Cruise Route Scoop!

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The new route from St Leger sur Dheune to Macon, in southern Burgundy, will take you on a fascinating adventure through varied scenery and history.
130km of peaceful waterways with only 24 locks make this a perfect cruise, even for novices.

The adventure begins…
St Leger sur Dheune: The first boats cruised on the newly built Canal du Centre in 1793.
Today’s port is situated on the ancient quay side. Just think how many boats have sailed before you!
Previously used to transport gypsum and coal,  with the coming of the railways in 1861, the canal was largely abandoned by the local industries of the time,  and subsequently adopted by  the locals for fishing and boating.  It’s now the perfect place to relax and enjoy cycling and walking.

A glass of wine?

Santenay: This small village is renowned for its red wines made from the full-bodied Pinot Noir grape.

By PRA (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 or GFDL], via Wikimedia Commons
Moor below the 19th century windmill while you explore the vineyards, of which one third produce Premiere Cru! Stop off for a tasting and purchase some wine for your holiday.

Chagny: Another delightful wine village marking the border between the Cote de Beaune to the north and the Cote Challonais to the south.

By Jacques Lameloise – Editer par Arnaud 25 (Own work) [GFDL or CC-BY-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons
Pre-book to enjoy a wonderful meal in the 3-star Michelin restaurant, the Lameloise, for a culinary treat!

By Mpmpmp (Own work) [GFDL or CC-BY-SA-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0], via Wikimedia Commons
Rully: Take your bikes along the quiet country roads to visit this vineyard village, and enjoy a tasting in the bistro.

Kanalo Fragnes” by BildojOwn work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

Fragnes: The port here offers excellent services including laundry machines and wifi for those of you who feel the need to stay connected! Upload your photos and share your cruise with your friends…  There is also a number of shops selling local produce.

A touch of history?
Chalon sur Saone: As you leave the Canal du Centre behind, your first major port of call will be at Chalon sur Saone, a large, lively town dating back to Roman times.

Chalon-sur-Saône” by P. JacquetOwn work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

Plenty for everyone to see and do here..
Why not visit the Photography Museum dedicated to Niepces, the founder of this noble art, admire St Vincent’s Cathedral on the town square, dating back to the 8th century, or explore the market stalls and numerous boutiques?
As well as wine caves, there are many restaurants to suit all palates.

Tournus: Tournus marks the beginning of the Macon region and the architecture begins to change, toward a more Mediterranean feeling.

Tournus abbaye“. Licensed under CC BY-SA 1.0 via Wikimedia Commons.


Towering above the river Saone is the stunning church of St Philibert, which dates from the 11th century.  Other monastic buildings surround the church including the Cloisters and refectory, giving a detailed insight to medieval monastic life.

Back to nature…

Joining the river Seille, known locally as Fisherman’s Paradise, you will be treated to a wealth of fauna and flora as you cross the Bresse plains.  This is a very peaceful waterway and ideal for swimming and fishing alike.

Branges: Moor up along the working mill for a unique day or overnight stop!

Louhans:  At the end of the river Seille, lies this beautiful town famous for its livestock market.

By Arnaud 25  (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons
Visit the ancient arcades in the old town where a variety of shops are now housed.  Step back in time in the Hospice with its wonderful collection of apothecary jars in the dispensary.

Returning toward the river Saone, you may like to stop off for some traditional french cooking at La Truchere, where the Auberge de la Grenouillère welcomes you.

Now cruising southwards, the river Saone takes you to
Fleurville, a quaint, tiny village of just 500 inhabitants dominated by its 17th century chateau.

Pont de Vaux: If you have been bird-watching during your cruise but haven’t yet managed to identify all the species spotted, do visit the Natural History museum featuring a large ornithological exhibition.

By Luciani71 (Own work) [GFDL or CC-BY-SA-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons
By PRA (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 or GFDL], via Wikimedia Commons
And finally, you will reach Macon, one of the most ancient cities of France at over 2000 years old.
Many of its relics were destroyed in the religious wars, but you will be able to see wooden houses dating from the 16th century, the 11th century St Laurent bridge, and the Sénecé hotel from the Renaissance period.
Take time to visit this beautiful town and to taste some fine wines before you continue your journey.

Whether you cruise aboard a traditional Penichette or a luxurious, modern style Linssen, you are sure to enjoy this varied cruise.

Book before September 14th to qualify for the 2014 rates, with an additional early booking discount, which can be combined with our family offers to save you up to 15%!

What’s more, if you book before September 1st,  pay just 20% deposit to secure your ideal dates and boat!

Free Gift !
To claim your gift, just quote “route scoop to prepare for your cruise.
The Waterways Guide is the perfect introduction to the region: Read about the all towns and villages along the way, and study the navigation maps from home before you set sail.

Contact Emma at
or call Hotels Afloat on +33 614 250 200 now for further information
and to book your 2015 cruise.

Remember to quote “Route Scoop” for your free gift!

See you soon!


Emma’s Christmas gift

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For the holiday of a lifetime, join the charter barge Wine & Water for a magical cruise on the Burgundy canal, wending it’s way through the Vallée D’Ouche.

Rolling hills, chateaux, medieval towns and villages…
Visit the Burgundy vineyards and taste some of the world’s finest wines…
Explore the beautiful cities of Beaune and Dijon …
Relax and watch the world go by while the captain and hostess do the work for you!
This is the holiday that you deserve…

Simply book your cruise by January 15th 2013  to save 1000 euros on the published rates.

If you would prefer to book a self-drive cruise, we are still offering discounts to save you up to 15%,  but hurry! This offer closes on December 30th.

To book your cruise at discounted rates, simply contact me by email at

or call me on +33 614 250 200

Happy Christmas!

Photos of the barge (click on any photo to zoom in and watch the slide show)

Cruising on the Burgundy Canal
The sundeck on the barge
Classic countryside
Lounge and bar
Ensuite cabin




Emma’s 2013 Cruise news

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You are now one step closer to discovering our current promotions. Simply read on…

Charter barge cruises

Time to relax
Time to relax

Burgundy remains our top destination… There is plenty for everyone to enjoy here:
Fine wines, gastronomy, historic chateaux, and the vineyards of the world renowned Cote d’Or.

Join the Jubilant in a journey through time along the majestic river Saône as she cruises from the Medieval city of Dole to the Roman town of Chalon-sur-Saône… Flexibilty is the crews’ watchword: start days, cruise duration, dining ‘in’ or ‘out’, and visits can all be adapted to suit your party.
To celebrate her post-refit return, we are offering a 5% discount to guests reserving by November 5th.
Click here to board Jubilant

How about a wine discover cruise aboard the aptly named Wine & Water? Cruising along the Burgundy Canal through the beautiful Valleé d’Ouche, you can discover the nearby vineyards under the expert guidance of Max, dine in some hidden-away bistros,  and enjoy the wonderful views along this tranquil route.

Book by October 31st to save 5%
Click here to view Wine & Water

So much to discover...
So much to discover…

The Aquitaine, in the south west of France, is also a popular destination…
Rugged landscapes, gorges, a rich history dating back to pre-historic times, fine Bordeaux wines and a great climate attract many to this region.
Join Captain Tom aboard Easyvie for a relaxed cruise on the Canal de la Garonne.
Click here for details

Self Drive Cruises

The Captain's Choice...
The Captain’s Choice…

Book any top-rated, air-conditioned America boat by October 31st to save 20%! Explore the waterside towns on the river Saône, the fauna and flora of the river Seille, and the ancient vineyards on the Canal du Centre.

Enjoy a cruise on a traditional style Penichette in any region, and save up to 15%. Blending in with the countryside, these boats offer comfortable accommodation for up to 12, and are ideal for families and groups of friends alike.

Luxurious self drive boats? Yes!
Experienced crews among you can enjoy the Vision 3 and Vision 4 in France.
Fully air-conditioned, hotel-type cabins, wonderful top deck including outside galley!
Modern steering technology…
Click here to discover the boats and be the envy of all that see you cruising on the waterways.

Remember, these are just selected examples…

Other discounts are available for early bookings received by October 31st.
Simply email me and let’s start planning your next cruise.

Best regards
Emma @ Hotels