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French Barge Holiday Cruises


French Barge Holiday Cruises

Themed cruises usually entail scores of passengers and little in the way of one to one involvement with the experts. However, European Waterways have come up with themed cruises on their luxury hotel barges that seem to have it all.

French Barge Holiday Cruises

To those unfamiliar with this form of travel, barging might suggest rather basic accommodation, but let me enlighten you. The cabins are bijou,and they come with en suite shower rooms. They are well equipped with plenty of storage space. I traveled on ANJODI, the venue for Rick Stein’s “French Odyssey” and luxurious indeed it was.

French Barge Holiday Cruises

The lounge bar and dining room is elegant and each meal is rather like a very nice dinner party, although informality of dress is the order of the day. You get a chance to dress up at the Captain’s dinner on the final night of the cruise.

French Barge Holiday Cruises

Lunches are on deck and are a gourmet’s delight. Seafood is a specialty with oysters, mussels, crevettes in abundance and supported by the chef’s culinary gems..

Dinner is accompanied by superb wines specially selected to complement the wonderful French cuisine.

French Barge Holiday Cruises

We were six guests on board, four Americans and two Brits, and we instantly made what I’m sure will be lasting friendships. Often the barges are hired by a group of friends or family, or you can, as we did, join other people with similar interests and make new friendships.

My passion is golf and this was well catered for. ANJODI traveled the Canal du Midi in the South of France and the four golf courses we played were all challenging and very picturesque. If your passion is painting, you can do that too. Vineyards, walking, antiques, festivals and more are on offer and there is a flexibility if you have other interests. European Waterways cover a vast region from Ireland, Scotland, England, through Holland, Belgium and Italy, as well as France, and there is something magical about meandering the canals of Europe whilst pursuing your favourite hobbies.


French Barge Holiday Cruises

Everything is included in the price – there is an open bar and all the wines and spirits are complementary, as are the meals when taken in local restaurants. There are excursions to places of interest and these too are included in the price. Bikes are available for those who wish to explore a little further. European Waterways have thought of everything.

The crew were incredibly knowledgeable about all facets of French cuisine and the local wines. They even produced a sommelier who came on board to give us a wine tasting as we made our way along the canal. They were as helpful as it’s possible to be, with flexibility and attention to detail high on their list of priorities. I shall miss them – they helped to make a perfect holiday for me.

By Rikki White

Prices for a fully-inclusive 6 night/7 day cruise (2009) aboard the European Waterways hotel barge Anjodi are from £1,990 per person. Cruises aboard other barges are from £1,550 per person. To find out more:


Tel: 01784 482439


TMUK apologise for the repetition of some place or proper names with different
spellings, but where this happens there is either no definitive spelling translation
of these words or the place is known by different names by different peoples.

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