Since our only visit to France had been on an ocean cruise stop in Cannes, we wanted to get a better feel for the country, the culture, and the history (oh yes, and the wines!).
The cruise traveled from the Mediterranean to the Normandy Coast, with Paris in between. What more can you ask for? Along the Rhône, Saône, and Seine rivers we stopped at numerous towns and cities for (included) excursions of towns such as Avignon, Perouges, Dijon, Giverny, and Honfleur. Most notable were excursions to wineries in Chateauneuf-du-Pape and Beaune, and the Pont du Gard and the Normandy D-Day landmarks and American Cemetery.
The entire journey required two different riverboats, but the connection was something special as well. The included connection was from Dijon to Paris aboard the TGV, or Train à Gran Vitesse, France's high-speed train. What a pleasure to sit in power reclining seats and travel over 200 mph in smooth, quiet comfort.
This deck is mostly below the waterline with only high-mounted windows to see if the sun is shining. You can hear the screws of passing boats through the hull, and most of the plumbing of decks above.