Meet in Paris for Private Driver Transfer to ‘Belmond Hirondelle,’ moored in the elegant small town of Dole, birthplace of Louis Pasteur. Enjoy a welcome reception as your crew welcomes you. Later that evening, enjoy a sumptuous gourmet dinner on board.
This morning, cruise to St-Jean-de-Losne. Enjoy lunch on board as you wind along the Rhone-Rhine Canal to meet the Saône River, perhaps stepping ashore along the way to walk or cycle. After lunch on board, disembark to drive along the famous Route des Grands Crus, passing through the charming villages of the Cote d’Or. Stop at the celebrated Clos de Vougeot vineyard and château where the Cistercian monks first started making wine in the 12th century, now the headquarters of the renowned Burgundian wine society, the Confrérie de Chevaliers du Tastevin. After your visit, savor a private wine tasting at a top local producer. Return to your barge for dinner.
After breakfast, enjoy a walking tour of historic Dijon, including a visit to the market, the famous Maille mustard shop and the Ducal Palace — seat of the great medieval dukes of Burgundy. Then, take advantage of some free time for shopping, or perhaps sit in a sidewalk café and simply watch the world go by. Return to the barge for lunch and an afternoon cruise along the majestic Saône River to Verdun-sur-le-Doubs with dinner on board this evening.
Leave the Saône, and cruise into the Canal du Centre through the impressive Crissey lock, before mooring for the day in Fragnes. After lunch, disembark to the pretty village of Rully and its 12th-century medieval fortress, whose owner guides you through his home, sharing the intriguing history of his ancestors. Conclude your visit in the 15th-century kitchen with a tasting of the wines produced by the de Ternay family. Tonight, dine ashore at a charming local restaurant.
Relax this morning as you cruise in style through scenic landscapes. After lunch on board, disembark to visit historic Beaune, the wine capital of Burgundy, where you enjoy a private tour of the magnificent 15th-century charity hospital, Hôtel-Dieu. Enjoy time at leisure to stroll the charming town and its shops before returning to your barge for a delicious dinner on board.
Cruise at leisure to St-Léger-sur-Dheune, another quaint village along the Canal du Centre. After lunch, go ashore to visit Château de Chamirey, a family-run wine estate in Mercurey, a community noted for its prodigious wine production. Tour its vineyards before gathering for a visit to the wine cellar and a tasting of its fine range of wines. Return to ‘Belmond Hirondelle,’ where the chef has prepared your gala farewell dinner, a fitting close to your wonderful week of cruising.
After breakfast, a Private Driver Transfer to Paris marks the end of your journey.
Route runs in reverse on alternate weeks and may differ on selected cruise dates.