All-inclusive Hotel Barge holidays offer a unique opportunity to travel in comfort without the strains of unpacking and repacking.
Enjoy a balanced blend of daily excursions and relaxing cruising.
If you are getting a group together or celebrating a special occasion – consider chartering the whole boat. Capacity ranges from 6 to 20 passengers.
Your voyage includes accommodation, all meals aboard and ashore, champagne welcome, open bar, excursions and admittance fees, and use of bikes. Your floating hotel is furnished with modern comforts. The finest cuisine is prepared by your on-board Master Chef, complemented by a fine array of wines. And of course the experienced and knowledgeable crew is there to provide a superb holiday experience.
Daily excursions are a highlight of all Hotel Barge cruises. They are either a short walk away from the barge, or if further by minibus. There is also time to stroll or bike along the tow-paths, assist a lock keeper, or wander into riverside villages and towns. While on board you may relax on deck (some have Spa pools) or in the saloon – reading a book, listening to music, or just admiring the landscape slowly rolling past.
When it comes to river cruises, Italy is a country seemingly designed to host them. Its beautiful canals and rivers pass through diverse landscapes and nature en route, from picturesque lagoon islands with their colourful houses, to wild beach dunes and pine woods with an abundance of birdlife.
These waterways were once the ancient trade routes used by the Romans and the early Mediterranean settlers before them, and cruises around Italy are perfect for gaining a real insight into the many cultures – including Roman, Etruscan, Istrian, Byzantine and of course Renaissance – which have influenced the arts, architecture and history of the region over many centuries.
Throughout the season the 20 passenger La Bella Vita provides Italian river cruises that encompass the romance and architecture of Venice as well as the captivating lakeside setting of the Renaissance city of Mantua. Venice is, of course, the crowning jewel of most Italian river cruises, but Mantua, in central northern Italy, has also been (and still is) a hub of art, culture and music for centuries. The route inland takes you along the River Po and the Bianco Canal through the Po Valley.
Delicious seafood, local culinary specialities, fine wines and attentive service complete the experience of this fairytale adventure and explain the appeal of our boutique Italian river cruises. Luxuriating in a friendly and relaxing boat environment, travellers have an opportunity for a unique perspective on some magnificent Italian cities.
Since the reign of the Emperor Charlemagne, the Champagne region has been one of the great agricultural regions of Europe and now thanks to a type of sparkling wine to which the region has given its name, the word Champagne is known worldwide.
The region starts around 75 miles from Paris, around the city of Meaux and stretches along the beautiful River Marne to the city of Epernay, home of such renowned Champagne houses as Moet & Chandon. There is a plethora of vineyards spread across the undulating plains as far as the eye can see, brilliant green with the new leaves of spring, turning to gold as the grapes ripen in the autumn.
Also famous for its Champagne houses, Reims is one of the capitals of Champagne and certainly the most prestigious. It boasts one of the finest medieval cathedrals in the country where once the kings of France were crowned, including most famously, Charles VII, orchestrated by the loyal Joan of Arc.
The Champagne region is rich in other products, particularly its wonderfully creamy cheeses, with Coulommiers at its heart.
Holland is famous, of course, for its tulips, but as a land with a rich artistic and cultural history. The western provinces of the land of water are populated by windmills and along the very river that gave its name to Amsterdam. Our hotel barge cruises some of Holland’s hidden gems and are the perfect way to experience the best the country has to offer.
From the colours of the bulb fields to the magnificence of the formal gardens such as the world-renowned Keukenhof Gardens, enjoy the unique horticultural expertise of the Dutch. And those who stop off at cities along the way, marvel at the architecture and innovative engineering feats .
Lovers of culture come from far and wide to tour the renowned Dutch museums. Amsterdam, Leiden and Haarlem will charm you, while other attractions such as the Royal Delft potteries and Aalsmeer flower market are equally memorable.
For a magical barge cruise, Scotland is hard to surpass. We cruise sedately through the Great Glen between Inverness and Fort William, navigating beautiful lochs and the scenic, absorbing Caledonian Canal. Ancient castles perched on the water’s edge, heather-clad hillsides and arguably the finest inland cruising in the world offer our clients unforgettable experiences on a handpicked barge cruise. Scotland’s legends of the past, the taste of single malt and the mythical inhabitant of Loch Ness all contribute to a special magic only experienced in the dramatic Highlands.
A cruise aboard the Scottish Highlander or the Spirit of Scotland along the Great Glen as you admire some of Scotland’s finest scenery will be unforgettable. According to guests who have embarked on a barge cruise, Scotland is one of the top regions to see from the water.
Cuisine is traditional Scottish fare – salmon, game and seafood, prepared by your own Master Chef, and the hotel barge’s experienced crew of four will take care of your every need.
When it comes to river cruises, England is sometimes overlooked as a potential source of fabulous opportunities. British waterways have a lot to offer, as guests who book a room on a hotel barge will discover. When you experience English river cruises, the quaint, scenic countryside opens up before you.
For holidaymakers wanting less crowded but still charmingly scenic river cruises, England may well be the perfect destination!
When it comes to river cruises, Ireland remains one of the most fascinating undiscovered locations in the world. Offering a mixture of folklore, quaint customs, friendly locals and the sort of sprawling green landscapes which earn the island its nickname of ‘Emerald Country’, Ireland River cruises are sure to satisfy even the most demanding of river cruise enthusiasts!
The River Shannon is perhaps the ultimate location to enjoy the best river cruises. Ireland’s rolling green fields, ancient Celtic monasteries and an abundance of wildlife are common place on the carefully chosen route. An Ireland river cruise will put you in touch with legends and fables as well as the warm and hospitable Irish people. Their extraordinary history has been varied and sometimes difficult, but they somehow always find the time to chat and discuss the time of day.