Paris
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Musical Paris: City of Lights

Performing Parisian style

France is an enchanting country that evokes elegance, opulence, and richness. But the country is so much more than luxurious castles, fashionable cities, and delicious food and wine. France has an incredible history spanning thousands of years, history that can be found in every crevice of its countryside. Each region is unique, and amid the beauty of the mountains, coastline, and cities there are charming small towns filled with friendly people who embrace the true meaning of joie de vivre.

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Highlights

Your Adventure, Day by Day

Day 1 Depart from North America
  • Flight to Paris Sit back, relax, and enjoy your flight to Paris.
Day 2 The adventure begins...
  • Arrive in Paris Our 24-hour Tour Director will meet us at the airport and remain with us until our final airport departure. We will have use of a private coach and driver while touring for the next seven days. Paris is one of the most iconic cities in the world, filled with culture and history, monuments and museums. Known as the City of Light, Paris is a million things to a million people. No writer has ever been able to truly capture Paris in words, and only the experience of being there can begin to express the grandness and magic of this incredible city.
  • Seine River Cruise Experience the perfect introduction to the beauty of Paris on a Seine River Cruise. We will pass under many graceful bridges and view important landmarks on both banks during our trip.
  • Hotel check in For the next six evening(s) we will enjoy the convenience of our centrally-located Paris hotel, where daily breakfast will be included.
  • Dinner This evening, dinner will be provided in a local restaurant.
Day 3 The Birth of the City
  • Sainte-Chapelle (Holy Chapel) Visit the ethereal Sainte-Chapelle (Holy Chapel) on the Île de la Cité in the heart of the city. Commissioned by Louis IX, the tiny Gothic marvel features 15 of the most spectacular stained glass windows in Europe, depicting over 1,000 religious scenes. It was originally built to house religious relics, including the Crown of Thorns.
  • Visit Notre-Dame Cathedral Work began in 1163 on a spot that had been a holy shrine since Roman times. Over the centuries, the cathedral has been the scene of some of France's most momentous occasions, including the coronation of Napoleon.
  • Explore the Marais Quarter The Marais Quarterwhose history stretches back to the beginning of the city. The Marais features magnificent shops and cafes, and is a perfect place to take in the Parisian lifestyle. While here, we will get a view of the La Place des Vosges, the oldest square in Paris.
  • Dinner This evening, dinner will be provided in a local restaurant.
  • First Concert Performance Your concert performance is today. Venue options include historic gothic masterpiece Notre Dame and La Trinité, where Messiaen served as organist and where Hector Berlioz had his funeral. In addition, there is Saint-Étienne-du-Mont, The American Church in Paris, and the Église de la Madeleine, which is another of our most popular venues for attracting good audiences. Finally, the Église St- Roch regularly hosts concerts. It is an excellent venue for visiting choirs and has good facilities and very organized publicity.
Day 4 Day Trip to Chartres & Versailles
  • Travel to Chartres The city of Chartres, lying near the border of the Loire Valley, was one of the first urban conservation sites in France. With its half-timbered houses, cobbled streets, and stone bridges, the venture has successfully retained the town’s unique charms.
  • Visit Chartres Cathedral The Chartres Cathedral is the jewel in the crown of medieval churches in Europe. The stone church is a testimony to the religious fervor of the Middle Ages. Chartres boasts an unrivaled expanse of sculpture, as well as one of Europe's most impressive collections of stained glass windows.
  • Experience Versailles A palace commissioned by Louis XIV around Louis XIII’s hunting lodge. In addition to viewing the spectacular Gardens, our visit includes the ornate State Apartments, highlighted by the magnificent Hall of Mirrors. Versailles set the standard for royal opulence in the 17th century; this over indulgence set the stage for outrage and the ensuing French Revolution 100 years late.
  • Seize the Chateau! Experience the French Revolution through role play. Using Audio Guides you will find yourself in the shoes of the monarchy, clergy, nobility, bourgeoisie or peasantry to explore the issues underlying the French Revolution.
  • Dinner This evening dinner will be provided at a local restaurant.
Day 5 Plunge into Paris
  • Conciergerie Visit the Conciergerie, located near Notre-Dame Cathedral. This splendid gothic palace was named for the king’s official (The Keeper) who maintained order within the palace walls. During the French Revolution, it housed up to 1,200 prisoners, including Marie Antoinette.
  • Place de la Bastille Experience the Place de la Bastille, where on July 14, 1789, an angry Parisian mob stormed the notorious prison and freed the prisoners.
  • Second Concert Performance Your concert performance is today. Venue options include historic gothic masterpiece Notre Dame and La Trinité, where Messiaen served as organist and where Hector Berlioz had his funeral. In addition, there is Saint-Étienne-du-Mont, The American Church in Paris, and the Église de la Madeleine, which is another of our most popular venues for attracting good audiences. Finally, the Église St- Roch regularly hosts concerts. It is an excellent venue for visiting choirs and has good facilities and very organized publicity.
  • Dinner This evening dinner will be proved in a local restaurant.
Day 6 Paris: The Rise and Fall of Napoleon
  • Arc de Triomphe Ascend the Arc de Triomphe, a massive triumphal arch commissioned by Napoleon. Today, it is a symbol of Paris and is home to the tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
  • Walk through the Jardin des Tuileries Explore the neo-Classical gardens outside of the entrance to the Louvre and continue to La Place de la Concorde for a magnificent view of the Champs Élysées. Time permitting we will explore the Champs Élysées, which offers a beautiful look at Parisian life and architecture.
  • Tour the renowned Louvre Museum A local specialist will guide us through the museum. We will see Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa, the imposing Coronation of Napoleon, and many of the finest paintings and sculptures from western civilization.
  • Visit the Hôtel des Invalides An imposing building commissioned by Louis XIV in 1670 for his wounded and homeless veterans.
  • Visit the gilded Dome Church The Dome Church is one of the finest examples of 17th century French architecture. It is highlighted by the massive Tomb of Napoleon.
  • Dinner Tonight we will enjoy dinner in a local restaurant in the Latin Quarter, a section of the city that dates back to the Roman times; it is generally associated with artists, intellectuals, and political unrest.
Day 7 Paris of the Impressionists
  • Visit the Musée D’Orsay The Musée D’Orsay is housed in a former railway station. It features mainly French art from 1848-1915, and is best known for its impressionist masterpieces by Monet, Degas, Renoir, and Cezanne.
  • Eiffel Tower Ascend to the top of Paris’ most recognizable landmark, the Eiffel Tower, built for the Universal Exhibition of 1889. The wrought-iron tower was not meant to be permanent, and the first permit was only for 20 years. But by that time, it had proved to be a valuable communication device for radio. It is now France’s global icon and has hosted over 200 million visitors.
  • Sacré-Coeur Basilica Visit Sacré-Coeur Basilica, a huge white church that dominates the Parisian skyline. Construction of the church began in 1875 and ended in 1914, just before WWI. Inside, we can admire the stained glass and some of the world’s largest mosaics.
  • Dinner & Place du Tertre Tonight we will ascend to the Montmartre area of Paris, where we will have dinner in a local restaurant. This area was made famous in the late 19th century as an artists’ haunt. We will also spend time in the Place du Tertre, a square known for its local artwork.
  • Third Concert Performance Your concert performance is today. Venue options include historic gothic masterpiece Notre Dame and La Trinité, where Messiaen served as organist and where Hector Berlioz had his funeral. In addition, there is Saint-Étienne-du-Mont, The American Church in Paris, and the Église de la Madeleine, which is another of our most popular venues for attracting good audiences. Finally, the Église St- Roch regularly hosts concerts. It is an excellent venue for visiting choirs and has good facilities and very organized publicity.
Day 8 Final Farewell...
  • Depart to North America Our rewarding and enjoyable tour comes to an end as our Tour Director accompanies us to the airport on our final day.