Seine River Cruise (Updated 2021)
On a Seine River cruise, you most always begin and end your trip in Paris, where ships dock within walking distance of the Eiffel Tower. Cruises are usually roundtrip to Rouen, Caudebec-en-Caux or Honfleur. You should note, however, that few vessels can actually make it to the center of Honfleur for docking.
What We Like About A Seine River Cruise
- The experience of Paris. Ships often overnight in the City of Light, giving you ample time to explore, not only during the day but also in the evening. I’ve walked the distance between our boat and the Eiffel Tower twice, in fact, on two separate evenings on a couple of Seine River cruise sailings. See Two Overnights In Paris On Avalon Creativity and CroisiEurope’s Botticelli: Boarding In Paris
- Monet’s gardens in Giverny. Visiting Monet’s gardens is like walking into one of his impressionistic paintings. You can get to the gardens by bus or by bike. We chose to bike on one of our visits – recommended if you’re an active traveler. Have your camera handy – and your sketch pad if you’re an aspiring artist. See Impressions Of An Impressionist’s Gardens In Giverny and Vernon & The Art Of Claude Monet.
- The Landing Beaches of Normandy. Most Seine River cruise itineraries list Normandy as a destination. However, travel to Normandy is by motorcoach rather than riverboat. I traveled to the Landing Beaches from Rouen, about 90 minutes away, with my teenage son. We watched “Saving Private Ryan” on our iPad on the way to the American Cemetery. See A Trip To The Landing Beaches & A Stunning Discovery At The American Cemetery.
- Honfleur. The extremely picturesque port inspired many well-known artists. It will inspire you to raise your camera – many times. A must-see.
- Les Andelys. Ships dock within walking distance of Chateau-Galliard, built by Richard the Lionheart in only two years between 1196 and 1198. My teenage son and I hiked to the top for incredible views. See In Les Andelys: Conquering Richard The Lionheart’s Castle
- Rouen, the “city of 100 spires,” as the writer Victor Hugo characterized the capital of Upper Normandy more than a century ago. The writer Gustav Flaubert was born here and wrote Madame Bovary more than 150 years ago. Claude Monet lived in an apartment across from the Cathedral of Notre Dame. Jeanne d’Arc, more popularly known in the English tongue as Joan of Arc, was burned at the stake and martyred in Rouen. See Roses & Ruins In Rouen, And A Young Lady Martyred & Remembered
About the Seine River
The Seine River begins in the Burgundy region of France about 20 miles northwest of Dijon. It flows in a northwesterly direction for 482 miles before emptying into the English Channel at Le Havre and Honfleur.
The Seine is indirectly connected to the Saône River through the Yonne River and Burgundy Canal. Only barge riverboats or other smaller vessels can traverse the waters between the Seine and Saône, though. On the western portion of the river, the Seine is considered navigable for some ocean-going vessels from the English Channel to the city of Rouen.
Many bridges cross the Seine River. The Pont de Normandie Bridge connects Le Havre and Honfleur; and in Paris, the Pont Neuf is one of the city’s 37 bridges over the Seine. Pont Neuf was built around the beginning of the 17th century and is the oldest bridge in Paris.
In 1991 UNESCO added The Banks of the Seine in Paris to its list of World Heritage Sites.
Check out our video featuring our Seine River Cruise on CroisiEurope’s Botticelli
A Seine River Cruise
Although the Seine is a winding river from Paris to the English Channel, most of the sites and scenery are historical, cultural or archaeological in nature rather than in the form of the beautiful landscape you’ll see on some of the other rivers in Europe.
There are two companies that do not travel on the Seine River – A-ROSA and Emerald Waterways.
The average itinerary length for a Seine River cruise is 8 days. Packages that combine other river cruises can be up to 23 days. The most common cruise is on the Seine, Rhône and Saône.
Prominent destinations often visited on Seine River cruise include:
- Les Andelys
- Normandy Beaches
Companies That Offer A Seine River Cruise
This information is intended to give you an overview and a general idea of what different river cruise companies offer. With regard to itineraries – they change from year to year and sometimes within a year. The number of itineraries listed for some of the companies does not include reverse itineraries for packages that combine the Seine River with other waterways. For example, a reverse river cruise from the Seine and Rhône from Paris to Avignon would be from Avignon to Paris.
NOTE THAT OUR CHARTS ARE CURRENTLY BEING UPDATED FOR 2022 PRICES
|AmaWaterways||Avalon Waterways||CroisiEurope||Scenic||Tauck||Uniworld||Viking River Cruises|
|Ship||AmaLyra||Tapestry II||Seine Princess||Gem||Sapphire||S.S. Joie De Vivre||Rinda|
|Sailing Date||June 28, 2018||June 23, 2018||June 27, 2018||June 27, 2018||June 20, 2018||June 24, 2018||June 27, 2018|
|Number of days||8||8||8||11||10||8||8|
|Cabin Category||Category A||Category A, B, P||Main Deck Suite||Balcony Suite P||Category 5||Category 1||Veranda B|
|Balcony||French||French||None||Step out||French||French||Step out|
|Per diem/per person||$581||$562||$362||$753||$790||$774||$481|
|Port Charges||$168 ($21 per day)||$168 ($21 per day)||Included||Included||Included||Included||Included|
|Gratuities (on ship - non-compulsory)||$136 ($17 per day)||$90 ($11.25 per day)||Included||Included||Included||$127 ($15.87 per day)|
|Gratuities (on shore - non-compulsory)||$20 ($2.50 per day||$20 ($2.50 per day||$20 ($2.50 per day||Included||Included||Included||$20 ($2.50 per day|
|Beverages||$80 ($10 per day)||$80 ($10 per day)||Included||Included||Included||Included||$80 ($10 per day)|
|Laundry||$24 ($3 per day)||$24 ($3 per day)||n/a||Included*||$24 ($3 per day)||Included*||$24 ($3 per day)|
|Optional Shore Excursions||all excursions included||all excursions included||all excursions included||all excursions included||all excursions included||all excursions included||$100 ($12.50 per day)*|
|Incentive (links may have expired depending on end date of promotion)||n/a||n/a||none||Economy air for June, July and August 2018 sailings. Book by August 31, 2017. Pay in full by October 31, 2017, to save an additional $500 per couple on 8 to 10 day salings and $1,000 per couple on 11+ day sailings. Source: Scenic||n/a||Economy air included for those who book by September 30, 2017. Pay in full by September 30, 2017 for an additional 10 percent discount. Source: Uniworld||Economy air from $797 per person for those who book before August 31, 2017 Source: Viking
|Our Estimated Value of Incentive||$0||$0||$0||** $1,595 ($199 per day), plus $500 ($62 per day) for paying in full by incentive end date.||$0||** $1,595 ($199 per day), plus $620 ($77 per day) for paying in full by incentive end date.||** $797 ($99 per day)|
|True Per Diem||$634||$598||$375||$492||$793||$498||$426|
What’s the Best Choice for a Seine River Cruise?
The best choice really depends on your budget, how much time you have to travel and what destinations you would like to see. If you take a cruise on the Seine River only, Honfleur is the farthest port from Paris. That will allow you to experience the longest cruise in terms of distance. However, only CroisiEurope sails into Honfleur. The other companies transport guests by motorcoach from Le Havre or Rouen to Honfleur.
If you have at least two weeks to travel, a combination of the Seine, Rhône and Saône rivers is a good choice. An itinerary to or from Chalon-sur-Saône will allow you to experience more of the Saône than a cruise to or from Lyon.
Read more Seine River Cruise articles.