Barge in France Recs

I am interested in taking a barge trip in France (think: wine!). Can you recommend a good barge company/region, etc.?

Posted by Tom
2876 posts

For what it might be worth, the current (September) issue of France magazine has a story of a family with 3 kids that barged the Canal de Garonne. They rented from Minervois Cruisers, which also rents on the better-known Canal du Midi.

Posted by Ed
9110 posts

Are you interested in a crewed boat or a self-drive?

Posted by Andrea
Sacramento, CA
5693 posts

Kat, if you do a barge trip before I do I am not going to be happy! You know that is on my bucket list!! ;-)

Posted by kat
277 posts

I would need a crew or we'd end up in New Zealand! @Andrea: Problem solved! We'll have to do it together. (as long as you leave my limoncello bottle alone!)

Posted by Bonnie
Acworth, Georgia, USA
70 posts

We can't give you a review yet, but we have booked a week-long barge cruise in September on Barge Stern leaving from Nevers, France. This is a boat with accommodations for two in addition to the owners/crew. It is expensive but we feel(hope!) that it will be worth it. It is a "bucket list" item for us as well. We will post a review when we return.

Posted by Karen
800 posts

Kat-we used (and will use again next year) Ellen Sack "The Barge Lady" to book us on an incredible wine excursion in Burgundy aboard Prosperite. Check out her website ( or give her a call. Our boat was a whole boat booking but it looks like she has others available for individuals. Since you didn't list a budget I will tell you ours was an especially expensive trip and not the way we usually travel. We were fortunate enough to have been taken on this trip by a generous friend but we enjoyed it so much that we are putting together a group of our own to do it again. It was one of the most fabulous trips we've ever had.

Posted by Andrea
Sacramento, CA
5693 posts

You might be on to something kat. I don't know what your time table is, but we are shooting for fall of next year to utilize air miles. We have discussed doing this with Susan & Monte, and Eileen has also shown an interest. From what I hear, Sid would require his own boat due to extremely loud snoring. And no worries, you can keep your limoncello. When barging through wine country I will stick with that! Let's discuss on the 17th!!

Posted by Darcy
Lewiston, Idaho, USA
1408 posts

kat and Andrea, you do realize that almost the entire Helpline will want to go with you? I wish I could go but I already have our trips planned through 2015, zut!

Posted by Andrea
Sacramento, CA
5693 posts

Darcy, too bad you're all booked up. It would be fun. Seriously, I would hesitate to embark on a trip like that in close quarters with people I don't personally know. It's a good thing kat and I are friends! For areas, I'm partial to Burgundy. I did a short trip on the Canal du Midi from Carcassonne and don't feel the need to return to that area since there are other places I would like to explore.

Posted by Ellen
San Antonio, Texas, USA
1 posts

I've cruised with France Cruises and had an amazing time.