The Camargue region of France is unusual in that you can combine the pleasures of life on the inland waterways with the pleasures of being by the sea.
No previous boating experience or a licence is needed to hire a canal boat and sail on the Canal du Rhone à Sète where you’ll discover the vast lake of Etang de Thau, marshes and the amazing 85,000 hectares of amazing nature reserve that is home to some of the richest flora, fauna and birdlife in Europe.
The Camargue region has many icons of history close to the waterways with remarkable cities and fortified castles dotted along your route. Lovers of history and heritage will be wowed by reminders of the past, such as the wonderful city of Aigues Mortes.
Food and drink is also extremely good in this region. Take time to try the delicious southern cuisine – favourites are the famous oysters from Bouzigues or the wines of Costières de Nîmes and Muscat de Frontignan.
If you like the sun and swimming then, for a change from sunbathing on the deck of your canal boat, why not head to the beach! Our cruising routes put you in the perfect location close to Mediterranean beaches - many close enough to visit by bike or on foot.
The story behind the Canal du Rhône à Sète is that it was the brainchild of Pierre Paul Riquet. The canal would become an extension to the famous Canal du Midi that he had created in the 17th century. It took several centuries to complete, initially with ‘le canal des étangs’ ponds being developed before in 1811 they were joined up, meeting with the River Rhône at Beaucaire. This now meant the waterways were linked to the network of European canals in addition to the Mediterranean sea and Atlantic ocean.
Nowadays the Camargue is very popular for boating holidays, in particular for those new to boating as it is very easy to cruise here and there are no locks to negotiate. Being close to the beaches means it appeals to crews of families but there is also an abundance of nature and wildlife to be found. Europe’s largest nature reserve is home to many species of birds including flamingos and the European Bee-eater and you’ll most likely spot wild bulls and Camargue horses in the countryside that surrounds the canals.
With sun and warm temperatures for most of the year sun worshipers will also love a boating holiday in the Camargue!