Hotel Barge La Belle Époque

  • Starting location: Venarey-les-Laumesnlay
  • Ending location: Tanlay
Meal options

All inclusiveFull-board


Private cabinFour-star accommodation

La Belle Epoque is a spacious, luxurious hotel barge, designed with both elegance and passenger comfort in mind.  She originally carried logs from Burgundy to Paris, now skilfully converted into a delightful hotel barge. The perfect vessel for cruising the Upper Burgundy Canal with its towpaths that are ideal for walking and cycling.

On offer is a sun deck with spa pool, wood-panelled saloon/dining room and sleeps up to 12 passangers.

Fully air-conditioned, spacious cabins and a choice of twin or double beds all have marble en suite facilities. The Captain leads a crew of six: master chef, ‘matelot’ (deck-hand/steward), tour guide and two housekeepers.

Classic cruise highlights

  • Visit the Abbaye de Fontenay, a UNESCO World Heritage site
  • Private wine tasting of Chablis wines in the cellars of a renowned Domaine
  • Visit the village of Flavigny sur Ozerain, location of the film ‘Chocolat’
  • Noyers-sur-Serein, one of the most beautiful villages in Burgundy
  • Visit to famous battle site of Alesia
  • Gastronomic dinner ashore
  • Excellent towpath for walking and cycling
  • Optional Hot Air Ballooning

What's included:

  • 7 nights hotel-barge accommodation sharing a twin/double room
  • All dinners, breakfasts, lunches, wine with meals on board
  • ‘Always-open’ inclusive bar
  • To/from pick-up from designated hotel in Paris
  • Excursions to places of interest

What's excluded:

  • Flights/train
  • Transport to/from to designated pick-up point
  • Diner ashore on one night
  • Insurance
  • Staff gratuities

Holiday Itinerary

Day 1 - Venarey-les-Laumes

Sunday – Guests are met at a designated meeting point in a wonderful Paris hotel and transferred to the barge moored in Tanlay. A full crew ‘Welcome Aboard’ with champagne and canapés. After time to settle into your cabin you are invited to join us for a first dinner on board and introduction to Burgundy’s excellent cuisine.

Day 2 - Venarey-les-Laumes to Montbard

Monday – Enjoy a leisurely breakfast, then we cruise through woodlands and rolling fields with great towpath biking and walking opportunities past the tiny canalside villages of Nogent, Courcelles and Les Granges. After lunch, 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 Gauls and Romans took place in 52 B.C. and visit the impressive museum. Dinner on board.

Day 3 - Montbard to Ravières

Tuesday – Morning cruise with excellent towpath walking or cycling.  After lunch an escorted visit to the exquisite UNESCO World Heritage Site of Abbaye de Fontenay founded by St Bernard in 1118. It is a distinctive example of early Cistercian architecture and virtually intact.  You will have time to enjoy the peaceful gardens, ponds and fascinating cloisters, dormitories and scriptorium, before returning to the barge and cruise to Ravières. Dinner on board.

Day 4 - Ravières to Ancy-le-Franc

Wednesday – A morning visit to medieval town of Noyers-sur-Serein to admire the local produce, colours and delights of the traditional French market.  Or, wander the town ramparts before returning to the hotel barge. 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.



Day 5 - Ancy-le-Franc to Lezinnes

Thursday – This morning we visit Château d’Ancy-le-Franc. This beautifully symmetrical, 16th century chateaux 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 with dinner on board.

Day 6 - Lezinnes to Tanlay

Friday – After breakfast 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 and enjoy a private wine tasting at a renowned winemaker such as the family-run Domaine Jean-Marc Brocard before returning to the barge for ‘Captain’s Farewell Dinner’ on board.

Day 7 - Tanlay

Saturday – After breakfast, disembark and transfer to the designated drop off point in Paris.

Important information

On alternate weeks the cruise will be in the reverse direction.

How to get here

Fly into...

Orly or Charles de Gaulle or the EuroStar

Your holiday starts in Paris from where you will be picked up from a designated point in the centre of the city.

Transfer options

Private transfer in air-conditioned mini bus

Your transfers will leave from a designated meeting point in Paris.  The tranfer between Paris and the hotel barge takes approximately 2hrs 30mins.

Dates and prices

2019 prices

Prices are per person sharing a stateroom cabin.  All cabins are en-suite.   Departure days are Sunday.  Single supplement available.

All meals on-board are prepared by the barge Master Chef, an ‘open-bar’ serving large range of alcoholic and non alcoholic drinks is available.  All wines served throughout the cruise, excursions and admittance fees as per the itinerary are included, the services of 4 crew and use of barge facilities such as bicycles and spa-pool as also available.

Upgrade your holiday when filling out the enquiry form!

Arrival date
March 31
Apr 7, 14, 21
April 28
May 5, 12, 19, 26
June 2, 9, 16, 23, 30
July 7, 14
July 21, 28
August 4, 11, 18
August 25
September 1, 8, 15, 22, 29
October 6, 13, 20

Whole barge private charters are available from £3400 per person based on 12 friends sharing – price on application

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Team members who have been on this holiday

Liz Olkowicz
Paul Sugg

At Footprint Holidays, all of our holidays have been experienced by at least one of our team members, so any questions you have will be directly answered by our first-hand experience.

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Food and wine
Term explanations

Activity levels

All of our holidays have an activity level rating. They are rated on a scale of 1 - 5 and give you a good idea of the level of activity and fitness which the holiday requires.

Activity level 1: Leisurely

A holiday for those that are in good health, enjoy the outdoors and want a relaxing trip with some light exercise on their adventure.

Activity level 2: Moderate

This is a holiday for the fit and healthy, who love to get up and are prepared to do a good day's worth of exercise every day of the holiday.

Activity level 3: Tough

Only for the most experienced of holiday-makers, you have to have a wild spirit of adventure and impeccable health and fitness!

Meal options

Depending on the holiday, there will be different meal options that come standard in the price. They may change from day to day, depending on the holiday's itinerary and where you end up staying. The meal plans will be clearly marked in your itinerary.

There may also be the opportunity to upgrade your meal plans when filling in our booking form.

Bed and breakfast

After a good night's rest, there will be a free breakfast available for you to indulge in.


You will be given two free meals included with your accommodation, depending on the itinerary it could be any combination of breakfast, lunch and dinner. Which combination will be clearly marked out in your itinerary.


You will be given three free meals included with your accommodation: breakfast, lunch and dinner.


All meals, food and beverages are free and included with your accommodation.


No meals are included in your accommodation but there will be some sort of kitchen, cooking utensils and cooking apparatus available to use.


No meals are included in your accommodation and there is no cooking apparatus available. You will be expected to eat out or prepare/buy meals beforehand.

Terrain types

As we provide holidays all across the world, there are many terrain types which you will encounter. As the terrain is likely to change on a day to day basis depending on your itinerary, we aim to list the most prevalent types you will find on your holiday.


Terrain with no noticable incline.


The terrain includes multiple inclines going up and down.


Terrain with a steeper incline than hilly and is more likely to be combined with unsurfaced roads and off-road activities.


Tarmacked roads which are easy to cycle and drive down.

Unsurfaced roads

Roads which have a gravel or dirt surface.


Commonly this will involve hiking trails and other hard-to-reach places by car.


Depending on your holiday, you may be staying in one type of accommodation or you may stay in many as you travel. For each holiday we list the standard accommodation included in the holiday.

There may be opportunities to upgrade or change your accommodation, please let us know of any special requests when filling out the booking form.

Private room

Usually rooms with a double bed or twin singles for just you and/or your companion.

Shared rooms

Rooms which you will be sharing with other adventurers and new-found friends. Often these rooms will have bunk beds and sleep up to six people.

Single cabin

The same as a private room but on-board one of our cruise ships or barges.

Shared cabin

The same as a shared room but on-board one of our cruise ships.

Huts / Gîtes

These are homely places, similar to staying in a holiday cottage. They have self-catering facilities and sleeping arrangements can range from private rooms with en-suite bathrooms to shared rooms with other adventurers.

Star-rated accommodation

On many of our holidays there are places you will stay which are three- and four-star rated accommodation.

Financial Protection

At Footprint Holidays we are happy to be members of the Travel Trust Association or TTA and hold a certificate of general membership, our TTA membership number is Q5057. Guests can verify our membership status by searching our company name or membership number on the TTA website which can be found by clicking here and entering our membership number: Q5057.

Your financial protection is importance to us, hence our membership in the Travel Trust Association, ensuring your payments and any travel arrangements you make with us 100% protected in the event of any supplier failure.

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