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


Canal Cruises in France

Visit Beautiful Burgundy

As one of the main wine-producing regions of France, Burgundy canal cruises are extremely popular. Not only can you explore part of the 60,000 acres of vineyards in the area, but you can explore the rich history and heritage too.

Roam The Historic Canal du Midi

If you are looking for the ultimate French waterway canal cruise, Canal du Midi is the place to be. The 360-km network of waterways is considered to be one of the most remarkable civil engineering feats and is basked in sun for the perfect getaway.

Explore The Culinary Delights Of Gascony

Food lovers will find the gastronomic delights of Gascony perfect for their French canal cruise. Taking you through the heart of L’Occitanie along the Canal des Deux Mers, you can explore orchards and vineyards with some of the most delicious food on offer.

Enjoy Stunning Views In The Loire Valley

For an exclusive canal cruise in France, visit the luxurious Loire Valley. With its fairytale castles and stunning views, you can cruise along the River Cher on a premium hotel barge. European Waterways is the only company to offer this experience so book your Loire Valley canal cruise today.

Private Tastings In Champagne

The champagne houses of France offer some of the best-tasting experiences in the world, with private tasting sessions available. You’ll find that there is no better way to sample luxury wine than on a French canal cruise in Champagne.

Discover The Architecture Of Alsace & Lorraine

Explore the rich culture and architecture of Alsace & Lorraine. From Christmas markets and close proximity to Germany, you’ll get a wonderful blend of experiences, with unique cuisine and stunning views along the Canal de la Marne au Rhin.

Enjoy the ultimate luxury French canal cruise with European Waterways. Book your holiday today or contact our team to discuss your needs.

More Destinations For Your Canal Cruise In France

With more than 2,700 miles of French inland waterways to visit on a French canal cruise, you’ll get a unique and unforgettable experience with European Waterways. Visit the Canal de Garonne or discover things to do on the Canal de Bourgogne. You can see France in an entirely new way, with vineyards, picturesque villages, and more to do on your trip.

The Ultimate Hotel Experience With French Waterways Canal Cruises

France boasts some of the finest scenery in Europe, combining these stunning views with a rich history and thriving culture. European Waterways cruises in France give you the chance to explore the country in a new way, with gourmet meals, local transfers, and use of the barge facilities. You can take daily escorted excursions to discover the local area, such as a visit to a chateau or local markets for the immersive experience. View the different types of French canal cruises you can take below.

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

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

Hotel Barges For Your Canal Cruise In France

With no fewer than 13 hotel barges, there is sure to be a fully-crewed hotel barge that will suit you and your party.

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


The Ultra-Deluxe hotel barge Finesse

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

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

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

Book Your Themed Barge Holiday

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.

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

Video Feed

We uploaded our first video in 2010 and since then we have added over 100 hotel barging videos and received over 3,000,000 views on YouTube. We hope you enjoyed watching our videos…

Hotel Barge Renaissance

Luxury hotel barge Renaissance has been designed to carry her guests in ultimate luxury along the Canal de Briare, France’s oldest canal, completed in 1642 and steeped in history on a cruise route that features elegant châteaux, small countryside villages and the famed wine-growing region of Sancerre.

Hotel Barge L'Ipressionniste

Hotel barge L’Impressionniste glides gently through the picturesque Ouche Valley in Southern Burgundy through locks with their charming lock houses. You will see medieval villages perched on hilltops and have the opportunity to discover a region famed for its history and viticulture, with visits to such places as Beaune, the regions ‘wine capital’, and the elegant city of Dijon.

Hotel Barge La Belle Epoque

La Belle Epoque in her first life transported logs from Burgundy to Paris, but today she is transformed into a deluxe hotel barge carrying a very different cargo along the same canals.

The Lock-Keeper Blog

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

Family Fun Afloat: Multi-Generational Family Cruises in Europe

A hotel barge cruise is a fantastic option for multi-generational families looking to enjoy a unique and relaxing escape together. With the entire barge privately chartered for your group, you... Read More

10 Extraordinary Feats of Engineering on Europe’s Inland Waterways

From Neptune's Staircase to Eiffel's Pont Canal de Briare - here are our top 10 extraordinary feats of engineering on Europe's inland waterways Read More

The Best Things to do in the Loire Valley

The Loire Valley is the home of vineyards, storybook castles, caves and watersports, a wonderfully versatile destination for the whole family! 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 canal holidays in France.

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

Mike Grenby spent 6 days on the Burgundy canal, read about his Belle Epoque adventure here Read More

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

Mike Grenby spent 6 days on the Burgundy canal, read about his Belle Epoque adventure here Read More

Slow Barge through the Loire Valley

Karen Pasquali Jones takes a tranquil cruise aboard Renaissance, through Burgundy and the Upper Loire Read More

6 Reasons You Should Go on a Canal Barge Cruise

Laura Lynch spent a week aboard the luxury hotel barge Finesse cruising the Canal du Midi. Read about her experience here Read More

Cruising in Burgundy

David Powell spent a week on the luxury hotel barge L’Impressionniste cruising through Burgundy. Read about his experience here Read More

The Best River Cruise Ever!

Tim Hedgley cruised aboard hotel barge L’Impressionniste in Southern Burgundy in June 2017. Read about his experience Read More

Taking a Hotel Barge through Burgundy

Cruise through Burgundy aboard the elegant La Belle Epoque 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