I recently had a chance to interview Greg & Kelly Green about a river cruise that they just returned from, sailing from Paris to the Beaches of Normandy on the Seine River.
Greg & Kelly flew into Paris a day early and stayed at a hotel called The Arts Monmartre. It was a small boutique property with a nice view. The staff was wonderful, and the rooms were updated and very nice. They did some sightseeing both the day they arrived and also the following day. After dropping off their bags at the ship, they went back out and explored more sites in Paris.
Onboard, Greg & Kelly had a room with a French balcony, meaning the sliding glass door opens up to a railing; there’s no actual balcony to step out onto. They loved their room.
Greg & Kelly enjoyed filling out the provided onboard postcards that the cruise line staff would send, free of charge, to the guests’ friends and family. They also loved the varied nightly onboard entertainment, especially a local French singer one evening. The food was varied and delicious; the chef had a recommendation every night, but if you didn’t want the recommended dish, you could choose from a variety of other choices. They also had fun making friends onboard.
Stops & excursions highlights:
The Greens had a great time seeing all of the churches, cathedrals, and abbeys along the way. The licensed guides were very knowledgeable and interesting to listen to. One of Greg’s favorite stops was the town of Rouen, where Joan of Arc was martyred. He loved seeing the original William the Conqueror tapestry there, and the Great Clock. Kelly's favorite was Monet’s gardens at Giverny, and how ornate the insides of all of the cathedrals and churches were.
Rather than tour the Beaches of Normandy, the Greens chose to visit an alternate city called Honfleur. They loved seeing this location, which had been bombed during World War II and nearly decimated, but since then has been restored to look like it did previously, with small local shops and a marina.
They loved the pastries onboard, and made a point of trying as many as possible off the ship as well—a delicious choice. They also loved doing this type of cruise, where there were stops and included sightseeing every day, plus they always had time to do some exploring or shopping on their own.
Post-cruise: St. Malo
Following the cruise, Greg & Kelly went on a post-cruise excursion which included 3 nights in St. Malo and one final night in Paris before flying home. Breakfast was included daily, and for the rest of the meals, they had a preferred list of restaurants which the ship had given them. There was some included sightseeing each day, along with free time to explore. One of the highlights was seeing Mont St Michel’s Abbey, which is on an island, built on a cone of rock.
The Greens had a fantastic time on their river cruise! Their biggest recommendation if you’re ever going on a river cruise, is to make sure you take all over-the-counter medications with you that you might need. Everyone remembers to bring prescription meds, but we don’t always think about something as simple as Ibuprofen or aspirin.
I loved interviewing Greg & Kelly about their trip! It was so great to hear about their experiences on and off the ship. They sailed on the exact same cruise that we’re going to do in October 2024, with the opposite order of events. Next year we’ll start at the Beaches of Normandy and Honfleur, and end in Paris.
Let me know if you’re interested in booking, or finding out about, a river cruise—this one or somewhere else! I would highly recommend taking one; they’re a fantastic way to travel, as the Greens found out!