Air France Ups Its Game

July 22, 2014 on 7:43 am | In Airlines, France, Paris | Comments Off




CA - Generic Banner (French)
Being Franco-American and a frequent flyer on Air France, I have always enjoyed the fact that every time I stepped aboard any flight from JFK to Paris, the crew and atmosphere made me feel more than halfway home. Yet, as with any long-haul travel—whether in economy, business or first class—I undergo some stress beforehand, wondering whether I’ll be able to sleep; if I will be comfortable; and if the entertainment choices will be sufficiently engaging to help the time pass quickly.

Air France’s latest refitting of its Boeing 777s from JFK to Paris is the airline’s attempt to address those concerns. The carrier recently launched its updated 777 aircraft, with improvements for passengers traveling in all classes, spending over €500 million in upgrades, including new seats: nearly 10,000 in Economy; 1,100 in Premium Economy; and 2,102 in Business.

The Economy seats are reportedly both slimmer and lighter, providing an additional inch of legroom, personal nine-inch flat-screens, a greater variety of entertainment options and electrical sockets for charging personal devices. Along with this, the airline’s Premium Economy’s seats, created in hard shells, provide 40 percent more space than Economy, along with 12-inch screens and plenty of entertainment to fill the six-and-a-half-hour flight from JFK to Paris.

The new Business-Class seats offer full-flat beds with added privacy, Bose noise-cancelling headphones and a laptop-sized 16-inch screen. The luxurious La Première Suites in First Class feature 94-inch flat-bed seats; 24-inch HD screens; premier entertainment; and gourmet cuisine, including Champagne and caviar.

Paris remains a top desired travel destination, not only for American travelers heading to Europe, but also for those who choose to fly through Europe to reach destinations in the Asia-Pacific region. According to the latest Simmons report, Asian-American travelers choose Paris as their preferred vacation destination over any other European country except London. With an eye to the East, Air France announced its intention to carry out additional cabin and entertainment upgrades on aircraft flying to Singapore, Jakarta, Tokyo-Haneda and Shanghai by year’s end.

As competition between airlines escalates to attract luxury and business travelers, Air France’s latest expenditures on upgrades will apply pressure to competitors; yet, routes and destinations will remain key drivers of success.

Jetstreams for Travel Discounts

Discover the food and wine of Alsace, France

July 10, 2014 on 7:31 am | In Dine Drink, France, Paris | Comments Off



Nestled between the beautiful Vosges Mountains in France and the borders of Germany and Switzerland, Alsace is one of the smallest regions in the French Republic but produces some of the most notable Rieslings in the world. Discover France, an award winning bike tour operator, has created a fully-customizable itinerary to lead active travelers along La Route des Vins d’Alsace from Strasbourg, the region’s capital, to Colmar, through numerous wine-producing villages. Pair the dry white wine with haute cuisine from one of 28 Michelin-star restaurants in the region, indulging yourself in the local gastronomy, knowing you get to work it off when you hop back on the bike.

http://www.discoverfrance.com


Late summer adventure with Discover France

July 10, 2014 on 7:25 am | In Adventure Travel, France, Paris | Comments Off



National Geographic by Live PreparedThere’s nothing like traveling around Europe by bike during the late summer; take advantage of cooler weather, less crowds and beautiful scenery on a Discover France active bicycling tour along Europe’s most famous cycling trail from Passau, Germany to Vienna, Austria.

Depart from Passau, the “City of Three Rivers”, and follow the mighty Danube River all the way to Vienna. Stop at a historic monastery, ancient castles and Austria’s oldest surviving church while riding through tiny Austrian villages, lush orchards and picturesque vineyards. Arrive in Vienna, Austria’s bustling capital and historic center, where the old empire meets the modern world. There is so much to explore in Vienna, but don’t forget to sit back, relax and enjoy an Ottakringer beer to celebrate the completion of your journey.


Shangri-La Hotel, Paris is awarded Palace Status‏

July 10, 2014 on 6:50 am | In France, Paris | Comments Off



Paris  - Less than four years after its opening, Shangri-La Hotel, Paris has been awarded the coveted “Palace status,” which enables the hotel to join the prestigious circle of Parisian “Palaces”. Established in 2010, the Palace status is designed to award official recognition to the finest 5-star hotels that have exceptional qualities embodying French standards of excellence and contributing to enhancing the image of France throughout the world.

The members of the Atout France jury (France Tourism Development Agency) were captivated by the soul, history and character of Shangri-La Hotel, Paris, which was constructed in 1896 by Prince Roland Bonaparte, who was the Emperor’s grand-nephew. During the time the Prince lived in the palace, the aristocracy and upper classes gathered with men of letters and scientists in this majestic setting, that honored the Bonaparte family. Having undergone complete refurbishment and enhancement by Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts from 2006 to 2010, the Prince’s residence is now listed with the French institution, “Monuments Historiques”.

Shangri-La Hotel, Paris offers an incomparable fusion of Asian hospitality and French “art de vivre”, and a unique position in Paris, located just across the Seine and a few steps from the Eiffel Tower. The majority of the hotel’s 101 rooms and suites offers breath-taking views of Paris’ sights. The three restaurants are among the best culinary addresses in the capital: “L’Abeille” the French gastronomic restaurant with two Michelin starred Chef Philippe Labbé; “Shang Palace” the only Chinese restaurant in France awarded one Michelin Star; and “La Bauhinia”, the beating heart of the hotel with its French and Asian fusion cuisine. The spa is a haven of tranquillity right in the heart of Paris, boasting relaxing treatment rooms, a 16-meter (52.5-foot) pool drenched in natural light and state-of-the-art fitness facilities. Finally, the historic banqueting and function spaces, all blessed with daylight and covering a total area of 550-square-meters (5,920-square-feet), remind guests of the magnificent receptions hosted by Prince Roland Bonaparte at the end of the 19th century.

Stefan Bollhalder, general manager of Shangri-La Hotel, Paris states: “I would like to thank the Atout France jury members for exalting Shangri-La Hotel, Paris to the position of an exceptional hotel embodying French excellence and elevating France’s prestige on the world stage. This distinction constitutes a fitting reward for the staff teams who toil day after day to ensure our clientele’s well-being, under the guidance of the five key values of Shangri-La: humility, respect, courtesy, generosity of heart and

Hong Kong-based Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts currently owns and/or manages more than 80 hotels under the Shangri-La brand with a room inventory of over 34,000. Shangri-La hotels are five-star deluxe properties featuring extensive luxury facilities and services. Shangri-La hotels are located in Australia, Canada, mainland China, Fiji, France, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Maldives, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Sultanate of Oman, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom. The group has a substantial development pipeline with upcoming projects in mainland China, India, Mauritius, Mongolia, Myanmar, Philippines, Qatar, Sri Lanka and the United Arab Emirates. For more information and reservations, please contact a travel professional or access the website at www.shangri-la.com

Jetstreams for Travel Discounts

Uniworld Extends Significant Savings to Solo Travelers on Most Popular All-Inclusive Europe Cruises‏

July 7, 2014 on 10:57 am | In Austria, Belgium, Cruise Boats, Czech, Denmark, Europe, France, Germany, Hungary, Lichtenstein, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Paris, Russia, Switzerland | Comments Off



Solo travelers can cruise Europe’s legendary waterways with waived or reduced single supplements on a variety of Uniworld Boutique River Cruises ’ most popular itineraries throughout 2014 and 2015. The award-winning all-inclusive river cruise line has waived or reduced the single supplement fee usually charged to guests staying alone in a double accommodation stateroom, so solo travelers can enjoy their own private sanctuary.

Close to 10% of Uniworld’s guests traveled on their own last year and interest in solo travel continues to grow at a steady rate. It is encouraged to book early because waived and reduced single supplements are capacity controlled and do sell out quickly. Solo travelers are attracted by the safety, service, expertise, and genuine camaraderie that Uniworld provides.

“Uniworld is known for having an especially warm and welcoming family-like atmosphere,” says Guy Young, President of Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection. “Our intimate ships, open seating dining, and small group excursions foster a close-knit onboard community, so it’s easy to make new friends with fellow guests.”

Uniworld’s all-inclusive Europe cruises provide even more value with everything included in the fare—all meals and unlimited beverages onboard, all gratuities onboard and onshore, all scheduled arrival and departure day transfers, and a broad menu of fully hosted shore excursions, many of which are exclusive to Uniworld guests.

A partial list of 2014 and 2015 itineraries and departure dates with waived single supplement fees includes:

Bordeaux, Vineyards & Châteaux (Bordeaux to Bordeaux, 8 Days)
2014: August 3 & 10, November 2 & 9
2015: March 15 & 22, August 16

Burgundy & Provence (Avignon to Lyon, 8 Days)
2014: August 3
2015: March 22 & 29, April 12, July 26, August 9

Venice & the Gems of Northern Italy (Venice to Venice, 8 Days)
2014: August 3, November 2 & 9
2015: April 5 & 12, June 14, July 5, August 2

Portugal, Spain & the Douro River Valley (Porto to Porto, 8 Days)
2014: November 2, 9, & 16
2015: March 26, July 16, August 13

Classic Christmas Markets (Nuremberg to Frankfurt, 8 Days)
2014: December 21
2015: December 13

Castles along the Rhine (Basel to Amsterdam, 8 Days)
2015: March 15 & 22, April 1 & 15, July 8 & 15, August 19

For more details, please visit uniworld.com. Join Uniworld’s social media community at facebook.com/uniworldrivercruises  or twitter.com/uniworldcruises.

About Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection
Award-winning Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection—the world’s only authentic boutique river cruise line™—features luxurious ships with an average capacity of 130 guests and the highest staff-to-guest ratio in the river cruise industry, as well as included shore excursions, gourmet cuisine, and unsurpassed hospitality. Based in Los Angeles, California, Uniworld offers voyages on 15 rivers in 20 countries throughout Europe, Russia, China, Vietnam, and Cambodia. Uniworld is a member of Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) and is highly regarded by discerning travelers, media, and cruise industry experts:

Listed among the “World’s Best River Cruises” by Travel + Leisure, and recognized for the “World’s Best Service” in the ‘River Cruise’ category

Seven ships listed among Travel + Leisure’s “Top 20 River Ships,” with River Countess rated highest of all cruise ships (river & ocean)

Distinguished as a Condé Nast Traveler “Platinum Circle Member” an honor bestowed for being on the prestigious Gold List every year for seven years (2008 – 2014)

Top three ranking on Condé Nast Traveler’s “Top 10” list of cruise lines (river & ocean)

Named “Best Luxury River Cruise Line” by Cruise International (2012 & 2013)

About The TreadRight Foundation
Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection is part of a joint initiative with The TreadRight Foundation, a not-for-profit foundation established by The Travel Corporation to encourage sustainable tourism within our own family of brands and in the places we visit. To date, TreadRight has donated more than US $2 million to sustainable tourism projects around the world. To find out more about our work with TreadRight visit: www.TreadRight.org


Seasonal Summer Festivities Announced In Val d’Isère, France

July 7, 2014 on 7:46 am | In Festivals, France, Paris, Webbandstand | Comments Off



Normally associated with skiing in the winter months, Val d’Isere has plenty to offer visitors in the height of summer. The beautiful mountainous village boasts extensive hiking and cycling trails, with endless sporting opportunities and lively social events to keep guests busy.

With a thriving summer calendar, Val d’Isère plays host to an array of exciting activities and experiences over the coming months. Read on for a selection of the best…

4th Tarentaise Ice Scramble “4e Ice Trail Tarentaise” – July 13th 2014
Over 1000 participants will enjoy this event, with 500 setting off with a startling 4am start for the Tarentaise Ice Trail hill climb. The fourth edition of Europe’s highest scramble race will take them to altitudes of over 3000 metres.

In addition, there’s the “Altispeed”, a 32km, 2,500m vertical climb for 500 more adventurers, starting at a more civilized time of half past eight. A mini-scramble lets the children get involved on July 12th. With many of the world’s best athletes expected to attend, this is an event not to be missed!
Environment Awareness Day “Journée de l’environnement” – July 20th 2014
Now in its seventh year, this event encourages guests to reduce their carbon footprint and help to conserve the beauty of the Alps by taking part in waste collecting on the slopes. Valuable hard work is rewarded with a traditional, hearty alpine lunch in one of the resort’s many delicious offerings. The highly reputable Ecomove group have organised this day for numerous years and the amount of waste collected increases annually. It has now developed into an entire day based on the important theme of the environment.
Village Celebrations – July and August 2014

Celebrations abound all summer long in the Val d’Isère hamlets. Don’t miss the Fornet Fete on July 16th, without a doubt the most traditional summer fete of all, offering traditional wooden games from bygone times, accordion concerts and country style aperitifs.

The Vieux Val quarter comes to life on July 26h – 27th with a fantastic parade of floats organised by the “Pics a Bouic” association, plus face painting and endless children’s entertainment. Enjoy the hotly anticipated annual Daille mini Olympic Games on July 23rd, and witness the competitive participation of all of the village’s sportsmen.

From French bowls, to tennis, to volleyball, this event is a great day of sport, fun and conviviality, providing guests with the perfect active family day out. Head to the Tourist office to enter and for information. From August 8th to 10th, guests can throw on their dancing shoes and enjoy the brand new

Country Music Festival; three days of music, dancing and merriment.
CIMES de Val d’Isère – July 21st – August 4th 2014

Val d’Isère metamorphoses into an international centre of excellence for music with the participation of talented classical musicians from every corner of the globe. Members of the public can join in a number of master classes, enjoy the classical and jazz music concerts, as well as the varied free entertainment. Music to our ears!

And with a variety of new outdoor concerts, both in the mountains and in the village, the musical performances never cease. July 25th sees street performances in the Tourist office square, on July 27th guests can enjoy the “Fête du Vieux Val”, while the Ouillette lake plays host to numerous concerts on August 1st.

10th Foire Savoyarde “L’Avaline” – August 2nd and 3rd 2014

This traditional summer fair unites a number of craftsmen and farmers from the Savoy and Aosta regions for a grand traditional fair. Delight the taste buds and sample local Alpine produce ranging from cheeses to cured meats. Marvel at the period clothing, jewellery and sculptures, and witness the captivatingly skilled craftsmen at work in a festive atmosphere.

Enduro de VTT: Mountain bike competition – August 16th – 17th 2014
Enduro is the brand new discipline of mountain biking, requiring the ability to descend steep mountain paths whilst also needing the endurance to climb demanding hills at the same time. For a whole weekend, Val d’Isère will be hosting the French cup. Expect some of the best international mountain bikers and soak up the frantic rhythm and energy!

L’Atelier d’Edmond

Opening on July 5th, this beautiful restaurant offers fantastic meals in a picturesque location. Set on the Route des Grandes Alpes road, in the charming hamlet of Fornet, this dining spot is surrounded by hiking trails and a national park. If that weren’t enough, the latest addition to the resort is the only Michelin Starred restaurant open during the summer – so certainly not one to miss!

Val d’Isère is also offering a selection of exclusive new summer packages:
NEW : Spend a night or 2 in Val d’Isère, on your way along the Route des Grandes Alpes. Hotel, 43 € per night per person in B&B, 60 € per night per person half board.*

On a double room basis in a 3 star hotel, 1 to 2 nights stay.

From June 15th to August 30th, motorcyclists on their way up or down the Iseran pass can enjoy a welcoming area with a free parking space, cloakroom and information desk.

Alpine Elements (020 3642 6024 http://www.alpineelements.co.uk/activity-holidays) has a special offer at Hotel Gelinotte. The £629 holiday includes a free package of great activities as well as 10% Extra Discount, and first child goes Half Price! The hotel has a new pool, steam room and sauna wellness centre, as well as new restaurant and lounge areas. Flights for these 7 night holidays depart from Gatwick on July the 19th (other dates and airports are available). Included with this offer are flights, transfers, accommodation, free kids club, catering and extensive Active Pack.

Alpine Elements (020 3642 6024 http://www.alpineelements.co.uk/activity-holidays) has a special late season offer of £596 including 10% Extra Discount, and first child goes Half Price! The holiday includes a free Active Pack with a range of great family activities. Hotel Gelinotte has a new pool, steam room and sauna wellness centre, as well as new restaurant and lounge areas. Flights for these week long holidays depart from Gatwick on August the 23rd; other dates and airports are available. This offer includes flights, transfers, accommodation, free kids club, catering and huge Active Pack.
For more information on what other events and activities are available, please visit www.valdisere.com  or call +33 4 79 06 06 60.

Webbandstand for Concerts and Performing Arts

Les Nuits Romanes In Poitou-Charentes 10th Anniversary

July 6, 2014 on 6:49 am | In France, Italy, Paris, Rome, Webbandstand | Comments Off



Throughout the summer many of the region’s Roman architectural legacies are to be lit up and brought to life with 170 free shows which are open to all

The region of Poitou-Charentes is proud to announce the 10th Nuits Romanes which is to be held from 28th June through until 13th September 2014. The extravaganza brings to life over 170 Roman monuments and buildings throughout the region highlighting the many architectural legacies found in the region.

Evening events – over 250 shows – whose aim it is to bring to light the region’s exceptional Roman heritage and to highlight the region’s identity as well as explore or rediscover the many fabulous sites as viewed with a different perspective of these modern times. The shows and events offer an exceptional free and up-close cultural experience to a vast audience.

Every evening, shows conceived to match a venue’s architectural heritage will see artists of national and international repute thrill audiences with their outstanding performances.
Events include a variety of artistic mixes such as street art, plastic art, pyrotechnics, concerts (jazz, lyrical, gospel, contemporary as well as music of the world) together with an opportunity to savour the region’s many wonderful gastronomic delights and specialities.

The opening night of the 28th is to be held in St Savin-Sur-Gartempe in the superb Abbey which is a UNESCO world heritage site and where the Compagnie Group F will thrill audiences with their spectacular performances (www.groupef.com ) – on the 13th September an evening in Melle which boasts a Roman “Triade” of churches is the venue for a thrilling evening’s entertainment featuring the Compagnie Envolée Chromatique. (www.envoleechromatique.com )
With around 800 Roman churches and abbeys, Poitou-Charentes boasts one the richest Roman legacies in the whole of France. These monuments stand as a testament to the splendour of the period. They can be marvelled at from afar as well as up close and all who enter these magnificent edifices are overwhelmed by their overpowering beauty – yet there’s no need to understand how the incredible architecture and construction was achieved or how important their historical significance happens to be.

Nuits Romanes offers everyone the chance to reconnect with these magical, beautiful sites through the many superb artistic performances held in them. Last year in 2013, 127,000 people enjoyed the many events that were held throughout the summer.
http://nuitsromanes.poitou-charentes.fr


September Short Breaks In The French Alps – Pilates, Yoga, Horse Riding, Cycling, Swimming And Painting

July 5, 2014 on 7:08 am | In Adventure Travel, France, Paris | Comments Off



Make the most of your Autumn and enjoy the beauty of the French Alps by joining us on one of our short breaks this September. With a wide range of activities for everyone to enjoy, we make the most the mountains on these luxury breaks.

Based in our beautiful Alpine spa chalet in the heart of Haute Savoie, our short breaks for 2014 include

NEW* 6th to 9th September: Horse Riding Weekend
NEW* 10th to 13th September: Landscape Painting and Walking
NEW* 13th to 17th September: Alpine Suffer Weekend (Cycling)
17th to 20th September: Yoga and Walking Weekend
NEW* 20th to 24th September: Swim Annecy Challenge Weekend
20th to 23rd September: Pilates and Walking
Each short break runs for 4 days / 3 nights and costs from £450pp to include
• Airport transfers
• Local transport
• 3 nights accommodation in luxury spa chalet
• Full board, with breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner
• Spa facilities in the chalet
• All training / activities as shown on the schedule
So, whether you want to relax and enjoy the autumn colours or get active on our cycling or swimming weekends, we have a weekend for you.
For more information visit www.adventuresinthealps.com  or contact us  at info@adventuresinthealps.com  or on 00 44 207 193 7660.

Webbandstand for Concerts and Performing Arts

Celebrating The Best Of Quirky And Eco- Accommodation In Poitou-Charentes

July 4, 2014 on 12:28 pm | In France, Paris | Comments Off



Discover the first ecolabel accommodation in France
Poitou-Charentes is one of the most well-known regions in France for eco-labelled accommodation. The region boasts a number of guest houses and boutique hotels, with over 28 eco-labelled eco-products, including ‘Les Orangeries’ in Lussac-les-Chateaux, which in 2006 was named as the first eco-label in France. Les Orangeries is a prestigious restaurant in lavish décor, located in a renovated eighteenth century building. The natural environment surrounding the space has been preserved to reflect the establishment’s ethos and the menu is filled with a delightful range of dishes expertly created by food lovers David Royer and his second Jean-Charles Gallot, who are both passionate about using eco-ingredients to create a perfectly harmonised menu. Les Orangeries received the sustainable restaurant awards 2014.
http://www.lesorangeries.fr/
The benefits of staying in eco-labelled accommodation means staying in a setting that is committed to reduce water and energy consumption, use of reusable energy and eco-friendly products or materials, meals prepared with organic and local produce, create and adhere to good environmental practices. For those who care deeply for the environment and preserving their natural surroundings, eco-labelled accommodation shows you how caring for the environment can be seamlessly integrated into everyday life.
http://www.visit-poitou-charentes.com/en/Green-tourism
Discover quirky accommodation in Poitou-Charentes
Domaine de Dienné is a unique style of accommodation which includes two mushroom shaped houses and a snail house. Each of the houses sleeps up to six people and presents a new way of enjoying your surroundings while travelling; the fun designs of each home are not only comfortable but enjoyable to stay in and explore. http://www.defiplanet.com/
Quai des Pontis is one of those enchanting places situated in the heart of Cognac, on the Charente River. Quai des Pontis is in a magical setting where there are three different types of accommodation to choose from; gypsy caravans in the park, cabin’s on stilts on the river’s edge and cosy wooden lodges set in the gardens. Although each style of accommodation is equipped with modern luxury amenities such as DVD’s, LCD television sets, Nespresso machines and much more, guests will lose themselves in the natural beauty of their surrounding environment. With so much to do and see such as fishing, swimming, relaxing on the porch, exploring the surrounding countryside or going into town, Quai des Pontis offers a serene escape in the heart of Cognac. http://www.quaidespontis.com/
Another magnificent accommodation is the Cabanes dans les arbres in Parc de la Belle, which offers cabins set in trees in a 10a park with a French garden, a vegetable garden, a maze, a Japanese garden, a rose garden, a small farm as well as a playground for children. Each of the cabins located in the Parc de la Belle has been set at different heights from 5 to 14 meters high, with a ladder or rope bridge that allows guests to reach their accommodation. The cabins are perfect for families, couples or singles with ample privacy provided throughout the vast space. There is always something to do at the Parc de la Belle, for sporting enthusiasts to nature explorers looking for a peaceful escape among lush green gardens with over 20,000 plants and different varieties of trees and flowers to explore. The establishment also offers an eco-menu where picnics can be ordered for up to 18 euro per adult and 9 euro per child. http://www.cabanesdelabelle.com/
Maraisthon 15th June: Get ready to discover the “Green Venice”
Taking place in the Marais Poitevin, in the heart of the waterside town of Coulon, is France’s Premier eco-marathon, Maraisthon, known all around the world and said to attract more than 1,000 competitors each year. This year will be even more special as the Maraisthon celebrates its 5th Anniversary on the 15th June, 2014. This year’s event will be held in support for an environmental project in Mali to preserve the local wood and highlight the country’s energy problems. For the winner of this year’s Maraisthon, an extra special trophy will be awarded made entirely out of sweets free of any colouring or preservatives. Aside from the main event, there will be several other side activities taking place, including the 10km fun run, the 11km discovery walk, a visit to eco-markets and many exhibitions. http://www.maraisthon.fr/
www.visit-poitou-charentes.com
Atout France UK: pressoffice.uk@atout-france.fr


Celebrate Glass In Hand With Grape Escapes At Some Of France’s Top Events This Summer

July 4, 2014 on 12:25 pm | In Adventure Travel, Dine Drink, France, Paris | Comments Off



This year Grape Escapes have paired wine tours with some of France’s top celebrations such as La Fête de la Musique 21 June, Bastille Day 14 July and the Tour de France 5-27 July, to give visitors the chance to combine the festivities with some of the country’s finest wines.
Now in its 33rd year, La Fête de la Musique is always one of the key activities in France’s event calendar. Grape Escapes’ three-night Flexible Bordeaux Tour is perfect for those keen to discover music and culture in this beautiful city whilst also having the opportunity to taste wines from the Medoc appellation or learn about the famous Merlot grape used in many of the regions finest wines. The city of Bordeaux takes the urban theme of this year’s Fête de la Musique to heart with a number of hip hop, rap, electro, soul and latino performances peppered with more traditional bands and music. Enjoy the peace and quiet out in the vineyards during the day tasting the famous wines of the Medoc and St Emilion and venture back into town in the evenings for a spot of sophisticated tastings in the local wine bars and to soak up the city’s party atmosphere. Prices for the three-night Flexible Bordeaux Tour start from £565 per person.
The 101st Tour de France is running from Saturday 5 July to Sunday 27 July 2014 and will be made up of 21 stages, covering a total distance of 3,664 kilometres. Grape Escapes’ three-night Flexible Champagne Tour to Reims is perfect for those keen follow the race in this beautiful city whilst also having the opportunity to taste great Champagnes. Stage 6 begins in Arras and finishes in Reims on 10 July covering 194km. The three-night Flexible Champagne Tour to Reims is perfect for some mid-week bubbles and offers a more in-depth introduction to the various tastes and styles of Champagne available. Prices for the three-night Flexible Champagne Tour to Reims start from £421 per person.
For the true Tour de France lovers amongst us who will be standing at the starting line ready to cheer off their heroes at Stage 16 of the race on 21 July in Carcassonne, take some time to visit the UNESCO World Heritage Medieval City built in 1280 with Grape Escapes Flexible Carcassonne Wine Tours. Visitors will be able to taste the famous Minervois appellation, used in some of the region’s finest wines, when visiting the two wineries – one of which is located in Livinère, the only Cru in the Minervois. Prices start from £337 per person.
Today, Bastille Day is a wonderful mix of pomp, ceremony and great fun. Every single village, town and city in France has its communal meals, dances, parties and firework displays to commemorate the French Revolution. Grape Escapes’ three-night Rhône Wine Tour based in Avignon is a fantastic way to make the most of the local festivals on 14 July, whilst also providing the perfect break for those looking for an in-depth introduction to the various tastes and styles of wines available in the Southern Rhône. The tour involves tastings of a variety of wines ranging from those by small, local producers right up to the famous Châteauneuf du Pape, and a history lesson in wine production since the Roman era. Prices for the three-night Avignon Rhône Wine Tour start from £663 per person.
For more information call +44 (0) 1763 273 373 or visit www.grapeescapes.net


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