With the thought of those cold Winter months fast approaching, planning a trip to the stunning Canal du Midi next Spring is a most appealing option. Luxury hotel barge operator European Waterways offers a range of relaxing, 6-night cruises on the waterways of France, including aboard the 8-passenger Enchanté, with its spacious cabins, which are the largest of any hotel barge on the 300-year old Canal du Midi, a UNESCO world heritage site.
One of the most luxurious barges in the fleet, Enchanté, with its double decks is contemporary in style, with 4 beautifully-appointed, en-suite twin, or double suites, air-conditioning, a large lounge/saloon, sun deck with hot tub, alfresco dining area, and a demonstration galley where guests can watch the skilled chef at work.
Known locally as Le Midi, this region of Southern France is one of the most picturesque and popular holiday destinations in the world, particularly in the Spring, when the weather is warm and an abundance of wild flowers such as poppies and mimosa – adorn the banks of the tree-lined canal.
During a classic Canal du Midi cruise aboard Enchanté, from Puichéric to Sallèles d’Aude, guests will experience during their voyage: excursions to Cathar hilltop towns like Minerve; historic Narbonne and the fortified medieval city of Carcassonne; wine tastings at a renowned vineyard; and all with the backdrop of a widely diverse landscape overlooked by the distant Pyrenees Mountains.
Bikes are available for the guests to explore the towpaths and the barge is also equipped with DVD/TV, a computer with internet access and a CD/iPod sound system.
While on board, guests will be pampered by the professional crew – Captain, Master Chef, Tour Guide and Housekeeper – and enjoy gourmet cuisine, accompanied by expertly-selected wines, including fine examples of the local Minervois and Cotes de Roussillon.
Prices in 2013 for a 6-night cruise aboard hotel barge Enchanté, with departures between March and May, are from £3,670pp in a twin/double suite, including all meals, wines, an open bar, excursions and local transfers. Full boat charters also available from £25,380 (6 people).
For more information go to www.gobarging.com