We chose this cruise for the chance to explore the Bordeaux and Provencal areas of France, and our travel agent recommended Uniworld as being an excellent line. We thoroughly enjoyed the beautiful ship with its elegant French décor and contemporary art, its kind and helpful staff, and the surprisingly good food and wine. Our cabin had a French window, very comfortable bed, lovely bath with heated towel bars and floor, and excellent storage. We even took a photo of the closet interior with its shelves, racks, and drawers!
The excursions were generally good to excellent, although my husband, who has hearing difficulties, found the microphone system incompatible with his hearing aids. I relayed to him as much as I could of the commentary. High points: the Pont du Gard, the little town of Beaune, and Viviers with its tour of a potter's studio and a potting demonstration by the potter himself. There were a few niggles: we had only 2 1/2 hours in Arles, which surely merits a full day. The person who showed us to our cabin did not explain how to open the window or turn on the lights or activate the light to indicate we were sleeping in. Room service was quite limited. The self service laundry (a fine touch) had machines which needed an engineer to operate. Everyone in the laundry room was extremely frustrated, and there was no promised iron to press our clothing. And then there was the Mistral: powerful winds (at least 40-50 mph) that blew for three days and forced us to walk horizontally on the excursions. We had read about these winds (which are supposedly capable of blowing the ears off a donkey), and now we have met them personally. These are minor points, and obviously Uniworld cannot control the weather.
The food was extremely varied and delicious, with efforts made to include the cuisine and wines of the areas we visited. We particularly enjoyed the buffet lunches with their colorful variety and choices, the homemade soups and delectable Chef-made ice creams. One day lunch featured oysters in the half shell! The waiters and wine steward were knowledgeable, friendly, and efficient.