Sunday, Day 1 Fleurey-sur-Ouche
Guests are met at the designated meeting point and transferred to the elegant L’Impressionniste moored in Fleurey-sur-Ouche for your cruise through Burgundy. The Captain and his crew will be there to welcome you with a champagne reception on board. Then enjoy your first dinner on board.
Monday, Day 2 Fleurey-sur-Ouche to Sainte-Marie-sur-Ouche
This morning experience your first day’s cruise along this enchanting canal, which also promises a walk or cycle along an ever-present towpath cruising past sleepy villages and pretty lock houses. Late morning, our expert wine guide joins the barge to give an introductory talk on the vineyards of Burgundy and during an on-board wine tasting, ensures that everyone has mastered their tasting technique! In the afternoon, he takes us on a visit to Clos de Vougeot, headquarters of the esteemed Chevaliers du Tastevin, who annually award prized special labels to the finest Côte d‘Or vintages. Driving past legendary Grand Cru vineyards, we also pay homage at the fields of Romanée Conti, then stop at the family-run Domaine Jafflin in the heart of Nuits-St-Georges on the Route des Grands Crus. A tour of their cellars is followed by a tasting of their exceptional Pinot Noirs including Vosne Romanée, Nuits St George and Gevrey Chambertin. Dinner on board.
Tuesday, Day 3 Sainte-Marie-sur-Ouche to La Bussière-sur-Ouche
After breakfast, we enjoy a leisurely cruise to La Bussiére-sur-Ouche with perhaps a walk or bicycle ride to the next lock or two. Following lunch on board, we embark on a walking tour of old Dijon, including a visit to the vivid flower and produce markets, mustard shops and the impressive Notre-Dame de Dijon, or enjoy some excellent shopping time. Dinner on board.
Wednesday, Day 4 La Bussière-sur-Ouche to Pont d’Ouche
After a short morning cruise, we set off on a drive through premier cru vineyards, stopping en route at the “vigne de l’enfant Jesus”, a famous vineyard owned by the Domaine Bouchard Père et Fils. There, we will find out more about the domaine and gain a real insight into the production of its Grand Cru and Premier Cru wines. We continue to Beaune, capital of Burgundy wine country, for a winery tour and private tasting of Bouchard Père et Fils wines before enjoying a gastronomic lunch in the delightful orangery of Château de Beaune, owned by the winery since 1820. Afterwards, we visit the fascinating 15th century Hôtel-Dieu Hospice and explore the quaint shops of the town, before returning to the barge for a short evening cruise to Pont d’Ouche. Dinner on board.
Thursday, Day 5 Pont d’Ouche to Vandenesse-en-Auxois
After breakfast, we cruise to Vandenesse-en-Auxois, past grazing white Charolais cattle, rolling hills and picturesque villages, crossing the only canal bridge on the Burgundy Canal. Later, our wine guide joins us again and we drive from the barge through wooded hillsides out into the world famous vineyards of the Côte de Beaune. After making a stop in the Grand Cru vineyards of Le Montrachet, we visit a domaine in the village of Puligny-Montrachet where we enjoy a private cellar tour and a tasting of some of the world’s greatest white wines. There should also be time to visit the medieval village, craft shops and castle of Châteauneuf-en-Auxois, once an outpost of the Dukes of Burgundy and offering a fine overview of the canal and surrounding countryside. Dinner on board.
Friday, Day 6 Vandenesse-en-Auxois to Escommes
Our last day’s leisurely cruise takes us to the canal summit, 1,250 feet above sea level, just before the Pouilly tunnel. This afternoon we visit Château de Bussy-Rabutin, once the home of the Comte Roger de Bussy-Rabutin who was exiled to his estate due in part to his scandalous lifestyle and satirical chronicles of French nobility which found him in great disfavour with King Louis XIV. There is time to stroll through the French-style gardens and enjoy the views of the château surrounded by its moat. Captain’s Farewell Dinner on board.
Saturday, Day 7 Escommes
After breakfast disembark the barge and transfer to the designated drop off point.
*Wine themed cruises are charter only. This sample itinerary and is subject to change. On alternate weeks the cruise is in the reverse direction. **Various pick up and drop off points are avaiable for charter groups.