If you are looking for a holiday that includes a little sophistication coupled with some romance, lots of relaxation and a taste of the French countryside, consider a barge holiday in France. The perfect climate and the peace and tranquillity of the waterways attract visitors from all over. The Burgundy Canal is one of the prettiest canals in France, winding its way through charming rural towns, past elegant chateaux and in and out of vineyards. You can relax on board the barge, watching the world go by at your own pace or join a guided tour and visit one of the many picturesque medieval towns that dot the landscape.
Accommodation on the barges is always comfortable with all of the added extras you would expect in a hotel room. On every barge holiday in France there is a full complement of professional staff that are there to cater for your every need. All meals are included in the holiday, served in a luxurious dining room and complimented with carefully chosen local wines.
Discover Burundian Treasures
Beaune is Burgundy’s city of wine. Wine sellers offer tastings and are more than happy to share their experience and knowledge of wine making and answer any questions you may have. The city is a lovely place to wander around with its vibrant café culture and lively atmosphere.
The Hotel Dieu is Beaune most prestigious historical building. Originally built in the 15th century as a hospice it is now famed for its stunning multi coloured tiled roof and the polyptch of The Last Judgement.
Auxerre is the city for art connoisseurs. The glass windows in the Gothic Cathedral, the bas-reliefs in the doorways and the apsidal chapel are all exquisitely well-preserved works of the artistic style that dominated at the time of construction. Another attractive addition to a barge holiday in France is a visit to the Abbey of Saint-Germaine. The bishops of Auxerre are honoured here with their memorial tombs housed in the abbey and the walls are decorated with one of the oldest murals in France.
Travelling along through the winding canal you come across Vezelay, which is the infamous starting point of the crusades. Here you can visit the magnificent Romanesque Basilica de Saint Madeleine.
Burgundy is definitely one of the most prestigious wine growing regions in France and it is not short of gastronomic accolades either. The many soft cheeses made from the rich source of milk from the many cows and goats here and are known worldwide for their sublime quality. The small village of Epoisse, famous for the cheese of the same name, is definitely worth a visit if you go walking in France, and as with any barge holiday in France you have the opportunity to visit local markets where you can sample the regional cheeses, aged and prepared in different ways and discover how they are carefully matched to the wonderful wines of the region too.
Paul Newman is the Marketing and E-Systems Executive for European Waterways. We can provide you with a luxury, all-inclusive holiday in France. Cruises are also offered in Holland, Italy and the UK.