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


The Hotel Barging Experience

Are you looking to experience a once-in-a-lifetime river cruise in a stunning European location? European Waterways specialises in creating the ultimate feeling of relaxation as the European river cruises feel the parting water of Europe’s fairy tale waterways.

Over the course of your journey, you will enjoy a plethora of fantastic local excursions that will allow you to fully embrace the true culture and heart of these destinations. At the end of your adventure-filled shore excursions days, your luxury hotel barge will await your return so that you can enjoy your night in the finest luxury.

Multi Generational Cruises

Multi Generational Cruises - Family Picnic

With capacity for between 6 and 20 passengers, a private hotel barge charter is perfect for a multi generational getaway

A Home Away from Home


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

Enriching Excursions


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

Insider Experiences

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These experiences form the heart of a European Waterways cruise; spontaneous, unique adventures that just couldn't be had anywhere else

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...

Outstanding Service


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...

A Gastronomic Experience


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

Themed Charter Cruises


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

Family Cruise

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

Barging & Biking

Spirit Of Scotland 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...

Where We Operate in Europe

With all of our river cruises, we give you a real taste of the country that you are exploring. Our phenomenal hotel barges navigate through the rivers and canals in several key destinations that offer some of the most gorgeous waterways that the continent has to offer.

European Waterways Europe Map


We embark on journeys around the nation’s 2,700 miles of inland waterways. France is one of the most popular destinations in Europe and there is no better way to see the stunning country than through its many majestic waterways. The cruises travel through the countless UNESCO world heritage-listed vineyards where you will get the opportunity to try phenomenal fine wines. We offer barge cruise lines that travel the Rhone River, Seine river, Saone river, and other main rivers to French destinations such as Burgundy, Paris, Normandy, Bordeaux, and Picardy.


Otherwise known as the Netherlands has some of the prettiest waters and countryside in Europe. Our cruises travel the country’s waters decorated in stunning windmills. We travel the very river that gave the iconic city of Amsterdam its name. On our Dutch cruise, you will get to see the true charm and beauty of this stunning country.


As a country, Belgium is not explored half as much as it should be. Our cruise experiences show the true culture and beauty of this wonderful country. We will visit stunning locations with immense history and culture such as Antwerp, Bruges, and Ghent.


During our Italian cruise experiences, we travel to some of the country’s most beautiful and infamous waterways. The highlight of our glorious Italian cruises is when we travel the historic waterways of the province of Venice. Venice boasts 177 glorious canals and countless historic locations. Over your holiday you will also be able to experience the world-class cuisine that Italy has to offer.

Germany & Luxembourg

This stunning cruise travels the Moselle river which touches both of these breathtaking countries. The awe-inspiring river is decorated with steep-sided hillsides and vineyards creating a truly magical atmosphere. You will also get to taste the fine wines that the Moselle region of Germany is famous for.


On the English cruise ship you will navigate through the iconic waters of the Royal River Thames. Along the journey, you will pass some of the country’s most important architecture such as Windsor Castle and Hampton Court Palace, both royal residences. The tremendous journey that we embark on is also an old Viking trading route.


The island, also known as ‘The Emerald Isle’ is one of the most beautiful countries in not only Europe but the world. However, it is also widely undiscovered by most. Over the course of your Irish river cruise, you will get to experience the true soul of the country through its beautiful music, friendly locals, and stunning scenery.


Travelling through the inspiring land of mountains, glens, and famous magical lochs is truly an experience that you will never forget. You will get the chance to experience the magical scenic landscape, local whiskey, and the famous loch ness.

Our Exclusive Collection of Hotel Barges

A majority of our vessels are owned by us, however, the vessels that we do not own are owned by private operators who share our same standards for exceptional quality service. During the course of your trip, you will have countless sightseeing opportunities as well as indulge in the mouth-watering local cuisine made for you on board by your private chef.

Kir Royale

Hotel barge Kir Royale cruising Champagne

Kir Royale is a ultra deluxe, 8 passenger hotel barge that cruises the renowned Champagne region of France

La Belle Epoque

La Belle Epoque - Cruising - 490

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


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


L'Impressionniste barge

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

Themed River Cruises in Europe

If you privately charter one of our phenomenal boats then you will have a wide range of themes that you can choose from for your cruise experience. We will adapt and build your itinerary around your chosen theme so that you can do more of what you love, whether that be golf, walking tours, tennis, wine appreciation, antiques and so much more.

Garden Cruises

Our dedicated garden cruises include visits to some of the best gardens, estates and parklands in Europe

Christmas Markets

We offer a Christmas Markets cruise aboard hotel barge Panache in Alsace, with a special itinerary filled with twinkling lights, brass bands, and the sweet aromas of mulled wine and gingerbread from quaint little chalet-like stalls

Whisky Cruises

We offer a Whisky 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

Verified Reviews

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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…

Scottish Highlands

Cruise the heart of the Scottish Highlands aboard the 8 passenger luxury hotel barge ‘Scottish Highlander’.

Cruises in Italy

Our cruises around Italy will let you discover that country’s hidden beauty!

Cruises in England

Magna Carta is one of the finest, most luxurious vessels cruising the British Isles today. The ambience created by combining a traditional 1936-built barge hull with fine mahogany, teak and oak woods is outstanding.

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…

Top 10 Islands to Visit in the Venetian Lagoon

With over 100 islands in the Venetian lagoon, it’s tricky to pick the best ones to visit, so we’ve compiled a shortlist of our top 10. Read More

Let’s Talk Prosecco: Everything you Need to Know

Prosecco, the drink of choice for celebrations all over the world. But do you know your prosecco from your spumante? Read More

Top 10 Best Things to do in the Scottish Highlands

Experience the natural beauty of the Scottish Highlands guided by our top 10 things to do, to see the best landscapes, lochs and architecture in the region. 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.

Der gute Geist der Highlands

Auf einer 6-tägigen Kreuzfahrt an Bord der Luxus-Hotelbarge Spirit of Scotland besuchte O. Schmidt die schönsten Sehenswürdigkeiten Schottlands. Read More

Tiptoe Through the Tulips on a Holland Cruise

Mix a handful of Americans, a couple of Brits, and a pinch of an Australian. Put them aboard a canal cruise flowing around Holland for several days, add some interesting excursions along the way, and feed them glorious food all day and night. What do you have? A fabulous cultural vacation in a European country with lots of sights, laughter, and good food. Read More

More of Scotland

"For six days we explored this hidden corner of France covering a mere 74 nautical miles. We came to appreciate that the insouciant movement is an inherent charm of barging..." Read More