignon, Viviers and Tournon-sur-Rhône
  • Sit back and relax with fully-inclusive meals
  • Enjoy wine, beer and soft drinks with lunch and dinner
  • Take part in a variety of exciting onboard activities


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  1. Day
    Arrive in Lyon
    Lyon, France

    You will be met at the airport in Lyon and be transferred to the Emerald Liberté luxury ship where you will be welcomed by your Captain and crew. Tonight, enjoy a welcome reception and dinner on-board.

    Meals - Dinner
  2. Day
    Chalon-sur-Saone - Beaune
    Chalon-sur-Saône, France

    Chalon-Sur-Saône is best known as the birthplace of photography and the centre of Burgundy's wine region. Travel by road to the quaint village of Beaune, where we visit the Hospices de Beaune, one of the finest examples of French fifteenth-century architecture. Marvel at the multi-coloured roofs of this former hospital, now a museum, which has become one of the symbols of Burgundy.

    This afternoon hear tales from Michel Roux in an informal Q&A and talk, plus receive a free book per cabin which Michel will sign. After which join Tom Parker Bowles for a wine tasting of local wines from the Bourgogne region. Before dinner join Michel and our Captain for a cocktail in the lounge.

    Meals - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  3. Day
    Lyon, France

    Lyon is France's third largest city, a former Roman capital positioned at the confluence of the Rhone and Saone rivers, which is steeped in history. Today take part on the guided tour of Lyon, which starts with a drive to the Basilique Notre Dame de Fourvière, Lyon's hilltop church, with stunning views over the town. Then pass by the recently re-discovered Roman amphitheatre and walk through the cobbled streets of the gastronomic old town including the secret laneways. Michel will give a talk during the tour about the food from the region and ingredients to look out for along the way.

    This afternoon enjoy an exclusive cookery demonstration with Michel Roux Jr, who will reveal his insights and stories and share the secrets to creating the finest French cuisine.

    Tonight, enjoy your gala dinner. Where Michel will select his recommended dishes from our menu.

    Meals - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  4. Day
    Tournon, France

    Join your local guide for a walking tour of Tournon, which is dominated by the 16th century castle and roman ruins, and is nestled in the valley near the steep slopes of le Massif Central, France's 3rd largest mountain range. The area has a long tradition in wine making, including the renowned wine growing centre of Tain l'Hermitage across the river.

    EmeraldACTIVE: Guided active walk through vineyards
    EmeraldPLUS: A cheese and olive tasting on board
    EmeraldACTIVE: Guided bike tour to Glun

    Meals - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  5. Day
    Viviers, France

    Arrive in Viviers, a town which still has a lot of flare. Viviers is also the home of one of France's oldest cathedrals, join an included city tour exploring all the architectural heritage of this quaint town.

    DiscoverMORE: Tour to Grignan (extra expense)

    Meals - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  6. Day
    Avignon, France

    Avignon has a rich history; from its Celtic beginnings, to becoming the residence of the Popes and later being central to the French Revolution. Although a fortified town, it is the Papal Palace which stands most secure, on a hill in the centre of town, and its walls are 17-18 feet thick. Your walk with a local guide takes you through this historic centre, strolling the cobbled laneways and browsing the shops overlooking the famous 'Pont d'Avignon'.

    Meals - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  7. Day
    Arles, France

    Join your local guide for a walking tour showcasing the highlights of the city in particular the 2000-year-old Roman Amphitheatre still in use today, which was originally built to hold 20,000 spectators in the style of the Colosseum in Rome.

    DiscoverMORE: Excursion to Les Baux de Provence (extra expense).

    Meals - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
  8. Day
    Return home
    Arles, France

    After breakfast disembark your river cruise ship in Arles and transfer to Marseille Airport for your onward or homebound flight.

    Meals - Breakfast


Emerald Liberté

Cruise ship

One of the most impressive river cruise ships of the Emerald Cruises fleet

Making her maiden voyage in 2017, Emerald Liberté provides a luxurious and relaxing passage through the southern stretches of France.

Proving the journey is every bit as important as the destination, Emerald Liberté is blessed with an incredible selection of amenities and features. Designed to ensure every moment spent navigating the rivers of Europe and Asia with Emerald Cruises is incredibly comfortable, relaxing and enjoyable; the ship's features and flourishes have been selected to perfectly complement the journey.

From luxury restaurants and bar areas to health-giving spa and fitness facilities; our award-winning Star-Ships are designed to complement the journeys and lifestyles of our guests. Determined to ensure our guests never feel restricted during their time with Emerald Cruises, all staterooms, suites and public areas of the ship have been designed to maximise comfort.

The Sun Deck aboard Emerald Liberte always proves to be hugely popular during the summer months, with the delicate river breeze perfectly complementing the stunning panoramas provided by the world's most beautiful waterways.

This open-air top deck consists of a dining area adjacent to leisure and relaxation features; perfect whether you fancy a gourmet meal with new friends, or soak up the sun from the pool.

And it's not just the public area of the Emerald Cruises' Star-Ships which have been lovingly devised to maximise comfort and enjoyment, our ships are blessed with the most stylish cabins. Ensuring restful nights and comfortable days, they are endowed with all the facilities and features you'd expect from an upmarket boutique hotel.

Brought to you by

Emerald Cruises
This tour is operated solely by Emerald Cruises
Emerald Cruises offers classic river cruises on board spacious, modern ships - its award-winning, state-of-the-art fleet is the newest in Europe.

To view Emerald Cruises’ supplier’s terms and conditions click here.

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Call now to book 01615162277