la belle epoque - burgundy

canal cruising in france

hotel barge holidays in france

canal cruising in france

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La Belle Epoque - burgundy

Canal Barge in France

"We had a fantastic trip. The crew was incredible, the food was superb, the wine went down very easily and the scenery was picturesque. We LOVED every second of it." -

La Belle Epoque is a spacious, luxurious hotel barge skillfully converted in the late 1990's into a delightful hotel barge. She is now the perfect vessel for cruising the Burgundy Canal with its towpaths that are ideal for walking and cycling. She has been designed with both elegance and passenger comfort in mind and offers a sun deck with spa pool, wood-paneled saloon/dining room and other luxury amenities. The spacious cabins offer a choice of twin or double beds with marble en suite facilities. The Captain leads a crew of six comprising Master Chef, Deck-Hand, Tour Guide and two Hostesses.



The Belle Epoque has been designed with both elegance and passenger comfort in mind and offers a sun-deck spa-pool. The wood paneled saloon and dining room, together with other luxury facilities, are all fully air-conditioned. The spacious cabins offer a choice of twin or double beds with marble en-suite facilities. La Belle Epoque was entirely refurbished in 2011. New sound and heat insulation - New air-conditioning and heating systems. - New Curtains - Ninety percent of the interior wood has been carefully removed and replaced with seasoned satin-varnished, mahogany and hardwood paneling. - Two bathroom suites have been re-fitted with Italian Mainzu-Ceramica tiles with rain forest shower units and teak-deck flooring. - All Bathrooms were refitted with Trend duo toll holders, soap dishes, glass holders, glass shelves, towel rails. The list is too long. After her upgrade, La Belle Epoque will certainly remain the client's favourite barge in Burgundy.

on board

itinerary - Venarey les Laumes to Tanlay

SUNDAY - Venarey les Laumes

Guests are met at the Hotel Westminster in Paris and transferred by private chauffeured minibus to La Belle Epoque. A full crew Welcome Aboard with champagne and canapés. After time to settle into your cabin you will enjoy your first dinner on board and an introduction to Burgundy’s excellent cuisine.

MONDAY- Venarey les Laumes to Montbard

Enjoy a leisurely breakfast, then we cruise through woodlands and rolling fields with great towpath biking and walking opportunities past the tiny canal side villages of Nogent, Courcelles and Les Granges. After lunch, we enjoy either a stroll around the hilltop village of Flavigny-sur-Ozerain, where the film ‘Chocolat’ was set, or a tour of the medieval town of Semur-en-Auxois. On the way from the summit of Mount Auxois, we also look at Alesia, where the last battle between the Gaulois and Romans took place in 52 B.C. and visit the impressive museum. Dinner on board.

TUESDAY - Montbard to Ravieres

Morning cruise with excellent towpath walking or cycling, passing the 18th century Forges de Buffon. Then after lunch we escort you to the exquisite UNESCO World Heritage Site of Abbaye de Fontenay founded by St Bernard in 1118. Representing a distinctive example of early Cistercian architecture and virtually intact, Fontenay allows an exceptional glimpse of Cistercian life and industry with its peaceful gardens, ponds and fascinating cloisters, dormitories and scriptorium. Return to the barge and cruise to Ravières. Dinner on board.

WEDNESDAY - Ravieres to Ancy le Franc

Morning visit to medieval Noyers-sur-Serein to admire the local produce, colours and delights of the traditional French market, or to wander the town ramparts in this, one of the most beautiful villages in France. We return to the hotel barge and after lunch on board, enjoy a gentle afternoon cruise past grazing Charolais cattle, with plenty of opportunity to walk or cycle along the towpath, to moor in Ancy-le-Franc. Dinner ashore at a local restaurant.

THURSDAY- Ancy le Franc to Lezinnes

This morning we visit Château d’Ancy-le-Franc. This beautifully symmetrical, 16th century masterpiece contains France’s biggest collection of Renaissance murals and is set in magnificent gardens and parkland. In the afternoon, a gentle cruise as your hotel barge continues along the Burgundy Canal and descends through the picturesque locks to moor at Lezinnes. Dinner on board.

FRIDAY - Lezinnes to Tanlay

After breakfast we enjoy a leisurely cruise to our final mooring at Tanlay, with the opportunity to cycle or walk into the picturesque village of Saint Vinnemer. Following lunch, we tour the vineyards and town of Chablis, dating back to Roman times and enjoy a private wine tasting at a renowned winemaker such as the family-run Domaine Régnard, which makes the most of the region’s wonderful local terroir to produce high quality wines, before returning to the barge for Captain’s Farewell Dinner on board.

After breakfast, guests are transferred to the Hotel Westminster in Paris.

On alternate weeks the cruise will be in the reverse direction. This is a sample itinerary and is subject to change.

the Town where 'Chocolat' was Filmed

Flavigny-Sur-Ozerain: Chocolat's Backdrop You may already have heard about the luxury and slow-paced bliss of our hotel barge holidays, but what you might not know about is the historical and cultural richness of our barge routes. Today we would like to tell you a little about our historical and characterful barge, La Belle Epoque, and one of the towns her passengers can visit along the way - one where the critically acclaimed and popular film Chocolat was shot in 2000.

La Belle Epoque is already steeped in local history, having originally carried logs from Burgundy to Paris. It’s oddly fitting, then, that she should pass through such a historic town, both in terms of its ancient architecture and its more recent prominence as the location where the excellent Chocolat was filmed. When you finally visit the town of Flavigny-sur-Ozerain, you’ll begin to understand why it was chosen as the set of this unique and moving film.

The central theme of a strong, vivacious character living her life against centuries of stagnant tradition is etched into the beautiful but imposing medieval architecture and the stone walls all around. The combination of the stoic, uncompromising nature of the structures with the sublime beauty and peace of the town, not to mention its timeless, isolated feel, provide the perfect atmosphere for the story of beautiful, heart-warming relationships erupting within a repressive, old-fashioned framework.

If you have been considering a barge holiday and you have a passion for film, please do consider a trip on La Belle Epoque. Combining a historically and culturally rich route with the charming character of the vessel makes for a holiday experience like no other. Additionally, Flavigny-sur-Ozerain isn’t the only film location on our cruises, and we look forward to telling our film buff barge-lovers about some of the others!

  • cruise
    2020 - 2021

    individual or charter

    us$ price on request


    junior suite

    single supplement

    8 person charter

    9 person charter

    10 person charter

    11 person charter

    12 person charter

  • value season
    6 nights all inclusive

    29 Mar - 19 Apr / 19 Jul - 23 Aug / 4 - 25 Oct

    4650 Euros per person

    4790 Euros

    1700 Euros

    46900 Euros

    48400 Euros

    49600 Euros

    50800 Euros

    52000 Euros

  • regular season
    6 nights all inclusive

    26 Apr- 12 Jul / 30 Aug - 27 Sep

    5490 Euros per person

    5690 Euros

    2000 Euros

    55400 Euros

    57100 Euros

    58400 Euros

    59700 Euros

    61000 Euros

Price for La Belle Epoque includes:

Transfers by Chauffeured Mercedes Mini bus between Hotel Westminster in Paris to the hotel barge, a luxury 6 night cruise, all meals on board catered for by the on board Master Chef, an open bar 24/7 with a large range of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, all wines served throughout the cruise, excursions and admittance fees as per the itinerary, the services of 6 crew and use of barge facilities, which includes bicycles and spa pool.

These rates do not include:

• Insurance • Personal expenses • Gratuities to the crew (between 7 and 10%)

To avoid currency exchange fees,

• Australians can pay in Australian dollars by direct deposit or credit card. • New Zealanders can pay in New Zealand dollars by direct deposit or credit card. • US citizens will be charged in US dollars using credit card.


Bon voyage!