Options Available for Cruise Tours Along the Loire River

The Loire River is the longest river from France, popular for its medieval villages, vineyards or fairytale castles. The river flows from the Cevennes Mountains to St. Nazaire on the Bay of Biscay; the area between Sully-sure Loire and Chalonnes is considered a UNESCO Worlds Heritage Sight, which has been designated “an outstanding cultural landscape.” Not al the stretches of the Loire River are considered to be navigable, so the cruise tour options are sometimes limited to only a few cabin cruisers or hotel barges.

Nymphea Hotel Barge

The Nymphea includes three en suite staterooms. A 6-night cruise to Nitray departing from Moulin de Nathra will include various transfers from/to St. Pierre des Corps station, on board meals, drinks, shore excursions or wine/champagne welcome. The cruise tour will provide the opportunity of exploring some of the most beautiful chateaux, including Chateau d`Amboise, Chateau de Nitray or Chateau Villandray. Passengers will also be able to enjoy wine-tasting seasons at Domaine de Fontenay as well as visiting the cave village at La Magnaneraie. The Nymphea`s Honeymoon Cruise will include a balloon ride, shopping in the street market at Montrichard, a Michelin-starred restaurant or a visit to the Chateau de Chenonceau. Passengers will be able to enjoy wine/champagne cocktails each and every evening as well as dinner by candlelight.

Hotel Barge Renaissance

This hotel barge will operate a 7-day cruise along the waters of the Upper Loire. Renaissance includes a 4 luxury passenger cabins with flat-screen television, air conditioning, private bathroom or DVD player. Internet access will be available in the lounges, as well as films, cozy gas fire for possible cool evenings, book or board games. Passengers may use provided bicycles as well as a heated Jacuzzi on deck. The price of the cruise tour will include transfers from Paris as well as all food or drinks, including a single dinner at the Auberge des Templiers in Les Bezards. The cruise tour will start with an Eiffel Aqueduct crossing for a single visit to historic Briare, where passengers may sample local wines. Other trips may include Chateau Gien, the medieval walled town of Moret-sur-Loing or Chateau Sully sur Loire. The cruise tour will also pass through “Little Venice”, popular for its flower-bedecked bridges or ancient watercourses. This cruise tour will operate on a weekly basis from April through late October.

Hotel Barge Meanderer

The Meanderer carries 6 passengers in 3 air-conditioning cabins which will include private bathrooms. Passenger facilities will include a music system, board games, library, sundeck and internet connection. This barge will operate along the waters of the upper Loire River and its is specialized in short themed cruise tours which may include shopping, golf, antiques, learning French, wine and art. Rates may include meals or drinks.

Mini Cruises

Bateau Saint-Martin-de-Tours is a 66-passengers ship which will operate 1-day cruise tours along the Loire River. The Chateau de Valmer cruise will include wine cellars, lunch at the Auberge de la Brenne as well as guided tour of the gardens. The Cheateau de Nitray cruise will include wine-tasting session, a trip around the chapel, rose garden, a tour of the chateau and park. The excursion will be ending with a pleasant wine-making course at the Musee de la Vigne et du Vin.

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