The Wayfarers - vacations and travel

France - Burgundy

France, Europe

from $4,650* per person 7 Days September, October
Boutique accommodations Exertion level: 2
Operator: The Wayfarers 16 people max
  • Airport, france near montbard, france
  • Boats, Barges & Small Ship Cruises trips
The luxury barge, La Belle Epoque, is our home for seven days as we glide along the waterways of Burgundy.  We cruise the upper Burgundy Canal in the North of Burgundy, between the two classic French towns of Tanlay and Venaray les Laume.

Tranquility and comfort accompany us on our journey, cruising peacefully through Burgundy. Every day we leave our barge to set off on foot to explore Renaissance châteaux, dramatic cliffs, wooded hills, medieval towns, lush valleys and ancient vineyards.

Fine French cuisine is prepared on board La Belle Epoque by our personal chef and every meal is accompanied by a different regional wine, making this trip a gourmet's delight.

Locations visited/nearby

France, Europe

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Itinerary

Sunday

We rendezvous in Montbard and transfer to the barge, moored in Tanlay, in a private air-conditioned minibus. A full crew Welcome Aboard with champagne and canapés during which we hear about the week’s itinerary, its walks and its activities. After time to settle into your cabin we gather for our Welcome Dinner on board - a wonderful introduction to Burgundy’s excellent cuisine.
Overnight: Mooring: Tanlay

Monday

After a delicious breakfast which includes fresh croissants from a local boulangerie, we start our holiday with a morning cruise through the Burgundian countryside to Lezinne. After lunch on board we visit the 16th Century Renaissance-style Chateau de Tanlay for a guided tour of this beautiful castle. We are then transferred a short distance by minibus to our first counrtyside walk. This takes us through farmland and woods from which we emerge into the glorious Tonnerois vineyards at Epineuil, in October ablaze with hues of gold, yellow and orange.
Overnight: Mooring: Lezinne

Tuesday

We start the day with a canal-side walk passing ancient villages before we depart for the world-famous town and vineyards of Chablis. After a gourmet lunch in Chablis, we see some of the sites before we enjoy a private wine-tasting at the Domaine Servan, renowned for its Premier and Grand Cru wines popularized by Alex Lichine in the 1950's. There is time to wander around the town before we return to the barge at Ancy le Franc.
Overnight: Mooring: Ancy le Franc

Wednesday

A morning visit to Noyers sur Serein, listed as one of the most beautiful villages in France, to enjoy the vegetables, cheeses, colors and delights of the local market. We are then guided around the medieval streets and ramparts before returning to the barge for lunch. In the afternoon we either enjoy a lazy cruise gently down Ravières or walk there by a ciruitous route through the Burgundian countryside. We start this in the ancient village of Chassignelles where we visit its historic 12th Century church to see some of the best preserved wall paintings in Burgundy.
Overnight: Mooring: Ravières

Thursday

Starting at the tiny village of Cry, this morning’s walk takes us through a cacophony of woodland, rolling fields and a ruined castle. In the afternoon we drive to the exquisite World Heritage Unesco site of Abbey de Fontenay founded by St Bernard in 1118. Not only is it a wonderful example of early Cistercian architecture but it is virtually in tact.  With its peaceful gardens and ponds and fascinating cloisters, dormitories and scriptorium, Fontenay gives an exceptional glimpse of Cistercian life and industry. A transfer back to the barge will give you time to stroll around the ancient centre of Montbard before dinner; or you can take a hearty walk from the abbey to the barge, arriving just before sunset.
Overnight: Mooring: Montbard

Friday

After climbing out of the valley our final walk takes us past fields of Charollais cattle and through the hamlet of Benoisey before reaching Grignan where we descend to meet the barge. En route we have the best views of the week with stunning vistas across the valley of the Brenne and the Canal du Bourgogne. In the afternoon we first visit the fascinating walled hilltop village of Flavigny sur Ozerain, where the film Chocolat was made. This is followed by a visit Alesia, the site of the final battle between the Gauls and Romans that took place in 52 BC, before ending the afternoon in the medieval fortified town of Semur en Auxois. We return to the barge moored at Venarey les Laumes for the Captain’s Farewell Dinner .
Overnight: Mooring: Venarey les Laume

Saturday

After breakfast, disembark the barge and transfer to Montbard railway station in time for the 11.28am train to Paris Gare de Lyon.

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