|With women travel groups on the rise, European Waterways has introduced “Girls’ Getaway” hotel barge charter options that offer a wide range of excursions, culinary experiences, shopping and health-conscious themes, such as yoga and walking. They’re a unique way for women travelers to connect with relatives, friends and social groups and enjoy their favorite activities in some of the most attractive and exclusive regions of Europe. With European Waterways also offering 10 percent off the charter prices on select cruises for spring 2019, good when booked by September 14, the “Girls’ Getaway” themed cruises can be enjoyed at one of the lowest prices of the new season.
Derek Banks, managing director of European Waterways, noted that girls’ getaway charters can be tailored to meet the unique interests of each group. For example, a culinary themed cruise can include private cooking demonstrations, truffle hunting and visits to local attractions such as an artisan chocolatier or a Mediterranean oyster farm. Guests can take an educational tour of L’Oulibo, a factory that produces the purest extra virgin olive oil from the famous Lucques olive, one of the hardest from which to extract the oil. They can also enjoy gastronomic excursions to local food markets, accompanied by their on-board master chef who can incorporate their culinary finds into the evening menu.
“Today’s women travelers are more confident and independent than ever before,” said Banks. “The social nature of hotel barging makes it an ideal way to take a break with like-minded friends in a relaxing setting. Vessels accommodate just six to 20 guests, with most featuring a 1:2 crew ratio, so every guest is assured the highest level of individual and attentive service.”
Among hotel barges offering culinary themed charters is the deluxe 12-passenger L’Impressionniste, which sails Southern Burgundy on the Canal de Bourgogne. The cruise offers free transfers in chauffeured minivans from Paris. For smaller groups, the ultra-deluxe 8-passenger Enchanté, cruising on the famed Canal du Midi, is ideal.
Health-themed vacations are also increasingly popular with women travelers, and European Waterways’ cruises offer plenty of opportunities to engage in “soft adventures”, such as walking on the gentle towpaths that run parallel to the canal, or starting the day with a morning yoga class on deck. The 8-passenger L’Art de Vivre hotel barge offers Walking Cruises in Burgundy between Auxerre and Chevroches, with the cruises providing countless opportunities to take in the historic Burgundian countryside and medieval villages along the way.
For those who prefer sipping to stretching, a wine appreciation cruise will do the trick. The 8-passenger Rosa hotel barge transports guests through the sun soaked city of Saint-Émilion, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and home to the most famous of the Bordeaux appellations. The 20-passenger La Bella Vita provides a slice of the good life on her Wine Appreciation Cruise through the Veneto region of Italy. Guests can taste world renowned vintages as they tour the sprawling Renaissance wine estates en route between Venice and Mantua.
For more creative groups, art themed cruises come with an expert “art guide” who shows guests around craft workshops and boutiques and suggests the best painting spots. The hotel barge itself makes an ideal “spot,” and guests can paint on-board while enjoying a cocktail or chilled glass of champagne.
“There is never a ‘what do we do today’ moment on a European Waterways cruise, because activities are carefully planned to fill the days,” said Banks. “We also ensure there is plenty of free time for our guests to do nothing at all but enjoy the beautiful countryside as they sit back and sip their favorite wine. For some, that’s ‘activity’ enough!”
About European Waterways
Hotel barging is a boutique, unique experience which offers an immersive, all-inclusive “gentle voyage of discovery” that focuses upon the culture, history, fine wine and gourmet cuisine of the region. With a 6 to 20 person capacity and 1:2 crew ratio, European Waterways is able to provide an impeccable level of on-board service and can transport their guests on the intimate inland waterways that are inaccessible to larger vessels. This fascinating network of smaller canals allows for flexibility, spontaneity and ample opportunity to hop off and explore the beautiful surroundings via bicycle or on foot. In addition to this are daily, chauffeured excursions “off the beaten track” to a wide variety of enthralling locations, from exquisite wine tastings to private tours of stately homes. With over 40 years’ experience and a fleet that spans nine countries, European Waterways is the largest luxury hotel barging company in Europe. For more information, call 1-877-879-8808 or visit europeanwaterways.com.