Join this serene fortnight canal cruise in the heart of France as you follow the inland canal network along a 150-mile route between Sancerre, on the Canal Lateral de la Loire, and via the Canals of Briare and Loing, plus a short stretch of the River Seine, to conclude in the city of Sens, on the River Yonne. This waterway route takes you through 63 locks, and with good towpath alongside the canal sections there is plenty of opportunity to walk or cycle.
This two-week programme takes you into no less than five of the iconic Departements straddling the Loire, Seine and Yonne–, Nièvre, Yonne, Cher, Loiret and Seine
- Executive Coach Travel with pick-ups across Kent*
- Assistance with booking taxi connections and/or hotel stay pre-departure
- Eurotunnel crossings
- 7 night hotel stay at the 3* Hotel Le Clos Martin in Sancerre old town, with breakfast
- 7 night hotel stay at the 4* Mercure Hotel in Fontainebleau, with breakfast and dinner
- Cruise itinerary with on-board lunch including a glass of wine
- On demand tea and coffee throughout cruising
- Beers and local prestige wines available for purchase on board
- Coach Excursion programme as detailed
- Entrance charges to all listed destinations, with guides where stated
*For travellers from further afield, hotel accommodation pre and post tour can be arranged on request.
Tour package includes all meals with the sole exception of Lunch on our travel days outbound and homebound
This morning depart Folkestone on the 08:20 Eurotunnel crossing, arriving in Calais 10:00 local time. Enjoy a late lunch pause near Reims before the onward journey, breaking at Auxerre, to our hotel at Sancerre where we aim to arrive by 18:30.
After check in you are free to choose our own restaurants in Sancerre old town.
Today you will cruise the Canal Lateral de La Loire northwards from Sancerre to Neuvy-sur-Loire, for an afternoon visit to the fine city of Bourges, notable for its green spaces and magnificent cathedral.
The cruise continues to Briare, where we cross the great aqueduct and moor in town before lunch out at the local restaurant L'Estancia. This afternoon enjoy a visit to one of the great vineyards of Sancerre or Pouilly.
Today the cruise continues on the Canal de Briare to the lock at Petit-Chaloy, before a guided afternoon visit to Château Sully-sur-Loire.
Today is spent with free time in Sancerre. A taxi can connect with main rail line at Tracey-Sancerre (about 5km from the hotel) for anyone wanting to break out for Moret-sur-Loing, Fontainebleau or Paris
Cruise all day to Montbouy via Rogny-les-Sept Ecluses.
Today we will cruise as far as Montargis where there is free time in the afternoon for sightseeing and shopping before returning to Sancerre.
This morning we will check-out of the hotel and rejoin the boat to continue cruising northwards as far as Nargis. Continue by coach to Fontainebleau where we check into the Mercure with an evening meal in the hotel.
The cruise continues northwards on the Canal du Loing to Nemours (taking until mid-afternoon). Late afternoon free in Nemours.
The cruise continues northwards from Nemours to Moret-sur-Loing. There is an extended lunch-break to visit the gated town of Moret with its impressionist connections. Then if good weather we break en route back to Fontainebleau to walk one of the forest trails.
Today we will cruise from Moret-sur-Loing, joining the Seine at Saint Mammès. We then follow the Seine about 10km upstream before turning on to the River Yonne and continuing as far as Cannes-Écluse. Enjoy an afternoon visit to the UNESCO-listed medieval centre of Provins.
Today, explore Fontainebleau at leisure with the option of a short taxi ride to Fontainebleau Avon Station for regular train connections into Paris or connect at Laroche-Migennes for Auxerre and Dijon
Today, we return to Cannes-Écluse to cruise the winding and picturesque River Yonne upstream to Pont-sur-Yonne. Later in the afternoon we visit the plus-beaux village of Barbizon, situated just to the west side of Fontainebleau Forest. The village is one of several in Seine et Marne to be closely associated with the great early 19th century landscape painters and has a museum dedicated to their work.
For our final day of cruising we continue to follow the Yonne upstream to another of the region's historic cities, Sens. After lunch aboard, we allow plenty of time to visit the city and see its celebrated cathedral and its magnificent stained glass windows before our return to Fontainebleau.
After a leisurely breakfast we head back around the eastern side of Paris, aiming for a late lunch break in or near Senlis. We expect our return Eurotunnel crossing to be timed for mid-evening and to be back in Kent around 8pm our time