'La Belle Époque' - Burgundy Canal
Unwind and float through Burgundy canals past idyllic countryside and impressive estates, a wonderful way to relax and gather with loved ones while exploring this stunning region of France.
France: Drink It In
Graceful 'La Belle Époque' drifts through Burgundy on a delightful itinerary between Venarey-les-Laumes and Tanlay. Visit the former Cistercian Abbaye de Fontenay and Château d'Ancy-le-Franc. Pause for a private wine tasting. Enjoy a falconry display during your tour of Château de Commarin. Back aboard, relax in the spa tub and savor gourmet meals created by your expert chef. Enjoy a private Champagne tasting at Boutique Champagne House. Dine with a Baroness at the magnificent Château de Ricey-Bas. This barge follows an excellent tow path for cycling, strolling and even hot air ballooning, a wonderful way to explore the Burgundy countryside while relaxing in stylish comfort.
Travel Curator’s Insights:
- • All meals onboard prepared by a Master Chef and include outstanding wine pairings.
• Do as much or as little of the planned itinerary as you like. A great opportunity to relax with family and friends.
• Become an expert in magnificent Chablis wines as you savor the richness of French country life and watch the world go by...slowly.
From $5,950 per person
Policies and protocols provided before you book.
Departs every Sunday.
Ask us for your preferred dates.
Departs every Sunday
Trip Sustainability Awards
Fantastic advances in minimizing carbon footprints at locations.
On the East African Energy Renewal Board
Runs local educational facilities for children.
Day 1 - Venarey-les-Laumes
Guests are met at a meeting point in central Paris** and transferred by private chauffeured vehicle to La Belle Epoque. A full crew welcome you aboard with champagne and canapés. After time to settle into your cabin, enjoy your first dinner on board and an introduction to Burgundy’s excellent cuisine.
Day 2 - Venarey-les-Laumes to Montbard
Enjoy a leisurely breakfast, then cruise through woodlands and rolling fields with great towpath biking and walking opportunities. Float past the tiny canalside villages of Nogent, Courcelles and Les Granges. After an early lunch, visit the moat-encircled Château de Commarin to be treated to a private demonstration of the medieval sport of falconry. This close-up encounter with these majestic birds against the backdrop of the castle grounds is unforgettable. Afterwards, meet Count Bertrand de Vogue, the current resident and 26th generation of the de Vogue family to maintain continuous residence since the 13th century, who will give us fascinating insight into the Château’s history. This is followed by a private tour of the building. Dinner on board.
Day 3 - Montbard to Ravières
Cruise this morning or walk or cycle along the towpath, passing the 18th century Forges de Buffon. Then after lunch visit the exquisite UNESCO World Heritage Site of Abbaye de Fontenay founded by St Bernard in 1118. Representing a distinctive example of early Cistercian architecture and virtually intact, Fontenay allows an exceptional glimpse of Cistercian life and industry with its peaceful gardens, ponds, fascinating cloisters, dormitories and scriptorium. Return to the barge and cruise to Ravières. Dinner on board.
Day 4 - Ravières to Ancy-le-Franc
Following breakfast aboard, head to Les Riceys, the only wine growing area of the Champagne region to have 3 Appellation d’Origine Contrôlées. Here we visit the Maison Alexandre Bonnet, a family owned Champagne house renowned for a stunning yearly harvest of Pinot Noir that leads to some utterly exquisite vintages. After you’ve tasted an array of champagnes, take a short drive to Château de Ricey-Bas with its 12th century vaulted cellars and thousand year history. This is the ideal location to appreciate rolling vineyards and enjoy a glimpse of family life in a rural château. Here we will be greeted with a Champagne aperitif and a gourmet lunch with the Baroness herself, in either the private salon or the atmospheric vaulted 13th century kitchen. Spend the remainder of the afternoon strolling the beautiful gardens or exploring the regal château interiors. Upon your return to the barge, we’ll begin our cruise to Ancy-le-Franc, with plenty of opportunity to walk or cycle along the towpath… or sit on deck with another glass of bubbly! Dinner on board.
Day 5 - Ancy-le-Franc to Lezinnes
This morning we visit Château d’Ancy-le-Franc. This beautifully symmetrical, 16th century masterpiece contains France’s biggest collection of Renaissance murals, and is set in magnificent gardens and parkland. In the afternoon, relax and cruise as your hotel barge continues along the Burgundy Canal and descends through the picturesque locks to moor at Lezinnes. Dinner on board.
Day 6 - Lezinnes to Tanlay
After breakfast, enjoy a leisurely cruise to our final mooring at Tanlay. Cycle or walk into the picturesque village of Saint Vinnemer. Following lunch, we visit the town of Chablis, dating back to Roman times, and enjoy a private wine tasting at the prestigious Domaine Laroche. There, we also visit the 1000-year-old Obediencerie, originally part of the monastery of St Martin, the founders of Chablis, where for centuries, the domaine’s wines have been aged. Later we return to the barge for the Captain’s Farewell Dinner on board.
Day 7 - Tanlay
After breakfast, transfer to Paris.
Please Note: Other locations are available for Private Charter bookings. This is a sample itinerary and is subject to change. On alternate weeks the cruise travels in the reverse direction.
Need more options? Ask us about other barge opportunities in France and other parts of Europe.
Barging is fantastically decadent however all barges are not created equal. Be sure and travel on a boat like 'La Belle Epoque' from an operator you and I can both be sure of.
Joy Martinello, Founder
What’s Included & Cancellation Policy: