Are you looking for a truly different holiday experience? Feeling the need for a well-deserved break from routine? Then cast off for a riverside adventure along Loiret's secret canals.
In Loiret, you are just 150km to the south of Paris. After saving precious travelling time, here you are promoted to the grade of captain for a fresh water expedition you'll talk about for a long time after! An escapade off the beaten track that is as attractive as it is surprising; an adventure that takes you through nature's most beautifully preserved treasures. For in Loiret, a great journey does not necessarily rime with long-distance travels...
And you don't even need a sailing licence! Easy to manoeuvre, our river boats can do without. You will naturally need to follow an express training session before you leave and the lock keepers will be delighted to give you a helping hand when you pass the locks. The canal atmosphere is a convivial one. The seafarers' traditional solidarity also applies on inland waterways!
Tourisme Fluvial à Châtillon-Sur-Loire © Christophe Lörsch
Tourisme Fluvial à Briare © Christophe Lörsch
Coming with friends, with the kids? Welcome on board!
Our liveaboard boats can sleep 2 to 12. On board, you'll see just how quickly you can settle and feel at home here. Your private yacht offers all the comforts of a standard holiday rental, sometimes even more! 'For the comfort and bell-being of all, only use the central sleeping area if you are away for a weekend' Cécile Cardon, booking manager, advises.
'However bright and spacious our boats are, if you're travelling for a week or more, everyone will appreciate having their own personal cabin and storage. The secret of a successful holiday!'
Don't forget your sun cream and hats to make the most of the summer sunshine as you relax on the deck. And if you're travelling in the low season, bring a good pullover, even if our boats all have heating.
Sheets and bedcovers are provided. And the kitchen is fully fitted – all you need to do is to fill up the fridge!
Along your way, you can shop for food at the market or in the stores in the towns and villages you travel by. Our local speciality: a 'Crottin de Chavignol' goat's cheese served with a Coteaux du Giennois wine... pure delight!
One way or round trip?
Leave your car and your troubles behind you, at one of the nautical bases in Briare, Châtillon-sur-Loire or Rogny-les-Sept-Ecluses; you'll soon forget about them! Round trips are our most popular offer. And we bet you won't see the same forests, ponds, canal overflows or even herons in both directions! From a weekly tour, you can also book a one-way trip, at a supplement. And if you're lucky enough to be holidaying for three weeks, you can embark upon the 'boucle du centre' round trip from the Loire Valley to Burgundy.
Total holiday freedom
You're totally free to choose your own stopping places. So, this evening, do you fancy anchoring in the heart of nature's best? Berthing on the bank, amidst the frogs and the moorhens? Or would you rather head for one of the river stopovers that punctuate the canal? A great opportunity to set foot on solid ground, to enjoy a stroll or a meal in a great little restaurant!
Just go with the flow
Your boat slips its way along the ribbon of water at a speed of 6km/h. A pace that rimes with taking your time. The time to pass gently by the locks. The time to communicate with the locals and other boaters. To appreciate the surrounding landscape and sights! You will pass by forests, towns and villages in the finest of fashions: total immersion!
Another surprise in store: crossing the Loire by boat along the elegant Briare Aqueduct is a unique experience. The canal bridge crosses the Loire over a distance of 600 metres. It is one of the longest in Europe. Thanks to Mr Eiffel in person! It also forms a link between the north and the south. Between the Briare Canal, that has linked the Loire and the Seine since the 17th century, and the lateral canal that heads towards the Mediterranean.
Wild and bucolic
The Briare Canal is the wildest and the most bucolic of the two. It passes by a succession of forests and bocage landscapes. Nature lovers particularly appreciate the Gazonne ponds, located on either side of the summit reach, the canal's highest point.
Shhhh! The herons and kingfishers are at home here! Over a weekend, you can travel from Briare to Rogny, where the canal bypasses the 'ladder of seven locks'. In a week, you can even relish in a taste of Montargis' famous pralines, after passing through Chatillon-Coligny, a former protestant fief.
From the Loire to the hillside
The lateral canal overlooks the valley to the south of Briare. This is where you can admire the first hillsides. These 'coteaux' are those of the wine-making areas of Giennois, then Sancerrois. You can reach them at ease over what promises to be an unforgettable weekend.
The canal docilely follows the Loire over 12km without locks, via Châtillon-sur-Loire.
Make sure you don't miss Mantelot, a listed site that once offered access to the Loire, before the aqueduct was built. Then after the charming small towns of Beaulieu and Bonny, you can take a break in Sancerre, or continue to La-Charité-sur-Loire, still in the immediate vicinity of the river.
Good idea: take your bike with you, or hire one. It will prove extremely practical for going to fetch a few groceries or simply to stretch your legs along the towpath!
When, how much and where?
Where? departures from Briare, Châtillon-sur-Loire or Rogny-les-Sept-Ecluses, access via the A77 motorway, 1 hour 30 minutes from Paris.
When? From March to October.
How much? from €378 for a weekend or mini week for 5 (voir avec Cécile)
Who will appreciate? Or rather: who won't appreciate?!!!
To book: contact
INFORMATION ET RÉSERVATION D’HÉBERGEMENTS :
02 38 78 04 04