2 to 6-night all-inclusive cruise through the Upper Seine where castles, art and gastronomy mix
Cruise from Melun to Montargis through the bucolic Canal de Loing; visiting castles, forests and villages.
River trip highlights
- Discover the Loing Canal and its gates
- History of hidden small villages
- Visits to chateau de Fontainebleau and Vaux le Vicomte
- Visit the medieval castle of Nemours,
- Discover the painters villages of Moret and Barbizon
River trip summary
From May to June, our barge sails softly on the rhythm of her unique slow turning engine through the beautiful landscape of the Upper Loire and Upper Seine region, and its beautiful nature and wild landscapes.
- The barge starts its cruises on the 1 st of May from Melun and makes its way down to Montargis (1st Week of cruise).
- Then from Montargis, its cruises down to Châtillon-sur-Loire (2nd Week of cruise).
- Then it turns around and does Châtillon-sur-Loire to Montargis (3rd week of cruising)
- Finally, it cruises from Montargis to Melun (4th week of cruising).
- With three ensuite bedrooms, cozy dining space and inviting large sundeck, you’ll feel at home away from home in our floating guesthouse.
- Visits to Chateau de Fontainebleau and Vaux le Vicomte, medieval castle of Nemours, painters villages of Moret and Barbizon, and more.
- With an emphasis on fresh local produce, sourced each day by the chef, you can be confident of gourmet cuisine. It is also possible to cater for specific dietary requirements including organic products and gluten-free options.
- Spend your time in between our barge and the visit of cities, towns, and villages of the Upper Loire and Upper Seine valleys. Its a journey back in time as they have charm, character, and authenticity.
- While the Loire valley (further West) is quite well known and touristy, we propose you to discover these two areas, which are more preserved, and full of history, gastronomy, and authenticity.
Click HERE to view the owner's Terms & Conditions relating to this river cruise.
River trip description
Stops along the cruise: Melun – Moret sur Loing – Nemours – Château Landon – Montargis.
Day 1-Sunday: Soft cruise andMelun town and surroundings
- Melun is a southeastern suburb of Paris, France’s capital city. The area has a rich history exemplified by museums, castles, and palaces. It has been under the rule of several dynasties over the centuries so it contains a mélange of architectural styles. It is known for its charming, tranquil ambiance and a majestic 17th-century castle. Wander along tree-lined pathways next to the River Seine which flows through the commune.
- Visit the Château de Vaux-le-Vicomte in the nearby Maincy region. The 17th-century castle features baroque architecture and is surrounded by a moat. Look around the stables and 100 acres (40.5 hectares) of grounds. Take a tour of the house to admire the various ornaments and relics.
- The 11th-century Collegiate Church of Notre-Dame in the center of Melun was the original home of the Melun Diptych, a 15th-century oil painting consisting of two panels, one of which now resides in a Berlin, while the other is in Belgium. Admire the church’s façade with spires and arches. Make a site visit to the nearby Church of St. Aspais, which was built in 1555.
MONDAY, Day 2: Cruise from Melun to Moret-sur-Loing and visit this tipical village
- We will be leaving in the morning from Melun, and start our cruising on the Seine, and quickly switch to the Canal de Loing. This will take a few hours, while you can relax on the deck, in your cabin, while you will be served lunch while the barge is cruising down, before arrival in the early afternoon at Moret-sur-Loing.
- This historic town is perhaps rather overlooked by tourists because of these famous neighbors, however, Moret-sur-Loing should be on your list of places to visit in the region as it has a pleasant historic center with some monuments of interest.
- It is easy to get your bearings in Moret-sur-Loing: the town center is quite small and centered around the church, and along the Rue Grande that between the two principal towers in the town, to the west of the old bridge across the river.
- Start your visit to the Place Samois at the western end of Grande Rue. You can also see a bust of the artist Alfred Sisley.
- Dinner on board will be served with the best local produce and cooked by our chef
Day 3-Tuesday: from Moret-sur-Loing to Nemours
- The next morning, the same happens, you wake up when the boat starts cruising (or whenever you want!), and the barge makes its way down the Canal de Loing, while you see beautiful landscapes passing by, and imagine the castle you will visit in the afternoon. The captain and the stewardess will be there to tell you the stories and legends of these places you will see.
- The small town of Nemours is pleasantly situated on the banks of the Loing River and famed for its medieval castle. The Château de Nemours was built in the 12th century and remodeled in the 15th and 17th centuries and consists of a keep flanked by four corner towers and a tall watchtower. Today it houses a museum with collections of archaeological finds, earthenware, paintings, and sculptures.
- Prehistory fans mustn't miss a trip to the Musée Départemental de Préhistoire d'Île-de-France for its rich archaeological collections dating from the Palaeolithic period to the end of the Iron Age, excavated in the Île-de-France region.
- Every summer, on the first weekend of July, the town organizes a lively medieval festival: a journey back in time to the Middle Ages for the whole family, with a medieval market, shows and street entertainment!
Day 4-Wednesday: Cruise from Nemours to Château Landon
- We will depart when that suits you, as all the trip is customizable to feet your inclinations. Again, we will be cruising softly, while some of you can follow the boat for some time by bike! Some sport is always nice for those who want. We will then arrive at the delightful medieval fortified town of Château-Landon.
- Once we find the perfect mooring for the evening, it will be time to enjoy some cocktails on deck before preparing for your next culinary adventure.
Day 5-Thursday: Château Landon area, no cruising today!
- It is the historic capital of the Counts of the Gâtinais and a former pilgrimage site. Perched on a rocky promontory, its old houses, monuments, towers, and pretty terraced gardens form a very scenic picture with the narrow Fusain river flowing past below. The river banks are a particularly lovely place for a stroll, dotted with lavoirs (old wash houses) and mills, and offer a wonderful view of the town and the fortress-like old royal abbey of Saint-Séverin.
- Also not to be missed is Notre-Dame church, built in a mixture of Carolingian, Romanesque and Gothic styles, and its superb bell tower with gemel windows
FRIDAY, Day 6: Cruise from Château Landon to Montargis
- Again, your last day of cruising aboard our barge, so enjoy the quietness of the river for the last time, before we show you the last of our local towns and its wonders.
- Nicknamed the 'Venice of the Gâtinais' due its network of canals, 17 bridges and pretty waterside houses, Montargis is a lovely town to wander around.
- Visitors can also explore the town's museums: the Musée Girodet with its collections of paintings, drawings and sculptures, and the Musée du Gâtinais, which has objects dating from prehistory and the Gallo-Roman period on display.
- Those of you with a sweet tooth can savor the famous local specialty, Montargis pralines: delicious caramelized roasted almonds.
Day 7-Sunday: Day of departure
- This morning, we take breakfast, discuss a bit, and slowly make our way to midday, time of your departure. This was an amazing river trip with you, and it will be a pleasure to have you back again for a new route, and new discoveries together!
- We will drop you at a train station, airport, in a 1.30-hour drive trip maximum. All will be set in advance of course!
Number of double beds: 2
Number of sofa beds: 1
Type of experience
Heating / cooling
Languages spoken onboard
Books and magazines
River trip owner
Since 2015, we are offering bespoke cruises in the Champagne area on our ship Johanna. She was converted in 2013 from a cargo vessel to a modern and comfortable 3 bedroom cruise ship.
4 Reviews - 2 to 6-night all-inclusive cruise through the Upper Seine where castles, art and gastronomy mix
Keith - the United States
This was our best family vacation ever!
This was our best family vacation ever! Thank you!
Nancy and Frank - the United States
Thanks for a wonderful adventure!
Thanks for a wonderful adventure!
It far exceeded our expectations. You guys are super hostesses. Food was exceptional. Enjoyed our trip and would like to return!
Bob & Anne - the United States
What a superb trip!
What a superb trip. Thank you all for making this such a memorable - beautiful vacation!
PS: Patsie's delicious cuisine, the fabulous Johanna, a very well done ship and all the friendly assistance will be permanent memories!
Sonia, Trevor, Brielle, Willem - Australia
We had a great week with lots of laughter, wine, amazing food, and great company
Dear Patsie and Kris,
Thank you so much for having us this week aboard the beautiful Johanna! We had a great week with lots of laughter, wine, amazing food, and great company. Looking foiward to seeing you again in the future!