MAASTRICHT to PARIS

15 day escorted cycling & walking tour The Hotel yacht Miro sets sail for the world-renowned City of Lights every year at the end of September, ensuring you a gorgeous Autumn trip to Paris and back. We’ll take more than 160 long tunnels, locks and bridges, and of which most locks are automatic. But sometimes […]

15 day escorted cycling & walking tour

The Hotel yacht Miro sets sail for the world-renowned City of Lights every year at the end of September, ensuring you a gorgeous Autumn trip to Paris and back. We’ll take more than 160 long tunnels, locks and bridges, and of which most locks are automatic. But sometimes it’ll be expected of us to lend the Lock Master a helping hand!

Along the route are delightful cycling opportunities and possibilities to enjoy some (Nordic) walking, and we’ll have the bikes ready for you on the deck, so be sure to help yourself and feel free. If you disembark, make sure to drop into one of the many delightful villages that you’ll pass, perhaps to buy a deliciously crusty baguette: you’ll enjoy the soup at dinnertime that much more!

The route takes us from Maastricht, to Liege and Namur through the coal basins of Charleroi . We’ll sail on to Strépy where the ship will be lifted by a special ship lift, as big as a football field, 73 metres into the air across to the other side. We’ll sail through kilometres of long tunnels where a small locomotive will pull us through the dark corridors. A truly unforgettable experience! We’ll dock at old French cities such as Maubeuge, Compiègne and Pontoise, gorgeous garden cities where the various Napoleons and kings built their country lodgings. We’ll sail over the Somme de Oise and lastly the magical Seine.

In PARIS we’ll dock in the middle of town so that you will have more than enough time to discover this enchanting city. Your skipper knows Paris like the back of his hand, and the cook on board is a real chef who uses his experience and knowledge of the region to ensure a fabulous gastronomic experience, together with a delicious French wine and some renowned French cheese to accompany.

 

leige

Leige

ship lift

Ship Lift at Strépy Thieu

paris

Paris

 

Day to Day Itinerary

Day 1

Saturday – Maastricht

12.00 noon boarding and enjoy a chilled glass of Champagne, meeting the cast and crew and having your e-bike adjusted to meet your own personal preferences. There will also be time for a short test ‘drive’, so that you can get used to the feel of your bike. We’re delighted to serve you a delicious welcome dinner on board, before you embark upon a lovely city excursion through Maastricht that evening. During the walk a guide will show you all the hidden delights of this wondrous city: you’ll follow in the footsteps of d’Artagnan, the famous 4th musketeer. The guide will be please to tell you all about the city of Maastricht, including the rich history of this important southern town. And he’ll also be more than happy to join you for a beer on the famous Vrijthof Square! 

Day 2

Sunday – Maastricht to Leige

At 8.00 you’ll be enjoying a sumptuous breakfast while the Miro sails to Liege. On the way, you’ll pass the Maas’s highest Locks whereby the boat will ascend 18 metres – an impressive experience. The bike tour (20 km.) will bring you to Liege, where the Miro will dock in the very heart of the city. We wander through the city and visit the renowned Sunday market La Batte. This is the largest market in all of Belgium, and it is literally a treasure trove of everything you could possibly imagine. We will be pleased to serve you dinner at around 18.00, leaving more than enough time for you to spend you evening hours discovering Liege’s enchanting secrets, romantic streets and cosy bars for yourself.

Day 3

Monday – Leige / Huy / Namur
We Cruise to Huy while you enjoy breakfast, and enjoy the vistas of all that we pass as we make our way. Once in Huy, we will have ample time to visit the imposing Cathedral and the impressive Citadel, and to have a look around this lovely town all by yourself. Huy is also the starting point of the bike route to Namur (32 km.), which will take you along gorgeous country panoramas with a number of unforgettable spots. The tour will end in the impressive city of Namur, which is also the capital of the Wallonia State. From where we’ll be docked you’ll have a beautiful view of the fairytale castle high above the city and the city ramparts, built centuries ago to protect against marauders. Namur has an enchanting city centre and after dinner the captain will be pleased to take you to the Citadel for a walk back in time, and to enjoy a wonderful view over the city, the Maas and the Sambre
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Day 4

Tuesday – Namur to Strepy

As you enjoy another sumptuous breakfast, the Miro will already be progressing on to Charleroi, and you’ll see in the landscape the vestiges of the once-booming mining and steel industry for which the region was famous for centuries. Today’s bike tour will take us to Strépy Thieu (35 km.) to the new ship elevator in the Canal du Centre. This gigantic ship lift is as big as a football field and bridges a span of 73 meter. The fantastic engine room and adjoining museum are open to visitors so that you can learn more about this marvellous feat of engineering. Dinner will be served on board and afterwards you can enjoy the beautiful nature and the wonderful panoramic views. 

Day 5

Wednesday – Strepy to Mons
Today we’ll breakfast at 8.00 to fortify you for the bike tour planned. This one is 37 kilometres long and takes you from the Canal Historique du Centre, where you can visit three smaller ship elevators, one of which has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage site. From there, the route will take you to Mons and you’ll cross the French border. After dinner you’re welcome to take a break, and recover from your active day of biking or walking. 

Day 6

Thursday – Mons to Antoine

A new bike tour awaits you after a delicious breakfast, and this one takes you to Antoine, a beautiful tour along the Old Canals.

 

Day 7

Friday –  Antoine to Vallancienne .

The ship will follow on its course along the Old River Boven Schelde. You’ll cross the French border to the beautiful city of Vallancienne.

 

Day 8

Saturday – Vallancienne to Denain

This tour takes you to Denain en Arleux (35km). The ship will follow on it’s course along the Boven Schelde and will dock at Souterrain du   Ruyaulcourt. Here you’ll come back on board to continue through the dark shipping tunnels . These tunnels are 4.354 meters long and cross right through the hilly countryside. You’ll sail through the Canal du Nord that ends in the Souterrain du Pannetrie, a total of 1.601 meters of tunnels! From here, we’ll sail in a convoy, in typical French fashion: with wine and delicious food. Because what we don’t finish today, we can always do tomorrow or the day after, right? At any rate, there’s more than enough time to catch up on relaxing and taking walks, and simply enjoying the delights of the unique countryside.  

 
Day 9

Sunday – Deneain to Noyon

The bike tour scheduled for today takes you all the way to Noyon. It’s not a short one – between 40 and 50 kilometres – but since you’ll be tracking the boat anyway you can jump on at every sluice to take a break. The trip takes you through storybook French countryside and past picturesque villages that are primarily rural in nature. Noyon is an old city, dating to the period 600 BC. The town offers many worthy sight-seeing highlights and monuments that have survived the impact that both WWI and WWII had on the region. In the evening you’ll once more enjoy a sumptuous dinner and with a crisp wine on the aft deck, you’ll realise that life just doesn’t get any better.  

 

Day 10

Monday – Noyon to Compiegne

Following a buffet breakfast you’ll proceed to Compiëgne (31 km), while the ship keeps it’s lazy river pace alongside you. You can jump on again at any of the delightful riverbanks that you’ll pass. Compiëgne is known as a regal village because every French king of old had a summer dwelling here, and once you see it you’ll know why. It’s also the city where Joan of Arc was captured. In short, a delightful city of rich history that you’ll love discovering for yourself, dotted with many museums to while away your day in. We’re happy to let you wander around to your heart’s content for the rest of the afternoon.  

 

Day 11

Tuesday – Compiegne – Creil

During breakfast, the Miro will sail on to Creil, a lovely route along the River Oise. 

 

Day 12

Wednesday – Creil – Pontoise – Bougival

The tour will take you along tiny villages to ‘l Isle – Adam. This is where Parisians come to play, and the influence of such a big city is obvious. We sail on to Conflance – Sainte Honorine. This is the main city of French inland sailing, and youll wonder at all the beautiful boats, big and small, docked here peacefully. The town has a lovely ambiance and you wont be surprised to learn that many skippers retire here to enjoy their twilight years. Youll spend the night in Bougival. Today is biking on demand.     

 

Day 13

Thursday – Bougival – Paris

Today in the afternoon you’ll make your entry into Paris!  The Seine offers the perfect foreground for the wondrous city of Paris. You’ll love seeing the approaching skyline of Paris while you slowly make your way into the City of Lights. In Paris we’ll look to dock at Grenelle Directly under the Tour Eiffel This Evening you can take a walk or Bike  to the romantic Eiffel Tower. You’ll fall sleep in it’s incredible shadow.  

 

Day 14

Friday – Paris

After breakfast, the city of Paris awaits you!  If you’d like to know more about this world-renowned city, our guide will be happy to accompany you on your travels. He’ll take you to see all the highlights by bike or by public transport, if you so wish. And a twilight boat ride on the Seine is yours for the asking. What an unforgettable way to end your holiday!

 

Day 15

Saturday

You’ll enjoy one last breakfast on board before saying goodbye to your newfound friends. We’ll be sad to see you go and hope that you’ll leave with only the fondest memories!

Return trip by TGV, airplane, or extend your stay in France

 

Tour Rating- moderate

The total length of the route by bike is about 220 km. Almost all bike paths are level and well-lit.

Grade of difficulty: Easy to moderate. These are lovely bike routes along well-signposted bike routes. Suitable for all levels of cyclist.

You are welcome to take time off and stay aboard ship during the course of the tour.

 

Schedule & Price

Dates 2014

Maastrich to Paris:  June 28,  September 20

Paris to Maastricht: July 15,   October 10

Contact us regarding availability at info@ADVENTOURUS.com.

Price per person CAD $2800
Single Surcharge (on request) None
Extra nights pre or post tour, p.p. Inquire

 

This “almost all-inclusive” tour includes:

*     Welcome drink

*     14 nights on board the 5***** Hotel Yacht Miro

*     3 excellent meals per day plus afternoon tea and fruit selection

*     Luxurious Comfort Class cabin  with bathroom, satellite TV, air-conditioning, safe, & central heating

*     Towels, linen and maid service

*     Bike rental of first-class Gazelle Chamonix Electro-bikes with 2 saddle bags, extra long step-in, 8-speeds, bike computer, rain poncho, repair materials, a double safety lock and bike helmet, reinforced tires etc.

*     Full bicycle insurance

*     Biking & walking maps, route descriptions and travel information for your use and convenience

*     Multi-lingual crew on board to provide assistance and advice on the days touring

NOT INCLUDED:

*     Local harbour and lock fees, bike insurance, and taxes of Euro 197.00 per person, must be paid in cash onboard to the captain

*     Staff gratuities

*     Bar drinks