Anjou - Loire
Castles and watermills; easy cruising for beginners
Boating destinations for the Anjou and Loire
Just a few hours from Paris, discover Anjou and three beautiful waterways the Mayenne, the Sarthe and the Oudon. The Anjou is reputed for its friendly way of life, gastronomy, wines, castles and Abbeys.
Map of the waterways
Luxury hotel barges
Self-drive boats in the Anjou - Loire region
Nicols operate 14 different types of self-drive boats in this region.
Here is a random selection.
France Passion Plaisance operate 4 different types of self-drive boats in this region.
Anjou - Loire information
Named after the Gallic Andegavi people that lived there, Anjou is a historical region of France, formerly a county and province, which occupied the more significant part of the department now known as Maine-et-Loire, with its capital city being Angers.
In the northwest of France, Anjou is a unique region, in between the Loire Valley and Brittany, and just 2½ hours from Paris. Here you can cruise through green and wooded landscapes dotted with numerous riverside villages such as the charming Chenillé-Changé on the banks of the river Mayenne.
Explore Laval’s dramatic castle with its underground chapel and donjon.
Take time to marvel at the Romanesque and Gothic cathedral of Angers, Saint-Maurice d'Angers, and the 9th-century Château d'Angers.
The town of Solesmes is known for being one of the most substantial Benedictine abbeys in the world, and you can enjoy the monks singing Gregorian Chant in the abbey church. Visit the Roman-Gaul Baths at Entrammes, discovered in 1987. A church built over the baths accounts for their remarkably well-preserved state.
You could also visit Le Mans, renowned for car racing.
Those with a sweet tooth will love the Angers speciality of Quernons d'Ardoise, caramelised praline coated in smooth blue chocolate, imitating in shape and colour the slates that cover the houses of the town. Biscuit lovers will enjoy the delicious round shortbread of Sablé, often flavoured with almonds, lemon or orange zest.
Anjou is perhaps best known for its rosé wines which come in two distinct forms: the semi-sweet, Rosé d'Anjou and the more complex Cabernet d'Anjou.
Positioned in the valley of the Loire and with coastal influences, the climate in Anjou is mild. With over 300km of rivers dedicated solely to boating for pleasure, this is an ideal region for a cruising holiday.
Without many locks, this is a perfect choice for beginners. There are three rivers for you to discover: the beautiful and sometimes wild Mayenne, the twisting Sarthe, bordered by willows and other trees, and the Oudon, the shortest navigable river in France.