Bike and Barge Cycling Itinerary in Burgundy France
This package includes daily cycling with a professional cycling guide, plus an upgrade of bicycles for the duration of the cruise. All meals and drinks on board are included, as well as châteaux visits and other places of interest.
Sunday, Day 1: St-Jean-de-Losne
Guests are met in Paris and transferred by air-conditioned minibus to Finesse. A Champagne Welcome and the opportunity to meet the crew, followed by dinner on board.
Monday, Day 2 : St-Jean-de-Losne to Fragnes
We begin our voyage this morning through Southern Burgundy along the peaceful River Saône, passing delightful little river ports such as Seurre and Verdun-sur-le-Doubs, before joining the Canal du Centre at Chalon-sur-Saône to arrive at our mooring in Fragnes. After lunch on board, the cyclists will depart the barge at 2:30pm with their guide for a round circuit of approximately 44km/28 miles. This is a bucolic route where you will cycle past some of Southern Burgundy's best kept châteaux including Château de Germolles at which you can stop to catch up with the rest of the group for a short visit. Those who are not cycling will leave later with their guide by minibus to visit the 14th century Château de Germolles, the best preserved of the residences of the Dukes of Burgundy, with its ducal chapel, medieval wall paintings and romantic gardens. Both parties will return to the barge by 6:30pm and enjoy dinner on board.
Tuesday, Day 3 : Fragnes to Rully
This morning, the cyclists will depart the boat from Fragnes at 9am with their guide for a round circuit of approximately 31 miles/50km. This ride will take you through the unspoiled countryside of the Côte de Beaune where you will cycle past Montrachet's most famous vineyards. Those who are not cycling will leave the barge around 9am with their guide by minibus for a walking tour of old Dijon, including a visit to the vivid flower and produce markets, mustard shops and the impressive Notre-Dame de Dijon, or enjoy some excellent shopping time. Both parties will return to the hotel barge for lunch and then enjoy an afternoon cruise with perfect opportunities to walk or cycle along the towpath en route, to our mooring near the village of Rully. Dinner on board.
Wednesday, Day 4 : Rully to Remigny
After a short morning cruise to Chagny, everyone will set off on a drive through the Côte de Beaune vineyards to the town of Beaune itself, capital of Burgundy wine country, where we visit the fascinating 15th century Hôtel-Dieu Hospice and explore the quaint shops of the town, before enjoying a gastronomic lunch in the heart of Puligny & Chassagne Montrachet vineyards at the restaurant Le Montrachet. After lunch, we return to the barge for a relaxing afternoon cruise to Remigny. Dinner on board.
Thursday, Day 5 : Remigny to St-Léger-sur-Dheune
This morning's leisurely cruise takes us past picturesque Burgundian villages such as the famous wine-producing village of Santenay. You might wish to cycle along the towpath en route, before we moor at the pretty little port of St-Léger-sur-Dheune. In the afternoon, the cyclists will depart the barge at 2:30pm with their guide for a round circuit of approximately 34 miles/55km leaving from St-Léger-sur-Dheune. This will be a pleasant ride up pastoral rolling hills where you will enjoy stunning views of wine-producing châteaux including Château de Chamirey where you can stop to catch up with the rest of the group for a wine tasting. Those who are not cycling will leave the barge later with their guide for a winery tour and private tasting at the delightful 17th century Château de Chamirey in Mercurey, owned by the Devillard family for five generations. Both parties will return to the barge by 6:30pm for dinner on board.
Friday, Day 6 : St-Léger-sur-Dheune to St-Julien-sur-Dheune
This morning, we continue our cruise along the Canal du Centre through undulating countryside to moor at the little village of St-Julien-sur-Dheune. Along the way we ascend a series of 11 locks while cruising past some delightful canalside villages. After lunch, the cyclists will depart the barge at 2:30pm with their guide for a round circuit of approximately 36 miles/58km leaving from St-Julien-sur-Dheune. This is an idyllic circuit taking you through a few of Burgundy's rural villages and, although it might be a little more challenging, it has paved roads along the whole route. Those who are not cycling will depart with their guide on an excursion to the historic town of Autun. Founded by the Romans as Augustodunum, it has retained many of its original ancient monuments such as Roman gates, ruins of a temple and a 17,000-seat amphitheatre. Both parties will return to the barge by 6:30pm to enjoy the Captain's Farewell Dinner on board.
Saturday, Day 7 : St-Julien-sur-Dheune
After breakfast, guest are transferred by private chauffeured minibus to their choice of location in Dijon.
NOTE: This is a sample itinerary and is subject to change. On alternate weeks the cruise is in the reverse direction.