One fascinating aspect of canal cruises – and indeed river cruises – is the lock system. Locks allow barges and riverboats to ascend or descend otherwise unnavigable stretches of canals and rivers, as you’ll see in the video accompanying this post.
One correction to the video. I noted there were 17 locks between Dijon and the Saône river. In fact, there are 21 locks over a distance of 18 miles, which takes about a day and a half to navigate.
The locks present wonderful opportunities to get off the barge and walk or cycle along the towpaths that run alongside the canal. The Burgundy canal connects to the Saône at Saint-Jean-de-Losne, where I recommend a visit to the excellent Musée de la Batellerie, a museum dedicated to the history of the French canals, the lock systems and other aspects of life on the canals.
Where In France?
Please let me know if you'd like to barge with me in France, which region and when.