Depart Paris in our luxury private transfer service direct to the barge moored in St Jean de Losne, where you board the Apres Tout for your canal cruise through Burgundy on the Canal du Bourgogne. A champagne reception gives you a chance to meet the crew. Once you have settled into your cabin, it will be time to return to the deck for a cocktail cruise on the river Saône. A delicious four course dinner will be served with wonderful wines to match, followed by after dinner drinks – weather permitting all served on the magnificent teak deck.
Leaving the River Saône behind, we now enter onto the Canal de Bourgogne through the first of many locks! Spend the morning enjoying your first cruising day on the flat plain from the river toward Dijon. After lunch, your guide takes you to the area of the ‘Côte d’Or’ ( In French meaning Gold Coast) planted with vines that produce some of the most wonderful wines of Burgundy – on the ‘Route de Grand Cru’. We visit a local truffle producer at his Chateau, near Nuits St George. Here, we learn all about this most valued mushroom and of course, purchase some of these delights to be used on board during the week. We then return to the barge moored at Longecourt for a well deserved refreshing cocktail!
This morning we continue with our cruise towards Dijon, after lunch you will be transferred to Clos de Vougeot, a medieval chateau surrounded by vineyards. This is a truly magnificent Chateau and the headquarters of the Chevaliers du Tastevin, whose special label is awarded annually to the finest Cote d’or vintages. We have arranged for some fantastic World War II jeeps to take you through the vines to explore some of the small tracks that wind through the famous land for some exhilarating fun! We return to Dijon, a wonderful town with a long and interesting history. There is time to shop in the city’s many chic boutiques and of course, visit the mustard shop for a tasting of this famous product and then take a walk through the historic area of the town which will captivate you with its historical past, including the Ducal Palace. Tonight, you must try a ‘Kir Royale’ made with local Cassis, a liqueur invented here in Dijon made from blackcurrants and mixed with the Burgundy Champagne equivalent named Cremant.
Leaving Dijon behind we continue our canal cruise to the valley of the Ouche. Enjoy a relaxing morning on board; there are many locks for dis-embarking to cycle or to walk. Late morning you transfer over the hillside and down through the vines to the charming village of Gevrey Chambertin. We are greeted by the owner of this prestigious Grand Crus wine makers, and here we have a splendid lunch on their terrace over looking their vines! During lunch Madame Drouhin Laroze (the owner) will present her wines. We then take a scenic drive along the famous ‘Route du Grand Crus’, Passing through many of the famous wine villages.
The morning is spent cruising through the lovely Ouche Valley, this is a truly spectacular part of the canal, small villages pass by, cows wander in the fields, and there is nature all around. There is a total feeling of peace and tranquillity as we slowly cruise this magnificent canal. After another wonderful lunch, you are transferred to the delightful town of Beaune, the capital of the wine region of Burgundy. Enjoy a visit to the famous Hôtel-Dieu, Hospice de Beaune with its interesting history and magnificent tiled roof. After some free time for shopping or strolling in the pedestrian streets we have an appointment for a private wine tasting at the famous cellars of Joseph Drouhin. Later, we return to the barge for a refreshing cocktail moored in the beautiful village of Gissey.
Today enjoy the final stretch of this beautiful canal cruise. We pass through several more locks until reaching our destination of the port at Pont D’Ouche. This afternoon we make a special private visit to an English artist of world renown, who has set up his gallery and workshop in a converted barn. His work is world class, and has been recently commissioned to create a piece of art to celebrate the Olympics in London. We are shown through the workshop, and explained how he makes his marvelous pieces of bronze sculptures many of which have been produced for the Queen of England, including the war memorial in London. We then drive up to Châteauneuf-en-Auxois, a medieval hill-top village steeped in History. This is a charming place with stunning views from all angles, of the surrounding countryside. Return to the Apres Tout for a gala dinner with wonderful wines to match and a fond farewell.
After breakfast disembark and transfer to Paris with our private luxury transfer service.