Barge Cruising & Holiday Packages
Life on board a barge cruise is slow paced and relaxing as you cruise the canals of Europe. Whichever barge you choose to cruise on, you can rest assured that a lot of thought and care has gone into combining traditional features with modern comfort. Every cruise itinerary includes exciting daily excursions. Visit local places of interest such as Châteaux, villages, markets, wineries or hidden gems off the beaten track..
Why embark on a barge cruising holiday?
Start your journey in comfort directly from the hotel with a transfer. We can arrange your pre and post cruise accommodation, and we will make sure your transfer is organised. A member of the crew will pick you up at your hotel and drive/ train you to the barge. The transfers are planned for you to have enough space for your luggage and be the beginning of your journey.
When you arrive on-board you will be welcomed by the crew. This is an opportunity for them to introduce themselves and have all your requirements prepared for the week. They will make sure you are comfortable and explain how your week will un-fold on the canals. Enjoy the welcome cocktail, start relaxing and fully enjoy the barge cruise experience.
Life on board a barge cruise is slowpaced and relaxing. Barges cater from 2 to 24 people, making it an intimate experience where your crew can personally look after you. Comprised of a captain, a chef, a tour guide and host or hostess, the highly professional English-speaking crews take their jobs very seriously. They are attentive to guest needs and will happily share their rich, local knowledge.
All barges have different ratings, but one important point they all have in common is their high standards. Every winter, vessels are fully painted and varnished to be perfectly accommodating. Some of them are family-owned with a cosy atmosphere, some are ultimate luxury with all the amenities you can imagine. Barges range in size from 2 cabins up to 10 cabins for larger group charters.
You will enjoy the amenities on-board such as bicycles to cycle along the canals to small villages; the library on-board to relax on the sundeck with a good book; the heated swimming pool on some of the barges, a cocktail to enjoy an aperitif and the ensuite cabins where you will be comfortable.
Every cruise itinerary includes exciting daily excursions. Visit local places of interest such as castles, villages, markets, wineries, or hidden gems off the beaten track. Outings can often be tailored to your wishes – particularly if you have chartered the whole barge – and are usually led by your tour guide crew member.
Wake up every morning to fresh bread, pastries, and fruit, brought on board by your crew. Meals are typically gastronomic adventures prepared by your very own chef with locally sourced ingredients. Many barges in our range have excellent selections of wines for you to savour every meal.
All drinks are included, and the bar is open 24/7 for soft and alcoholic drinks. If you are a wine or whiskey aficionado, there are even cruises that will be focusing on some great tasting experiences. For most of our barges let us know prior if you prefer red, white, rose, spirits or juices and we will make sure everything on-board caters to your preferences.
How appealing is waking up to a different view from your sundeck every morning? The variety you will get to experience is a highlight of your barge cruise. Cruise along pretty waterways otherwise inaccessible to larger vessels and really unwind as your barge trundles at a perfectly relaxing pace. It truly is the ideal scenario to sit back and admire the inspiring landscapes of Europe.
Featured Barge Cruising
Themed Barge Cruises
Family themed cruises are available on most of the barges in our range. Whether for a special family celebration or simply a chance to enjoy quality time, a barge cruise is the perfect opportunity whatever your age. Tuck into a delightful dinner all together or partake in group activities that both adults and young ones can enjoy.
If you are looking to travel as a group with family, friends or colleagues and if you require more cabins than a single barge offers, Entire Travel Group can arrange tandem cruises for you. This is where two barges will follow the same itinerary, allowing more passengers to cruise in company. A group cruise is also a good option for two families keen to explore together but have their own personal space if wanted.
Are you a lover of fine food? Do you get a kick out of eating fresh ingredients and supporting local producers? If so, our gastronomy cruises are the answer. Itineraries on these cruises will focus specifically on the gastronomy of the region you are exploring. Typical highlights of a gastronomy cruise include a visit to a cheesemaker, a truffle farm and plenty of food markets to sample local delicacies.
Europe as a continent is well-known for producing some of the oldest and finest wines in the world. Theme your barge cruise around your love of wine and visit well-known estates for wine tasting and sometimes lunch. Predictably perhaps, many of these cruises are available across France in the country’s rich wine growing regions: Burgundy, Alsace, Champagne, Bordeaux and Languedoc-Roussillon. The experience can also be organised for a cruise in Italy.
At Entire Travel Group, we offer whisky trail cruises on board the authentic Scottish Highlander. Discover how Scotland’s primary export is produced as you visit established distilleries around the country. Typical excursions include Benromach Distillery, a family-run business for over 100 years, the Glen Ord Distillery, Tomatin Distillery and Dalwhinnie Distillery. A thrilling experience for whisky fans.
Most of the barges in our range have bicycles on board for passengers to use during their voyage. A cycling cruise however focuses on the activity in an organised way. Your guide will take you on a tour around your chosen region on a daily basis. For avid and casual alike, a cycling route may take you along the tree-lined towpaths along the Canal du Midi for example. Cycling itineraries can be customised to suit your group’s wishes.
Discover the rustic charm of England, the lush scenery of Ireland or the pretty medieval towns of France with a walking cruise. A number of the barges in our selection offer this opportunity. In Burgundy, enjoy walks past fields of Charolais cattle, picturesque hilltop villages and vineyards. Walk around Richmond Park in England, Virginia Water lake and the beautiful grounds of Windsor Castle. Wherever you choose to cruise, your guide promises to take you to the best spots.
If you are a golf enthusiast you will probably know that France, England, Ireland and Scotland feature some of the best golf courses in the world. Add scenic waterways and a unique hotel barge into the mix and you will have yourself an incredibly special and memorable golfing holiday. As well as playing your favourite sport, you get to relax on board your floating hotel with all the perks of a barge cruise such as delicious meals and flavoursome wines.
Italy is considered by many as the birthplace of opera dating back to the 1600s. The La Bella Vita offers an itinerary for opera lovers. Before your cruise begins, your guide will take you to Verona to visit its fascinating sites and that evening enjoy a performance in the authentic setting of Verona’s Roman amphitheatre. Embark on your cruising journey in Venice after a thorough visit to the main monuments and sites. Other cruise highlights include a guided tour of an opera house, a tour of Chioggia and its markets, tour of Adria, Ferrara and the city of Mantua.
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