Fo­cus on: Seine

A wa­tery artery flow­ing through the heart of Paris, the Seine winds its way to­wards the English Chan­nel pass­ing me­dieval mar­ket towns and post­card ru­ral scenes on ev­ery bend,

Selling Travel - - Contents - says Jes­sica Pook

With ev­ery twist of the Seine there’s a story wait­ing to be told. It hugs some of the coun­tries fa­mous land­marks, brings to life Monet’s most renowned paint­ings and trans­ports you back in time to cob­bled streets once stomped by Richard the Lion Heart.

The river be­gins its jour­ney in a vil­lage named Source-Seine, be­fore coil­ing north­west for 483 miles through Nor­mandy and fil­ter­ing out into the Chan­nel.

Cruis­ers are spoilt for choice with Shear­ings, Riviera, Crys­tal, Scenic and New­mar­ket Hol­i­days all of­fer­ing any­thing from three­night week­enders to lux­ury 11-day trips.

When to go

Spring is the time to fully ex­pe­ri­ence France’s im­pres­sive flora in full bloom. Monet’s gar­den in Giverny is a true rep­re­sen­ta­tion of the muchloved paint­ing and the gar­dens of Ver­sailles re­ally come to life. Cus­tomers cruis­ing in the sum­mer months will find the river is the per­fect way to en­joy the gen­er­ous sun­shine while pro­vid­ing some re­lief from the heat. Au­gust is peak time for vis­i­tors but Parisians tend to skip town when it gets too hot, giv­ing the city time to breath. And al­though the Seine may strug­gle to com­pete with the Rhine in Ger­many when it comes to Christ­mas mar­kets, the low sea­son still pro­vides plenty of fes­tive cheer. Agents should be aware that heavy rain flow at this time of year can pre­vent ac­cess into Paris from the Seine.

What to ex­pect

Al­though river cruises are typ­i­cally pop­u­lar with the 60-plus bracket, op­er­a­tors such as A-ROSA are at­tempt­ing to make river cruis­ing more ap­peal­ing to fam­i­lies with of­fer­ings in­clud­ing ‘all chil­dren un­der 15 cruise for free’.

The or­chards, laven­der fields and vine­yards that dot the river­scapes will spoil na­ture lovers, along with the sandy beaches and rugged cliffs of Nor­mandy. Shop­pers need no in­tro­duc­tion to the fash­ion cap­i­tal of the world with cafes and cul­ture aplenty in Paris while his­to­ri­ans can trace the steps taken by Joan of Arc be­fore she met her fiery end in Rouen.

How to sell

A-ROSA re­ports an 80% growth in UK pas­sen­gers dur­ing the last 12 months with pas­sen­gers es­pe­cially ea­ger to see D-Day Nor­mandy Beaches and the Bayeux Ta­pes­try.


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