HOTEL BARGES / RENAISSANCE

Itinerary

2019 Classic Upper Loire & Burgundy Cruise

Sunday, Day 1 Montargis
Guests are met at our meeting point in Paris** and transferred by private chauffeured minibus to the spacious Renaissance where a Champagne welcome with canapés awaits and you meet the Captain and crew. Time enough for a walking tour of the pretty village of Montargis before dinner on board.

Monday, Day 2 Montargis to Montbouy
This morning, we embark on our first cruise through the Loire countryside, with great towpath walking and cycling opportunities, to moor at Montbouy. After lunch on board, we visit the Château de Fontainebleau, a national museum and UNESCO World Heritage Site where we enjoy a behind the scenes tour of the French Military School of Horse-riding, accompanied by a passionate French Colonel. We continue our tour through the magnificent château itself; the only royal and imperial residence to have been continuously inhabited for seven centuries, to walk the halls of Fontainebleau is to stroll through the history of France. Dinner on board.

Tuesday, Day 3 Montbouy to Rogny-les-Sept-Ecluses
This morning we visit the privately-owned Château de La Bussière, known as the ‘fishermen’s castle’, with its wonderful ornamental and vegetable gardens. Following lunch back on board, we enjoy an afternoon cruise to our mooring at the pretty village of Rogny-les-Sept-Ecluses, near its 350-year-old 7 lock-flight, which is well worth visiting on foot. Dinner on board.
 
Wednesday, Day 4 Rogny-les-Sept-Ecluses to La Gazonne
After a leisurely breakfast, we visit Gien, home of the Faience pottery, renowned for its beautifully decorated and vibrant dinnerware, and also explore the town’s bustling market. After lunch, we enjoy an afternoon cruise to La Gazonne, a beautiful mooring surrounded by lakes and ponds that provide water for the workings of the Canal de Briare. Dinner ashore at the Michelin-starred Auberge des Templiers in Les Bezards.

Thursday, Day 5 La Gazonne to Briare
A morning cruise to our mooring at the little town of Briare, site of Gustave Eiffel’s magical aqueduct across the River Loire, again with excellent walking and bicycling opportunities. We preview Friday’s crossing of this amazing 10,000 ton, 662 metre Pont Canal which was completed in September 1896. Our afternoon visit is to a renowned winery in Sancerre, such as Domaine Henri Bourgeois in Chavignol, for a tour and private tasting.  This medieval hilltop village overlooks a vibrant region which has known viticulture since Roman times. Dinner on board.

Friday, Day 6 Briare to Châtillon-sur-Loire
This morning we visit the market in Briare with its food and fashion stalls before returning to the hotel barge for lunch and a short cruise across the Briare aqueduct, an amazing engineering feat completed by Gustav Eiffel in 1896. This afternoon, we visit the delightful Château de Ratilly and its rather spectacular selection of turreted towers, construction of which began in 1270. Captain’s Farewell Dinner on board.

Saturday, Day 7 Châtillon-sur-Loire
After breakfast, guests are transferred by private chauffeured minibus to Paris**.
 
This is a sample itinerary and is subject to change.   On alternate weeks the cruise will be in the reverse direction.
 
**other locations available for Private Charter bookings
 
For families, we are able to create a bespoke itinerary and substitute a maximum of 4 of the detailed excursions with your preferred family activities from the list below.
 
Due to their nature, some activities carry a supplement and must be booked directly by the customer with the activity provider. All activities are subject to availability.
Please contact our Reservations Team to discuss your requirements.
 
The following activities can be included in your cruise fare without supplement and can usually be arranged on-board direct with the Captain:
 
Archery / Bowling / Go-Karting / Horse-Drawn carriage ride at Chateau Fontainbleau / Kayaking / Paint-balling / Swimming at a beach on the lake / Tennis / Zip-line & Tree Climbing
 
The following activities carry a supplement payable direct to the provider whose individual terms and conditions apply. Please contact us for further information:
 
Horse Riding & Pony Trekking / Hot Air Ballooning.
 
**Childrens bikes, cycle-helmets, child car seats, high-chairs are all available without cost**