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Seine

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Gateway to Paris
 

The Seine is undoubtedly France's most famous river, and second longest after the Loire at 495 miles long (780km). One of Europe's great historic rivers, the Seine rises near Dijon and flows in a north westerly direction through Paris before crossing the green countryside of Normandy and emptying into the English Channel at Le Havre. Narrowed between high stone embankments in Paris, the river carries commercial barges, waterbuses and large tourist boats (bateaux-mouches). From the water, there are excellent views of the Cathedral of Notre Dame, the Louvre, the Musee d'Orsay (housing Paris' collection of Impressionist art), the Conciergerie and the Eiffel Tower.

The banks of the Seine are a delight in themselves, passing from rural wilderness to charming towns and villages, with Gothic architecture, half-timbered houses, chic boutiques and enchanting cafes.For centuries, The Seine�s natural beauty has inspired poets, musicians and artists as it flows past medieval fortresses, elegant gardens, fragrant orchards and through the region's many bridges. There are 37 bridges in Paris and dozens more spanning the river outside the city, some of them several centuries old!

As well as exploring the world's most romantic city of Paris, a cruise along the Seine takes you to Giverny - where Monet lived and worked for years, where you will see the familiar Japanese bridge and water lily-covered pond that inspired his great works of arts. Visit Rouen - where Joan of Arc was tired and executed; walk the historic beaches of Normandy and soak up the inspirational scenery.

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