Staff Review

European Waterways

by The Kirker Team

On my most recent trip I went out to experience a new addition to our brochure: luxury hotel barge holidays on the canals and rural waterways of France. We are excited about offering our clients a range of tailor-made holidays, each of which includes a 6 night hotel barge cruise, with travel by air or rail, transfers and a stay in a wonderful city close by before or after the cruise.' 'This luxury hotel barge is not to be mistaken for an ordinary river cruise – each of the barges is a traditional working vessel from the Netherlands, completed restored and refitted with comfortable bedrooms which accommodate up to 12 people in total (except for the Italian barge, which is a little larger). During the 6 nights on board, everything is included and carefully thought of – from the excursions with professional local guides and the delightful crew, to fabulous food and excellent local wines from the region. The cabins are perfectly comfortable, and are equipped with air-conditioning and en-suite bathrooms.' 'During the day you will either spend the morning or afternoon cruising very gently along the water, and the other part of the day exploring the surrounding area with your guide on well organised excursions. While cruising you can enjoy the scenery, relax on the top deck, or work up an appetite for lunch with a stroll or cycle along the towpath. The slow cruising barges and unhurried pace ensure a very relaxing holiday.' 'Our cruise on La Belle Epoque passed through the northern part of Burgundy, visiting towns such as Chablis (where we visited a vineyard for a delicious wine-tasting), the stunning castle at Ancy-le-Franc and the picturesque town of Noyers. The food and wine were sourced locally from markets along the route and were always paired perfectly – all of the waiters and hostesses were very knowledgeable about the wines and cheeses of the area.' 'This particular cruise (and other Burgundy cruises) lend themselves perfectly to combine with a couple nights in Paris before or after the journey. Getting there is smooth and effortless – we will book your Eurostar or flights and arrange transfers and accommodation at one of our recommended hotels in Paris for you. Kirker clients also receive metro tickets, a 2 day museum pass and Seine cruise to explore Paris with – and our in-house Kirker Concierge is at your service to arrange anything else you need, from a private guide for the morning to a table reservation at a lovely local restaurant, or tickets to a concert, opera or ballet.

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Our expert reservations team regularly travel to a wide range of destinations to explore new cities, visit hotels and to research museums, galleries and restaurants so that we can offer the most up-to-date advice and recommendations.


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