Burgundy, the most popular hotel barging area in Europe, is renowned for its vineyards, Gothic churches, Renaissance châteaux and picturesque villages. This is a region of France in which gastronomic delights and the art of living have reigned supreme since Roman times. Excursions are arranged to places with story-book names, whether it be the quaint town of Clamecy, the famous palace in Dijon, the castle in Châteauneuf or to Vezelay, with its hilltop basilica St Mary Magdalene.
We have nine luxurious hotel barges which cruise in this delightful region. We have chosen these barges and cruise routes carefully to assure that no matter where, when or how you cruise in Burgundy, we have the barge for you.
The 12 passenger La Belle Epoqueis the sister ship of L'Impressionniste. She cruises the upper Burgundy Canal in the North of Burgundy throughout the season, between the two classic French towns of Tonnerre and Venarey. This is a perfect cruise for exploring every aspect of the region. Go with your master chef to the market at the village of Noyers and meet the locals who are so proud of their produce. Accompany your tour guide who will take you on a tour of L'Abbaye de Fontenay, a true insight into the history and culture of Burgundy. Then taste the wine at Saint Bris le Vineaux after touring the Chablis vineyards where it was grown.
The 8 passenger L'Art De Vivre cruises the Nivernais Canal in central Burgundy throughout the season. The Nivernais remains an undiscovered area, well off the beaten track on the edge of the Morvan hills. The sleepy hamlets, white grazing Charolais cattle, woods and forests are typical of the scenery we cruise through. Time seems to have stood still for over two hundred years. The hand-swung bridges are a delight and we pass old logging sites which are now almost forgotten by the local people. A cruise route chosen for its charm, beauty and serenity, there are visits to the stunning hilltop village of Vezelay and private Chablis wine tastings. Drift peacefully from one quiet village to the next and relax on deck watching the trees, fields and occasional lone fishermen as you drift by. The L'Art de Vivre is a more intimate barge which offers the same level of service that you will come to expect from our entire fleet.
The 12 passenger L'Impressionniste is the sister ship to La Belle Epoque. She cruises the lower Burgundy Canal in the east of Burgundy throughout the season. Burgundy boasts some of the world’s finest wines with almost 60,000 acres of sun-lit vines and arguably the prettiest canal in France. This cruise takes you through the Cote d'Or department of Burgundy, one of the most important areas for the production of fine wine in the world. Sit on deck sipping a glass of Cote de Nuits whilst cruising through the vineyards where the Pinot Noir grapes are grown to make it. Your captain is a wine expert and will take you to Clos de Vougeot, headquarters of the esteemed Chevaliers du Tastevin, and to Beaune's oldest winery. Private tastings are also arranged. This is a perfect cruise for the wine lover, but it does not neglect the fascinating history and architecture of the region you cruise through. Accompany your tour guide to the 13th century Chateau de Commarin, the home of 26 generations of French aristocracy, and the fortified outpost of Chateauneuf en Auxois.
Our flag ship La Renaissance accommodates up to eight passengers in ultimate luxury. This ultra deluxe barge is perfect for those who want the largest cabins and the most luxurious facilities. Throughout the season La Renaissance cruises in western Burgundy and the upper Loire on the Canal de Briare, France's oldest canal. This cruise makes use of some incredible feats of engineering and architecture such as the Pont Canal de Briare, one of the world's longest navigable aqueducts built by Gustav Eiffel in 1896, and a seven lock flight at Rogny Les Sept Ecluses. Visit the historical moated fortress of Sully sur Loire and get the chance to taste food and wine typical of both Burgundy and the Loire Valley including a wine tasting in Sancerre.
The 12 passenger Savoir Faire cruises between northern Burgundy and Paris during the months of May, June, July and August. This cruise gives you the chance to experience both the vibrant and exciting "city of lights" and the peaceful country life typical of Burgundy.
The 8 passenger La Reine Pedauque spends the season cruising a very similar route to that of L'Impressionniste on the lower Burgundy canal. The barge, itinerary and minibuses have all been designed with accessibility in mind. If you are less physically able or you use a wheelchair then this barge has the facilities to reassure you that you can still enjoy Burgundy to the full.
The ultra deluxe 8 passenger La Nouvelle Etoile is also wheelchair accessible and spends the late spring and early summer cruising several different routes in northern Burgundy. Like La Renaissance she has extra large cabins and additional luxury facilities.
Other options include the 8 passenger Hirondelle which cruises in western Burgundy and our two ultra deluxe sister ships, the 8 passenger Amaryllisin southern Burgundy and the 6 passenger Fleur de Lys in eastern Burgundy.
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