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Rhone, Day 2 with AmaWaterways

Day 2

I don’t think that I sleep as well as I do onboard AmaWaterways anywhere else when I am travelling. I certainly needed a good nights sleep after the long day yesterday. I decided to go to the main restaurant for breakfast this morning, there is also and option for early risers pastries in the main lounge if you want something lighter.

Breakfast is beautifully presented, in the centre of the restaurant there is an island which has a hot buffet selection available including bacon, eggs, beans, tomatoes and sausages. On the other side of the island there is fresh fruit, yoghurts, granola and a continental selection. There is great selection of fruit juices available. Fresh smoked salmon and sparking wine is perfectly laid out with bagels and there is a wide array of different breads, pastries and cakes and condiments. If this didn’t take your fancy, there is a menu where you can order from the kitchen which includes eggs benedict, porridge, waffles or even the A+ breakfast which is a full english breakfast including steak! Making my way around I opted for some fresh fruit and freshly squeezed orange juice. The waiters are on hand to assist and to keep you topped up with tea or coffee.

After breakfast it was time to set off for our Lyon city tour. We departed the ship at 09:30 by coach with a local guide who was able to provide us with the expert knowledge of the city. Lyon is the third largest city in France, the birthplace of the cinema and historically known as an important area for the production of weaving silk but in more modern times now has a reputation for being the capital of gastronomy in France. We arrived at our first stop, Fourviere Hill…..an amazing view point that spans across the skyline of Lyon (photo attached). We toured the 19th century Basilica which had the most incredible intricate detailing in the stained glass windows and the wall mosaics (photo attached), then proceeded to look at La Tour Metallique (photo attached) – this is a mini Eiffel Tower which was built by the owners of land where it stands to rival the real thing. It is the highest point in Lyon and is actually higher then the Eiffel Tower itself….(well because it is on the hill).

We continued our morning tour to the charming old town of Lyon called St Jean. Enroute we were able to stop and admire the attention to detail of some of the painted walls in Lyon. There are almost 100 mural frescos painted on the facades of buildings. We arrived in St Jean where we were guided through the narrow cobbled streets (photo attached) and traboules, it is thought that the first examples of the traboules were built in Lyon in the 4th century. It is a beautiful town with lots of small boutique stores and restaurants. After free time we headed back to the ship to be welcomed by warm hand towels and a fruit punch.

Lunch was then served and I chose to opt for the lighter lunch option in the main lounge instead of going to the main restaurant. The light lunch is a perfect option, it has soup, sandwiches, a hot meal choice and a wide selection of salads, even in the main lounge during lunch your wine, beer and soft drinks are included.

The afternoon was free for us to explore Lyon or to relax on the ship. I chose to take one of the ships bicycles (there are 20 onboard) and cycle along the river. It was a glorious afternoon, as I cycled along the path the scenery was just stunning. The old buildings framing the river, all changing in colour from yellow to pink to orange. I cycled through a small park called Parc de Gerland, a remarkable development on the banks of the Rhone river, it was only because the cycle path stopped that I turned back. I have to say that at the time I didn’t realise how far I had cycled from the ship, it was only in the evening when we began our sailing towards the Saone to reach Belleville that John our Cruise Manager pointed out that this is the confluence of the rivers where the Saone flows into the Rhone…..when I recognised where I was I became very proud of myself for working off all the wonderful food I had eaten that day and was then looking forward to eating dessert that evening!

I arrived back at the ship after a sunny afternoon pedalling my way along the Rhone and dressed for dinner as we began our sailing to Belleville, it is so relaxing sitting back in the lounge and watching the scenery pass you by. We continued sailing through dinner, where again I was completely spoilt for choice with the options available (menu attached). I decided on the Caesar salad to start, followed by lamb and then hazelnut ice-cream for dessert, I had earned it on my afternoon bike ride! During dinner we passed through our first of twelve locks. It still amazes me at how the captain navigates us through the lock it’s such a narrow gap – we are literally inches from each side of the lock. As we start to go through we are lowered into the lock and gradually the dining room starts to darken from natural light, within no time at all we exit the lock and continue with our journey.

After a delicious meal, I headed up to the main lounge to watch a wonderful performance of music and song by Adele Bracco, from Lyon. We continued sailing while Adele serenaded us as the sky continued to darken and night fell………

Night from me

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