The Burgundy Canal du Nivernais follows the Yonne and is intertwined the river itself. The jewel in the crown of canal cruising and our most popular route.
Constructed between 1784 and 1843 to transport firewood and products of the region to Paris, the canal is now just for pleasure. Renowned for its beauty and tranquillity, the canal passes through a picturesque valley with villages, historic towns, and vineyards.
Included : 6 breakfasts, 5 lunches, and 1 dinner aboard, tours, entrance fees, evening chauffeur service, and Paris transfers.
Not included : 5 Dinners ashore at local restaurants along our route. Add addition dinners aboard with our Cruise Builder.
2pm Paris rendezvous for a 2 1/2 hour private car transfer to the Randle.
Arrive to Chevroches, (pop' 146) where once paving stones were loaded aboard barges destined for the streets of London. Welcome aboard with Champagne and homemade gougére pastries.
Visit nearby Clamecy (pop’ 4,500) an old town nestled in rolling landscape of the Nievre region from where the Nivernais canal gets its name. Take a walk through the meandering cobbled streets to the magnificent 16c church St Martin. Clamecy was the seat of the bishop of Bethlehem for 600 years and a centre of logging for 400,
Where once the town's post was delivered by carriage, now a classic French restaurant hotel with relaxed surroundings and extensive wine list.
We depart at 9am to descend onto the river Yonne, the morning cruise takes us past limestone cliffs and the 14c fortified farm Chartreuse-de-Bassville. After stopping for lunch we continue to our destination of the day, Lucy-sur-Yonne (pop’ 151) with 11c church with restored stained glass windows, and a mill pond nearby.
A guided afternoon tour takes us to Vezelay, an UNESCO world heritage site and fortified town with Romanesque Basilica dedicated to Mary Magdalene. Stroll the picturesque streets with many boutiques, art galleries, cafés, and restaurants.
Our very own gourmet chef Gael prepares a four course dinner from fresh local produce complimented with a selected premier-cru wine of the region.
At 9am and we set off along the meandering canal past hilltop villages past the magnificent white cliffs of Rochers-du-Saussois. After lunch we arrive at Mailly-la-Ville (pop’605) with pretty river mooring.
Take an Afternoon guided tour to the limestone caves of the Grottes-de-Arcy. A fascinating cave system which runs for over 500m underground and contains many 28,000 year old Palaeolithic paintings representing Bears, Rhino, and Mammoth.
Dine at the étape-des-gourmets for dinner with local flavour, or for a grand night out at the Chateau Vault-de-Lugny with evening chauffer service included.
Today is morning market at the village of Noyers-sur-Serein. A very picturesque fortified village with 15c timber framed buildings with intricate carvings, it is listed as one of the 156 prettiest villages of France, "Les Plus Beaux Villages de France". Home to many artists, a potter, a jeweller, and a leather maker. Stroll the cobbled streets and market stalls, buy a little something for friends back home. After lunch aboard the Randle we make an afternoon cruise along the canal and river Yonne to the pretty Village of Accolay (pop’ 467)
A surprisingly good find and a short walk from our mooring with elegant under-croft restaurant or al fresco dining on balmy evenings.
9am we depart from our mooring and cruise along the Yonne valley with vineyards coming into view on the hills above. After lunch we moor on the river at Vincelles overlooking a watermill with vines on the hills above. We take an afternoon tour to the wine villages of Irancy, Chitry, and Chablis. View the famous Chablis grand-cru vineyards and take a wine tasting in the town.
With riverside setting close to our mooring chef Alain Renaudin prepares gastronomic dishes from fresh local ingredients.
Today and we are river cruising along the Yonne with open vistas past pretty riverside villages. After lunch we arrive to our destination, Auxerre (pop’ 45,000)
Auxerre has been a prosperous town since roman times and is dominated by the 11-16c St Étienne cathedral built on the high ground overlooking the river. Although a bustling and modern town it maintains its 15c charm with many timber framed buildings and cobbled streets, a great place for shopping or just people watching from one of the busy street side cafés.
A small and charming restaurant where Jérôme and Sylvie Carpentier focus on traditional Burgundy cuisine.
After breakfast aboard we bid you á bientót for your
chauffeured transfer to your Paris hotel,
station, or airport.