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Published on :   15/07/2018

Canal barge cruising: a bright future in store 

A beautiful family of canal barges is gradually taking shape in CroisiEurope’s current fleet of no less than 50 ships, mostly made up of river cruise boats. 

Canal barge cruising is booming, following the bold vision set out for these compact boats, which are inspired by a slower way of life. 

Jeanine is the name of the first barge launched by CroisiEurope in 2013. She was followed by Madeleine, then Raymonde and Anne-Marie in 2014. In 2016, two further barges completed the feet: Danièle on the Canal de la Garonne and Déborah on the Canal Latéral de la Loire.  

Fitted with 12 cabins for 24 passengers, all six barges have the same dimensions: 38.5 metres long and 5.05 metres wide. Designed, built and fully equipped by CroisiEurope, they are characterised by their tastefully decorated interior, complete with a contemporary twist and personal touch. Flawless and made to measure from the hold to the top deck, they offer impeccable quality, comfort and safety. 

CroisiEurope’s six wonderfully cosy canal barges boast a range of on-board amenities: a sundeck with deckchairs, a jacuzzi installed at the front of the boat, and bikes to ride along at your convenience. The new itineraries are ideal for bike lovers, particularly the route along the Canal de la Garonne, which has a green path all along the waterway specifically tailored for bike riders and pedestrians. The Canal Latéral de la Loire is on the EuroVelo 6 (EV6) route through Europe from East to West. 

From Nevers to Briare: a 7-day cruise on the Canal Latéral de la Loire 

With renowned vineyards, historic sites, lush landscapes and noteworthy river heritage, this itinerary on board the "Déborah" ticks all the boxes of the ideal canal barge cruise.  

Passengers embark in Nevers in Burgundy. This wonderful town is part of the French network of Art and History cities and has remarkable historic heritage featuring number of medieval buildings.  

It is highly recommended to make full use of the bikes on offer on board to follow the cycle itinerary along the path following the canal. The boat peacefully sails along a succession of breathtaking landscapes to Marseilles-les-Aubigny, then Apremont-sur-Allier, the latter featuring on the list of the most beautiful villages in France. Surrounded by idyllic scenery, this former quarry village had just 72 inhabitants at the last census. Don’t forget to visit the town’s floral park.

Twenty kilometers away from Nervers, you can discover the Fontmorigny Abbey. After Chapelle-Montlinard, you can also enjoy a visit to an authentic farm in Charité-sur-Loire

The trip continues to Ménétrol-sous-Sancerre, where passengers can visit the tower of Pouilly-Fumé. The site, which includes a 16th Century tower, offers a tour through the middle 

of the Pouilly vineyards, following a winemaker’s work throughout the seasons. Naturally, you will be invited to a wine tasting session.  

Along the way, passengers will stop in Léré, where they can visit Sancerre and a goat cheese production site. A wonderful surprise awaits passengers: the Briare aqueduct, which was the longest aqueduct in the world until 2003.  

It is in Briare where passengers disembark from a relaxing and jovial cruise, ready to return to the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

Discover our canal barge cruises in France