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What does a typical day on a barge cruise include?
A leisurely cruise . . . with a friendly crew to care for you
A barge cruise abounds in beautiful scenery, relaxation and activity, delicious meals, interesting people, new adventures and unexpected surprises. Imagine a typical day on board a charming floating home with a friendly crew to care for you. You wake up to the smell of freshly baked bread and croissants. The aroma of coffee pulls you from your bed, and you wander to the dining room where breakfast awaits you at your leisure. Then maybe a shower, or not, as the barge warms up the engine and casts off for a few hours of cruising through villages, vineyards, farms and oh-so-pretty countryside.
A bit of exercise . . . or not
A walk along the towpath or bike ride to a nearby village energizes you with exercise and fresh air. Or maybe you read a good book on deck and watch the world float by. With fascination, you watch the workings of the locks and marvel at the 300-year-old engineering feat that allowed cargo to be transported by barge from river to river and town to town.
Yummy lunches . . . and wine, of course!
Lunches vary with each barge and can be a beautifully presented plated lunch or buffet of fresh colorful salads, pates and cold meats accompanied by hot soup or entrée. A selection of regional cheeses is often served and a sweet treat may be included as well. Lunches are always accompanied by quality wines selected by the chef.
Interesting and diverse excursions . . . fun too!
Then it’s into the chauffeured van for your daily excursion. Maybe today you taste wine in an ancient cave where the family has made wine for generations. The entertaining guide regales you with history and stories of the local culture. Tomorrow it may be an open air market, a medieval village or an architectural wonder. The countryside abounds with historic and scenic sights.
Relaxation or a game of petanque . . .
Back on the barge, a nap may be in order before aperitifs on deck. Maybe a game of petanque on shore as the chef prepares a gourmet feast.
Delectable gourmet dining . . . and excellent wines!
The day is capped with a delectable dinner in the company of your fellow passengers. You wonder where the day went as you realize how relaxed and content you feel. Your comfy cabin welcomes you to dream of another fun day ahead.
What is included in an all-inclusive luxury barge cruise?
- Transportation between the barge and designated meeting point. For barges close to Paris, most barges pick up and return guests to Paris.
- Six nights accommodation with ensuite private bathroom
- All meals and wines
- Open bar with alcoholic and soft beverages
- Guided excursions and entrance fees
- All amenities of barge including bicycles, library, music, games, etc. Many deluxe and ultra-deluxe barges have hot tubs on deck.
What is not included in an all-inclusive luxury barge cruise?
- Air or other transportation to the designated meeting location in France or Europe
- Travel insurance
- Items of a personal nature
- Optional and discretionary crew gratuity, typically 5-10% given to the Captain in euros at the end of the cruise
What is a Half Board Cruise?
Would you enjoy taking some meals in local restaurants? These barges offer a variety of meal plans called half board, 3/4 board and/or full board. Half board reduces the barge price, and is a fun way to explore some of the local restaurants and villages. The barge crew will help you with your restaurant choices and provide transportation. Please refer to the individual itineraries for details:
- Bonheur (4) Charming Class – Southern Burgundy – 3 dinners on shore at guests’ expense
- Caroline (4-6) Charming Class – Canal du Midi – 2-3 meals on shore at guests’ expense
- Esperance (4-6) Deluxe – Canal du Midi – full board or half board with 4 dinners on shore at guests’ expense
- Johanna (4-6) Charming Class – Champagne, Upper Loire, Belgium – 3/4 or full board meal plans
- Libje (4) Charming Class – Brittany – 3 dinners on shore at guests’ expense
- Magnolia (2-6) Charming Class – Southern Burgundy – full board or half board with 3 dinners and 1 lunch on shore at guests’ expense
- Randle (4) Charming Class – Nivernais Canal in Northern Burgundy – full board or half board with 6 dinners on shore at guests’ expense
- Savoir Vivre (6-8) – Charming Class – Southern Burgundy – 6 dinners with wine on shore included in the price
Where do I meet the barge?
At a designated meeting place which differs with each barge and possibly the direction of the cruise. Check the individual itineraries for more information. Most barges located close to Paris pick you up and bring you back to Paris by private motor coach or escorted rail transfer.
Can you recommend hotels in Paris?
We provide a Trip Information Kit with recommended Paris hotels. We are happy to book for you or you can book directly.