Grand Tour of France

15 days
Travel from the culinary capital of Lyon to the iconic city of Paris, and through the plethora of charming medieval villages and coastal Riviera towns in between. This grand tour is your chance to eat, drink and sightsee your way through this dynamic country.

Let us handle the details

Expert Tour Director

      Local       cuisine

Handpicked hotels

Sightseeing with local guides

Private transportation

Personalized flight options

Tour group size: 18 - 35 travelers

Tour pace: You will walk for about 3 hours daily across moderately uneven terrain, including paved roads, cobblestone streets and sandy paths, with some hills.

Let us handle the details

Expert Tour Director

      Local       cuisine

Handpicked hotels

Sightseeing with local guides

Private transportation

Personalized flight options

Your tour includes

  • 13 nights in handpicked hotels

  • Breakfast daily, 5 three-course dinners with wine or beer

  • Private deluxe motor coach

  • Multilingual Tour Director

  • Guided sightseeing and select entrance fees

Map of tour of France

Overnight Flight 1 night

Day 1: Travel day

Board your overnight flight to Lyon today.

Lyon 2 nights Hotel info

Day 2: Arrival in Lyon

  Included meals: Dinner

Welcome to France! Spend an afternoon getting to know Lyon on your own before meeting your Tour Director and fellow travelers at a welcome dinner.

Day 3: Sightseeing tour of Lyon

  Included meals: Breakfast

A local guide introduces you to France’s culinary capital on a tour through Lyon’s UNESCO-recognized city center.

• Take in the Gothic and Renaissance architecture as you pass by the Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière 

• Step inside Lyon Cathedral and walk through centuries-old traboules, or underground passages

Enjoy a free afternoon in Lyon or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Medieval Village of Pérouges $59pp* Details

Make your way to the charming village of Pérouges, a favorite among the French for its winding cobblestone streets and medieval architecture. Visit the central Tilleul Square for a panoramic view of the area and explore the Fortress Church of Sainte-Marie Madeleine. After taking in the scenery, stop at a local bakery to sample some of the region’s sweetest specialties, including galette (a round, flat tart filled with berries) and hypocras, a spiced wine flavored with honey, ginger and cinnamon.

Must be booked 20 days before departure

Nice 2 nights Hotel info

Day 4: Nice via Avignon

  Included meals: Breakfast

Travel through the countryside toward the French Riviera, stopping to explore the historic Provençal city of Avignon en route to Nice. 

• Stroll through the historic town center, which is surrounded by the city’s original medieval walls

• Step inside the magnificent Papal Palace, a UNESCO World Heritage site

Spend a free evening in Nice or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Evening in Monaco $99pp* Details

Spend an evening in Monaco, world-renowned for its luxuriousness. A tiny principality ruled by the Grimaldis, Europe’s oldest royal family, Monaco has retained its independence for more than 700 years. Your Tour Director introduces you to the Old Town with a stop outside the Royal Palace. After an included dinner, you may wish to visit the world-famous Monte Carlo Casino. Please note: The trip to the casino requires moderate walking.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $109)

Day 5: Sightseeing tour of Nice

  Included meals: Breakfast

Get to know Nice’s many charms on a guided sightseeing tour.

• Drive along the Promenade des Anglais 

• Discover the narrow streets of the Old Town

• Explore the Roman amphitheater

• Wander around the gardens of the Franciscan Monastery in Cimiez 

Enjoy a free afternoon in Nice or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Villages of Provence: Saint-Paul-de-Vence & Eze $45pp* Details

Make your way to Saint-Paul-de-Vence, one of the oldest villages of the French Riviera. A celebrity haven, the charming village has a wonderful art scene and a rich medieval history, which you’ll get to know on visits to the Porte de Vence, Collegiate Church and more. Afterward, relax and sip pastis, the local aperitif, while people-watching on the main square. Then, travel to Eze for an inside look at the Fragonard perfume factory. Learn the secrets of producing this precious liquid (one of France’s signature goods) before heading back to your hotel.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $55)

Montpellier 1 night Hotel info

Day 6: Montpellier via Aix-en-Provence

  Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Make your way through the landscapes that influenced the French master painters, stopping in Aix-en-Provence for a walking tour.

• Enter Paul Cézanne’s studio

• Pass Aix Cathedral, built on the site of the 1st-century Roman forum

• Stroll the city’s beautiful boulevards

Then continue on to Montpellier, where you’ll spend the night.

Bordeaux 2 nights Hotel info

Day 7: Bordeaux via Carcassonne

  Included meals: Breakfast

On the way to Bordeaux, stop in the historic Cité of Carcassonne, a UNESCO-recognized medieval fortified town.

Day 8: Sightseeing tour of Bordeaux

  Included meals: Breakfast

Meet your local guide for a panoramic tour of Bordeaux, the capital of the Aquitane region that’s well-known for its wine. 

• Stop at the Place des Quinconces

• Drive along the Garonne River, stopping at Place de la Bourse

• Enter the Basilica of Saint Michael

• Pass the lively hub of the Place de la Comédie and the Grand Théâtre  

Enjoy a free afternoon in Bordeaux or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Bordeaux Dinner & Wine Tasting $115pp* Details

Head outside the city of Bordeaux to the countryside where some of France’s best wines are produced. Tour the historic village of Saint-Émilion, known for its namesake monolithic church, unique underground monuments and centuries-old vineyards. Visit a local winery for a tour of the cellar and to learn about the winemaking process. Then, sip your way through world-renowned varieties, including prestigious Grand Crus. After your tour and tasting, discuss your favorites over dinner at the vineyard.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $125)

Loire Valley 2 nights Hotel info

Day 9: The Loire Valley via La Rochelle

  Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Explore the Atlantic port city of La Rochelle, from its charming harbor to its medieval towers. Later, arrive in the Loire Valley.

Day 10: Sightseeing tour of the Loire Valley

  Included meals: Breakfast

Get to know château country on a sightseeing tour today. Step inside the extravagant Château de Chenonceau, where you’ll discover how it got the nickname “Château des Femmes,” and explore its surrounding gardens.

Enjoy a free evening in the Loire Valley or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Loire Valley Dinner & Wine Tasting $99pp* Details

Cap off your day in the Loire Valley by taking in views of châteaux and greenery on your way to a local wine cellar. With its central location in the country, this area draws culinary influence from several parts of France, which you’ll experience during a wine tasting and dinner at a local restaurant.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $109)

Normandy 2 nights Hotel info

Day 11: Normandy via Mont-Saint-Michel

  Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Travel north to the historic Normandy coastline. Stop for several visits along the way, including a guided tour of Mont-Saint-Michel. 

• Stop to see the medieval Château de Fougères

• Visit the striking, 8th-century island Abbey of Mont-Saint-Michel

• See how the UNESCO-recognized site, perched high on a granite rock, is surrounded by water at high tide and quicksand at low tide

Day 12: Free day in Normandy

  Included meals: Breakfast

Spend a full free day in Normandy or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - D-Day Beaches of Normandy $75pp* Details

Relive World War II history during this excursion to Normandy, where the Allied troops landed in June 1944. First, travel to the D-Day Museum in Arromanches. Next, stop at the American Cemetery in Colleville—the burial place for more than 9,000 American soldiers who lost their lives during the battle of Normandy. From there, visit Pointe du Hoc to view the evocative granite monument erected by the French in honor of the American Second Ranger Battalion, who seized the German canons here before they could be used to fire on American troops landing on Omaha Beach.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $85)

Paris 2 nights Hotel info

Day 13: Travel to Paris

  Included meals: Breakfast

Transfer to France’s capital city this morning. Once you’re settled in, enjoy a free afternoon or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Dinner in Paris & Seine River Cruise $115pp* Details

Take in the nighttime allure of the City of Light on a special evening excursion. The event begins with dinner at a local restaurant. After you dine, board a boat cruise along the Seine. As you coast along the river and under Paris’ bridges, you’ll behold the illuminated monuments of the city glittering alongside the riverbanks. Please note: The dress code may vary depending on the restaurant for your dinner. Your Tour Director will advise you on what to wear, but shorts and sneakers are likely to be considered inappropriate attire.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $125)

Day 14: Sightseeing tour of Paris

  Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

A guided tour introduces you to the architecture, scenery and history of the City of Light’s many neighborhoods, called arrondissements.

• Drive down the Champs-Élysées to view the famed Arc de Triomphe 

• Pass the legendary Notre-Dame Cathedral, located on an island in the Seine River 

• See the Eiffel Tower, the Palais Garnier opera house and Place de la Concorde, the city’s grandest square 

• Marvel at the eclectic and iconic architecture of the Louvre 

Enjoy a free afternoon in Paris or add an excursion.   

Say goodbye to your group at a farewell dinner this evening.

Optional Excursion - Versailles Palace & Gardens $115pp* Details

The reign of Louis XIV, known as the “Sun King,” set new standards for decadence among the crowned heads of Europe. It took 50 years and 35,000 workers to turn Versailles, once a small hunting lodge, into the most magnificent château in all of France and the envy of royalty worldwide. On this excursion, you will see the palace in all its glory as you tour the State Apartments and the glittering Hall of Mirrors. Then, stroll through the lavish gardens to admire their fine statuary, splendid fountains and colorful flowerbeds.

Please note: The four rooms of the Queen's State Apartment are closed for renovations through 2017.

Must be booked 45 days before departure

Day 15: Departure

  Included meals: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home or continue exploring Paris.

Add Paris Starting from $349 pp

Please note: Extension is not available on all departure dates.

Overflowing with history, art and romance, there’s nowhere in the world like Paris. People-watch at a cafe, visit the world-class museums, stroll manicured parks and let yourself get lost exploring the winding streets of Montmartre.

Paris 2 nights Hotel info

Day 15: Free day in Paris

  Included meals: Breakfast

Enjoy a free day in Paris or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Monet & the Landscapes of Giverny $85pp* Details

Monet & the Landscapes of Giverny

The village of Giverny was home to Claude Monet from 1883 until his death in 1926. On a visit to Monet’s home and gardens, discover the subtle palette of colors that inspired his Water Lilies series and gave rise to a new way of seeing. Please note: This excursion is seasonal and runs from April through October.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $95)

Day 16: Free day in Paris

  Included meals: Breakfast

Enjoy another free day in Paris.

Day 17: Departure

  Included meals: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home.

How's the weather?

  • Lyon, France
  • Nice, France
  • Montpellier, France
  • Bordeaux, France
  • Amboise, France
  • Normandy, France
  • Paris, France
Temperature Precipitation
  • JAN
  • FEB
  • MAR
  • APR
  • MAY
  • JUN
  • JUL
  • AUG
  • SEP
  • OCT
  • NOV
  • DEC

Passport & visa requirements

  • In order to enter France, U.S. and Canadian citizens need a valid passport with an expiration date extending at least six months beyond the date of reentry.  * We recommend having at least one blank passport page for entry stamps. * There is no visa required for U.S. or Canadian citizens. * If you are not a U.S. or Canadian citizen, you must contact your destination country’s consulate for your specific entry requirements.    

Tour pace

* You will walk for about 3 hours daily across moderately uneven terrain, including paved roads, cobblestone streets and sandy paths, with some hills. * Travelers should be healthy enough to participate in all included walks without assistance. Adding optional excursions may increase the total amount of walking on your tour. * You should feel comfortable managing your own baggage at times. * If you have any mobility concerns or physical restrictions, please contact our Customer Experience Team.

Transportation & arrival information

* Round-trip flights booked through Go Ahead arrive in Lyon and depart from Paris. A Go Ahead representative will meet you at the airport and take you to your hotel. Please remain in the arrival lounge, as the representative might be escorting one of your fellow travelers to the bus at the time of your arrival.  * Transfers to and from the airport at your destination are included for travelers who have purchased their flights through Go Ahead. Travelers who purchase their own flights may request airport transfers with Go Ahead for an additional cost. * All other included transportation on this tour is by private motor coach. 

Baggage allowance

* Airlines have varying weight restrictions on baggage. Some airlines may impose additional charges if you choose to check any baggage; be advised that you are responsible for any such costs.  * Contact your airline for baggage size and weight restrictions for your flight, but please note that Go Ahead travelers are restricted to one checked bag per person due to storage limitations on motor coaches and other transfers, which may include train connections or flights.  * One carry-on bag of 45 total inches (length + width + height) is also permitted. * Make sure you label your baggage and keep valuables, medication and documents in your carry-on bag. 

Clothing & packing tips

* We recommend packing lightweight, loose-fitting clothing that can be easily layered to accommodate varying temperatures, as well as a light jacket or rainwear. * A sturdy pair of walking shoes or sneakers is recommended for sightseeing. * You may want to pack dressier attire if you plan to visit a high-end restaurant or attend a special performance. * It is preferable not to visit churches or other religious sites with bare legs and shoulders (and entrance may be denied on this basis).

Health

* There are no major health risks associated with traveling to France. * At least 60 days prior to departure, check with your doctor or healthcare provider for the latest updates and entry requirements, or visit the Center for Disease Control and Prevention website at cdc.gov. * If you have medication that you take daily, be sure you have enough for each day of the tour as well as any possible delays encountered. * If you have dietary restrictions and/or food allergies please notify Go Ahead at least 30 days prior to departure by logging in to My Account and updating your traveler info. To update this information closer to your departure date, please call our Customer Experience Team.

Cuisine

* For a picnic with French flair, stop at a small grocery store for cheeses, pâtés, cured meats, fresh-baked bread and fruit. In the cities, sidewalk vendors are known for their steaming crepes, while mouthwatering pastries and hot café au lait beckon from cafes. In restaurants, the prix fixe option is a popular way to enjoy a set three- or four-course menu for a good price. * Although lunch is generally served from noon until 2pm, dinner is served from 7:30pm onward. Those wishing to eat earlier can stop at a cafe, where light entrées and sandwiches are available throughout the afternoon and evening.

Electricity & air conditioning

* France operates on the European standard 220-240 volts and uses Types C, E or F plugs with two small, round pins.  * We recommend packing a universal adapter, as well as a voltage converter if you plan on using your own hairdryer or other electrical device without a built-in converter.   * The majority of the hotels on this tour will have air conditioning. The strength of the air conditioning in European hotels is often not as strong or as cool as what you might be used to in the U.S. or Canada. When air conditioning is available, it is usually regulated seasonally and controlled centrally by the hotel.  * Your hotels may provide hairdryers, irons and other small appliances. However, these amenities cannot be guaranteed.

Connectivity

* Wi-Fi is available in most hotels, though some charges may apply. In more remote locations, internet access may be limited and is not guaranteed. * There is no Wi-Fi on any of the motor coaches.  * Please contact your mobile service provider for information on roaming charges.

Time zones

* France is one hour ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) and six hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time (EST).  * When it’s noon in New York, it’s 6pm in Paris.

Currency

* You will use the euro in France.  * Better rates of exchange are usually available overseas, although it’s worth ordering some currency from your local bank to use when you first arrive.  * We strongly advise that you take debit/bank cards and credit cards, which can be used to withdraw cash at local banks as needed.  * You can use most debit/credit cards at ATMs on the international networks Cirrus and Plus, but make sure to check with your home bank about withdrawal fees.  * Inform your bank and credit card company of your travel plans so that they won’t confuse your international purchases for fraudulent charges. * International banks and businesses primarily accept debit and credit cards that work with the EMV chip system. If you do not already have at least one debit or credit card with a chip in it, we strongly recommend requesting one from your bank prior to your tour.

Tipping

* At the conclusion of your tour, it’s customary to offer your Tour Director and driver a gratuity in local currency. Please keep current exchange rates in mind. * We recommend tipping the equivalent of $7USD/CAD to $10USD/CAD per person per day for your Tour Director and the equivalent of $3USD/CAD per person per day for your driver. * If applicable, we also recommend the equivalent of $2USD/CAD per local guide.  * Tips can only be paid in cash. 

Purchasing excursions on tour

* Most optional excursions will be available for purchase while you are on your tour.  * Your Tour Director will only accept cash (in USD only), Visa or MasterCard as payment for optional excursions.  * Please be advised that if you pay for an excursion by credit card while on tour, it may take up to three months for your card to be charged.  * Some optional excursions may only be purchased in advance. See page four of your tour itinerary for more information.

See what our travelers say about this tour—all reviews are authentic and unedited.

Have you been on tour with us? Visit My Account to submit a review.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Tour Date: 9/17/2016

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: FL

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Grand tour of France

We had a great group of people on our tour. They made the experience so much fun. Great tour guy, local tour guides and itinerary. Would love to have spent more time in Montpellier but otherwise the amounts of time were perfect. Hotels were hit and miss. Some better than others, some closer to the central areas than others. I would have preferred staying in older, more historic, non-chain hotels but I understand the logistics of booking groups might have made that more difficult. Overall, we were very pleasantly surprised. Would definitely consider more trips with go-ahead.

 

Hi Jeff! We’re so glad that all the people you met on tour enriched your experience, including your group members, Tour Director, and local guides. We appreciate your feedback on the various components of your tour, such as the accommodations and itinerary. We will be sure to share them with our team for evaluation. Thank you for your review, and we look forward to welcoming you on tour again!

Posted by Daniela, Director of Quality Control | October 25, 2016

5 / 5

5 / 5

Tour Date: 9/10/2016

Number of Past Tours: 3

From: NB

Tour Director: 4 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Great Vacation

I did not realize how large a country France was until I travelled through it. The countryside is beautiful and of course the wines are second to none. Visiting the beaches of Normandy was particularly moving. The Tour Guide was excellent and went out of his way to accommodate the group. This was a great vacation !!!!

 

Hi Cliff! France is indeed a big country. We're so glad you enjoyed the picturesque countryside and the incredible wines. It's great to know that your Tour Director went the extra mile for your group, and we will be sure to share that feedback with his supervisor. Thank you for your kind review, and we hope to welcome you on tour again!

Posted by Daniela, Director of Quality Control | October 24, 2016

4 / 5

4 / 5

Tour Date: 9/10/2016

Number of Past Tours: 4

From: MN

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 3 / 5

Improvement

Hello, overall the trip was really nice. But the extra off-area tour cities weren't necessary on the way to Paris. I would have liked an extra full day in Paris since it's so big, not enough time unless you paid $400 to extend. This should be included in the package. Also, I became ill on the day the extension tour, Villages of Provence: Saint Paul de Vence. I'm requesting the cost of $45 be given to me as a refund. I didn't plan on being ill and Jean-Jacques was very helpful. He personally rode back to the hotel w/me via the city bus and made sure I was okay before joining the group excursion. He is over all, one of the best guides I've had.

 

Dear Shari, We are glad that you enjoyed your tour overall. We appreciate your feedback on extending the main tour to Paris, and we will be sure to share this with our Product Development team for consideration moving forward. Regarding your unexpected bout of illness, we are glad that you were able to speak with one of our Quality Control members about this matter. As a company of travelers, we understand how frustrating this can be. We are glad that your Tour Director assisted you in getting back to the hotel and resting and that you could sense his care and concern. We will be sure to share this feedback with his supervisor. Thank you for your review, and we hope to welcome you on tour again!

Posted by Daniela, Director of Quality Control | September 28, 2016

4 / 5

4 / 5

Tour Date: 9/10/2016

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: AZ

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 3 / 5

Grand Tour of France 2016

Jean-Jacques was beyond wonderful as a tour director! He was very protective and attentive and made sure that every single aspect of our tour was perfect. I could not have asked for anyone better! His sense of humor and general information he provided was really appreciated. When one of our members ended up in the hospital he stayed in touch with his wife and gave us daily updates as we were all concerned. My only "complaint" was that the tour would be better lengthened to include north eastern France and an additional day in Paris without having to extend the tour for 2 extra days. Missing an entire section of France when the name is "Grand Tour of France" seems incorrect or misleading. And Paris just requires more time. Cramming the city tour and Versailles into one day was too much and there was really no time for things like shopping, Notre Dame, the Louvre, etc. - important things to do and see and Paris! please increase the time of this tour to include the above things as that would make it the perfect "grand tour" of France.

1 / 4
 

Dear Cathi, Thank you for your thoughtful and constructive review. We’re glad to learn that your Tour Director was a great asset throughout your tour. It sounds like his warm and eager personality kept you all laughing and informed. Regarding the itinerary suggestions, we truly appreciate your thoughts on how to improve the tour overall. Being that France is a large country with a lot to offer and that many travelers are working with limited vacation time, we do our best to include as many of the highlights as possible. We will be sure to convey your suggestions to our Product Development team for consideration moving forward. Again, we appreciate your constructive suggestions, and we will be sure to use them in evaluating this tour. Thank you for your review, and we hope to welcome you on tour again!

Posted by Daniela, Director of Quality Control | October 11, 2016

3 / 5

3 / 5

Tour Date: 7/9/2016

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: KY

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 3 / 5

Our 2016 France Tour

Tour would have been much more meaningful for me if the time at the Normandy Invasion sites was a day or more longer. A better tour for me would be one that concentrated on the invasion sites and then proceeded to WWI memorial sites. Our guide, your employee, was outstanding. We have traveled with and without guides for over thirty years Tristian was at or near the top or those we have encountered! johnd

 

Dear John, We're delighted to learn that your Tour Director was among the best that you've ever had. We regret, however, that you would have liked more focus on the Normandy invasion sites and WWI memorial sites. We will be sure to share this feedback with our Product Development team for consideration on future departures. We truly appreciate your suggestions. Thank you for your review, and we hope to welcome you on tour again.

Posted by Daniela, Director of Quality Control | August 15, 2016

5 / 5

5 / 5

Tour Date: 7/9/2016

Number of Past Tours: 5

From: FL

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

So much to experience!:

We shared our travels with a wonderfully compatible group and a Guide who knew so much of the ambiance, culture and historical details of the French people that we quickly acclimated to our itinerary! From dining and wine tastings to walking through (H)Roman ruins, centuries old fortified cities, cathedrals, a perfumery, Monte Carlo, Chenonceau, Mont San Michel, Normandy and Paris, to begin. Then out Guide arranged numerous brief stopovers at other towns not on our schedule, which were delightful additions. We saw and explored many wonderful places! It was nearly perfect and we had great weather!!

 

Hi Betty! It’s wonderful to hear that your group quickly acclimated to the itinerary with the help of your Tour Director. We’re glad you were able to have such iconic experiences as visiting historically significant Normandy and the extravagant Château de Chenonceau. We’re also pleased to learn that your Tour Director arranged for some surprise and delight moments in additional locations. Thank you for your wonderful review, and we look forward to welcoming you on tour again.

Posted by Daniela, Director of Quality Control | August 16, 2016

5 / 5

5 / 5

Tour Date: 6/15/2016

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: IL

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 4 / 5

France was grand

This was our first tour with GAT as well as France. For the most part, everything exceeded our expectations. Nicholas was an excellent tour guide. He and Jerome made a great team together. They made sure we felt safe and secure and made sure we knew what to do if we went on our own. The beds were so comfy - which was an issue we were concerned about. The food was excellent most nights. There were 2 nights we did not get to pick what we wanted and they were our least favorite, but ok. If anything a little more information ahead of time (eg the packet that came less than a week before our trip would have been nice to have sooner). The day excursions could have been a little more detailed in the brochure. We added a night to Paris through GAT. Beware that excludes your ride to the airport which wasn't made clear to us. All in all, it was a wonderful trip and a great time.

 

Hello! We’re so glad your first Go Ahead tour went off without a hitch! We appreciate your feedback regarding your Tour Director and meals, and we’re so glad that most things exceeded your expectations. We regret that it was unclear to you that a ride to the airport was not included in your post-stay. Post-stays are completely independent from the tour and the only component orchestrated on our part is the hotel stay. Again, we are sorry this was unclear to you. We’re pleased that overall you had a wonderful trip, and we thank you for your great review. We hope to welcome you on tour again!

Posted by Daniela, Director of Quality Control | August 10, 2016

5 / 5

5 / 5

Tour Date: 6/15/2016

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: IL

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 4 / 5

Best Tour Director

Best tour director, Nicholas and bus driver, Jerome. They were so much fun and so concerned for our welfare. There were 8 of us: my husband's brothers and our sister-in-laws and most had not been to France so We wanted to see as much as we could without changing hotels every night! It was an unforgettable trip, sunny days, no flooding and no terrorism! Thank you Go Head!

 

Hi Mary! How wonderful that you could experience this tour with your family! We’re so glad you enjoyed your time in France and that you were fortunate to have good weather. We appreciate your feedback regarding your Tour Director and bus driver, and we will be sure to share it with them. Thank you for your review, and let us know when you’re ready to travel again.

Posted by Daniela, Director of Quality Control | July 20, 2016

5 / 5

5 / 5

Tour Date: 6/15/2016

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: NY

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Tour de France

What made this tour special was the extensive itinerary and the excellent director. Never a dull moment. We covered a large portion of France. As busy as we were we never felt rushed. Always prepared by our director who briefed us before each stop. The value comes from the accommodations which were business type: functional and clean but nothing memorable or fancy. We spent very little time in the room. It's what made the trip a better value. Learned a great deal. Busted many myths and preconceived notions about France and her people who were warm and hospitable. Always felt safe even using the Paris subway system. Wonderful tour mates certainly helped to make things go smoothly. Go Ahead tours were a pleasure to work with and would look to use them again anywhere.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Tour Date: 5/7/2016

Number of Past Tours: 5

From: NY

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Great Adventure

We had a terrific time and Nicholas was absolutely brilliant.

 

Hi David! We're so glad you had a good time and enjoyed your Tour Director. Thank you for your review, and we hope to welcome you on tour again!

Posted by Daniela, Director of Quality Control | May 27, 2016

5 / 5

5 / 5

Tour Date: 11/21/2015

Number of Past Tours: 3

From: CA

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Best Tour

First time for me to Tour Europe and I picked Grand Tour of France because I have heard a lot of History about this Country but never have a chance to go and see...Finally I took the Tour from Nov 22nd-Dec 5th....I was so surprise and very happy with everything I saw and all the layout and schedule, organize of this Tour .....sooo excited and looking for the next one...Our Tour Director was the best...we call him JJ.....and he is so helpful and very funny and entertain us at the same time...Bus Driver were the best Emanuel in Lyon and Anthony all the way from Nice until we arrive safely in Paris...I thank you all for the good time and how you guys handle everything....Hotels...some bedroom were ok...but apart from that...you can't please everybody..i still enjoy the trip..thank you for a good time..i enjoyed it to the max and have some good new friends...wish you all a Happy Holiday and stay Blessed....Cheers.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Tour Date: 7/11/2015

Number of Past Tours: 8

From: FL

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Awesome trip

So comprehensive and unique town visits in between bus destinations. Favorites were La Rochelle's harbor and town, Carcassonne, Fougeres medieval village, Chateau Chenonceau, in addition to the beauty of Lyon and Nice and the marvels of Paris with the extension. Thirry, our guide was fabulous and freely volunteered his time on free days. Examples- night views from Paris' Montparnasse Tower, helping us with the purchase of Metro tickets, going on the funiculaire to Montmartre and the Sacre Coeur, boat ride on the Seine, visiting Notre Dame and the Louvre, and more. This was an amazing way to see so much of France in 17 days.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Tour Date: 7/11/2015

Number of Past Tours: 8

From: FL

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Getting to know France

The Grand Tour of France was the most comprehensive and inclusive way to see this beautiful country that I can think of. Starting in Lyon, taking kin Nice, Montpelier, Bordeaux, Loire Valley, Normandy and finally Paris, this is an incredible geographical experience. While most travelers to France see only Paris, there is so much more to this country. The castles, the churches, the green countryside, the medieval towns with their narrow streets and architecture, the food, the wine, the people were a wonderful experience. Our guide, Thierry, was outstanding-friendly, helpful, watchful, and very knowledgeable. The local guides were also well-informed and thorough in the towns and villages we visited. The group was a good size, very compatible, and this also adds to the enjoyment of a memorable tour. I learned a lot about the French wine industry, and have a better understanding of the regions and the varieties of wine from France. While this was not a fast-paced or strenuous trip, the itinerary was very well planned and inclusive. I highly recommend the Paris extension-there is so much to see and do in this city, and our guide was very helpful in explaining the subway system, which enabled us to get around on our own.All in all, an enjoyable, educational and memorable trip!

5 / 5

5 / 5

Tour Date: 7/11/2015

Number of Past Tours: 7

From: TX

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Patient and Kind- Awesome Tour Director

Thierry was an amazing tour director. He helped us check on openings, closings, directions, tickets, calling for reservations, and so much more. You name it, he was so kind he would do it for you. We missed Mont St. Michel due to a strike and the only road into Mont St. Michel was blocked, but he compensated with a wonderful stop at an old castle. He helped us with transportation when we needed it, even going so far as to walk us to our Metro station in Paris so we could go easily to our destination and he picked up tickets for our group for museums and other places of interest. He took us on walks at almost every destination so we could see how wonderfully close we were to amazing sights. Our group was small and we all had fun together. Everyone shared the front of the bus, and we all had fun together. The itinerary was super- there were excursions and stops that appealed to all of us. I took the most excursions I have ever taken on this trip and I wasn't disappointed. The one that I skipped was one of my group's favorites, so I was sad to have missed it. For the most part, the food was fabulous, and even though one hotel that was far out of town, Thierry worked it out so that people could stay in town or go back to the hotel. The Grand Tour of France was a huge hit with my group; especially because of Thierry. I would repeat this trip in a heartbeat. It rates in our top 3 and we have done many GA tours. Highly recommended!

5 / 5

5 / 5

Tour Date: 6/13/2015

Number of Past Tours: 4

From: MD

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

An enjoyable introduction to several regions of France

Having traveled with Go-ahead before, I anticipated a well designed, educational, and rewarding tour led by an experienced and personable tour director. And so it was, fulfilling my expectations for getting a good introductory glimpse of several regions of France beyond Paris, including many of the places and towns I long wanted to see, like Lyon and Nice. There are so many amazing places one could choose to explore in a two-week period. Though sadly Arles, Avignon and the famous Pont du Gard could not be included in our already extensive tour, I really enjoyed our visit to Aix-en-Provence and the visit to Paul Cezanne's Studio. As a photographer I was totally fascinated that in his time already Cezanne painted his studio walls and ceiling in the color of "neutral gray" to control the illumination on his canvasses. If I had been traveling on my own, Montpelier, Bordeaux, or La Rochelle might not have been on the top of my list, but each turned out to be eye-opening, distinctive, and worthwhile. On our evening walks in Montpelier and Bordeaux I and others of our group were blown away by the beauty of these cities and how easy it was to walk about or how simple, convenient, and safe it was to explore by hopping on a streetcar day or night. Because our itinerary by design covered a large geographic area, I expected a relatively fast pace, wishing I could stay longer at each site visited. But the two-night hotel stays helped to make the overall experience feel less rushed. The fast TGV train service from Lyon to Nice was an exciting experience in itself for those of us less familiar with this type of convenient train travel, and a modern, spacious bus with large windows made the road stretches between our sight-seeing stops and coffee and restroom breaks quite comfortable. Go-ahead now appears to limit group size more than in the past, and we were a collection of 20 congenial travelers. There was plenty of space to spread out and move about as we liked, and via the excellent PA system our tour director, Thierry, kept us informed about the sights to be visited and France's history or he would walk down the isle to answer specific questions. In one of the pre-tour documents I read with some amusement a brief introduction of Thierry, "Your tour director will work hard for you from Day 1 - and do a little bit of everything along the way. Like providing insider insights on amazing sights." But it was absolutely true. He handled everything that needed his attention for our smooth journey good-humoredly, tirelessly and unobtrusively. He helped our driver load and unload luggage from the bus, push a wheel chair up cobble stone streets, and led our group through busy Paris streets to our hotel, avoiding those big traffic round-abouts, when the Uber-taxi strike clogged traffic and for a time prevented access of our bus to our hotel. At meal times, I noted, he would not sit down, his food turning cold, until he was satisfied every member of the group had received what was wanted and was totally satisfied. Our helpful and experienced bus driver, Michel, steered us to our destinations. He freely answered questions or shared his knowledge, like the road-side photo-stop for some of the best views of the medieval fortress city Carcassonne. I will always remember in Normandy, as we were driving through a busy town, how his vigilance and quick action averted a serious accident, as a child ran into the street. The local tour guides hired to provide specific insights on the villages and cities we visited ranged from decent to very good. The provided radio transmitter-receiver ear buds system worked well over background noise, even as I walked some distance away to take pictures. I still remember Solene, who with her animated story-telling based on historic records brought the medieval hilltop village of Perouges to life for me. She reminded me of how a good local guide can add so much more to the visiting experience. The selected hotels, also used by other tour groups, were fine and for me provided perfectly adequate accommodations with breakfasts consisting of abundant and diverse buffets. My impression was that the included dinners and the meals of the optional excursions were improved in quality and ambience over those I recall from tours several years ago. Likely, smaller groups increased restaurant options and contributed not only to an improved atmosphere but also benefitted meal preparations. Especially memorable for me was our outdoor lunch in the lovely ancient wine village of St. Emilion, the dinner in the peaceful Loire valley restaurant after our wine tasting near the town of Amboise, and in Normandy our dinner in Caen after arriving from our visit to Mont Saint-Michel. I also recall that our first dinner in France at a bouchon in Lyon was lots of fun too, promising good things to come and our final dinner in Paris celebrating our tour's end starting with a surprising cheese fondue. I think Go-ahead arrived at a reasonable balance between the number of excursions and value added to the overall experience. The optional tours provided me with flexibility to pursue my own interests in the limited time available in each city and paying only for those activities of value to me. On this tour especially - it's France, after all - I faced decisions in each city on what I could accomplish seeing on my own in my free time or whether to take one of the offered excursions. That I could still sign up after consulting with our tour guide about using my time optimally was a big plus for me. As in my previous tours I never felt pressured at any time to take any of the optional tours. I joined most of the optional excursions because they were well thought out. Many would have been difficult to do on my own without some other compromises or impossible because of a lack of relevant convenient public transportation. Three excursions included wine tasting. These differed in format as well as offerings, were interesting to learn about, and definitely lots more fun to share in a congenial group. After our wine tasting near St. Emilion, we made a spur-of-the-moment stop at the largest menhir (megalith) in south-west France, the 17 ft high and 55 ton "Peyrefitte." Quarried from St. Emilion limestone, erected by early man 4,500 years ago, and classified a national historic monument in 1889, this ceremonial standing stone was an interesting change of pace from our visits to the many other national monuments of more recent history. This particular tour did not have the optional 2-day post-tour extension in Paris available, but there was no problem adding two more days on my own at the Paris hotel through Go-ahead. The extra days came in handy during the high-tourist season to see more of Paris. Finally, I want to commend the helpful Go-ahead staff, who cheerfully answered my questions or, if they did not have an immediate answer, called or emailed me back. Similarly, when I had concerns about flight connecting times, staff ably explored potential alternatives. In accordance with their recommendations the flight connections worked perfectly.

1 / 10
 

Dear Gerhard, Thank you very much for your insightful and personal review of your recent trip with us, and for continuing to travel with Go Ahead! We are so honored to have been given the opportunity to welcome you onto so many Go Ahead tours, and delight in reading about this most recent experience. We are thrilled to offer this tour that includes many different regions of France, from iconic cities, quaint medieval villages to charming harbor towns in the Rivera and culinary capitals. We are excited to read that you found value in the structure of the tour being customizable to each traveler’s desires, with optional excursions available to add cultural context to each area visited. We are proud to have a team of experienced Tour Directors all over the world who share our passion for travel, and who can provide the distinctive Go Ahead experience for our travelers. It sounds like your trip was one full of highlights, memories, and bucket list items, and we are so pleased that you chose to take this journey with us. Thank you again for continuing to choose Go Ahead, and we look forward to welcoming you onto another tour in the near future!

Posted by Daniela, Director of Quality Control | August 25, 2015

5 / 5

5 / 5

Tour Date: 6/13/2015

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: NY

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Excellent tour/excellent Tour Director!

My 'Grand Tour of France' was absolutely amazing! It was everything I'd hoped for and so much more. I'd been to Paris years ago and wanted to see the 'real' France - the countryside, vineyards, etc., and that's exactly what we did! It was a fast-paced tour (we stayed in six hotels all-told and our longest stay in any one hotel was 2 nights, so living out of our luggage was a necessity) and many of the included tours, as well as the optional excursions, were physically challenging - tho' SO worth the effort! My only negative comment would be that an elderly woman, who used a wheel chair much of the time, though a lovely lady, truly should not have been on this tour. There was much she was unable to do (walking and/or pushing a wheelchair is very difficult on uneven cobblestone streets), so she missed out on a lot. Our Tour Director (Thierry) went above and beyond in assisting her, but there were some areas even he couldn't get her to (a wheelchair cannot go up 200+ steps with or without assistance!) I think she should have been better informed. Anyway, Go Ahead, you are forever MY travel agency!! P.S.: the food was FABULOUS!!!

1 / 2
 

Dear Susan, Thank you for your thoughtful review of your experience on our Grand Tour of France and for taking the time to speak with us about your tour! We are proud and honored that you consider us YOUR travel company! It sounds like this was a trip full of highlights for you, and we are so glad we were able to show you the ‘real’ France you were searching for. As we discussed, we understand and share your concern about the traveler on tour using a wheelchair. We aim to be as clear as possible during the booking process about the physicality of each tour and ultimately, we want every traveler to select the tour that fits best for them. We try our best to assist each and every traveler in this process. As part of this, we are revising our materials and providing additional trainings to our staff to ensure that prospective travelers are more aware of the physical demands of each tour they are considering. Thank you again for your review, and we hope to welcome you on another Go Ahead tour soon!

Posted by Daniela, Director of Quality Control | July 14, 2015

4 / 5

4 / 5

Tour Date: 5/9/2015

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: FL

Tour Director: 4 / 5

Tour Value: 4 / 5

Loved France!

France was never on our bucket list, however the tour description that Go Ahead wrote sparked our interest and resulted in our signing up! Loved that we spent almost two days at all stops in the heart of a town so that if we wanted we could walk around after dinner and explore sights on our own. JJ was very personable and we felt went out of his way to accommodate any requests (places to dine, things to see, how to use public transportation, etc.) As we could not get into our room in Paris for four hours, he took us on a walking tour. This was great as we got to see and get a feel for a portion of the town (a four mile rapid walk) that our city tour did not cover the next day. The wine tours were fun and exploring the various ancient cities interesting. Our only complaint that some stops seemed too long as shops were closed and out door markets closed two hours before we had to meet the bus.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Tour Date: 11/1/2014

Number of Past Tours: 6

From: NH

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

France is more than Paris

Great trip and tour director. We enjoyed seeing a lot of other areas of France as well as some of Paris. Our director knew restaurants and foods to recommend. He was able to add villages and sites that weren't even on the schedule for us to see in keeping with the interests of the group. Good pace.

1 / 4

5 / 5

5 / 5

Tour Date: 11/1/2014

Number of Past Tours: 9

From: SC

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Awesome Tour Director - best one ever had

This has been one of my best vacations with Go Ahead. I have been to France multiple times but having a local Tour Director as energetic, knowledgeable but most important enjoyable and ready to make this trip feel like a vacations made a huge differnce. JJ is the best tour director I have had since I started travelling with Go Ahead. This tour was phenomenal and I enjoyed every stop we had even if they were a repeat. I was able to see something knew or learn something new. I highly recommend the tour. I also encorage GA to use local tour directors more as they really help understand the culture and enjoy the trip more.

4 / 5

4 / 5

Tour Date: 9/20/2014

Number of Past Tours: 2

From: NY

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Best Tour of France

Traveling to France the end of Sept. through the first week of October was best time to go as far as weather!! 70 degrees almost everyday! We feel Go Ahead gave us the best itinery; we got to see all of the highlights of France, while still having free times to go off on our own. It was perfect!!! Our tour director Tiery was excellent and very accommodating; showing us personally where certain places where that we were interested in seeing. He often went out of his way to actually bring us there himself when we had free time. He was wonderful!!! On the downside, some of the hotels were very uncomfortable and very small and cramped. I hardly got enough sleep because of the beds. The Crown Plaza was the most comfortable; but we only at this hotel for one night. Also, the hotels had the bare essentials, no iron, no close up mirror, soap, shampoo or hair dryer. The last hotel in Paris was very nice and had everything we needed and was comfortable as well. The food was very disappointing; very little vegetables or fruits; limited menu, (there were foods I could not eat and ended up not eating at all); very little variety of drinks. We found that when we had free time we could find better food. Also, the breakfasts in just about all the hotels were below average; runny eggs, no coffee in last hotel, underdone bacon and not enough variety, Overall, I would still recommend Go Ahead Tours because they gave a great trip for the money.

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