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Why We Went Canal Boating
Our Canal Trip in France

This "adventure" started with Julie picking up a travel magazine at the gym.

The magazine had an article about taking canal boat vacations in Holland. Knowing Brian's interest in boating and her desire to expose the kids to Europe, she thought that it might be a good family vacation.

We started to surf the internet to find out more about chartering canal boats in Europe. There is no shortage of attractive locations or charter companies.

We started off looking at Holland because of both the article and the fact that we thought the kids would enjoy seeing a real working windmill. The only thing about Holland though was the risk of having overcast or rainy weather. We had spent too many summer vacations wearing windbreakers to keep dry.

We also looked at narrow boats in England and Ireland. While Brian would have loved to spend time in Ireland, again the weather knocked those to locations out of contention.

Trying to make sure that we had warm weather, we turned our search to France. France has lots several canals, some of which date back hundreds of years. Between canals and rivers you can boat across much of France.

We selected the Canal du Nivernais for several reasons. Firstly, we found the perfect boat and charter company for our family?equirements (see below). Secondly, Burgundy is known for fine weather, food, and wine. Lastly, it was an easy two hour drive from Paris in a rent a car.

Where We Were


How We Selected Our Boat

We had selected our boat, the Mme Leslie, because it had three dedicated bedrooms. two baths with showers, and a large main salon area to relax in. Several other boats had salons that the dining table converted into a bed, but we liked the idea of having a dedicated living area.

The galley had two refrigerators, a four burner stove, and most importantly two work areas. Plenty of room to cook our meals in.

There was a large deck area towards the bow that had enough room for us to put a four foot inflatable swimming pool on to keep cool in. There were both internal and external steering positions, but the rear was by far the easiest to use,

Burgundy Cruisers run an excellent operation. Their boats are kept in fabulous condition. They were very helpful through the whole process and always available by phone if you had any questions.