L'Art de Vivre

A gourmet trip through pastoral scenery

Hotel Barge L’Art de Vivre

L’Art de Vivre is the oldest hotel barge in our fleet and was built in England during World War One as a supply vessel to the Allied troops battling in the Somme.

Today her life is a little less dramatic as she cruises one of France’s longest-established canals, the Canal du Nivernais in Burgundy. She is very much a traditional barge in style, with original wood and brass features that emphasise her heritage and create a warm and inviting interior atmosphere. The comfortable, compact cabins all have modern en-suite facilities and the delightful saloon combines contemporary leather with more traditional furnishings.

Outside, there is a sun deck to relax on with a glass of wine as you glide through the pretty Burgundy countryside and a spa pool to soak in. You can explore the ever-present towpath on foot or on one of the barge’s bicycles, before re-joining the L’Art de Vivre at one of the locks up ahead.

This region of Burgundy with its charming villages and centuries-old history simply oozes charm and your cruise aboard L’Art de Vivre is a journey back in time along a magical waterway.

Cruise Highlights

  • Explore enchanting Auxerre and its magnificent cathedral
  • Private wine tasting at the prestigious Chablis house of Domaine Laroche, along with a cellar visit and private lunch
  • Excursion to the quarry of Aubigny, followed by a crémant wine tasting in the cellars of Bailly Lapierre
  • Visit the picturesque town of Vezelay and its hilltop basilica
  • Visit the elegant 12th Century Château de Bazoches
  • Optional hot air ballooning
  • Excellent towpath for walking and cycling
  • “Biking Plus” option available

Classic Cruise Itineraries

Classic Cruise – Burgundy

Typical Cuisine & Wine


Regional Specialities

Terrine de Pêcheur façon Maison; Tourte Chaude d'Escargots à la Ciboulette; Filet de Rouget au Safron
Wine Cellar

Wine Cellar

Domaine Ferrari, Irancy ‘Les Palottes’; Pouilly Fuissé; Domaine Borgnat; Coulanges la Vineuse
Cheese Board

Cheese Board

Brie; Maroilles; Pont L'Eveque; St Marcellin


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The initial booking was easy. Obtaining insurance was more challenging. Fortunately we did not have to use the insurance,

Mrs Lynn Lee

Great crew and a lovely old boat

Mr Brian Maddison

Great trip all around! Great staff!

Mr Robert Kirkup

First class the entire trip!

Mr Steven Weber

Everything was top of class. Even though we traveled through rural Burgandy there was a tour of major cultural/ historical importance every day. The...

Mary Reynolds , Northbrook Illinois

A fabulous cruise on definitely one of the prettiest French canals. We had an incredible crew, wonderful outings and beautiful weather - not to...

Mrs Anne Bickerton , London

L'Art de Vivre was the perfect barge for our group of 6. We had the entire barge to ourselves and we were catered...

Ms Sara Davis , New York

The only thing we bought was wine and this is being shipped. We should have it in Aug.

Mr John Phillips , DedhamMass.

The country side was just wonderful to travel though, being able to walk and ride the bikes along the tow path was a great...

Mr Robert Motteram , Adelaide, South Australia

Special thanks to Andy, Jim, Pierre Yves and Claire they spoiled and pampered us. We loved their attention to every request and detail. When booking...

Mr Dennis E. Haynes , West Palm Beach, Fl., USA

muy bueno pero un poco chicas las camas

Mr Jose Baertl

If you mean the cost of the trip: high

Edith Sanchez , La Jolla CA

Having visited France four other times, I was so impressed with experiencing part of the country by barge. A unique way to travel...

Cecily , Flagstaff AZ

Deck Plan

L’Art de Vivre
First Class 8 Passengers 4 Crew More Details

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