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Great alternative to villa rentals for family and group holidays with European Waterways

April 8, 2016 River Cruising No Comments Email Email

Chartering a luxury hotel barge from European Waterways can be a great alternative to renting a villa in Europe. Instead of being confined to a single location, hotel barge cruises offer families and small groups memorable “floating” holidays as they cruisethrough some of the most historic and culturally rich regions of France, Italy and the British Isles.

L'Art de Vivre Cruising low res

For all European Waterways’ cruises, gourmet meals, drinks, transportation and tours of local attractions are all inclusive. For villa rentals, most of these expenses are additional and can significantly increase the final cost of a holiday. Now, with up to €9,000 (AU$13,500) off full boat charters on selected cruises in the summer months, they are even greater value.  Offers are to be booked by May 9, 2016.

Every hotel barge carries its guests in luxury, pampered by a crew of four, so there is no need to make dinner reservations or book any tours. On board each cruise is a master chef, a hostess, an English speaking tour guide and a professional, highly personable captain. Guides accompany them to local vineyards for private tastings, colourful food markets and châteaux in a wide range of historic and cultural excursions. Guests can also use the onboard bicycles to pedal along the towpaths and explore the nearby towns or relax in the on-deck spa pool with a glass of chilled wine as their hotel barge glides slowly through the ever-changing countryside.

“A hotel barge is really a floating luxury villa – with a doting crew at your service, an open bar and freshly cooked gourmet meals every day!” said Derek Banks, managing director of European Waterways. “Chartering a hotel barge gives you the best of both worlds – a private, luxury setting for your entire group and personalised attention so that everyone can spend quality time together enjoying themselves instead of worrying about the itinerary.”

 Floating in Luxury

Among the wide range of hotel barge cruises available from European Waterways, L’Art de Vivre in Burgundy and Anjodi on the Canal du Midi in Southwest France are always in demand. A current special offer of €6,000 (AU$9,000) off full barge charter on selected departure dates in June, July and August makes them an even better choice. With both being eight-passenger vessels, they are ideal for families and small groups to enjoy views of ever-changing landscapes, charming villages and lush vineyards on a gentle voyage of exploration.

The traditionally-built L’Art de Vivre in Burgundy cruises gracefully along the Canal du Nivernais, one of France’s most charming inland waterways.  Family itineraries can include swimming, theme park visits and supervised activities for the young, while a château visit and a private tasting at one of the oldest wine cellars in the town of Chablis are offered for the adults.

The Anjodi, cruising the 300-year-old Canal du Midi in Southwest France, features hand-crafted wood and brass interiors to create an ambience reminiscent of aclassic yacht. It takes guests from the sunny shores of the Mediterranean across lagoons full of migrating birds and past canal-side vineyards to ancient Cathar cities like Carcassonne. Along the way there are plenty of family activities such as a visit to the underground Caves of Limousis.

For L’Art de Vivre and Anjodi there is €6,000 (AU$9,000) off per full barge charter on selected departures in June, July and August and up to €9,000(AU$13,500) off for other vessels. Cruises to be booked by May 9. For full details, visit

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