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Anyone done a DIY barging trip in France with Le Boat company?

Anyone done a DIY barging trip in France with Le Boat company?

May 4th, 2010, 11:53 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 343
Anyone done a DIY barging trip in France with Le Boat company?

We want to do a drive-yourself barge holiday in France, probably in the Aquitane region. Has anyone used Le Boat company - seems to be the biggest company hiring barges/boats in Europe.

Just wondering a few things like is there just shelving for your clothes? Do they smell musty?

Are they a good company if you break down?
Amanda is offline  
May 5th, 2010, 12:37 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 849
Amanda,

Le Boat was formed from a merger of Crown Blue Line and Connoissuer Cruises relatively recently. Connoisseur had been owned by Ho Seasons Vacations. I rented from Crown Blue Line once and Connoisesur three times. I found Connoisseur far more professional and with better kept boats and better facilities. That said, everything I can find out, we are thinking of another rental in 2011, suggests that Le Boat has the character of Connoisseur and you needn't be concerned with any problems with the boat.

It will be completely cleaned and fueled, with a full load of water and propane (for cooking only, the engines and generator heat the water) when you pick it up. Do not have ambitious plans for your day of departure, it is axiomatic you will leave the departure point late in the day.

In the times I was renting boats, and you will find that self-drive boaters are, for the most part, gregarious, happy to share stories, wine, shopping recommendations, and restaurant experiences, I only heard of one equipment failure. A generator failed on a boat in Auxerre. Fortunately, the port had electrical power available to plug in, and a mechanic came up from Gray-sur-Saone in about an hour.

No matter how much time you spend on the canals, it is likely you will be no more than a two hour drive from any base, and there will be no problem in the unlikely event of a mechanical problem. Remember, you will be moving at 3-5 kph and you can't get very far away from help in any event.

BTW, because of the justified popularity of the Canal-du-Midi, it can get a little crowded in the summer. That can result in long delays at the locks. Of the four trips we took, the most interesting was from Epinal to Macon, because of the change from canal to river, the varied country, and the ability to get to interesting sights with our rental bicycles.
Jeff801 is offline  
May 7th, 2010, 07:29 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 849
Amanda,

I failed to mention that it is likely you will get more information if you post this thread on the Europe Board.
Jeff801 is offline  
Oct 16th, 2013, 05:37 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 1
We just returned from a wonderful 7 day cruise of the Carmague regain of France with LeBoat tours.
The boat was clean and in very good condition. We did have a slight electrical problem with the generator onboard, but we pressed on and the leboat people were great, they met us at several stops along our way to find a solution to the problem. Its a very good company and everyone we encountered along the way were very friendly and helpful with our questions. We are now planning to take another cruise with LeBoat next year.
mswauben is offline  
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