Day 1 :
Day 2 :
- Bonjour Paris:
Meet your tour director and check into hotel
Day 3 :
- Tour Paris:
Take a guided sightseeing tour of Arc de Triomphe, Champs-Élysées, Les Invalides, and Notre Dame Cathedral.
- Visit the Louvre:
The world's largest art museum, the Louvre is housed in a Medieval fortress-turned-castle so grand it's worth a tour itself. You walk through the 71-foot glass pyramid designed by I.M. Pei and added in 1989, and step into another world--one with carved ceilings, deep-set windows, and so many architectural details you could spend a week just admiring the rooms. The Mona Lisa is here, as well as the Venus de Milo and Winged Victory (the headless statue, circa 200 BC, discovered at Samothrace). The Louvre has seven different departments of paintings, prints, drawings, sculptures, and antiquities. Don't miss the Egyptian collection, complete with creepy sarcophagi, or the collection of Greek ceramics, one of the largest in the world. (Please note the Louvre is closed on Tuesdays.)
- Eiffel Tower ascent:
Line up to climb to the top floor of this iconic landmark for a spectacular birds-eye view of the glittering City of Light.
Day 4 :
- Tour Montmartre:
The steep hilly area of Montmartre has been associated with artists for years. The name Montmartre is attributed to the many martyrs that were tortured and killed here.
- Optional Giverny excursion:
Opt to visit the beautiful home of Impressionist Claude Monet at Giverny (before April 1 an optional visit to Van Gogh's last home at Auvers-sur-Oise will be substituted).
LEAP Activity | Cover the Canvas
Live the artist life. Explore line, color, perspective, negative space and form, then paint a masterpiece inspired by the beauty of Paris.
Day 5 :
- Versailles Guided Excursion:
The ultimate palace, Versailles was built by Louis XIII, and housed the royal family and its groveling court from 1682, when the Sun King moved in, to the French Revolution. Everything in Versailles is worth a look, from the 250-foot-long Hall of Mirrors, with themed salons- "war" and "peace" -on either side, to Marie Antoinette's faux country hamlet. When being a queen became too much to bear, she would pretend to be a commoner, tending her sheep and wearing peasant clothes. (Please note Versailles is closed on Mondays.)
- Tour Chartres Cathedral:
Journey to the Loire Valley, stopping to see Chartres Cathedral on the way. Built on an ancient worshipping ground to house a piece of the Virgin Mary’s veil (which is still on display), this 13th-century Gothic church is best known for its windows. With over 20,000 square feet of stained glass, visiting Chartres can be like walking around inside a large jewel. But don’t spend all your time looking up—on the floor is the only surviving medieval labyrinth. The faithful travel the winding 300-yard path on their knees to reach the image of paradise at the center. Ouch.
LEAP Activity | Seize the Château!
This costume workshop is a lively role-play activity that puts you in the shoes of the monarchy, clergy, nobility, bourgeoisie, or peasantry to explore the issues underlying the French Revolution.
Day 6 :
- Tour Loire Valley:
Visit the Château de Chenonceau and the Chateau d'Amboise.
LEAP Activity | Bon Appetit
Slice, dice, and stir! Savor the French country lifestyle by creating (and eating) traditional Loire Valley cuisine.
Day 7 :
- Tour Bordeaux:
Travel to Bordeaux on TGV train and take a tour director-led sightseeing tour of Bordeaux and visit St. Emilion vineyard visit.
Day 8 :
- Tour Bordeaux:
Take a city walk of Bordeaux and travel to Montpellier
Day 9 :
- Tour Montpellier:
Stroll the streets of France's 8th largest city past the Place de la Comédie and another Arc de Triomphe also known as Porte du Peyrou. Also visit Quartier Saint-Anne, a harbor city founded in the mid-nineteenth century.
Day 10 :