The region of Burgundy in France is dissected by two canals – the Canal de Bourgogne and the Canal du Nivernais.
The Canal de Bourgogne (Burgundy Canal) runs from north to south for 200 miles and is a masterpiece of pre-Industrial Revolution engineering. It passes through the gorgeous Gallo-Roman city of Dijon en route to the south.
The Canal du Nivernais links two of France’s greatest rivers, the Seine and the Loire. It crosses through some of the most beautiful and unspoilt countryside of France.
I took a trip on the Burgundy Canal which winds its way towards Dijon, rising through a series of locks and one of the largest canal tunnels in France. Connecting Pouilly-en-Auxois with Escommes the tunnel is 2.5 miles long and is very narrow. In the old days it would take all day to get through with the barge workers pushing the boat along with their feet on the low ceiling on the tunnel. These days it takes 40 minutes to a couple of hours depending on the size of the boat.
The scenery along the Burgundy Canal is stunning whatever time of day or whatever the weather.
The region benefits from lots of sunshine and a temperate climate, early morning mists quickly dissipate to let the sun shine through.
I stayed on the “Who Knows” barge on the Burgundy Canal, a fantastic floating holiday…
View from the window of the bedroom on the “Who Knows”: