Le Boat has been helping holidaymakers captain their own river cruise holidays in Europe for over 40 years, and 2016 promises to be the best year yet.
With a new cruiser built with couples in mind, new sociable flotilla holidays in Italy, new river guides and a refreshing new look, Le Boat is successfully broadening the horizons of its customers and promising holiday fun for couples, families, groups and individuals.
For holidays that are as much about the journey as the destination, holidaymakers can now travel in style and serenity along the romantic rivers and picturesque waterways of nine European countries. Le Boat has 39 different departure bases to choose from and a variety of boats to suit all budgets.
What’s New for 2016:
New Horizon cruiser designed and made for couples
The new Horizon fleet has been created exclusively for Le Boat by luxury boat builders Delphia Yachts as part of a €15 million partnership.
Available in all of Le Boat’s key cruising areas, including the Canal du Midi and Burgundy in France, as well as Germany, Holland, Italy and the UK’s River Thames; couples and small groups will have a broad range of destinations to visit.
A signature feature of the new model’s innovative layout is a spacious en suite master cabin with an adjacent smaller second cabin. The Horizon also combines an outside seating area at the rear and roomy saloon with an impressive ‘fundeck’, the largest top-deck of any boat of this size, complete with a sunbathing area.
The first wave of 16 new Horizon boats will join Le Boat’s fleet and launch in April 2016. Holidays are available to book now and cost from £920 per week arriving 25th April at Castelnaudary on the Canal du Midi, France and £790 from the 1st August on the Thames for a Horizon boat that sleeps up to four people (price does not include fuel and collision damage waiver).
As with all their boats, no experience is necessary and a full briefing will be given before setting off. The new model will also be available to own through Le Boat’s unique Ownership and Management Programme (see below for more information).
New Flotilla Holidays in Italy
Le Boat is expanding its range of holiday styles in 2016 to include flotilla options in Italy. Available to book now for the summer, the flotillas are a self-drive boating break with a twist, offering a new travel experience.
In keeping with Le Boat’s mission to make Europe’s waterways accessible to beginners and experienced boaters alike, the new flotilla strikes a balance for those that enjoy both independent and social travel. It offers travellers the opportunity to “captain” their own cruiser with freedom and flexibility with the security and knowledge of a guide.
Guests will travel on their own boat and as part of a group of up to eight cruisers expertly led by a flotilla host. Each set of holidaymakers is free to choose the boat model that best suits their individual needs. There are 15 models available accommodating from two to twelve people including the new Horizon boat.
Each flotilla has a lead boat and skipper to host and guide boaters through the waterways. The skipper will give advice on how to make the most of the destinations visited and help arrange special group activities along the way, as well as remaining on hand to assist those new to boating at every stage of their journey.
Flotilla holiday departures are available between May and July with prices starting from £1,405 for a 2* Corvette boat sleeping up to 4 people. Price includes 1 week’s accommodation on the boat with a skipper/guide and a group BBQ for all participants.
New River Guides – The Thames and the Canal du Midi
Knowing the Thames so well, in 2015 the Le Boat team decided to write a 70+ page book about this famous river including a fold out illustrated map. The guide includes detailed information about all riverside towns, villages and attractions as well as the best pubs and restaurants that holidaymakers can find while on Le Boat’s Thames cruises. Readers will also find tips and practical information about moorings, locks and navigation on the Thames.
New for 2016 is the Canal du Midi guide which will showcase the secrets of this glorious stretch of water. Compiled by the same Le Boat waterway experts, the guide gives suggestions on where to enjoy the very best of France’s cuisine, history and culture not to mention the most idyllic wine-tasting venues. The information given will help holidaymakers visualise what their holiday on France’s most famous canal might look like and prepare them for their Canal du Midi adventure.
Both guides are free and can be ordered from Le Boat’s website or sales team. All holidaymakers travelling on the Thames will find a copy on board their boat and the Canal du Midi guide can be pre-ordered now to be enjoyed in April 2016.
New boating holidays for solo travellers
Although it takes more than one person to safely handle one of Le Boat’s river cruisers, solo travellers can still enjoy the charms of a boating holiday by booking by the berth and sharing exciting experiences on the water with other like-minded travellers. It’s a fantastic way to meet new people and explore beautiful destinations from a new perspective.
This new style of holiday has been made possible through Le Boat’s partners at Intrepid. Solo travellers and their new travel companions can enjoy the benefits of having their very own guide or host who will show them the ropes, navigate the group to the best sights and ensure they get the most out of their time afloat. Booking options are restricted to selected boats and dates and are only available on the Canal du Midi at present; however Le Boat intends to add more destinations next year.
Prices start from £1035 per person for an 8-day holiday and includes 7 night’s accommodation on the boat (on a twin share basis), hosted itinerary and some activities. To find out more about Le Boat holidays for singles visit: www.leboat.co.uk/holidays/holidays-for-singles
Own your own boat
In addition to offering a wide range of boating holiday options, Le Boat is now providing fans of self-drive cruising holidays with the chance to own their own boat. Le Boat’s ‘boat sales’ department offers various ways to bring people the pride and joy of owning an inland river cruiser, whilst making the sales process simple and straight forward. Families, couples and groups of friends can truly travel for as long as they like on their floating home from home with all the creature comforts – the horizon’s the limit.
Boat Ownership Programme
With this programme, the owner’s boat is managed personally by Le Boat. Owners will arrive to a beautifully prepared boat, and they need never worry about maintenance or operating costs. They will receive a guaranteed income every month and will enjoy extensive usage on their own boat or a sister ship on many of the canals and rivers in Europe.
For more information and to book a holiday with Le Boat visit: www.leboat.co.uk or call: +44 (0)23 9222 2177.