Meet in Paris and transfer to ‘Renaissance,’ moored in Montargis. After a welcome reception, there is time to settle into your spacious cabin before a gourmet dinner on board.
The morning cruise to Montbouy offers excellent opportunities for walking or cycling. After lunch, visit the distinguished palace of Fontainebleau, home to generations of French royalty who continuously added personal embellishments. The immense estate, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, includes acres of landscaped parkland.
Visit Château de la Bussière today with its formal garden designed by renowned 17th-century landscape architect André le Nôtre. Then cruise to Rogny-les-Sept-Écluses to see the impressive staircase of seven locks, originally built to connect the Loire and Seine rivers.
Tour Gien, known for its production of faïence (glazed ceramic earthenware). Then cruise to La Gazonne and enjoy a sumptuous dinner ashore at the acclaimed Auberge des Templiers, a Michelin-starred restaurant.
Cruise to Briare this morning. After lunch on board the barge, visit a family-run vineyard at Sancerre for a private tour and tasting of local vintages. The picturesque village here has many old houses lining narrow streets.
Wander the market in Briare today before 'Renaissance' crosses the Pont-Canal de Briare, a magnificent canal bridge built in the late 19th century by Gustav Eiffel. Then visit Château de Ratilly, a charming medieval castle dating from the 13th century. Cruise to Châtillon-sur-Loire for a celebratory farewell dinner on board to end the cruise week.
After breakfast, transfer to Paris, where your journey ends.
Route runs in reverse on alternate weeks and may differ on selected cruise dates.