Sheer Excellence on the upper Burgundy canal
La Belle Epoque is spacious and luxurious, just the perfect barge for 12 guests to explore the delightful Burgundy region. She has been designed for both elegance and comfort and offers rich teak and mahogany interiors and a fabulous sun deck with spa pool for sociable cruising and total relaxation.
La Belle Epoque cruises on the Canal de Bourgogne through glorious countryside, ancient villages and bustling towns; with so much to see there is a full and fascinating itinerary and an excellent towpath for walking and cycling as the barge glides gently along.
Style: The 'nature' of the hotel barge. Outline subjective guidance as to the quality or comfort level that might be expected on board.
Price Band: Per person. Outline guidance only, on a relative or comparative basis. The bands do not represent accurate low or high season rates.
Hotel Barge La Belle Epoque :: Key Features
- Grand Luxe class (4*)
- Canal de Bourgogne, Burgundy
- Charter and cabin bookings, 6 nights, 7 days, April to October
- 12 guests / 6 suites of 150–165 sq ft including ensuite bathroom
- Individually controlled air conditioning and heating
- Queen size double or twin bed configuration
- Full board, on-board dining
- Spacious sun deck with spa pool
- 12 all-terrain bicycles
- Wifi (limited in some places)
- Air-conditioned minibuses for transfers and excursions
Hotel Barge La Belle Epoque: Cruise Highlights
- Visit the Abbaye de Fontenay
- Wine tasting of Chablis wines in the cellars of a renowned Domaine
- Explore the village of Flavigny sur Ozerain, location of the film ‘Chocolat’
- Visit to the exquisite Château d’Ancy-le-Franc
- Delight in Noyers-sur-Serein, one of the most beautiful villages in Burgundy
- Visit to the battle site of Alesia
- Optional hot air ballooning
- Excellent tow-path for walking and cycling
6 nights accommodation; transfers to and from Paris, all meals and drinks on board, excursion fees and associated transport
Air fares to and within France; travel, medical and cancellation insurance; crew gratuities (suggested 5-10% of the fee)
Hotel Barge La Belle Epoque: Classic Cruise
Venarey-les-Laumes to Tanlay, Canal de Bourgogne, Upper Burgundy
Sunday, Day 1 Venarey-les-Laumes
Guests are met at the Hotel Westminster in Paris and transferred by private chauffeured minibus to La Belle Epoque. Welcome Aboard with champagne and canapés, settle in and then first dinner on board.
Monday, 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, past the tiny canalside villages of Nogent, Courcelles and Les Granges. After lunch, enjoy a stroll around the hilltop village of Flavigny-sur-Ozerain, (where the film ‘Chocolat’ was set), or a tour of the medieval town of Semur-en-Auxois. On the way from the summit of Mount Auxois, we also look at Alesia, where the last battle between the Gauls and Romans took place in 52 B.C. and visit the impressive museum. Dinner on board.
Tuesday, Day 3 Montbard to Ravières
Morning cruise with excellent towpath walking or cycling, passing the 18th century Forges de Buffon. Then after lunch, a visit to the exquisite UNESCO World Heritage Site of Abbaye de Fontenay founded by St Bernard in anno 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 and fascinating cloisters, dormitories and scriptorium. Return to the barge and cruise to Ravières. Dinner on board.
Wednesday, Day 4 Ravières to Ancy-le-Franc
Morning visit to medieval Noyers-sur-Serein to admire the local produce, colours and delights of the traditional French market, or to wander the town ramparts. Return to the hotel barge for lunch and then enjoy a gentle afternoon cruise past grazing Charolais cattle to moor in Ancy-le-Franc. Dinner ashore at a local restaurant.
Thursday, Day 5 Ancy-le-Franc to Lezinnes
Visit to Château d’Ancy-le-Franc, a beautifully symmetrical, 16th century masterpiece containing France’s biggest collection of Renaissance murals. In the afternoon, a gentle cruise descending through the picturesque locks to moor at Lezinnes. Dinner on board.
Friday, Day 6 Lezinnes to Tanlay
After breakfast enjoy a leisurely cruise to the final mooring at Tanlay, with the opportunity to cycle or walk into the picturesque village of Saint Vinnemer. After lunch, a tour the vineyards and town of Chablis, dating back to Roman times, for a private wine tasting at a renowned winemaker such as the family-run Domaine Régnard. Return to the barge for Captain’s Farewell Dinner on board.
Saturday, Day 7 Tanlay
After breakfast, guests are transferred to the Hotel Westminster in Paris.
*This is a sample itinerary and is subject to change. On alternate weeks the cruise is in the reverse direction.
Hotel Barge La Belle Epoque cruises through North Burgundy
Barge Cruising Region – North Burgundy
Canal de Bourgogne (North) – River Yonne
A hundred miles or so south east of Paris, North Burgundy is a region steeped in culture and history and is considered by some to be the gastronomic heart of France, with its Boeuf Bourguignon, its buttery garlicky snails and its Coq au Vin, not to mention its stunning Chablis wine.
Founded in 1163, Villeneuve sur Yonne is one of a number of well-defended towns so characteristic of the area, harking back to a past full of conflict that included the Hundred Years War: even small farms and village churches had their own fortifications and the effect today is one of ancient charm.
It is a land of castles and abbeys: the impressive renaissance chateau at Ancy le France and the chateau at Tanlay with its romantic moat and famous trompe l’oeil frescoes are both a testament to former wealth and power, while the influence of the medieval church is more than evident in the abbey at Vezelay, which is the starting point for one of the pilgrimage routes to Santiago di Compostella. Constructed in limestone as pale as a watermark, it is said to house relics of Mary Magdalene. Fontenay Abbey was built by St Bernard of Clairvaux in 1118 and is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The lives of more ordinary folk are evident in the beautiful half-timbered town of Noyers-sur-Serein with its characteristic medieval arcades, where walnuts and truffles were traded and enjoyed as a complement to the fine local wine.
Hotel barges normally collect and return guests to a pre-agreed Paris hotel. The primary French international airport is at Paris-Charles de Gaulle. There are also TGV express train stations at Sens, Migennes, Montbard and Dijon; and many other towns in the region have railway connections.
– [below] In the region: Villeneuve sur Yonne, Ancy-le-Franc, Fontenay, Chablis, Tanlay, Vezelay, Noyers-sur-Serein –
Hotel Barge La Belle Epoque Details:
- Dimensions: 126ft (38.4m) x 16ft 6ins (5m)
- Junior suites are Nuits St Georges (stern) 165ft² (15.3m²) and
Meursault (bow) 150ft² (13.9m²)
- Staterooms are Santenay & Vougeot (mid stern) 130ft² (12m²) and
Chablis & Sancerre (mid bow) 125ft² (11.6m²)
- All have en-suite bathrooms included in the cabin sizes above.
- Bed sizes:
Chablis & Sancerre: twin beds 3ft x 6ft (0.9m x 1.83m)
Santenay, Vougeot & Nuits St George: as twin beds, same as Chablis & Sancerre, as a double bed 6ft² (1.83m²)
Meursault: double bed 6ft x 5ft (1.83m x 1.52m)
- All en-suite bathrooms have shower cubicle, tiled floors and walls, toilet and hand basin. Washing gel, hand soap, shampoo, towels, robes, slippers and hair dryer are supplied.
- All cabins have individual heating and air conditioning
- Crew of 6: pilot, tour guide, chef, deckhand and two hostesses
- All crew are European and speak English
- La Belle Epoque has 2 vehicles for excursions and transfers.
A 9-seater long wheelbase Mercedes Sprinter and a 7-seater Mercedes Vito. Both vehicles are air-conditioned and the seating capacity detailed includes a driver in each.
Other items on board:
- 6 person spa pool (hot tub)
- 12 6-gear bicycles
- A small library of books and maps
- A collection of board games
- Wi-Fi internet access is available for passengers bringing their own
- appliances. This is subject to availability in some remote areas.
- Nordic walking sticks (on request)
- Hi-Fi System with CD player, radio and iPod docking station.
- Selection of CDs on board and guests are welcome to bring their favourite CDs from home.
Hotel Barge La Belle Epoque: Cuisine
All meals on board are freshly prepared by your chef and most meals are a set-menu (there is no choice available). However, vegetarian, pescatarian and vegan dishes, and non-allergenic dishes, can be served given at least 8 weeks notice prior to your departure date.
Breakfast: a wholesome and balanced variety of breakfast foods, along with oven-warm breads & pastries, freshly-squeezed orange juice and hot beverages.
Lunch is a discovery of delectable regional specialities, in the chef’s fashion, served in a relaxed but refined style accompanied with a selection of quality wines chosen by the chef.
Dinner is a candlelit four-course gourmet experience where chef showcases his repertoire of dining delights.
Harmonizing food and wine is essential to the dining experience and the sommelier chooses only the best of locally produced wines to compliment chef’s exquisite cuisine.
Filet d’Agneau au Basilic; Magret de Canard; Poulet à L’Estragon
Fers Saint Eloi Grande Cuvée Fleurie; Montagny Premier Cru; Domaine Jadot, Moulin à Vent; Domaine Michelo; Meursault
Aisy Cendré; Bouton de Culotte; Epoisses; Ami du Chambertin
Charter and Cabin bookings
Sunday to Saturday
Value rate weeks:
April 1, 8, 15, 22
July 22, 29
August 5, 12, 19
October 7, 14, 21
8 guest charter: 52,400 USD / 35,200 GBP / 44,000 EUR
9 guest charter: 54,100 USD / 36,300 GBP / 45,400 EUR
10 guest charter: 55,400 USD / 37,200 GBP / 46,500 EUR
11 guest charter: 56,700 USD / 38,100 GBP / 47,600 EUR
12 guest charter: 58,000 USD / 39,000 GBP / 48,700 EUR
Per Cabin bookings
Stateroom Double Cabin: 5,150 USD / 3,450 GBP / 4,350 EUR per person
Junior Suite Double Cabin: 5,350 USD / 3,590 GBP / 4,490 EUR per person
Single Occupancy Supplement: 1,900 USD / 1,300 GBP / 1,600 EUR
Regular rate weeks:
May 6, 13, 20, 27
June 3, 10, 17, 24
July 1, 8, 15
September 2, 9, 16, 23, 30
8 guest charter: 59,800 USD / 39,800 GBP / 50,900 EUR
9 guest charter: 61,900 USD / 41,200 GBP / 52,600 EUR
10 guest charter: 63,600 USD / 42,300 GBP / 53,900 EUR
11 guest charter: 65,300 USD / 43,400 GBP / 55,200 EUR
12 guest charter: 67,000 USD / 44,500 GBP / 56,500 EUR
Per Cabin bookings
Stateroom Double Cabin: 5,990 USD / 3,950 GBP / 5,090 EUR per person
Junior Suite Double Cabin: 6,190 USD / 4,050 GBP / 5,190 EUR per person
Single Occupancy Supplement: 2,150 USD / 1,450 GBP / 1,850 EUR
All rates and prices will be confirmed at time of booking. Special Offers are available from time to time – contact us
We feature information about 50 wonderful hotel barges, of various sizes and price/style levels, more than 100 individual cruises to choose from every week of the season, in 8 regions across France. Some book flexibly by the cabin, others exclusively charter the entire hotel barge. Quite a choice!
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+33 609 740 064 -or- +44 7590 287 178
We have been cruising and exploring France
aboard our own river boat since 2003.
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