Alsace is one of our favourite regions with its half-timbered, flower-filled villages, the pine-clad Vosges Mountains, wonderful aromatic wines and diverse culinary traditions.
The Canal de la Marne au Rhin takes you from Strasbourg and the Rhine River plain through gentle farmland to the lovely Zorn Valley, before reaching the remarkable engineering feat that is the Plan Incliné at Arzviller. This is effectively a sealed lock that goes sideways up a slope, climbing 44.5m and replacing 17 locks! The canal then passes through two tunnels before reaching the summit and entering the Lorraine region. A superb waterway with lots of cycling and walking opportunities.
Champagne produces the world’s most celebrated wine and is a region rich in ancient and modern history; from Joan of Arc to the World Wars.
The Marne river is navigable from its junction with the Seine on the outskirts of Paris up to Epernay. There’s a buzz of commercial traffic around Paris, but that eases after Meaux from where the landscape is predominantly rural until the vineyards take over the hillsides around Chateau Theirry. From Epernay canals continue eastwards towards Alsace and north towards Reims and Picardy.
- Panache is a 38m barge with a crew of 6, accommodating 12 guests in 6 cabins with generous bathrooms. It starts the season with Tulip Cruises in Holland, then in May cruises through Belgium to Paris and up to Champagne, before continuing to Alsace. From June to October the Panache offers cruises between Strasbourg and Niderviller (south of Sarrebourg), featuring Strasbourg’s Gothic cathedral, vineyards and wine tastings, Meteor Brewery, La Petite Pierre and its René Lalique collection and Chagall’s stunning stained glass window in a 13th century chapel in Sarrebourg. The all-inclusive 6 night cruise, includes transfers from and back to Strasbourg and is priced from 4490 Euros per person. (The Panache also offers 3 one week transitional cruises as they bring the boat from Belgium to Paris in May. Or charter the whole barge for a party of 8 to 12 people. Contact us for a brochure & more information, or view a video HERE.
- Saroche is a delightful 39m owner-operated barge, offering whole barge charters for up to 6 guests. In May to July it cruises the Canal de l’Aisne a la Marne and the Marne river between Sillery (south of Reims) and Vandieres (west of Epernay). Guests are met in and returned to Paris and highlights include the Montagne de Reims vineyards and the champagne house of Billecart Salmon, Reims and its cathedral, remains of the trenches from the First World War, Epernay, Chateau de Condé-en-Brie and a private workshop at a notable chocolatier. The all-inclusive 6 night whole barge charters include transfers from Paris and are priced in US dollars, from US$30,000. Individual cabin bookings are possible for some weeks and are priced from US$6,500 per person. Contact us for more information.
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