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La Renaissance has new Look

Late in 2007, European Waterways acquired its most luxurious barge to date. The former Bonne Humeur, rechristened La Renaissance. more>

Special Offer

FAMILY CRUISE ON LA BELLE EPOQUE IN BURGUNDY DEPARTING 10TH August 2008.

We are pleased to offer a 25% discount on this cruise.more>

L'Impressionniste


visit our website


www.gobarging.com

La Belle Epoque
Welcome to the July-August 2008 Lock-Keeper

Hello Lock-keeper reader,

Welcome to the 58th edition of our new look European Waterways Newsletter.

In our new bi-monthly Lock-keeper, we have some fantastic 2008 cruise offers. We highlight the amazing La Belle Epoque family cruise, where we are offering our guests the chance to admire the Burgundy countryside from the sundeck of our luxury barge La Belle Epoque.

We have an article by Bucky McGuire who recounts his experience of cruising on La Belle Epoque. We highlight the Distinctive Destinations Newsletter and we have an article about the newly refitted La Renaissance ultra deluxe barge.

Don't forget to catch our latest news, as we can now offer clients the chance to stay in a genuine Lock-Keepers Cottage on the Caledonian Canal in Scotland.

I look forward to hearing from you, and please drop us an email with any comments about our new Lock-Keeper format. I hope to see you at our website, where you can find out all about GoBarging and keep up to date with the latest barging news as it breaks.

 

Best Regards,

Derek Banks - Chairman and Barge skipper




Latest Special Offer 2008 Cruises

 

La Belle Epoque, Burgundy

Savoir Faire, Upper Loire

Saint Louis, South West France

 


Latest Special Offers for 2008 Cruises

Family Cruise on La Belle Epoque in Burgundy departing 10th August 2008
Auxerre to Clamecy

Sunday, Day 1 Paris to Auxerre

Guests are met at Hotel Ampere in Paris at 1:30 PM and transferred to the elegant La Belle Époque in Auxerre, Burgundy. Following a Champagne Welcome, you are free to explore the medieval town of Auxerre by bicycle or foot or take a stroll along the banks of the River Yonne before returning for dinner aboard.

Monday, Day 2 Auxerre to the Caves de Bailly

There is a choice this morning or either ice-skating, swimming and perhaps if there is time a game of 10 pin bowling as well.  An alternative tour is St Bris with its extraordinary network of medieval passages beneath the town. A wine tasting introduces you to the outstanding Chardonnay and Pinot Noir wines produced in Monsieur Bersan’s 12th century cellars.  Dinner aboard.

Tuesday, Day 3 The Caves de Bailly to Accolay

This mornings choice of excursions depends on the children ages but you can choose quad biking (12+) Paint Balling (16+), potholing (10+) or pony riding (3+).  Alternatively visit Auxerre and discover the medieval town centre. Originally the capital of Lower Burgundy, Auxerre prides itself on its fine churches. We cruise through rich pasturelands and past grazing Charolais cattle to Accolay. Dinner ashore in a local Auberge.

Wednesday, Day 4 Accolay to Mailly la Ville

Visit the caves this morning of Arcy sur Cure.  The site of Arcy sur Cure, a major one for the medium and late paleolithic age in northern France, is located between Auxerre and Avallon.  It includes a set of caves dug out by the Cure River into a coral massif that emerged at the end of the secondary era.  Alternatively this morning, we visit the charming mediaeval village of Noyers, one of the most beautiful villages in France, on an excursion through delightful countryside.  We then return to the barge for a cruise southwards through the Yonne valley past dramatic steep cliffs to the market town of Mailly. Dinner aboard.

Thursday, Day 5 Mailly la Ville to Lucy sur Yonne

In the morning we cruise past the Saussois cliffs where an international climbing centre creates a spectacular setting,  mooring at Lucy sur Yonne.  All ages will love a canoeing trip or rafting on the River Cure near Vezelay.  The canoeing really is a fantastic excursion, which we feel, should not be missed.  For those a little less adventurous we can visit the Chateau of Bazoches, whose illustrious visitors included Richard the Lionheart and which was later remodeled by Maréchal Vauban.  Dinner aboard.

Friday, Day 6 Lucy sur Yonne to Clamecy

This morning we visit Cardoland, which is a vast wooded park about 7km from Vezelay.  The sculptor, Cardo, created this wonderful prehistoric world of life size dinosaurs.  It has a museum, caves, exhibition and prehistoric play area.  Cardoland is a wonderful visit for families with younger children.  An alternative to Cardoland is an excursion to the town of Vézelay, one of Burgundy’s most famous treasures with the Romanesque Basilica of St Mary Magdalene, craft shops and fine views of the surrounding countryside.  A cruise this afternoon takes us through beautiful countryside then takes us to Clamecy. Take a short walk into Clamecy to visit the town, the Cathedral and also the Logging and Barging Museum.  The narrow streets lined with ancient buildings also present an opportunity for shopping. Captain’s farewell dinner aboard.

Saturday, Day 7 Clamecy to Paris.

Disembark after breakfast and arrive at Hotel Ampere in Paris by about 1pm.

On alternative weeks the cruise is in reverse direction. This itinerary is subject to change

25% Discount on this cruise
£1612 / US$2992 Per Adult sharing a junior suite
£1500 / US$2767 Per Child (aged 0-17 years)sharing a junior suite
£1687 / US$3188 Per Adult sharing a suite
£1575 / US$2963 Per Child (aged 0-17 years)sharing a suite

We would be pleased to supply, at no extra cost, car seats, high chairs, bed guards, travel cots, children's bicycles and child bike seats and early children's tea's if required

Our normal Terms & Conditions apply. Visit the GoBarging special offers page

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La Dolce Vita - 6 Night Cruise

 

 

Dan and Anne Miller

The River Shannon

Venetian Gondola's

 


Distinctive Destinations

Distinctive Destinations
Newsletter for Sophisticated Travelers

Meet the co-editors of one of the travel industry's best-known publications Dan and Anne Miller have been traveling to well-known, and not so well known, ports of call for 15 years as they gather information for their quarterly newsletter, Distinctive Destinations. In what many consider a dream job, they've visited all seven continents, 174 countries and have sailed on 46 ships and barges.

"Barge trips are always high on the list when anyone asks what our favorite trips have been", comments Dan. "The pace is relaxed, the scenery beautiful and the food fabulous." Anne quickly adds her favorite part of barge trips. "I love unpacking just once. For us, sailing on a barge really is a vacation".

Distinctive Destinations came about as a result of one of the Millers' first trips. What started out as a four-week journey through the British Isles, staying only in castles, inns and manor houses, evolved into a full-time job.

Anne always keeps a travel diary and after this odyssey was soon grouping photographs with recipes collected along the way. She decided their adventures, coupled with the unique accommodations, were too special not to share with others.

It wasn't much of a jump to turn the results into a book - The Ins and Outs of Inns & Castles - and she soon found a publisher who agreed. Though now out of print, the book led to a vocation of travel writing that in turn led to their founding Distinctive Destinations.

Publishing a travel newsletter isn't without its adventures. On various journeys Dan and Anne have had their jeep in Botswana charged by an angry female elephant protecting her baby, traced the path of a still-active volcano in Indonesia, (retreating quickly when it started to emit black clouds of smoke), stayed in a vacant caravansary on the edge of the Sahara Desert when their car broke down, joined pygmies for monkey stew on the banks of the Amazon and a Rsherman for seal meat at his house in Greenland and, in a bit of political intrigue, been forced by soldiers to gather their belongings and leave a train at midnight when a local government aborted the rail excursion.

Maybe their adventures can be documented in another book by Anne. In the meantime their newsletter points the way for readers to enjoy hotels, restaurants and, of course, worldwide destinations.

Subscriptions for the upmarket quarterly newsletter are $39 for U.S. residents, $59 for overseas subscribers. Address is P.O. Box 125, Rockland, Delaware 19732, USA or visit their website and subscribe online at www.DistinctiveDestinationsNewsletter.com




La Belle Epoque

 

Bucky and his wife

La Belle Epoque crew

La Belle Epoque interior

La Belle Epoque interior


La Belle Epoque

Article by Buck Maguire

It was spring in France. By seven am the sun was just beginning to rise over its slumbering countryside.  

Exhausted folk had flown vast distances to the French luxury hotel barge, ‘La Belle Époque’ which lay dancing on the River Rhone waiting for them. The river dawdles south from the Paris area and by now the sun had found extra comfort in a bedspread of pink candy floss clouds and slowly rose over our peaceful scene.

Later, I stretched until awake in my comfy cabin, trying to work out where I was. Then I remembered the previous evening’s champagne party aboard’...Through our port hole seemed a scene scripted from Alice in Wonderland where folk ashore walked faster than the barge was going! I heaved sigh of contentment. Life, at last at a pace it should be at and I swung out off bed, showered, slipped on shorts, a tee shirt, and sandals and went up on deck for a ‘petit déjeuner-’ a small breakfast. A comfortable deck chair completed my chill out.  

The barge always tied up for lunch and at our first meal, we had a delightful local wine with crisp French bread, soup, cold meats,  farm salads, six assorted cheeses and a tart dessert. The chef had an organic cooking background and made his pasta aboard. All meals and liquor were included in the fares so there was no need for money aboard! Our first mate took us walking ashore later and I was feeling the benefits of my new found restful sleep patterns.  My fitness was also improving and the library books and soft music aboard saw me often snuggling off to the deck to enjoy the absence of tight schedules, e-mails and mobiles.

Long evenings with the moon dropping in on our candle lit dinners, were often concluded with a French liqueur. The other ten passengers aboard were huge fun and being like minded, soon united in a common love of the alfresco lifestyle. Mostly we enjoyed cruising slowly through constant changing scenery without the daily bind of packing and unpacking.

One day after lunch, a charming waitress offered me a cube of sugar dipped in Calvados, a potent French apple liqueur and it was not long before my book slipped from my hand and I dozed off.  On waking I felt vibrantly alive and begun studying the facts on,’ La Belle Époque’ (beautiful season or period in life). She is 40 meters long; cruises around Burgundy at 5 kph, takes 12 passengers, has 6 double cabins with own toilets, showers, comfortable beds and a sauna.  The Company ‘Go barging’, cruises in France, Italy, Scotland, England, Ireland, Germany, Belgium and Holland whilst the First Mate answered our many questions. One lady arrived aboard with a hip problem so whenever we walked, she went by barge Combi.

Each morning I took a bicycle from one the 12 aboard and set off with the chef to nearby villages and markets for fresh bread and news papers for the barge.  Around each turn in the river was always some new facet of French history. Afrikaans barge traveler’s love traveling at the barges pace and it reminded them of journeying in old ox wagons as their forefathers had done. Many were descended from the Huguenots and were horrified to learn of the hardship they endured during the religious wars in France. Many fled to South Africa where they brought technology to the wine industry and worked the land near Paarl, allocated to them by Governor, Simon van der Stel. During jogs ashore, I saw many similarities between French and South African farmers like my father-in-law, Eugene Marais, a Huguenot descendent and wine farmer…he who would have loved exploring France by barge.

Contact us today about a cruise on La Belle Epoque or Visit La Belle Epoque page

 

 



La Belle Epoque - 6 Night Cruise

 

Scenery

La Belle Epoque Cuisine

Cabin


La Belle Epoque (cont'd)

Continued article by Buck Maguire

Farmers world wide dislike un-authorized tourists barbecuing on their farm land and fear uncontrollable land fires. I remember a family farm in Villiersdorp being devastated in this way and sometimes whilst jogging, I found bizarre signs like: PRIVET PROPRIETE—ATTENTION-- VIPERES (private property- attention- snakes). Something touched my ankles. Yikes! It's a Border collie farm dog just like my own called Murphy. The tallest farmer ever loomed up (and I'd seen some in the South African veld). He glared at my broken nose and cauliflower ears, and then with a huge grin, roared, 'RUGBY, Oui? He stuck out a hand the size of a bunch of bananas and said, ‘Bonjour’. ‘Comment allez vous? (Hello, how are you?)  'Três bien', Merci. (fine thanks) I say. He was a rugby lock and I a prop forward and like all former scrum sinners, we got along wonderfully.

When a Frenchman is happy (or sad) he likes company to share a glass of wine or something powerful like 'Pastis,' a Marseille drink, strong enough to start a farm truck. We have a glass or two and later, very relaxed, I teach him an old rugby song, ‘Here comes the Boks!’ Much later I mutter, 'Il faut que je file' (I must go). He sadly shouts back, 'Au revoir' (good bye) Buckaroo. I jog off slowly to the barge and think rugby and sport is great for making new friends around the globe.

We were now deep in the spring countryside and sadly coming to the end of our 7 day and 6 night trip. We were already missing the huge birds like swans and wild Canadian geese which crash landed in the water with a huge, ‘GE-SPLASH. The French country farmers often grow lavender to keep insects away and on my final jog amongst the wild lavender’s strong fragrances, often stopped for a wild apple, quince, walnut or juicy red pomegranate -- it all reminded me of back home in the  South African countryside.. We would miss the sounds of the river water gurgling along at night and the daily laughter aboard but most of all being stress free and realising I had rediscovered the joy of time for myself once again. The trip had changed my life for ever.  We said our sad farewells and couldn’t help shed a tear or two with our new found friends who were leaving for the four corners of the Earth again.

But now we were due to meet my old friends ashore; the ultimate, typical French couple, Francis and Manuella du Pont from Marseille. He loves French olive oil and said chopping down an olive tree in some French regions was not only a sin but illegal. They were noble he declared and withstood the great Earth flood. Was it not an olive branch that a dove brought back to Noah to signify the waters had subsided?

Of course it was Francis.  But he and I had endless disputes over drinking wine with lunch. I said it made me sleepy. He said it made one relaxed. He further claimed I did not know the difference between feeling sleepy or relaxed. Voila! So at our next lunch I foolishly had a glass with him. ‘It’s all in your mind’, he said, ’Think relaxed and you will relax’ I duly obliged—and fell asleep.  Finally he made a typical French decision where both would win! We would celebrate this over lunch---with wine of course… I am a sucker but admitted later feeling at one stage a little relaxed. He danced around jubilant like a Bushman after a successful hunt. ‘France wins ’, he roared. I stalked off in a mock irritation. But latter returned and sure enough… there was the big fellow, fast asleep. It’s a draw you see. But one day I’ll take him on a luxury hotel barge where he can truly prove me wrong again. Au Revoir France.

Contact us today about a cruise on La Belle Epoque or Visit La Belle Epoque page



Renaissance in new livery

 

 

renaissance

renaissance cabin

Table

delicious cuisine


Renaissance has a new Look

Cruising the Upper Loire and Western Burgundy
by Durant Imboden

Late in 2007, European Waterways acquired its most luxurious barge to date. The former Bonne Humeur, rechristened La Renaissance, began operations on the canals of Western Burgundy and the Upper Loire in May, 2008. (Passengers are picked up and dropped off in Paris, which is a great convenience for guests who are flying in from abroad.)

We were on the barge's maiden voyage in its new European Waterways livery, and this article describes both our experience and what you can expect from a six-night cruise on La Renaissance.

A river yacht for eight passengers

La Renaissance began its life in 1960 as a French cargo barge. In 1997, the vessel was converted to a hotel barge, and it underwent another refit in 2006. After its acquisition by European Waterways in 2007, the barge was taken to a shipyard in Belgium for inspection, maintenance, and updating.

The barge measures 128 feet long by 17 feet 6 inches wide, or just over 51 by 5 meters. It was built to fit the locks of the canals in central France, which are smaller than river locks but larger than the locks in the Canal du Midi. For a layman, it's impressive to watch the captain and pilot squeeze La Renaissance into a 19th Century lock that offers just inches of clearance on either side.

La Renaissance has two decks:

The main or upper deck has an open bow, with a partial roof that shields the eight-person round table from sun or rain. The rest of the bow is uncovered, with a hot tub just behind the anchor winch.

Just aft of the bow area is a huge public room that's divided into two sections: the main saloon or living room, and a dining area with a large round table. Passengers can take soft drinks, mineral water, beer, or spirits from the bar without charge at any hour of the day. (A door at the back of the dining room leads to the kitchen, which guests are free to visit.)

From the saloon, stairs lead down to the lower deck, which has four two-person staterooms.

The helm, where the pilot steers the barge, is just behind the kitchen. (La Renaissance has a top speed of 10 knots, or 11.5 mph / 18.5 km/h), but most of the time it cruises at the canal speed limit of 6 km/h or 4 mph.). Crew quarters are aft and all the way forward; most of the crew live on board, although, on our cruise, the chef went home to his wife and baby most nights.

Contact us today about a cruise on Renaissance or Visit Renaissance page



Renaissance in new livery

 

 

renaissance

renaissance

renaissance


La Renaissance carries a maximum of eight passengers in two-person cabins, with a cruising season that normally runs from the end of March through early November. "Value" rates apply at the beginning and end of the season and in midsummer; these are about 15 percent less than the "regular" rates from mid-May to late July and from the end of August to mid-October.

Visit Renaissance Itinerary page


Renaissance has a new Look (cont'd)

La Renaissance Cabins

Staterooms

Barge cabins tend to be more cozy than spacious, but the staterooms on La Renaissance--dubbed "suites" by European Waterways--are huge by the standards of most barges and river cruisers. The bow and stern suites ("Voltaire" and "Molière") measure 270 square feet or 25 m², while the two suites in the middle of the barge ("Hugo" and "Dumas") are only slightly smaller at 260 square feet or 24 m².

Each cabin has beds that can be arranged as twin or king-size beds, plus a dresser, a small table, and built-in nightstands. (The bow and stern cabins also have chairs.) Closet space is generous, with plenty of room for clothing and luggage, and the bathrooms are larger than their counterparts on some oceangoing cruise ships.

Bathroom floors are made of teak (with ceramic tile in the toilet areas), and the shower enclosures are fairly roomy, with curved polycarbonate doors. Toiletries are by L'Occitane de Provence; each cabin also comes with an electric hair dryer and two bathrobes.

The central heating works well in chilly weather, but we woke up sweltering one night after the crew cranked up the heat instead of suggesting that a cold passenger add a second blanket. On the plus side, the wall-mounted air-conditioning unit is controlled individually by a remote device next to the bed, and we had no problem cooling our stateroom on warm, sunny days.

our only real complaint was with the twin portholes, which had only thin curtains instead of lined blackout curtains or screw-down covers. (If you're a light-sensitive sleeper, you might want to bring an eye mask.)

Dining

Breakfast on La Renaissance consists of baguettes, croissants, and other pastries (obtained from village bakeries en route) plus two cereals, ham and cheese, and a simple fruit salad. The staff will cook eggs on request, but don't expect a full English breakfast: The chef wants you to have an appetite for lunch.

Lunch typically consists of something hot (such as a quiche or a whole salmon baked in rock salt) along with several different salads. A cheese course (with two different cheeses) rounds out the meal.

Dinner is a more elaborate affair that includes a soup or starter, a main course, two French cheeses, a dessert, and coffee. On our cruise, dinner usually started at 7:30 p.m. and lasted about two hours.

Sylvain, the chef, was a young man of exceptional talents. He was also accommodating: If a passenger had a food allergy or simply didn't like something, he'd provide a substitute--such as individual cheese-free quiches and tarts for a passenger who couldn't tolerate cheese.

European Waterways cruise fares include wine, spirits, and other beverages, with different red and white wine selections (and occasionally a rosé) at every lunch and dinner. The staff make a point of describing both the wines and the cheeses, so bring your pocket notebook if you're a connoisseur of vin or fromage.

Contact us today about a cruise on Renaissance or Visit Renaissance Itinerary page




Renaissance in new livery

 

 

renaissance

renaissance cabin

Table

Porthole

delicious cuisine


Renaissance has new Look (cont'd)

Continued Renaissance New Look article

Cruising activities

You won't find casinos, art auctions, shuffleboard tournaments, and other traditional cruise activities on a canal barge. The emphasis is on relaxation and do-it-yourself pleasures, such as soaking in the hot tub, hopping on or off the barge at locks, and bicycling or walking along the towpath. You needn't worry about keeping up with the barge, which is likely to move more slowly than you do--especially when you factor in the time required to go through locks.

When you're feeling adventurous, you can try your hand at the wheel, with the pilot standing by to save you from embarrassment or disaster. (Steering the barge is less intimidating than you might think, as long as you aren't trying to parallel park. It takes a while for the rudder to respond to a turn of the wheel,

Tours and shore excursions

Shore excursions are part of the barging experience. In some cases, you can just walk ashore and wander through a village with the captain or on your own; on other occasions, you'll be shuttled to a town or tourist attraction in the nine-passenger minibus that meets the barge at various locks and mooring sites.

On our cruise, touring highlights included the town of Montargis ("the Venice of the Gatinais"), the family-owned Château de la Bussière (which we toured with the contessa's young English-speaking grandchildren), the fortified hilltop village of Château-Landon (where we rode in a horse carriage and had lunch in a local restaurant), the royal palace of Fontainebleau (where Napoleon abdicated and went into exile), and Moret-sur-Loing (a busy, prosperous walled town on the Seine where we spent our final night on board).

Cruises

La Renaissance carries a maximum of eight passengers in two-person cabins, with a cruising season that normally runs from the end of March through early November. "Value" rates apply at the beginning and end of the season and in midsummer; these are about 15 percent less than the "regular" rates from mid-May to late July and from the end of August to mid-October.

If you travel alone, you'll pay a hefty single supplement, so it's worthwhile to bring a companion unless you're a hermit with a trust fund.

Confession: We were a little concerned about traveling with a small group of people whom we didn't know, but we needn't have worried: Everyone got along fine, and Philippe (the European Waterways operations manager for France) pointed out that snobs and misanthropes aren't the kind of people who normally sign up for barging holidays. Barging tends to attract convivial, experienced travelers who enjoy making new acquaintances.

Contact us today about a cruise on Renaissance or View the Renaissance, Burgundy Cruise




GoBarging Cruise Competition

 

 

L'Impressionniste Cruise

Relax on the Sun Deck or even in the Spa Pool

L'Impressionniste's light and airy interior features picture windows



May Competition Winner

For our May Lockkeeper competition we had a fabulous prize to give away, a cabin for 2 on L'Impressionniste as it cruises through the breathtakingly beautiful Ouche Valley in Burgundy.

L'Impressionniste Deck Plan

L'Impressionniste Deck Plan

L'Impressionniste began life as a cargo barge in Holland before undergoing a complete transformation into the powerful canal and river cruiser she is today. Her light and airy interior features picture windows and a selection of prints, fabrics and wall colorings reminiscent of the turn of the century era after which she has been named. She is crewed by a knowledgeable Captain, Master Chef and crew of three. L'Impressionniste's classic route covers some fine Burgundy cruising with plenty of opportunity to cycle and stroll along the tow-path and wander into nearby villages.

Cruise Highlights

  • All-inclusive open bar
  • Free Wines, Gourmet Cuisine, Entry fees to excursions
  • Clos de Vougeot, Domaine Jafflin wine tasting
  • Walking tour of old Dijon, 14th century Ducal Palace
  • Moat - encircled 13th century Chateau de Commarin
  • 12th century Abbaye de la Bussiere
  • 15th century Hotel-Dieu Hospice
  • Visit Maison Champy, Beaune's oldest winery established in 1720

Find out who won fabulous Impressionniste cruise




GoBarging Cruise Competition

 

 

Nivernais Canal

Beautiful Salon

Yonne River Bridge



L'Art de Vivre Competition

WIN A CRUISE FOR 2 ABOARD
L'Art de Vivre

For our July Lockkeeper competition we have a fabulous prize to give away, a cabin for 2 on L'Art de Vivre in October 2008 as it cruises through the breathtakingly beautiful The Upper Nivernais in Burgundy.

L'Art de Vivre Deck Plan

L'Art de Vivre Deck Plan

The 8 passenger L'Art de Vivre started life as a Scottish munitions carrier and survived long enough to be transformed by a team of skilled crafts-men into a floating celebration of the Burgundian "good life".

Your crew of four comprises Captain, Tour guide, Master Chef and Hostess, all with a love for the Nivernais canal, and all secure in the knowledge that their vessel represents L'Art de Vivre itself

cruise highlights


  •    All-inclusive open bar,free wines,gourmet cuisine, entry
       fees to excursions
  •    Medieval town of Clamecy and 13th century cathedral
  •    16 Lock flight at Valley of Sardy
  •    Foie Gras tasting, with a noble Chablis
  •    Visit the 16th Century home of Marechal Vauban
  •    Tour the hill-top basilica of Vézelay
  •    Wine tasting at Precy le Moult

 

Enter L'Art de Vivre Cruise Competition




GoBarging News

 

 

map of scotland

View of lock

Scottish Highlander moored under Urquhart Castle - for more details listen to our latest radio interview



GoBarging News

The Old Lock-House Apartments, Fort Augustus

Scottish Highlander

If you fancy a stay in a real Lock-Keepers Cottage European Waterways can now give you that opportunity. Situated in the centre of the bustling village of Fort Augustus, in the heart of the Highlands, the Old Lock House is superbly located overlooking the lock staircase which lifts the Caledonian Canal from the southern shore of Loch Ness. From here, you can explore the Great Glen and its surrounding mountains, or just sit and watch the boats go by.

The Property

View of Old Lock House Built over 150 years ago by the Caledonian Canal Company, the Old Lock House has now been beautifully refurbished to 4 star standard as two beautiful 2 bedroom apartments; Lockside on the ground floor and Lockview on the first floor. Tastefully appointed in traditional style with antique pine furniture and leather suites, the properties are nonetheless equipped with every modern convenience. The kitchens have dishwasher, microwave grill and washer/dryer. The bathrooms are fitted with mains pressure showers over the baths and the lounges have Freeview TV and DVD, plus a collection of games and books for less hi-tech entertainment. The main bedrooms have 5ft king size beds looking out over the locks whilst the second bedrooms have bunk beds

View of rear of Lock House view of bedroom

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Outside, each unit has a fenced garden at the rear with patio looking down to the River Oich. Garden furniture and BBQs are provided. Outside the front door is a bench to sit and enjoy the canalside scenes which have changed little in 200 years.

Contact us today about a stay in a real Lock House or Visit the Lock House Apartments page.

If you have any suggestions, feedback on our new Lock-Keeper format or barging stories to tell us, then please e-mail us. We'll be glad to hear from you and share your inputs in future editions of the lock-keeper.

Why not email this edition on to a friend, and let them share the fun. New subscribers can sign-up here, and are very welcome. More people are joining every day, so let's keep building a great Barging community..!

That's about it for this 58th edition of the Lockkeeper, and hopefully the above articles have whet your appetite for that well-earned luxury cruise..! Please visit barge cruises and have a look around, or follow the individual links above.

The next edition of the lock-keeper will be out in September 2008, so we'll see you then.