Top 5 Myths about Luxury Hotel Barge Holidays

Introduction by Unique Cruises Founder / Director Walter Nand

Luxury Hotel Barging is a relatively new way of holidaying in Europe for most Australians and New New Zealanders. Today we look at the top 5 myths about Luxury Hotel Barge holidays…

1. I will get seasick / I’m afraid of being on the water

This is the number one concern for many people as soon as they hear ‘cruising’. The reality is that Luxury Hotel Barges in Europe cruise the shallow canals and rivers and never go out to open water. This means they are very stable so you will not get the rocking movement that you may experience on larger vessels. Plus, we are ALWAYS flanked by both sides of the river so you NEVER lose sight of land. The canals and rivers are relatively shallow – even the magnificent Canal de Bourgogne in France has a draught of only 1.40m (4.59ft).

It is nearly impossible to feel ‘seasick’ on a Luxury Hotel Barge
Photo Credit:European Waterways

2. It’s Boring

You can say a lot of things about a Luxury Hotel Barge holiday but ‘boring’ is certainly not one of them. Daily shore excursions to ancient palaces, chateaux, vineyards, quaint towns and historical villages are included in your holiday along with scheduled ‘down’ time for taking a walk or riding a bike along the towpath. There are so many experiences to be had that the challenge is trying to fit it all in to one week.

With new, unique and exciting experiences scheduled every day,
‘boring’ is certainly not a word that describes a Luxury Hotel Barge holiday.
Photo Credit: European Waterways

3. The barges are too old

You may have heard the expression ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’ and we suggest you don’t judge a Luxury Hotel Barge by its exterior. While it is true that many of the barges were built at the turn of the century, and were used as working vessels to transport goods, ALL the barges have had complete fits outs and have been individually refurbished to include modern amenities while maintaining a flair of ‘yesteryear’. Step onboard your floating villa and relax in comfort and style.

Step onboard a Luxury Hotel Barge and enjoy you home away from home.
Photo Credit: Belmond

4. It’s not active enough

One of the fantastic things about a Luxury Hotel Barge holiday is that you can be as active or as relaxed as you like. As stated above, a variety of different daily excursions are included but if you are wanting that little bit more, like canoeing, hot air ballooning or archery, simply let us know and we can discuss your options (a surcharge may apply to certain outsourced experiences). But remember that bicycles are available onboard most barges. These are free to use and you can cycle further afield to discover new towns and villages. And because the barges do not cruise overnight (they are moored near a town or village) there is no set time for you to be back – unless you want to be back for dinner that is. So, mix it up, be as active or relaxed as you like.

Be as active or as relaxed as you like on your Luxury Hotel Barge holiday.
Photo Credit: European Waterways

5. It’s seems to be all about wines and vineyards and I don’t drink (much)

It is certainly true that we have the opportunity to visit many world-class wineries and champagne houses, particularly in France, on a Luxury Hotel Barge holiday but this need not be the case. If you charter a barge with family or friends (please refer to our blog on this: Benefits of Chartering your own Luxury Hotel Barge – Unique Cruises), you can decide to theme your cruise and focus maybe on antiques, art, golf, cycling, culinary, history or something else you may be interested in. It is your holiday so speak to us about how to make it uniquely yours.

There is so much to experience and explore beyond the vineyards
Photo Credit: European Waterways