As Told by Our Guests...

The welcome we received and everything on board was perfect

Pauline Taplin, Hampshire, UK

This is a treasure that most people don’t know about

Denise Thorson , New Jersey, USA

Everbody should do this at least once in their life

Charles Baertl, Texas USA

For a very special occasion this is the place to be

John Thorson, New Jersey, USA

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The Hotel Barging Experience

Our vessels gently introduce you to some of Europe’s finest scenery, fascinating history and local culture. Every European Waterways six-night barge cruise includes all gourmet meals, regional wines, an open bar, local transfers and the use of on board facilities such as bicycles to explore the towpaths, a sundeck to laze on, or a spa pool to relax in. We also offer daily escorted excursions “off the beaten track” to wineries, castles, markets or to see craftsmen at work.

Inviting Accommodation

Inviting Accommodation Banner

All hotel barges in the fleet benefit from an annual refurbishment and this may vary from redecoration and refurnishing of the...

Outstanding Service

Outstanding Service On Board

Crews are mainly British or French and they all speak English, so there is no need to worry about a language barrier when they are...

Cuisine & Dining Aboard

Cuisine

The classic traditions of French and International cuisine are an unforgettable highlight of your cruise. The onboard chefs are...

Enticing Excursions

Chateau de Beaune

Every hotel barge cruise includes daily excursions to some fascinating local places of interest - châteaux, Cathar hilltop...

Themed Charter Cruises

Wine

We can arrange a wide selection of themed charter cruises which will appeal to all types of interest groups, large or small...

Family & Friends Cruises

Fam Banner

Families or groups of friends can charter any of the hotel barges. You will have the whole vessel to yourselves and she becomes a...

Biking & “Biking Plus”

Biking

We know that many of our passengers enjoy taking some exercise during their hotel barge cruise, so each vessel carries...

Shopping & Markets

Wonderful Local cheeses

Even if you are not normally a lover of shopping, the vast array of fascinating shops and markets you can discover on one of our...

Wine & Whisky Tours

Wine Banner

Many of our cruises are through some of the best wine- growing regions of France, such as Burgundy, Bordeaux...

Hotel Barging Experience

Barging Experience

Far removed from the hustle and bustle of city life, hotel barge voyages allow you to travel in luxury without the strains of...

Where We Cruise in Europe

Discover the fascinating world of barging, through the vineyards of Burgundy, on the shady Canal du Midi in Southern France, the historic Po Valley in Italy, or the River Shannon in rustic Ireland. Navigate the Royal River Thames, through the stunningly rugged landscapes of Scotland, picturesque Alsace & Lorraine, or the colourful tulip fields of Holland.

Burgundy

Clos de Vougeot
The wine-growing region of Burgundy lies at the very heart of rural France with a rich and unique history.

Canal du Midi

CDM-1X2
The Midi – a land with a rich heritage – diverse Mediterranean landscapes, sun-drenched vineyards and Cathar fortresses.

Alsace & Lorraine

Lutzelbourg
A unique blend of French and German cultures, forested hillsides, storybook villages and wonderful white wines.

Loire Valley

Chenonceau
A fairytale region of exquisite Renaissance châteaux, Royal French history and contrasting waterways.

Gascony

Gascony
A peaceful region of colours and flavours, of orchards and vineyards, where we get a taste of the real France.

Bordeaux

Bordeaux Vineyards
A region of vividly colourful landscapes, wonderful gastronomy and a ‘terroir’ that produces world-renowned wines.

Champagne

Champagne Region
A mosaic of forests, vineyards and rolling cornfields beneath expansive skies – home to the eponymous sparkling wine that all the world knows and craves.

The Netherlands

Holland
A unique blend of French and German cultures, forested hillsides, storybook villages and wonderful white wines.

Italy

Italy
The captivating waterways of the Veneto and the Po Valley, combined with the history and culture of Venice and its hinterland, offer a rare cruising experience.

Scotland

Scottish Highlander
An dramatic land of mountains, glens, battlefields and whisky, with deep and mysterious lochs that reflect the legends of the past.

England

England Windsor
England’s Royal River Thames offers you castles and palaces, peaceful meadows, quaint country villages and waterside pubs.

Ireland

Ireland Ruins
The Emerald Isle offers lush green pastures, history and folklore and a welcome to surpass all others.

More Destinations

There are so many delightful watercourses to be discovered – canals like the Briare, Nivernais, Burgundy and Canal du Midi in France, the Caledonian Canal in Scotland and the Bianco Canal in Italy; majestic rivers such as the Cher, Moselle, Shannon and Thames; and the more open waters of Loch Ness, the Etang de Thau and the Venetian Lagoon.

Our Exclusive Collection of Hotel Barges

Some vessels in our fleet are owned by us, others by experienced operators who maintain similar standards and have been vetted by us. On board all of them you will glide serenely along waterways that pass through magnificent countryside; be taken on fascinating local excursions; indulge in delicious meals, fine wines and comfortable accommodation – whilst all the time being pampered by your attentive crew.

La Belle Epoque

La Belle Epoque

La Belle Epoque is a deluxe, 12 passenger hotel barge that cruises the picturesque Burgundy Canal in Northern Burgundy

L’Art de Vivre

L'Art de Vivre

L’Art de Vivre is a first class, 8 passenger hotel barge that cruises the charming Canal du Nivernais and River Yonne in Burgundy

L’Impressionniste

L'Impressionniste Cruising

L’Impressionniste is a deluxe, 12 passenger hotel barge that cruises the Burgundy Canal in the wine region of Southern Burgundy

Finesse

Finesse Cruising

Finesse is an ultra deluxe, 8 passenger hotel barge that cruises the River Saône and Canal du Centre in Southern Burgundy

Themed Barge Holidays

We can arrange a wide selection of themed charter cruises which will appeal to all types of interest groups, large or small, including golf, walking and wine appreciation themed cruises.

Whisky Trail Cruises

We offer a Whisky Trail cruise aboard hotel barge Scottish Highlander along the Caledonian Canal and Loch Ness, with a special itinerary that allows...

Walking Cruises

The beauty of hotel barging and walking is that two of the most relaxing holidays possible are merged to give you the best of both worlds

Tennis Cruises

If you are passionate about tennis, then bare in mind we offer "tennis cruises" on board our barges Magna Carta and l'Art de Vivre to either spectate a game at...

Opera Cruises

For the opera lovers amongst you, taking one of our special Opera Cruises aboard La Bella Vita in Italy is sure to be a once in a lifetime experience.

Video Feed

We uploaded our first video in 2010 and since then we have added over 100 hotel barging videos and received over 1,000,000 views on YouTube. We hope you enjoyed watching our videos…

Video of the Week

Despite the growing popularity of cruising, especially on large river vessels, hotel barging is still a little known niche concept.

Cruises in Italy

Our Italian holidays afloat will let you discover that country’s hidden beauty!

Cruises in Alsace & Lorraine

In the Summer and Autumn, hotel barge Panache sails the beautiful waterways of Alsace

The Lock-Keeper Blog

The Lock-Keeper has gone viral! Every few weeks we will be blogging about the Hotel barging experience; From the history of our hotel barges to some of the off the beaten track excursions we visit. Intrigued? Then read on…

Lochs and Locks: Cruising the Caledonian Canal

The Great Glen is your oyster when you cruise the Caledonian Canal on our barge cruises. Find out more here. Read More

Exploring Burgundy: The Château de Bazoches

Explore the countryside through which the canals and rivers of Europe pass by bicycle. Find out more about our barging and biking options. Read More

Barging and Biking with European Waterways

Explore the countryside through which the canals and rivers of Europe pass by bicycle. Find out more about our barging and biking options. Read More

In the Press

There have been many interesting and entertaining articles written by journalists and travel writers from across the globe about their journeys on our luxury hotel barge cruises.

Taking a Slow Boat to the Land of Plenty: Barging through the Burgundy Countryside

The Mail on Sunday's Susie Boulton went on a barge cruise in Burgundy aboard La Belle Epoque. Read her storey as she cruises 40 miles in six days through the Burgundy countryside. Read More

La Belle barge provides small-scale cruising with a very French flavour

There’s a lot of numbers, but no math needed for a six-day cruise along the Burgundy Canal on La Belle Epoque: one hotel barge, 17 meals, 22 wines and 19 cheeses, one hot tub, some mountain bikes and visits to at least a dozen interesting sites Read More

A Mouth-Watering Meander Along the Waterways of Burgundy

Hotel barging is completely different from other types of river cruising, be it the mainstream European vessels carrying up to 200 passengers or navigating a self-hire narrowboat or pleasure craft. Barges can access narrow waterways and canals inaccessible to larger vessels and, with just eight passengers being looked after by five crew members, it’s a really personal experience with the ambience of a house party afloat Read More

A Gourmet Lunch on Finesse

Imagine drifting through the sleepy French countryside as your personal chef prepares a gourmet feast for you and a few friends. Isn’t that a vision to savour?" Read More Read More

Burgundy by barge: It’s about the journey

Simon and Garfunkel’s “59th Street Bridge Song” and the lyrics, “Slow down, you move too fast,” pop into mind as I gaze across Burgundy’s pastoral landscape from the deck of my hotel barge Read More

Savoring the Slow Road: Cruising the Burgundy Canal by Barge

My husband and I chose a European Waterways cruise in Burgundy not only for the peaceful setting, but to explore the prestigious wine-growing region up close, immersing in its rich history and culture. Read More

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