Rhone River Cruises From Arles to Lyon

Rhone River cruises travel from Arles to Lyon or from Lyon to Arles. Itineraries often combine both the Rhone and Saone Rivers. Lyon, France is also the point at which the Rhone and Saone rivers meet.

If the Saone is included in your river cruise, you will also travel between Lyon and Chalon-sur-Saône. Most itineraries include both rivers and will travel to and from Chalon-sur-Saone on the Saone River and to and from Arles on the Rhone River.

The Rhone River flows from Switzerland into France. Rhone River cruises are only available between Lyon and Arles in southern France. The first half of the river is not considered navigable by commercial vessels.

Saone River in Lyon, France

Lyon, France - Where the Rhone and Saone Rivers meet

Some suppliers add the Seine River to Rhone River cruise packages. Since the rivers are not connected, there are two separate cruises on two different ships. Your trip could begin on the Seine, Rhone or Saone River. After disembarking from your first river cruise, you will be transported by high-speed rail or motor coach to your next destination. 

One itinerary combines the Rhine River with the Rhone & Saone.  You’ll travel the length of the Rhine from Amsterdam to Basel. After disembarking in Switzerland, a motor coach will take you to Chalon-sur-Saone where you’ll embark on the Saone River for your next river cruise.

Rhone River in Avignon, France

Rhone River Facts

The Rhone River flows from Switzerland through southern France. It’s about 505 miles long and is the only major European river that flows directly into the Mediterranean Sea. The Rhone and Saone Rivers are joined in Lyon, France. This is the point where the Rhone begins to flow in a southerly direction to Arles, France.

About half of the river from its origin in Switzerland to Le Parc, France (95 miles southeast of Lyon) is not considered navigable. In other words, you will not travel on the Rhone River in Switzerland or east of Lyon, France.


Roman Amphitheatre in Arles, France

Rhone River Cruise Destinations

The Rhone River is located in France and Switzerland. Cruises on the Rhone are only in France, though. Cities along the river, include Lyon, Vienne, Tournon, Viviers, Avignon and Arles.

Some UNESCO World Heritage Sites that could be in your itinerary:

Arles, France – Arles, Roman & Romanesque Monuments
Lyon, France – Historic Site of Lyons

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Lauri Wakefield is a travel writer who specializes in  river cruises in Europe and the U.S. Connect with her on Twitter and Google+.

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