Standard Classic Cruise Itinerary
Sunday, Day 1 - Montargis
Guests are met at our meeting point in Paris and transferred by private chauffeured minibus to the spacious Renaissance where a Champagne welcome with canapés awaits and you meet the Captain and crew. Time enough for a walking tour of the pretty village of Montargis before dinner on board.
Monday, Day 2 - Montargis to Montbouy
This morning, we embark on our first cruise through the Loire countryside with great towpath walking and cycling opportunities along the way. After lunch on board, we visit Château de Fontainebleau, a national museum and UNESCO World Heritage Site. To walk through this magnificent palace is to walk through the history of France. It is the only royal and imperial château to have been continuously inhabited for seven centuries and every French royal family added its own architectural style and features when in residence. Dinner on board.
Tuesday, Day 3 - Montbouy to Rogny-les-Sept-Ecluses
This morning we visit the privately-owned Château de La Bussière, known as the "fishermen's castle", with its wonderful ornamental and vegetable gardens. Following lunch back on board, we enjoy an afternoon cruise to our mooring at the pretty village of Rogny-les-Sept-Ecluses, near its 350-year-old 7-lock flight, which is well worth visiting on foot. Dinner on board.
Wednesday, Day 4 - Rogny-les-Sept-Ecluses to La Gazonne
After a leisurely breakfast of fresh croissants, baguettes and assorted pastries we visit Gien, home of the Faience pottery, renowned for its beautifully decorated and vibrant dinnerware, and also explore the town's bustling market. After lunch, we enjoy an afternoon cruise to La Gazonne, a beautiful mooring surrounded by lakes and ponds that provide water for the workings of the Canal de Briare. Dinner ashore at the Michelin-starred Auberge des Templiers in Les Bezards.
Thursday, Day 5 - La Gazonne to Briare
A morning cruise to our mooring at the little town of Briare, site of Gustave Eiffel's magical aqueduct across the River Loire, again with excellent walking and bicycling opportunities. We preview Friday's crossing of this amazing 10,000 ton, 662-meter Pont Canal which was completed in September 1896. Our afternoon visit is to a renowned winery in Sancerre, such as Domaine Henri Bourgeois in Chavignol, for a tour and private tasting. This medieval hilltop village overlooks a vibrant region which has known viticulture since Roman times. Dinner on board.
Friday, Day 6 - Briare to Châtillon-sur-Loire
This morning we wander around fruit and vegetable, seafood, cheese and French fashion stalls in the market in Briare before returning to Renaissance for a short cruise across the aqueduct and lunch on board. This afternoon, we visit the delightful Château de Ratilly and its rather spectacular selection of turreted towers, construction of which began in 1270. Captain's Farewell Dinner on board.
Saturday, Day 7 - Châtillon-sur-Loire
After breakfast, guests are transferred by private chauffeured minibus to Paris.
- On alternate weeks, cruise will be in reverse direction.
- This is a sample itinerary and is subject to change.
- Family, Golf, and Wine themed charters are also available.