Includes airfare, hotel, tours, transfers, and baggage handling
Departs September 5, 2018
Dramatic, historic, captivating; the Normandy Coast and the Atlantic shorelines of France, Spain and Portugal have been called these things and more. On this Journey, you’ll explore the western coast of Europe, including a minimum of 6 UNESCO World Heritage Sites. You will begin your adventure in Normandy, a region dotted with apple orchards, Impressionistic settings, peaceful villages and in contrast, the reminders of a world at war. See Rouen’s Place du Vieux Marche, where Joan of Arc met her fate, and the World War II D-Day beaches of Juno and Omaha, where the history of the world took a dramatic turn. Set sail on your 11 night Azamara cruise from London, and travel to less visited, yet incredible ports along the Atlantic Coast of Europe. Visit Spain’s historic Gijon, as well as Bilbao, with its modern architecture and Guggenheim Museum. Bordeaux, with more than 7,000 chateaux in the area, is certainly one of the world’s most important wine regions, and you will have 2 days to explore the area. Taste some of France’s best known wines in Bordeaux, and at your leisure explore Margaux, Graves, Medoc, Saint-Emilion and Sauternes. Then, discover the origin of port wine in Porto, Portugal, before disembarking in Lisbon for your post-cruise adventure. In addition to their wine and incredible cuisine, Portugal has so much more to offer. Dramatic coastlines are not far from fairytale-like forests and palaces. Remnants of past conquerors, including the Romans, Visigoths and Moors, can be found in hilltop villages, castles, old city walls and remains of temples. Sample wine and regional liquors such as Ginja in Obidos, and walk along the Medieval streets of Coimbra. A land of kings and queens, explorers and knights, from magical Sintra, to Lisbon with its mixture of modern and historical landmarks, Portugal has something for everyone. Only 5 Cabins Left!
Visits: Paris, Giverny, Honfleur, Normandy, Camembert, Bordeux, St. Jean de Luz France; London, England; Bilbao (San Sebastian), Gijon, La Coruna, Spain; Leixoes (Porto), Lisbon, Quinta da Regaleira, Nazare, Azeitao, Evora, Alentejo, Portugal
|1||Arrive to Paris and Transfer to Hotel. Afternoon Visit to Wine Museum and Welcome Dinner. (D)|
|2||Half-Day tour of Giverny and Rouen. Free Time in Honfleur. Caen Hotel Check-in. (B,L)|
|3||Full-Day Tour of Normandy and D-Day Beaches (B,L)|
|4||Full-Day Tour of Camembert, Cider Experience and Ranville (B,L)|
|5||Transfer to Paris for Flight to London, Hotel Check-in (B)|
|6||Embark ship in London (Greenwich), London (B)||O/N|
|7||London (Greenwich), England|
|9||Bordeaux, France||11:15 AM||O/N|
|10||Bordeaux, France||9:15 PM|
|11||St. Jean du Luz, France||1:30 PM||9:00 PM|
|12||Bilbao (San Sebastian), Spain||8:00 AM||10:00 PM|
|13||Gijon, Spain||8:00 AM||6:00 PM|
|14||La Coruna, Spain||8:00 AM||5:00 PM|
|15||Porto (Leixoes), Portugal||9:00 AM||5:00 PM|
|16||Lisbon, Portugal – Included Shore Excursion for Enrichment Journeys Guests (L)||9:00 AM||O/N|
|17||Lisbon, Portugal – Disembark. Full-day tour of Cascais, Cabo da Roca & Pena Palace. Sintra Hotel Check-in. (B,L)|
|18||Full-day tour of Quinta da Regaleira, Obidos and Ginginha Experience. Coimbra Hotel Check-in. (B,L)|
|19||Full-day tour of Bucaco Forest and Coimbra, including a Fado Performance. (B,L)|
|20||Full-day tour to Azeitao, Setubal & Lisbon, including Tile Workshop and Winery Visit. Lisbon Hotel Check-in. (B,L,)|
|21||Full-day tour to Evora and Alentejo Wine Region. Return to Lisbon for a Farewell Dinner. (B,L,D)|
|22||Transfer to Airport for Return Flight (B)|
Day 1 – Arrive in Paris, transfer to hotel – In the afternoon, join your guide for a visit to the Musee du Vin (Wine Museum). Located in a former abbey, you will have time to view several of their more than 2000 items on display before enjoying a tasting of French wine. This evening, join fellow travelers for a Welcome Dinner (D) Note: if you wish to spend more time in Paris, ask your Personal Vacation Manager about the optional hotel extension – which will add two nights to your Paris hotel stay.
DAY 2 – Paris to Normandy – After breakfast at the hotel, travel north from Paris to the small town of Giverny. Here, you will visit the Foundation Claude Monet, which is his former home and gardens, both of which can be found in several of his paintings. Continue to Rouen, the capital of Normandy, where you will enjoy an included lunch. In the afternoon, join your guide for a walking orientation of this interesting town which dates back to Roman times. See sites like Place du Vieux Marche in the main square. Then drive to the coastal town of Honfleur, where you will have free time to view the 16th – 18th-century town homes. Continue to Caen and check in to your hotel for the next two nights. (B,L)
DAY 3 – Normandy – D-Day Beaches and Museum – After breakfast at your hotel, set off on a full day program to Normandy’s best-known historical sites. First you will drive to the town of Arromanches to visit the Musee Du Debarquement (The Landing Museum). It is located between Utah and Omaha Beaches (US Troops) to the west, and Sword (UK) and Juno (Canadian Troops) to the east. From the museum, you can still see parts of the temporary port built here. After visiting the museum, you will drive to nearby Bayeux. Here, you will visit the Tapestry Museum to see the 230-foot long linen tapestry that depicts the events leading up to the Norman conquest of England. The tapestry was finished in 1070 AD, and is now listed as a UNESCO Memory of the World. After lunch, see Juno and Omaha Beaches before continuing to the American Cemetery, on a bluff overlooking Omaha Beach. More than 9,300 men and 4 women who died while serving in the US forces are buried here, making it the largest of more than 20 war cemeteries in Normandy. (B,L)
DAY 4 – Normandy – Today, you will indulge in several tastes of Normandy. In the morning you will visit the small commune of Camembert, home to the famous French cheese and picturesque farmhouses spread out over the rolling countryside. A stop will then be made at the La Galotière Cider House for another regional specialty. Here you will learn how they grow, harvest and squeeze apples for juice, cider, vinegar and calvados, an apple flavored brandy. Enjoy an included lunch nearby before driving to Ranville, the first French village liberated after the Allied invasion in June of 1944. Continue on to the Caen War Memorial to learn more about the war in France before the invasion. From here, it is a short drive back to the hotel. (B,L)
DAY 5 – Normandy to London – After breakfast at the hotel, drive to Paris where you will board a plane to cross the channel. Upon arrival in London, you will be transferred to your hotel for check-in. Tonight, the evening is at your leisure to grab a pub dinner or stroll the captivating streets and lanes of London. (B)
DAY 6 – London – Transfer to the pier in Greenwich (London) and board the Azamara Journey (B)
Day 7 – 15 Cruising aboard Azamara Journey
Day 16 – Lisbon – After breakfast on board, set off with your local guide on the most exclusive Shore Excursion in Lisbon. In the morning, you will see several of the highlights of the old section of Lisbon. Perhaps the highlight of the morning will be your visit to St. Georges Castle, a Moorish structure dating back to the Medieval period. From its hilltop location, it provides a sweeping panoramic view over historic Lisbon. After lunch, your tour moves to the west end of the city and the Belem district. Here, you will see the monument to the Portuguese explorers during the Age of Discovery and make a photo stop at the Belem Tower, built in the early 1500s, now a UNESCO World Heritage site. You will then visit the Jeronimos Monastery, also a UNESCO World Heritage site. The current building replaced a church on the same site as its location allowed the monks to aid seafarers from the nearby harbor. This prominent example of Portuguese Manueline style architecture is the final resting place of Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama. During a short break following the monastery, you may choose to sample a Portuguese favorite, Pastel de Belem (“Pastry of Belem”). Return to the ship for your final night on board. (L)
Day 17 – Lisbon to Sintra – After disembarking your ship, you will depart Lisbon and travel to the seaside town of Cascais. Once a sleepy fishing village, it is now a popular location for weekend homes for Lisbon’s leading families. Continue to Cabo da Roca, for views of the waves crashing on the westernmost point of mainland Europe. From here, it’s a short drive to Colares region where we will stop for lunch. In the afternoon, tour the beautiful Romanticism style Pena Palace, located on a hilltop overlooking the town of Sintra. Construction started in 1842 for a summer home for the Portuguese Royal family, looking to escape the heat of the city. Today it is a national monument as well as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This evening, overnight in charming Sintra. (L)
Day 18 – Sintra to Obidos and Coimbra– After breakfast, see more of Sintra. The area and its detailed buildings create a fairytale-come-to-life setting, which is one of the reasons the whole area of Sintra is considered a UNESCO Cultural Landscape. The highlight of the morning is a visit to Quinta da Regaleira, another UNESCO World Heritage Site and romantic palace. This gothic-style “Palace of Monteiro the Millionaire” is an exquisite estate surrounded by luxurious gardens, fountains and caves. Departing Sintra, drive to Obidos, where you will have lunch upon arrival. Your guide will lead you on a tour of this charming town that is nestled within a 700-year-old city wall and medieval castle. Time will be taken to experience one of Portugal’s favorite drinks: Ginjinha, a local liqueur made by infusing sour cherries in alcohol and a little sugar. We will tour a Ginjinha factory and top it off with a tasting. Then drive to Batalha for a photo stop at the UNESCO site of the Batalha Monastery. Started in 1386 as a thank you to the Virgin Mary for a victory in battle, it would take more than 100 years and 15 architects to finish. Reflect back on new-found memories of Obidos and Batalha as we make our way to your hotel in Coimbra. (B,L)
Day 19 – Coimbra and Bucaco Forest – This morning, set out on a full day excursion to the highlights of this area. You will drive to Luso where you will have the opportunity to see cork trees, as well as some of the vegetation brought back by explorers and planted within the Bucaco Forest, which has been nominated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You will then drive back to the medieval city of Coimbra for lunch. In the afternoon, your guide will point out several of the highlights of Coimbra, which was the capital of Portugal during the medieval period. You will see sections of the old town, the riverfront and the university that sits on a hill overlooking the river. Finish your tour with a special Fado musical performance, listed as a UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage. The rest of the evening will be at your leisure. (B,L)
Day 20 – Coimbra to Azitao, Setubal and Lisbon – Depart after breakfast for the village of Azeitao. Here you will visit a workshop where they still make traditional Portuguese tiles by hand. Continue on to the town of Setubal, where a stop will be made for lunch. In the afternoon, visit the Jose Maria Da Fonseca winery for a tour and tasting of their regional specialty: Moscatel dessert wine. From here, drive to Lisbon where your guide will take you on a tour through the historic district, seeing Plaza da Figueira, the Cathedral, Baixa, Praca do Comercio, Alfama, and Miradouro da Graca. (B,L)
Day 21 – Lisbon – Evora – This morning, you will take a scenic drive east of Lisbon to Evora to see its old town center which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Your guide will lead you on a tour to see the Roman Temple, dating from the first century A.D., the city walls, which began as Roman and have been remodeled and rebuilt over the centuries so that now they are a tapestry of the town’s history. You will see the Cathedral and cloister, Chapel of Bones and other sites. After lunch, you will be taken to nearby Estremoz, a charming town from Roman times with remnants of Visigoth and Ottoman occupation from its history. It is located at the heart of the Alentejo wine region, this is where most of Portugal’s best wine is produced. A visit will be made to the Encostas de Estremoz, to sample local wine and olive oil. Relax on the drive back to Lisbon as you pass by vineyards and pastures, then enjoy a farewell dinner. (B,L,D)
Day 22 – Return Flight –Transfer to the airport for your return flight (B)
Bordeaux, France: Bordeaux is renowned for its wine, considered to be some of the best worldwide. Nestled along the banks of the Garonne River, it’s a cultural city known for its excellent restaurants, open markets, large university and accepting atmosphere. Be sure to visit Miroir d’Eau, the world’s largest reflecting pool, which lays in front of the striking Palais de la Bourse.
St. Jean de Lux, France: Resting to the east of the Bay of Biscay, this calm and quaint city was previously home to many sailors and pirates alike! Just a few miles away from the border with Spain, this city was a favorite vacation destination for French and Spanish aristocracy. In fact, in the 1600s the city hosted the royal wedding of Louis XIV of France to Maria Theresa of Spain.
Bilbao (San Sebastian), Spain: Bilbao is a city that is perhaps more culturally Basque than it is Spanish. Resting along Spain’s green and lush northern coast, it was formerly an industrial port city, but today is known for its culture and museums, such as the modern Bilbao Guggenheim Museum. Bilbao was originally founded in the 14th century, surviving various wars and conflicts. When you visit, be sure to stop by the Cathedral of St. James and the Basque Museum, after you stop by the Guggenheim, of course. Also visit nearby San Sebastian, a beautiful small seaside town known for beautiful beaches and excellent food.
Gijon, Spain: The first inhabitants of Gijon arrived some 250,000 years ago. It was continually inhabited from the Middle Ages forward and is home to several Romanesque churches that date back to the 12th and 13th centuries. Unlike much of the rest of sunny Spain, Gijon features a much cooler and rainier climate. When you visit, be sure to visit the Aquarium, Atlantic Botanic Gardens and Estacion Nautica Gijon Costa Verde.
La Coruna, Spain: La Coruna has been an important port city since Roman times, if not before. With a varied history ruled by the Romans and Normans, attacked by Vikings and enduring various conflicts, today La Coruna is home to approximately 244,000 inhabitants. When you visit, stop by the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Roman Tower of Hercules, and appreciate the galerias, or glazed window balconies, which the city is known for.
Porto (Leixoes), Portugal: Leixoes is one of Portugal’s largest seaports, located a few miles from the popular town of Porto. Porto has a semi-Mediterranean climate and is a working, mercantile city. While visiting, explore the World Heritage part of Ribeira, the part of Porto that is next to the river. If you’re a book lover, stop by Livraria Lello, voted one of the most beautiful bookshops in Europe.
Lisbon, Portugal: Lisbon, the capital of Portugal, has experienced a renaissance in recent years. This ocean-facing city is striking with its red roofs, rolling hills, yellow street cars and suspension bridge (blink twice and you may even think you’re in San Francisco)! Whether you’re visiting Rossio, the city’s main square, Baixa (Downtown) or Alfama (known for tight streets and Moorish architecture), you’ll be amazed by the sounds, colors and cuisine of Lisbon. Your Enrichment Journey includes an exclusive shore excursion in Lisbon!
Your 21-night Enrichment Journey begins with daily included tours in the Normandy region plus one night in London at your leisure. The group will then board the Azamara Journey for a 11-night Journey through France, Spain and Portugal. Optional shore excursions from your ship will allow for cultural immersion, exotic meals and numerous activities. Following the cruise portion, you will explore captivating Portugal with full day programs on most days. The overall pace is rather quick, as there is much to see in these regions, however there is a healthy mix of both visits to historical sites and time to enjoy the landscape and scenery.
The land portion of the trip should be considered very active, and includes a considerable amount of walking. In Portugal, especially Lisbon, the city is similar to San Francisco in that there are many steep roads and walkways that may transform a short walk into a strenuous one. Enrichment Journeys will do everything in our power to ensure comfort through our third-party providers, including air-conditioned buses and comfortable accommodations where applicable.
Please note: Most historic areas in Europe were developed during a time when traffic was by foot, or horse-drawn vehicle. Therefore, these areas cannot be accessed by modern day vehicles. Our drivers will get you as close to sites as is legally allowed. Many pavements are made up of brick or cobblestone (often original) and therefore are rough and/or uneven. Sensible, rubber-soled walking shoes are strongly recommended. Historical sites in Europe often do not have elevators, escalators or ramps due to the age of the building. Steps can be steep and uneven. Wheelchair access at many sites is limited to extremely limited. Based on crowds and traffic, order of visits may be changed.
A fold-up wheelchair may be able to be stored on the bus but requires prior arrangements. Motorized wheelchairs and scooters cannot be accommodated on this group program. Guests must be able to transfer from their chair to the transportation. Guides/drivers are not allowed to lift or push wheelchairs, so guests requiring physical assistance must travel with a companion who can assist. For the cruise portion of the trip, passengers will board and leave the ship up stairways and gangways, and you may have to walk a moderate distance to transfer to train, bus and car stations. Time spent on the road and traveling can be long, so you will need to be prepared for stretches of down time in between destinations.
Pastel farms intermingle with apple and pear orchards across the rolling hills of Normandy. Immerse yourself in the culture of Northern France while surrounded by Impressionistic settings, charming villages and historic sites. Then, experience a cruise along the English Channel and the various countries of Europe’s Atlantic Coast. A trip of a lifetime through Western France, Spain and not-to-be-missed, Portugal. The post-cruise program in Portugal will include melodies of Fado, artistry of cork and tile products, historic architecture and culinary delights. Enrichment Journeys encourages you to keep an open mind when in unique situations and meeting people abroad. Sometimes the attractions, shorelines and the cities themselves can be crowded, so we will proceed with caution.
The cultures of the three countries visited is passionate and diverse. You will have the chance to hear many languages and dialects and interact with a wide range of people. Keep in mind that some hand gestures have different meanings than they do in the U.S, so it’s customary to simply smile, say “hello” (or if you know the local equivalent) and “thank you” when addressed by locals.
If you have special needs or physical limitations, you will need to check with a Personal Vacation Manager before booking this trip. Western Europe has fairly mild, damp and cool weather in September. Having the appropriate gear for this type of climate and rain is advisable. Sturdy shoes will be needed during city walks and when exploring historic buildings.
Recommended Reading List
Looking to learn more about the cultures, lifestyle and fun found in foreign destinations you are about to visit? We recommend these following books:
The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George
The Paris Wife by Paula McLaine
A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway
The Lusiads by Luis de Camoes
A Small Death in Lisbon by Robert Wilson
The Little Matador by Julian Hector
Katie and the Spanish Princess by James Mayhew
A Cottage in Portugal by Richard Hewitt
France by Lonely Planet
Portugal by Lonely Planet
DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Northern Spain
Top 10 Lisbon (Eyewitness Top 10 Travel Guide)
Lisbon – Nomadic Matt: http://nomadicmatt.com/
Lisbon – National Geographic: http://intelligenttravel.nationalgeographic.com/
Bordeaux – the Slow Road blog:http://butterfield.com/
Bordeaux – Bordeaux Wine Blog: http://www.bordeauxwineblog.com/
Paris – Lost in Cheeseland blog: http://lostincheeseland.com/
Lisbon: The Lisbon Story
Paris: Paris, Je T’aime
Enrichment Journeys is committed to providing remarkable experiences at extraordinary value. As a result, airlines and routes are selected to maximize that value and may involve multiple stops and extended layovers versus non-stop or direct flights. Passengers wishing to utilize specific carriers, or direct, or non-stop, or Business Class flights, or gateways not otherwise listed, or to extend their time in any of our beginning or ending destination cities may do so by contacting their Travel Agent or Enrichment Journeys directly. We are pleased to provide Custom Air arrangements with a charge of $50.00 per person plus any additional air costs. The initial charge of $50.00 will be applied to the deviation cost.
|Routing||Transportation||Approximate Travel Time|
|Paris – London||Airline||1 Hour|
|Caen – Paris||Coach||2.5- 3 Hours|
|Sintra – Obidos||Coach||1-1.5 Hours|
|Coimbra – Lisbon||Coach||2.5 Hours|
|Lisbon – Evora||Coach||1.5-2 Hours|
Want to spend more time in Paris? With this optional hotel extension you will arrive to Paris 2 days early, giving you time to explore the city on your own before the Enrichment Journey program begins. Note: Includes private airport transfer upon arrival. Tours are not included. Price: $349 per person
Space is limited.
Please call your travel agent or 1-888-296-1992 for more information and to book!
Prices may change. Call for rates.
|9/5/2018||Retail Value||EJ Price||Savings Per Person||Single Rates|
|12 (Inside)||$9,465||$7,099||$2,366||CALL FOR PRICE|
|8 (Obstructed Ocean View)||$10,132||$7,599||$2,533||CALL FOR PRICE|
|6 (Ocean View)||$10,198||$7,649||$2,549||CALL FOR PRICE|
|V3 (Club Veranda)||SOLD OUT||SOLD OUT||SOLD OUT||SOLD OUT|
|Boston||$150||John F. Kennedy||$0||Phoenix||$450|
|Denver||$400||Los Angeles||$300||San Diego||$300|
|Washington – Dulles||$200||Chicago||$250||Tampa||$300|
|– Business Class Air Available on Request
– Additional Gateways Available on Request
– Air Add-On Rates are subject to change without noticeWhile we try to include the most common airports by default, we have many clients coming from different parts of the country. If you desire air from an unlisted airport, you must first reserve your Enrichment Journey with one of the listed airports as your default gateway and then ask, or have your Travel Agent ask, Enrichment Journeys to provide a quote for your preferred gateway.
All prices on our website and e-Journey Travel Guide are subject to change without notice. While we make every effort to provide you the most accurate and up-to-date information, occasionally, a trip or pricing category may be misprinted or unavailable at the time of booking. In the event of an incorrect price due to typographical, photographic, or technical error, or error in pricing information received from our suppliers, we retain the right to correct the price and to refuse or cancel any bookings placed at the incorrect price. In addition, all offers, prices, and conditions of sale may be subject to change without notice including tours, included features, highlights, minimum or maximum stays, itinerary, times in port, and/or other conditions/restrictions.
The following hotel list is preliminary and subject to change. Although we contract for hotels a year or more in advance, unforeseen circumstances do occasionally require a change of hotel. Should it be necessary to change a hotel, one of equal quality or value will be substituted and you will receive confirmed hotel information with your final itinerary. Please note that hotel ratings are based on TripAdvisor ratings and are subject to change.
Cruise Line: Azamara
Azamara Club Cruises provides guests with unparalleled service: the finest dining at sea, a glorious spa and wellness experience, and innovations such as Destination Immersion®, making it one of the world’s top up-market cruise lines. With our hallmark of longer stays, more overnights and night touringSM, we’ll not only take you to awe-inspiring destinations, but also give you more time to fall in love with them.
Like her sister ship, the sturdy Azamara Journey is a mid-sized beauty with a deck plan well-suited to the needs of modern voyagers. You’ll never feel crowded in the comfortable social spaces of our bars, restaurants, lounges, Casino and Cabaret. Nor will you feel like a sardine jammed in around the pool, where our attentive staff is always ready to offer a complimentary bottled water, soft drink or fresh towel. Staterooms feature modern amenities, furnishings, and European linens. And one of the greatest features of this ship is the large number of staterooms with verandas. There’s nothing better than opening your door to the fresh sea air and views. Azamara’s friendly ships are an altogether wonderful place to call your home away from home!
Currency and financial handling is at your discretion. Some people prefer to exchange all their money in advance, while others will rely solely on credit cards. Consider calling your bank ahead of time to have them aware of your international travel, especially when using cards or withdrawing money.
These are readily available in major cities throughout your Journey. However, some will charge fees on top of what your hometown bank may charge for using ATMs abroad. Look for well-marked machines that have the Visa or MasterCard symbols.
Currency can be exchanged at most banks when in need of cash. Ask a local host or tour manager if there is a nearby currency converter, or bank, that is open.
Major brand name credit cards are accepted world-wide. Call your credit card company ahead of time to find out its specific limitations and benefits overseas. However, it is a good idea to carry a little cash in case of emergencies or in the event you would like to purchase items from local markets.
Do be aware that some additional charges for mini-bars, laundry and room service will not be included in the tour package. Plan accordingly for these extra charges.
Pack as simply as possible for easy transfers and customs screenings. Ask your domestic carrier for their rules and regulations regarding baggage allowance, which may mean additional fees. All bags will be screened during transfer before flights and boarding the cruise ship.
Luggage Screening Process
To pass through screening, have liquids either in small containers and bagged, or in checked luggage. All valuables necessary for the trip should be on your person at all times, if possible. This includes medications and documentation. We recommend one main bag and a carry-on, per airline guidelines with weight and size.
Have your bags labeled with name and address clearly marked. Add something recognizable in case bags are misplaced. Also mark bags with “Enrichment Journeys” for fluidity.
In many countries, including the US, large liquid containers are not allowed in carry-ons. On the way back into the states, food or agriculture items are prohibited. If you are questioning a certain item, visit www.tsa.gov for a list of items that cannot be packed.
What to pack
Basics and layers are key to a comfortable Journey. There are always unusual variables as well, so make sure you have one sturdy jacket and an outfit for a formal occasion too, just in case. Here are a few key items to take on your trip:
Have back-ups for everything to avoid disappointment. Charge batteries in advance and bring extra film or digital memory cards. If bringing a high-end camera, consider investing in insurance to protect your asset.
Some cell phones will work overseas, but incur additional charges for the use. Choose whether you would like to add an international plan by calling you carrier, or consider purchasing a pay-as-you-go phone overseas. However, many smartphones and tablets can pick up wireless internet for free.
Your Health and Comfort
Protecting the Value of Your Travel Investment
Enrichment Journeys offers a comprehensive travel insurance package you can purchase alongside your trip. It eases the mind and lets you cancel your trip beforehand up to the departure date with a full refund – that means 100% coverage at anytime. This covers a wide variety of incidents, including travel delay, emergency medical services, baggage delay and medical consultations abroad. You will also receive a pre-existing medical conditions waiver if travel insurance is purchased within 14 days of your initial deposit. For a full list of coverage provided, visit the FAQ section of the website.
Medical Issues and Handicaps
As with any extensive trip abroad, our excursions will require some physical capabilities, including transfers from cruise ships, walking on uneven streets and navigating through busy cities with guides. Although we encourage all types of travelers to join us, we do ask you are aware of your own physical limitations. Unfortunately, we cannot provide individual care to those who may have walkers, wheelchairs or other aids. Enrichment Journeys also cannot accommodate pregnant women past their six month gestation period.
Please check with your Personal Vacation Manager to see if certain itineraries are suitable for you and your needs. We are happy to suggest other viable options for you that are more accessible.
Per the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act, travelers have the right to be reasonably accommodated in terms of tours in public situations. However, the laws do not apply for trips and outside the United States. So you must let Enrichment Journeys know ahead of time of any physical limitations, including information added to our questionnaire that needs to be filled out by all passengers. Failure to inform Enrichment Journeys of these limitations could result in refusal to participate, whether it be at the airport through the airline, on board the ship or at the accommodations booked.
If you have any sort of prescription medication, this should be a number one priority in packing. Bring extra, just in case. A small medical kit is also advisable for quick access to remedy minor aches and pains.
While on Tour
Airport transfers are included as part of your Enrichment Journey. Local representatives will advise you of the departure time from your hotel the night before departure. Generally speaking, arrangements have been made to have you at the airport approximately three hours in advance of departure, though this may vary depending on local circumstances. At the end of the cruise, an airport transfer will also be provided. Please advise your Personal Vacation Manager if you do not require transfer arrangements at the time of booking your Journey.
A local host or tour manager will be happy to guide you through the trip and answer all of your questions. Upon arrival to your destination, an Enrichment Journeys representative will have the group go over items such as the daily schedule, cruise details, weather and local customs.
All hotels booked by Enrichment Journeys are held to a high standard of comfort and quality, in accordance to international accommodation standards and rating systems. However, each choice varies so you may experience various types of properties on your excursion.
Your identification is one of the most important things you will be carrying on your trip. Passports are required upon entry into France and subsequent countries. Have your passport and visas ready and available at all checkpoints. Scan and copy these documents to print out. It is also wise to e-mail these documents to yourself and someone back home, in the event anything is misplaced. It may also be worth bringing an international ID or license.
Passport and Visa
Your passport must be in good condition and valid for at least 6 months following your date of return from the trip. If traveling with a non-US passport, contact your local embassy to ensure this document is the only one needed for passage into Europe.
Visa requirements change frequently and for various reasons. As a result, our Personal Vacation Managers are not always able to provide the most current visa information. However, visitors can travel within the United Kingdom and European Union [EU] for up to 90 days without a visa.
The best way to obtain up-to-date information regarding visa requirements is to visit the official US government website for Americans traveling abroad, Travel.State.Gov, which details specific information on the countries you would like to visit, including visa requirements.
Vaccinations are not required by law, but it is recommended to protect one’s health from preventable diseases abroad. It is always good to have routine vaccinations up to date when traveling for ailments such as chickenpox, measles and the flu shot. Use your own discretion when deciding on what vaccinations to have and your personal medical history. During this excursion, the utmost care will be taken with prepared food, atmosphere and other elements, so the likelihood of contracting diseases is scarce.
If you have more questions, feel free to contact the Center for Disease Control and Prevention at 1-800-232-4636 or visit the website at wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/.
Have an international electric outlet converter for this trip. All countries visited are on 220v to 230v for standard outlets. Most hotels will have two and three pronged outlets to use for various appliances. Ship cabins also have outlets for you to use with their converter.
You will be in the Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) in Portugal and England, as well as the Central European Time (CET), in France and Spain. GMT is 5 hours ahead of New York City, and CET is 6 hours ahead of New York City.
You will need two kinds of currency on this journey. This money is only needed for additional shopping, food or extra expenses, as much of this is included in the trip.
Here are the current exchange rates:
United Kingdom – Great Britain Pound (GBP)
Banknotes in 5, 10, 20, 50,
Coins represent 1 pence, 2 pence, 5 pence, 10 pence, 20 pence, 50 pence, 1 pound, 2 pound, 5 pound
Exchange – $1 USD to .70 GBP
France, Spain and Portugal – Euro
Banknotes in 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, 500
Coins represent 1-50 ‘Euro cents’ and 1-2 ‘Euros’ (100 cents in a Euro)
Exchange – $1 USD to .88 Euro
Tipping is always appreciated but not always required. European destinations, though, usually require less tipping than would be appropriate stateside. Expect several instances throughout the hospitality industry in Europe that allow for tipping. Have small bills ready for hotel staff, boat crew, restaurant servers and baggage handlers. Note the variances in currency between countries and plan accordingly.
Gratuities are included for group meals, at hotels and at airports. If you have a meal outside the itinerary or hire a resident driver, a few dollars in the local currency is customary. The local host or tour manager can be tipped roughly $8.00-$12.00 USD per day, and drivers can be tipped about $5 USD per day. Guides and drivers will happily accept either local currency or US.
With the tour covering mostly coastal regions, you will most likely come in contact with breezes, occasional rain, wind and/or damp environments. Check the weather online before embarking for an up-to-date look at the conditions in major destinations. Temperatures listed below (in Fahrenheit) can vary within the countries too.
|High/Low in Fahrenheit|
Altitude (above sea level, in feet)
London – 722
Paris – 115
Bordeaux – 272
Bilbao – 62
Gijon – 10
Lisbon – 7
Sintra – 574
Practice the Local Language
Knowing a few phrases in the local native language can be a wonderful way to connect with people and feel immersed in the culture. Here are some fun phrases!
Buenos dias (booEHN-os DEE-as): Hello
Come esta? (Koh-meh STAH?): How are you?
Con permiso (kohn pehr-MEE-soh): Excuse me
Gracias (gra-SEE-ahs): Thank you
De nada (deh NA-da): You’re welcome.
Sì (SEE): Yes
No (No): No
¿Dónde está el baño?(DOHN-deh ehs-TA el BAH-neeo): Where is the restroom?
Adiós (ah-dee-OHS): Goodbye.
Bonjour (Boh(n)-zhoo): Hello
Oui (wee): Yes
Où sont les toilettes? (Oo soh(n) lay twa-let?): Where are the restrooms
Merci (Mare-see): Thank you
Je vous en prie (Zhuh vooz ahn pree): You’re welcome
S’il vous plaît (Seal voo play): Please
Non (No): No
Pouvez-vous m’aider? (Poo-vay voo meh – day?): Can you help me?
Au revoir (Ah reh-vwarh): Goodbye
Olá (oh-LAH): Hello
Como vai (KOH-moh VIGH?): How are you?
Obrigado (oh-bree-GAH-doh): Thank you
Bem, obrigado(a) (bang, oh-bree-GAH-doh(ah)): Fine, thank you.
Desculpe(a) (dish-KOOL-peh(ah)): Sorry/Pardon me.
Por Favor (poor fah-VOOR): Please.
Sim (SING): Yes.
Não (NOW): No.
Onde é a casa de banho? (OHN-deh eh ah KAH-zah deh BAH-nyoo?): Where is the restroom?
Facts and Figures
Explore some unusual and fascinating facts about the countries you are about to visit!
United Kingdom (England)
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