Barge cruises are one of the most unique ways to explore France
, Central Europe
, and the United Kingdom
. Intimate accommodations, great food, and focused experiences are part of the excitement of a barge cruise. Here’s what you need to know about barge cruising in Europe:What's included?
What about food?
- All meals and accommodations are included in the price of barge cruises.
- Tips, airfare, accommodations before and after, and insurance are all additional expenses not included in the price.
What's unique about barge cruises?
- Food is very much part of the experience, and your captain and crew will be happy to accommodate any special diet requests you may have.
- Drinks, including alcoholic beverages (and even champagne) are also included in the price.
Who should take a barge cruise?
- Barges that now host cruises were originally built for carrying cargo, but now feature luxurious appointments and cushy spaces.
- Barges usually accommodate just 12 or fewer passengers, with a few hosting up to but never more than 24 guests.
- Barge cruises move much more slowly than traditional river cruises - barges travel around 3-5 miles an hour, whereas riverboats move through the water at about 11 miles per hour.
- Because of the speed, your barge cruise won’t visit as many places - but that doesn’t mean they are boring! In fact, you’ll have more time to really get to know the local culture, enjoy the cuisine, and take in the sweeping vistas. (Plus, you can always book a few days before or after your cruise in the major cities of Europe to experience the exciting metropolitan atmosphere that barge cruises tend to stray away from.)
- Other than a lounge, dining area, and ample sun deck, there are no other distracting onboard amenities, though your captain may have an inviting open bridge policy.
Let us know
- Barge cruises are perfect for travelers who want to cruise Europe without worrying about getting seasick.
- Women who are pregnant past 28 weeks should not (and sometimes cannot) take a barge cruise.
- Barge cruises are not ideal for solo travelers because of double-occupancy/single supplement travel fees.
- Barge cruises are also not suited for people with disabilities due to the design of these retrofitted vessels that can make them inaccessible (though for people with disabilities, traditional river cruises can be a great, accessible alternative).
- Smoking is generally restricted to open air spaces like the upper decks.
when you want to start planning your European barge cruise!