Canal Du Midi Barge Cruise: Carcassonne-Toulouse - Untours Ventures
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Canal Du Midi Barge Cruise: Carcassonne-Toulouse

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Emma is a luxury hotel barge on the Canal du Midi in Southern France that carries no more than six passengers, served by a crew of four. Days are spent floating on the canal, exploring quaint villages by minibus or by foot, and enjoying the chef’s gourmet cooking.

Sample local wines and cheeses, French style. Let yourself be spoiled and pampered by your 4 dedicated English/French speaking crew members and live in the comfort of luxury accommodation in your beautiful air conditioned cabin. Five or six night cruises are available.

Untourists Say:

Emma's four crew members treated the five guests like family. They were very friendly, accommodating, knowledgable, and just plain fun to be with. Liz and Rene, the owners, take great pride in their barge and it shows. I give top kudos to Liz and Rene for a perfectly splendid experience!!!!! There's nothing I can think of to make it better!
P. Horrisberger, Bluffton, SC and H. Forrest, Jackson, NJ

This was the very best trip I've taken in a long time. I'm almost 84 and have traveled all over. I love sailing boats (real sails) and hate the typical cruise ships. Emma showed this old fossil another way to be on the water and to satisfy my love of history, too. Just moving slowly down the canal remembering events, savoring the architecture and sipping the local wines was a luxury I never dreamed of. The excursions, too, were absorbing and exciting to me. How I'd love to travel the rest of the Canal du Midi! On Emma!
M. Campbell, Wytheville, Virginia

Ships: Emma

About This Cruise

Itinerary Highlights

Trébes, France; Leveque; Carcassonne; Limoux; Rennes le Chateau; Brams; Lauraigais; Mirepoix; Fanjeaux; Lauragais; Castelnaudary; Seuil de Narouze


  • Six nights accommodation aboard
  • Four crew members: captain, personal chef, hostess and matelot/driver
  • Transfer between the railway/airport and the barge both before and after your cruise
  • All meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner) with their accompanying wines from the region
  • Fully stocked open bar with a selection of cocktails, digestives and soft drinks
  • Guided tours each day in the mini bus and all entrance fees
  • Frequently Asked Questions

The Food

When you start to plan a holiday in France , food plays a big part of it. It is no wonder that France is the gastronomic centre of the world as the cuisine is so regional and so varied. The Mediterranean diet is renowned for being the healthiest, but you don't have to sacrifice flavor for health as you will find out aboard Emma. All dietary requirements can be catered for and as Liz tells her guests on the first day, "if there is something that you would really like to try, let me know and I will do my best."

We are so lucky living in the Midi that we have easy access to fresh fruit and vegetables all year round. We have a selection of fish, meats, charcuterie second to none. During your week aboard you will be treated to the best. Just to whet your appetite!

Breakfast is waking up to the smell of coffee, warm croissants and pastries, fresh baguette, fresh fruit, yogurts, cereals, juice, homemade jam and having the time to sit and enjoy it all and listen to the birds.

Lunch is a mouthwatering display of colorful salads, pâtés, quiches, tarts, cheeses, homemade pickles and preserves and all washed down with a few bottles of nicely chilled rosé wine from the vineyard you have just cruised through.

Sample Dinner Menu
Velouté of asparagus and wild salmon with roast asparagus and lime mousseline sauce

Roast saddle of lamb stuffed with garlic and rosemary served with a chiffonade of spring cabbage and a minced herb roll

Cheese. Roquefort served with a glass of Muscat St Jean de Minervois and Muscat grapes

Panna Cotta with a raspberry coulis and fresh fruit

Coffee and liquers

Air Options

We recommend flying in and out of Paris. There are good TGV rail connections to Southern France from Paris. While we have no specific air deals on this cruise, please call 1-888-868-6871 if you would like us to assist with your airfare.

Not included:

  • Airfare to and from France
  • transportation to and from Narbonne/Beziers (we will assist you with this)
  • Use of mobile phone
  • Meals and drinks purchased off board
  • Crew gratuity (suggested minimum amount is 5% of the cruise price)
  • Travel Insurance

Ships: Emma


Day 1, (Saturday): Trébes, France
Your guide will meet you at your chosen rendez vous point and bring you where Emma is moored in the port of Trébes. Once you are settled on board you shall cruise off with champagne cocktails out into the vineyards, through 2 locks to Leveque.
Day 2, (Sunday):
You go off to explore the biggest and best fortified city in Europe, Carcassonne. Although dating from the time of Charlemagne, it has been extensively restored. You can walk along the ramparts, visit the Chateau Comptal, shop in the boutiques along the cobbled streets, visit galleries and museums and get the feel of life in the middle ages.

Put your feet up and relax during our afternoon cruise, which takes us through 4 locks to Herminis. Have a stroll through the vineyards, cycle the towpath or just sit and have a glass of local wine, read your book whilst your gourmet dinner is being prepared.
Day 3 (Monday):
This morning your guide will take you to Limoux, home of the famous sparkling wine. Can we tempt you to a little dégustation? You will then carry on to Rennes le Chateau, which if you have read Dan Brown's novel The Da Vinci Code; you will remember the story of the Curé Saunier who all of a sudden had great riches. Did he find the treasure? This is a very interesting visit, through beautiful scenery, but keep your eye out for the lost treasure.

After lunch you shall cruise to the typical languedocian village of Brams. It is known as a circulade due to its resemblance to the spiral of a snail's shell.
Day 4 (Tuesday):
From Brams this morning your visit will take you through the rolling plains of the Lauraigais, fields of sunflowers in summer and views of the snow capped mountains on a clear day, to the town of Mirepoix. You shall stop off at Fanjeaux, home of St. Dominic and the Dominican Convent; the views are spectacular. Mirepoix itself is renowned for its wooden columns surrounding the main market square, its colombaged houses and its cathedral.

After lunch your captain will gently guide you along the canal, going through a selection of lovely locks to moor up in the lovely Lauragais countryside.
Day 5 (Wednesday):
This morning you shall cruise to the town of Castelnaudary.

This afternoon your guide will take you to visit Castelnaudary. One of the contenders for "the original and best Cassoulet", the others being Carcassonne and Toulouse. The Grand Bassin, the Gothic Collegiale with its 56 meter bell tower, the 17th Century windmill the vestiges of the Presidial, partly destroyed by Louis XII and the Chapelle Notre Dame de la Piti&é with its gold covered wood sculptures depicting ten episodes in the life of Christ are all on the visit.
Day 6 (Thursday):
You leave Castelnaudary this morning and continue your cruise to The Seuil de Narouze. This is the highest point on the Canal du Midi after which it descends the other side towards the Atlantic. Here the plane trees are the same age as the canal: how amazing!.

This afternoon's visit is to the the reason why the Canal du Midi was possible, the Lac St Ferreol It was the only land which had slopes both to the Atlantic and the Mediterranean.You will see the intricate irrigation system, which allows the world to have the canal we love today. To think this was all discovered in the 1600's on horseback by Paul Riquet.

Return to Emma for your final gala dinner lovingly prepared by your personal chef.
Day 7 (Friday):
Sadly you must leave this morning, and after breakfast, your guide will be ready to escort you to your onward departure point.
Ships: Emma

Excursions for Emma

Included. Please see Itinerary.
Cruise Details | Itinerary | Excursions | Pre-Post-Trip Options
Ships: Emma

Pre/Post-Cruise Options

Inquire about our 8-night castle stay/canal cruise combination. Four days of cruising and four days in a magnificent chateau. Otherwise, check out our Untours in Provence, Paris, and Alsace.

There may be a few gap days between cruise and Untour. Inquire for details.

Dates and Prices

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