River tourism in Burgundy is undoubtedly one of the most original ways to discover this historic region of France.
Burgundy is known for its endless vineyards, its medieval character and its traditional gastronomy.
Located only a couple of hours from Paris, this region is filled with spectacular waterways, which make Burgundy a wonderful area for river tourism.
The peniche (barge) is the best way to explore its waters and spend a few days with all the comforts that this type of boat offers you: comfortable cabins, a fully equipped kitchen, an indoor living room, an outdoor terrace, a bathroom, fishing equipment… And even bicycles for land outings!
Our GlobeSailor crew visited the base of Joigny to see the fleet and go sailing, explore this beautiful journey, and thus give you quality advice based on their own experience.
River crossing in Burgundy: a journey to relax
River tourism is for those sailors who seek the peace of river waters, the sound of nature and the tranquillity of slow navigation with stops to discover what is beyond the riverbank.
The Canal de Bourgogne, the Canal du Nivernais or the Canal lateral de la Loire are the most charming river crossings in the country.
There are different bases from which you can start your journey: Joigny, Corbigny, Briare or Dompierre-Sur-Besbre – those towns have a rich medieval architectural heritage, a ‘must see’ the day of your arrival, or once you disembark.
There are also other very interesting excursions that you can schedule along with your boat trip, such as: visiting the Château de Ancy-le-Franc, where the largest collection of Renaissance wall paintings can be found, or the Château de Tanlay, which houses a collection inside for trompe-l’oeil lovers.
South of the Loire River, is the city of Nevers, a must-see is its Ducal Palace, an icon of France, its facades, and narrow cobbled streets will transport you directly to the Middle Ages.
This river tourism experience in Burgundy is designed for everyone, as you do not need a license to crew this category of boat. The boats have all the comforts needed, and you will be able to cook local food and spend memorable days sailing and visiting.
The Burgundy canals are a great opportunity to disconnect and experience river tourism for the first time.
Angie, one of our GlobeSailor advisors for the Spanish market, tells us what she liked most about this team outing for river tourism aboard a Peniche in Burgundy.
Angie and river tourism in Burgundy
“Our journey began in Joigny, an hour and a half by train from Paris. It was all very exciting, we are all collaborators working in various different teams and we all love sailing. I could say that river tourism is a journey to share with friends, family or, as in our case: work colleagues. Hearing and observing the birds chirping in the misty mornings, gradually discovering the landscapes, the dinners on the terrace of peniche and the visits to the local villages along the route were what surprised me the most. After these days in Burgundy… I will highly recommend the adventure!”
Our colleagues value the ease with which we checked in and embarked, no navigation permit is required, the company is in charge of giving you a few brief notions at the time of boarding. The boat is prepared with fuel, maps and all the necessities for planning out the perfect journey. The boat also has bicycles so that the most sporty can get pedalling.
We cannot write this article without talking about what is hidden in the kitchens of Burgundy. Well, its gastronomy is a benchmark in France.
The flavours that you will find doing fluvial tourism in Burgundy are an authentic gourmet experience.
Flavors of Burgundy: gastronomy of kings
On your river journey, the dishes cooked with local products will be one of the things that raise the note the most on this boat trip through the canals of Burgundy.
Please find below some examples so that you can picture of your plate once out there :
- Boeuf Bourguignon: also known as Burgundian meat, originally a poorman’s dish, it consists of beef cooked in local red wine, the braised spring onion together with the sautéed mushrooms with parsley give the final touch to the recipe.
- Jambon a la Chablisenne: this typical recipe from the town of Yonne, ham cooked with Chablis white wine, sour cream, shallots, tomatoes and a little flour.
- Escargots Bourguignon: one of the most famous dishes in the region for the most daring, these snails are marinated up to three times before being cooked in butter and herbs that will leave you amazed.
- Coq au vin: ‘the dish of the conquest’, legend has it that it was the menu that Julius Cesar tasted after taking over Gaul, the marinated chicken requires slow cooking for several hours in red wine from Burgundy, carrots and mushrooms… this dish without a doubt will delight your senses.
- Bresse Chicken: with the DOC denomination, it is made with chickens fed solely on flour and milk. Can you imagine the taste?
To this list must be added the exclusive collection of bread, cheeses and wines that the Burgundy region has to offer.
And yes, in Burgundy, you will be able to discover the true taste of the most famous mustard in the world: Moutarde de Dijon. Spicy and unique, it has nothing to do with the taste of mustard you know so far.
GlobeSailor accompanies you in your sailing project in Burgundy
Now that we end this post on river navigation… Have you felt like setting sail in the heart of France and navigating the canals? Our team of advisors will be happy to assist you in organising your trip. We invite you to take a look at all the riverboats that are available for you on our website and look forward to seeing you in Burgundy.
We wish you a good trip!