For A Barge Holiday, France Is Irish Paper’s Recommended Destination

May 20,2014 - The Irish branch of leading periodical The Independent recently published a piece advertising the merits of a cycling and barge holiday; Francewas the chosen location to highlight.


Written from the first-person perspective of a cyclist taking a holiday to the Brittany and Normandy regions of France, the article pays more attention to the biking side of things than the barging itself; however, what mention is made of barges and ferries is glowing, and both these means of transportation are considered a worthy alternative to a two-wheeled drive through these regions.


Normandy and Brittany are just two of the regions linked together by a canal that was built by Napoleon Bonaparte to work around the British Invasion. Designed to allow for quick transportation of soldiers and weapons during the invasion, the Nantes-Brest Canal (as it is known) links the Loire, Aulne, Vilaine and Blavet valleys, and was completed in 1858, long after it had outlived its usefulness (Napoleon had actually been dead for 37 years when the waterway was completed). Nonetheless, it found a second wind with the rise of the barge holiday - France becoming a very popular tourist destination - as well as a source of national pride.


The feature writer explored the regions touched by the Nantes-Brest Canal through a combination of cycling and barging down the river, the same route that attracts many tourists to these regions of France each year. The agreeable weather and scenic landscapes make this part of the country excellent for both cycling and barging tours, a fact the author of the piece fully acknowledges.


When it comes to taking a European barge holiday, France is one of the most popular destinations, alongside Germany. Whether cruising through Paris or visiting more bucolic countryside locations, thousands of tourists are enticed by one of these cruises each year.


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