An 11-Day Pilgrimage to France
France Pilgrimage Sites Include:
Paris, Lisieux, Rouen, Chartres, Nevers, Paray le Monial, Ars, Lyon, Avignon, Carcassonne, Toulouse & Lourdes.
Would you like to lead your parish or group on this pilgrimage? Click Here to get started.
Day 1 – Monday
USA / FRANCE
Today we gather for the departing flight to our France pilgrimage. Meals are served on board our transatlantic flight.
Day 2 – Tuesday
PARIS / LISIEUX
Upon our arrival in Paris we meet our Pilgrimage Tours’ tour director who will remain with us until the end of our tour. We depart Charles de Gaulle Airport for the town of Lisieux, the home to Saint Therese, the Carmelite nun known as “The Little Flower” and the Newest Doctor of the Church. Here we will visit the site of the Lisieux family home, Les Buissonnets, and the Carmelite Convent Chapel which contains the remains of Saint Therese. Next we visit the Basilica of Saint Therese and celebrate Mass in its Crypt, where Saint Therese’s parents are entombed. Dinner and overnight in Lisieux.
Day 3 – Wednesday
LISIEUX / ROUEN / PARIS
This morning we drive to Rouen, where in 1431 Joan of Arc was burned at the stake for her Christian beliefs. Though the city was badly damaged in World War II, most of its monuments have been restored. We enjoy a walking tour of Rouen where we see its gothic Cathedral, the large flamboyant Church of Saint Maclou, the former Palais de Justice, and the Tour de Jeanne d’Arc, where Joan of Arc was imprisoned in 1430. We enjoy a visit and celebration of Mass at the Church of St. Joan of Arc, completed in 1979, built in the Old Market Square, where she was martyred. In the afternoon, we proceed to Paris, where upon our arrival, we check-in at our hotel. Following dinner, we enjoy this evening’s motor coach tour of the “City of Light”, where we will see many of Paris’ landmarks including the Arc de Triomphe, the Champs Elysees and Paris’ beautiful opera house; Palais Garnier. During our tour we will stop at the Trocadero terrace for a wonderful view of the Eiffel Tower and its light show. We return to our hotel for overnight in Paris.
Day 4 – Thursday
This morning we visit and celebrate Mass at Saint Stephen’s Church, one of Paris’ “pilgrimage churches”, once visited by Saint John Paul II. The church houses the remains of Saint Genevieve, the patron saint of Paris. Next we enjoy a cruise on the River Seine, followed by free time for pictures at the base of the Eiffel Tower. Next we enjoy some free time for shopping on the Champs-Elysees before arriving at the world famous Louvre Museum to see some of its fine collection of art, including the Mona Lisa. Following our time at the Louvre, we drive to the Montmartre District, the “Artists Quarter” of Paris and visit the Romanesque and Byzantine Sacre Coeur Basilica on top of Montmartre Hill. Following our visit to the basilica, we will have free time for exploring the shops on Montmartre Hill before this evening’s special dinner at La Bonne Franquette restaurant. Overnight in Paris.
Day 5 – Friday
This morning we drive to Rue de Bac to visit the Shrine of the Miraculous Medal, where Saint Catherine Laboure received her apparitions of Mary. Here we see the incorrupt body of St. Catherine as well as the body of Saint Louise de Marillac, who founded the Daughters of Charity with Saint Vincent de Paul. Following Mass and time at the shrine’s gift shop, we enjoy a visit to Paris’ lovely Luxembourg Gardens. Next we arrive at the Cathedral of Notre-Dame, which stands on an island in the middle of the River Seine. Here we will see the Gallery of the Kings, the Portal of the Last Judgment and its famous Rose Window. While here we enjoy free time for shopping and lunch next to the Cathedral. Our day of sightseeing concludes with a visit to the beautiful Sainte-Chapelle, a Gothic royal chapel with impressive stained glass windows. Dinner and overnight in Paris.
Day 6 – Saturday
PARIS / CHARTRES / NEVERS
This morning we depart Paris for Nevers, stopping along the way in the town of Chartres, situated on top of a hill overlooking the River Eure. In the center of the city stands the Cathedral of Notre Dame, one of the finest and best preserved Gothic buildings in France. We will see its very impressive interior including its windows dating back to 1210 that form the most magnificent collection of medieval stained glass in existence. We also see the cathedral’s south spire, its statuary and its late Gothic choir screens. In the afternoon we arrive in Nevers and visit the Saint Gildard Convent & Museum, where Bernadette Soubirous of Lourdes spent the final 13 years of her life. We will celebrate Mass in the Chapel of Saint Bernadette, where we will see the incorrupt body of Saint Bernadette kept in a glass reliquary. Following Mass, we arrive at our hotel for dinner and overnight in Nevers.
Day 7 – Sunday
NEVERS / PARAY le MONIAL / ARS / LYON
This morning we depart Nevers and continue on to Paray le Monial, known as the City of the Eucharist, and visit the site of the Shrine of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and Margaret Mary Alacoque. While here we will visit the Chapel of the Apparitions and enjoy an audio-visual presentation of the Basilica of the Sacred Heart. Next we drive to Ars, the village of the Holy Cure, Saint John Vianney, the Patron Saint of Priests. Here we visit his home and the Basilica of Saint John Vianney, where the saint’s body is housed in a glass reliquary. Following Mass at the basilica, we continue on to Lyon for dinner and overnight.
Day 8 – Monday
LYON / AVIGNON / CARCASSONNE
This morning we visit the beautiful Cathedral of Lyon, where we celebrate Mass. Following Mass, we drive to Avignon for free time for lunch before our visit to the grand Palace of the Popes, where in the 14th century, it served as home to the Papacy during Rome’s tumultuous political conditions of the time. Following our time in Avignon, we continue on to the largest preserved walled city in Europe, the ancient city of Carcassonne, for dinner and overnight.
Day 9 – Tuesday
CARCASSONNE / TOULOUSE / LOURDES
This morning we enjoy a walking tour of Carcassonne. Next we drive to Toulouse for a visit the Church of Les Jacobins where we will visit the tomb of Saint Thomas Aquinas, a Doctor of the Church. Following Mass, we continue on to Lourdes, where in 1858, Mary appeared to young Bernadette Soubirous. Upon our arrival in Lourdes we check into our hotel prior to walking to the Sanctuary for an introduction to the Shrine. Following dinner, we participate in this evening’s Candlelight Procession. Overnight in Lourdes.
Day 10 – Wednesday
This morning we celebrate Mass at the Grotto, where Mary appeared to Bernadette numerous times. Following Mass, we enjoy a walking tour of Lourdes where we will see the places important in the life and story of Saint Bernadette, including the Healing Baths where many pilgrims submerge themselves for its healing properties, the Rosary Basilica (Lower Basilica), the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception (Upper Basilica), the Basilica of Pius X, followed by visits to Bernadette’s home and the Museum of Lourdes. Our afternoon is free for personal exploration of Lourdes and time for those who wish to visit the Lourdes’ Baths. Following dinner this evening, we have another opportunity to join the Candlelight Procession. Overnight in Lourdes.
Day 11 – Thursday
LOURDES / PARIS / USA
Early this morning we transfer to the airport for our connecting flight home. Though our France pilgrimage has come to an end, the blessings of our encounters with the Lord, Our Lady and the saints are certain to strengthen and encourage us throughout our lifelong pilgrimage.