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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2019
This cruise departed from Paris after three days there and visited several towns on the Seine River, including Pontoise, Vernon, Rouen and Honfleur. There were included tours to Monet's garden and the Normandy landing beaches. We ... Read More
This cruise departed from Paris after three days there and visited several towns on the Seine River, including Pontoise, Vernon, Rouen and Honfleur. There were included tours to Monet's garden and the Normandy landing beaches. We visited the American Cemetery and the Caen museum as well. This was especially noteworthy as June 2019 marked the 75th anniversary of D-Day. Our days docked in Paris included a city tour and a walking tour of the artist neighborhood of Montmartre. There was ample free time in all places for independent activities. We have been on the Bizet before and it remains a lovely ship, holding just over 100 passengers. The food and crew are excellent, as has always been our experience on the many Grand Circle cruises we have been on. Our fellow travelers were good company and we enjoy the open seating in the dining room which allows for circulating to different tables and meeting more people than fixed seating allows. There were three Program Directors on board, each one served a group of less than 40 guests. They were all excellent and added greatly to the experience. I don't think most other river cruises have this feature. There were several special nights on board including a can-can show, a sun deck party evening and a strolling accordionist. The included activities list goes on and on, but you could just sit on the sun deck too if you wished. We had great weather and just missed the big heat wave in Paris that began on our departure day. GCT cruises are a very good value if you are somewhat flexible with your dates of travel. Their front office is a bit inflexible as they don't work with travel agents so you have to book directly with them. They also will not hold space so you have to book when you call for info, or else call back when you have finalized your plans. GCT can also be less than responsive to issues raised with them after booking, compared to other travel providers, in our experience. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
We wished to learn about the Normandy Invasion and enjoy another river cruise. The Normandy day trip was quite emotional and many passengers were there to honor relatives and veterans. The itinerary, staff, Program Directors and food ... Read More
We wished to learn about the Normandy Invasion and enjoy another river cruise. The Normandy day trip was quite emotional and many passengers were there to honor relatives and veterans. The itinerary, staff, Program Directors and food were all outstanding. Christophe Leger was our leader and a passionate traveler, historian, and all around good guy. His concern for our welfare, attention to details, and his enthusiasm for French culture and history all contributed to a very enjoyable cruise. A nice touch was the added shuttle bus for those of us who arrived a day early to give us 2-1/2 hours in Paris for a walk-about and a café lunch. This was a nice surprise. Also on departure day, GCT provided an employee to greet us at CDG to point us to the correct departure counters. That place is humongous! I nearly hugged the guy! I suggest asking for a top deck cabin on the right-hand side, as we tied up 3 times to another boat and had to keep our curtain closed during the day. Also when the Eiffel Tower lights up, you can't see it from your port-side cabins. Another suggestion: for the wonderful home-hosted visit, the bar staff onboard had gift wrapped bottles of wine. Our family was enthusiastic to collect various wines and this was an easy solution to bringing a hostess gift. We booked this cruise at the last minute and yet all details were handled well. You can't go wrong with Grand Circle Tours. This is go-to tour company! Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
Wanted to see Paris and Normandy, had cruised with Grand Circle in '16 and loved that trip. Wanted to dress casual and relax. This was a another great trip, spent extra time in Paris before embarking, worth doing, people and places ... Read More
Wanted to see Paris and Normandy, had cruised with Grand Circle in '16 and loved that trip. Wanted to dress casual and relax. This was a another great trip, spent extra time in Paris before embarking, worth doing, people and places great. The staff, the service, made you feel really special. The boat is just the right size,120 passengers, the rooms are adequate for their purpose, enough space for your stuff. This type cruise is the best, no vendors whenever you stop at a port. The guides are excellent, the sites are all worth seeing. The old world, middle ages, housing is really something to see as well as the cathedrals Grand Circle does a great job of getting you involved in the culture. We did the add on trip to London after the cruise, well worth while. Being docked at the Eiffel Tower was a special treat. You can reach all the highlight spots in Paris from dockside.. Also, the Impressionists painters were an important part of the trip. Monet's home and gardens was beautiful, everything was in bloom. Normandy is a must see for anyone, it gives you a much appreciated view of what our troops were facing and the courage it took to be there, When you're treated like someone special and you learn so much it's likely you'll come back,we will. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2016
We travel with Grand Circle because 1. The pricing is terrific, 2. A home-hosted visit is always included on all of their trips including river cruises, 3. Travel is always very casual., and dockage in Paris is within walking distance ... Read More
We travel with Grand Circle because 1. The pricing is terrific, 2. A home-hosted visit is always included on all of their trips including river cruises, 3. Travel is always very casual., and dockage in Paris is within walking distance of the Eiffel Tower and many museums. Seating in the dining room is open and the food is very good. Grand Circle hires their chefs well. Staff aboard ship is always pleasant. Because there are only 135 passengers on the river ship, you get to know your fellow travelers fairly well. In fact, we met some folks on our first river cruise from Paris in 2004 and became friends keeping in touch throughout the ensuing years. . Several years ago they visited us and ended up moving to our community. Navigating the airports is very easy with Grand Circle as they have people to get you to the airport on time for return home and to handle your luggage. In other words, GCT takes care of the details and you just relax and enjoy! Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
Being our first cruise, we took advice from friends who highly recommended Grand Circle. We were not disappointed. Excellent accommodations, timely transportation, a great main guide and local guides, fabulous food, clear directions, ... Read More
Being our first cruise, we took advice from friends who highly recommended Grand Circle. We were not disappointed. Excellent accommodations, timely transportation, a great main guide and local guides, fabulous food, clear directions, complete freedom to take in what you wished and stay on board when yo desired. Obvious attention to detail to make sure their guests received the best possible attention. Servers who remembered names, were always courteous and more attentive than any restaurant, main crew members who mingled and took the time to allow the guests to be part of the cruise experience. Quick attention to anything that needed correcting. Even the maid service people went out of their way to make our stay effortless and they always greeted us in the hallways. If you have experience such total service and quality before, you will find it with Grand Circle. If you have not, pamper yourself and have the time of your life. River boats cannot be beat. Your room and luggage travels with you and you are on land seeing all kinds of history for a large portion of you travels. From setting expectations, to meeting at delivering to the airports, and all in between, Grand Circle leaves nothing to chance. You pay a price, but every cent is worth it. All the multiple time Grand Circle travelers we met said every cruise was exactly the same as the one we took from Honfleur to Paris. I know why Grand Circle is highly rated, they earned it. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2016
I chose this cruise because I wanted to be in Normandy on or around D Day. We spent 3 days in Paris before embarking. In Paris, we visited the Palace of Versailles and took a city tour. On the cruise, We visited the towns where Van Gogh ... Read More
I chose this cruise because I wanted to be in Normandy on or around D Day. We spent 3 days in Paris before embarking. In Paris, we visited the Palace of Versailles and took a city tour. On the cruise, We visited the towns where Van Gogh lived his final years. Van Gogh painted many of the sights (church, etc) in the town. We visited Monet's village and his beautiful Japanese garden. Other towns we toured were Rouen (Joan of Arc) and Honfleur, near the beaches. GCT had excellent tour guides. Our guide, Guillaume was the creme de la creme. Other local guides they hired were very good. GCT also lined up very interesting optional tours. One exceptional tour was to the Benedictine Abbey where they make the Benedictine licquer. The food the boat served was always delicious. The evening entertainment was always top notch. I've been on a dozen cruises with various cruise lines (Viking, Celebrity, Princess, NCL) and this was one of my favorites. I already have my next cruise (in Scandanavia) reserved. Read Less
Bizet Ratings
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