• Info

    Tour type

    guided tour

     

    Departures

    29.05 and 12.06.2021 

     

    Price per person

    1,349 €
     

    Included

    • 7 overnights
    • Full board (breakfast, packed lunch and 6 dinners - excluding drinks)
    • Accompanying material (1 set per cabin)
    • English speaking tour leader
    • Sheets and towels
    • Daily cleaning of the cabin
    • Champagne and Brie tasting
    • Visit of a champagne cellar
    • Ferry tickets
    • Hotline service

     

    Not included

    • Transport to and from departure point
    • 1 dinner in Epernay
    • Beverages on board 
    • Tips
    • Anything not mentioned in the section "Included"

     

    Supplements

    675 € single cabin

     

    95 € bike rental

    210 € E-bike

     

    50 € gluten free/lactose free menu (to be paid on site)

  • Day by Day

    1. Individual arrival in Paris

    Embarkation and check in at 2:00 pm, at the Quai d’Austerlitz. If you are not too tired, you can have a first walk in Paris and admire its wonders.

     

    2. Paris – Lagny-sur-Marne (40/50 km)

    You will leave Paris behind cycling along the canal de l’Ourcq. A bike path leads from the place de la Bastille (close to the mooring place of the barge), via the basin of la Villette to the banks of the canal de l’Ourcq, which was built by order of Napoleon Bonaparte. The canal provided the city with water and played an important role in the transportation of goods to and from the city. Destination of today is Lagny, a nice little town along the river Marne.

     

    3. Lagny-sur-Marne - Meaux (20/40 km)

    In Lagny-sur-Marne you can take your bicycle for a first ride, mainly along the Marne river and its parallel canal. In case you opt for the short ride, the first challenge is the hill near Chalifert. The barge will take the tunnel through the hill, but cyclists can test their fitness and muscles for the first time by climbing over the hill by bicycle. Also on the longer option the first part is quite hilly, because you are leaving the valley of the Marne. Later you will follow the small Canal de l’Ourq on to the city of Meaux, famous for its “Brie de Meaux” cheeses and the magnificent Cathedral St.Etienne. Overnight in Meaux.

     

    4. Meaux – La Ferté-sous-Jouarre (30/55 km)

    There are a few cycling options today. The shorter option will lead you over the hills and slopes of the Marne valley on the south bank of the river through woodland and small villages. The longer option stays in the valley of the river in the morning, riding through Trilport and Lizy-sur-Ourcq. Later you will have to climb a few challenging hills, leaving the valley in the direction of Jouarre. In Jouarre, all cyclists can enjoy a very nice presentation and tasting of the famous Brie de Meaux and Brie noir cheeses at the family-run Fromagerie Ganot. Dinner on board and night in La-Ferté-sous-Jouarre or a village nearby.

     

    5. La-Ferté-sous-Jouarre – Château-Thierry (45 km)

    Enjoy a somewhat challenging cycling tour from La-Ferté-sous-Jouarre to Château-Thierry. The first part of the cycling track leads you along the Marne river. After a few miles you will ride into  a small valley marked by quiet villages and country roads. Follow the small river Clignon and continue riding uphill until you finally reach the plateau above the northern part of the Marne valley. The side valleys are mainly covered with woodland, on the plateau agriculture is predominant. Follow the valley of the small river Clignon. En route you can visit the large WW1 American War Cemetery and Monument near Belleau on the D82. Start your descent to reach Château-Thierry. Dinner on board and overnight in Château-Thierry. 

     

    6. Château-Thierry – Epernay (35/50 km)

    Château-Thierrry owes its name to the castle that once was situated on the slopes above the Marne. You can still see its ruins. The town was the site of two important battles: the Battle of 1814 in the Napoleonic Wars between France and Prussia and the Battle of 1918 at the end of World War I. Château-Thierry is also known as the native town of the world-famous writer of fables Jean de la Fontaine. Choose between a longer and a shorter bike ride. Today we will enter the official Champagne area. Cycle along the Marne river or cruise to Dormans, a quiet village on the Marne with a castle and chapel in memory of the battle of the Marne. During World War I this area was an important battlefield. You will see the Château de Boursault, a large castle built in 1848 by Mr. Cliquot’s widow, who gave her name (Veuve Cliquot) to a famous Champagne wine. A ride up the northern valley slope to the village of Châtillon-sur-Marne rewards the cyclist with a stunning panoramic view over the Marne valley and the Champagne vineyards. Today there is no dinner on board. You can select one of the local restaurants in town (dinner not included).

     

    7. Epernay round tour (20/25 km)

    The last half day’s bike tour takes you along the quiet canal parallel to the Marne river to Ay and Mareuil-sur-Ay. Return via Dizy to visit Hautvillers. After a somewhat challenging ascent you will reach this picturesque village of Champagne wine growers on the southern slopes of the Montagne de Reims. Highlight is a visit of the chapel with the tomb of the monk Dom Pérignon. According to the local tradition, Dom Pérignon (1638-1715) was in charge of the wine cellars of the abbey of Benedictine monks, and he was the first to succeed in blending various kinds of wine into a wine of superb quality. He also introduced the double fermentation, typical of champagne production. Return cycling to Epernay. After lunch, visit to the center of Epernay. Together with Reims, Epernay is the major wine center of the Champagne region. Epernay has many town houses in neo-renaissance style or classical style dating from the 19th century. Champagne tasting and tour in a Champagne house on the famous Avenue de Champagne.

     

    8. Epernay

    Disembarkation after breakfast around 9:30 am and end of tour.


    Due to organisational reasons, weather conditions or warnings issued by local authorities, the itinerary may be subject to some changes before and/or during the holiday. Issues with high and low water, as well as logistic obstacles such as officially ordered - previously not announced - repair work on locks or bridges can modify some of the daily stretches or overnight stays and may even request a transfer by bus. These decisions are only taken by the boat’s captain.

     

  • Route profile

    The tour winds along the valley of the Marne and in the Champagne wine region. Even if most part of the route follows the river and its tributaries, the itinerary will also take you on countryside roads in a hilly territory with some difficult ascents. You will rarely cycle on bike paths and mainly on paved low traffic roads.

     

    With 18 guests or more, the daily cycling tours will be accompanied by two knowledgeable and multi-lingual tour leaders. On most days, the tour leaders will offer a long and a short (or a quicker and a more relaxed) cycling option. The option for a long tour is also depending on weather conditions and wishes of the group.

    When there are less than 18 guests aboard, the tours will be accompanied by one knowledgeable and multi-lingual tour leader. During days when two bicycle options are possible, the tour leader will make a choice to guide the longer or the shorter option after consultation of the group. Not all mentioned highlights can be visited during the short cycling option.

     

    In case you prefer a day of rest, you can skip the bike tour and relax on board while cruising to the next town. 

     

     

  • How to get there

    Embarkation is at 2 pm on arrival day, but the barge will leave only the following day. Please let us know if you are late.

     

    The precise point of embarkation will be written in the Final Tour Details that you will receive some days before departure.

     

    By plane
    Paris has 3 airports, Charles de Gaulle (30 km away from the point of embarkation), Orly (15 km away from the point of embarkation) and Beauvais (80 km away from the point of embarkation).

     

    - From the airport Charles de Gaulle:
    Take a train RER from Charles de Gaulle and get to Denfert-Rochereau. Here take the subway line 6, direction Pont de Bercy, and arrive in Quai de la Gare. From here you can reach the Quai d’Austerlitz on foot. Duration of the journey: about 1 hour. For further information please visit the website: www.ratp.fr

     

    - From the airport Orly:
    Take a train RER to Bibliothèque-François Mitterrand. Here take a bus, line 89, to Quai de la Gare. FGare. From here you can reach the Quai d’Austerlitz on foot. Duration of the journey: about 40 minutes. For further information please visit the website: www.ratp.fr

     

    - From the airport Beauvais:
    Take the bus to Porte Maillot (duration 1:15 hours, cost 20 €) and from here the subway line 1 and 6 to Quai de la Gare. From here you can reach the Quai d’Austerlitz on foot. For further information please visit the website: www.ratp.fr

     

    By train
    The closest station to the point of embarkation is Gare de Lyon. From here take the subway line 14 and 6 to Quai de la Gare. Visit the website www.voyage-sncf.com and www.ratp.fr for further information.

     

    By car
    Parking in Paris is quite expensive. We suggest you to visit this website in order to find the best solution: www.parking-public.fr.

     

  • Accommodation and meals

    ZWAANTJE

    The Zwaantje (little Swan) is a new built passenger barge.

     

    The cabins
    On the lower deck, the Zwaantje has 12 comfortable guest cabins.

    • 10 twins (7 m² – 75 sq.ft.) with two separate single beds
    • 2 doubles (6 m² – 65 sq.ft.) with one double bed.

    Each cabin has a private shower, toilet and basin. All cabins have ventilation, central heating, air-conditioning and a window. Furthermore, in each cabin you will find a mini safe and hair dryer.

     

    The windows in the doubles can be opened, the windows in the twins are fixed for safety reasons.

     

    Common areas
    On the upper deck you will find the nice and cozy salon with heating, air conditioning, large panoramic windows, a restaurant area, lounge corner and a small bar. Wi-Fi is available.

    The Zwaantje also has a very spacious sun deck with chairs and tables where you can relax, enjoy the scenery while sailing or join the skipper in the wheel house.

     

    In brief:

    • Passengers (max): 24
    • Private bathroom
    • Towels
    • Air conditioning
    • Wi Fi
    • Hair dryer

     

    Watch Zwaantje photo gallery. 

     

     

  • Bikes and accessories

    In this tour you can rent:

    • unisex touring bikes with 21 gears and hand brakes
    • unisex e-bikes with hand brakes

     

    It is not possible to bring own bikes on board.

     

    Rental bikes are equipped with: 

    • 1 pannier bag
    • lock
    • helmet
    • water bottle.

     

    In France bike helmets are mandatory for children under 12. 

     

  • Accompanying material

    Before your arrival, you will receive an email from us with the digital information material. It contains the link to download the tour information material in Pdf:

    • Tour Notes
    • Final Tour Details

     

    On board you will find maps and route descriptions (one set per cabin).

     

  • By your side

    Our tour leaders are multi-lingual, and speak at least English and German. Smart, entertaining, caring and endlessly enthusiastic, they have a true passion for sharing their love of the outdoors, people, culture and local food. Thanks to a deep knowledge of the territory, they can give you useful hints and help you appreciate the place you are visiting. Of course they love cycling and will be happy to give you some advice about how to correctly use the bicycle gears and whenever necessary they can fix your flat tyre.

     

    For the whole duration of your bike tour, you can contact us as follows:

    • office +39 0444 1278430 from Monday to Friday 8:30-13:00 and 15:00-18:30 
    • emergency phone number every day 8:00-20:00 which will be specified in the Final Tour Details
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