The Quintessential French Barge Holiday
Posted: Nov 21, 2013
If you're considering embarking on a barge holiday, France is a great option. Offering the quintessential barge holiday, France has many wonderful cruises to choose from, all encompassing a wonderful experience. Cruising gently through the rural side of this lovely country is definitely the best way to explore its many off the beaten track gems, its incredibly beautiful countryside and its deep and rich history. As soon as you get settled on board you will feel yourself begin to unwind. Leave the worries and stresses of modern life back home and kick back in the comfort of your floating hotel to absorb a relaxed and laid back experience.
What To Expect
The main advantage of a holiday like this is that you get to travel long distances at a leisurely pace without having to deal with packing and unpacking at different hotels (or deal with public transport). The days are spent floating through the rural heart of the country, interspersed with day excursions and optional tours should you want to explore further. The balance of excursions is well planned and obviously they are optional, so if you choose to spend your time sunbathing on the deck and appreciating the countryside from the water, that is also entirely possible.
At the onset of your experience you are met by the crew and escorted to your vessel and allocated a cabin. You'll most likely receive Champagne on arrival and then be given a tour of the facilities on the boat. Cabins are en suite and remarkably spacious, with great storage and all of the modern conveniences too. All meals are served on the deck and the excellent chefs take great pride in serving exceptional meals, all complemented by fine wines and local cheeses to finish.
As you move into the rhythm of your barge holiday, France begins to open up before you as you gently cruise the peaceful waterways. If at any time you want to stretch your legs, you can walk alongside on the towpaths or cycle close by on one of the barge’s on-board bikes. Along the way you will pass beautiful villages, busy markets thronging with vivacious locals, charming churches and elegant chateaux. The scenery changes constantly but is always interesting and beautiful in every aspect. Miles of vineyards stretch before you and are then sporadically interspersed with lively towns and busy farmsteads.
Evenings are spent enjoying an aperitif and watching the sun set over the water. Many barges have spa pools too, which add a touch of luxury to your whole experience.
For a great barge holiday, France is most definitely the place to go. With excellent companies offering top class itineraries you will be spoilt for choice.
Paul Newman is the Marketing and E-Systems Executive for European Waterways. If you're looking for a luxury, all-inclusive barge holiday, France is the ideal destination. Cruises are also offered in Holland, Italy and the UK.
Writer and Online Marketing Manager in London.