Raymonde

 

 

NEW FOR 2025 -

 

Raymonde Barge

 

Cruise through Belgium. Travel along the country's canals while indulging in art, heritage, and flavors.

GHENT - OUDENAARDE - PERONNES-LEZ-ANTOING - MONS - STREPY-THIEU - HALLE - Brussels

 

 

Belgium has a dense network of waterways crossing Flanders and Wallonia from east to west and north to south. Join us for a gentle cruise focusing on the good things in life. With the abundance of cultural riches concentrated on the canal banks, you'll discover the characteristic cities, exciting sites, and unique flavors only Belgium can offer. Indulge in local specialties such as chocolate, beer, wine, and other delicacies. Discover Ghent, Bruges, Oudenaarde, Mons, and Brussels. Enjoy a visit to the Château de Beloeil—nicknamed the Belgian Versailles—and the award-winning Chant d’Éole vineyard and wine cellar.

 

 

GHENT to BRUSSELS

 


DAY 1: GHENT

Possibility of transfer between Brussels and Ghent (about a one-hour ride). Passengers are welcome to board our ship at 6 p.m. After comfortably settling into your cabins, we’ll introduce our crew at a welcome cocktail

DAY 2: GHENT - OUDENAARDE

This morning, join us for a guided tour of Bruges and a brewery. We'll head to Bruges (about a 60 to 75-minute coach ride leaving Ghent). Its works of art, tranquil ambiance, romantic aura, and stunning architecture make it one of the top places to visit during any European vacation. The city has meticulously preserved the elegance and class it exuded during its golden age as a maritime trade center. We'll then visit a brewery for a taste of ale. This brewery was founded in 1856. Six generations later, it is a dynamic brewery still attached to its origins and the authentic Brugse Zot. We’ll return to the ship in Ghent. During our afternoon, we'll glide along the Scheldt from Ghent to Oudenaarde, surrounded by the magnificent scenery of several natural parks. We'll arrive in Oudenaarde in the early evening. We'll remain in port overnight.

DAY 3: OUDENAARDE - PERONNES-LEZ-ANTOING

This morning, join us for a guided tour of Oudenaarde and a distillery. Oudenaarde is a picturesque city full of historic monuments, with the most notable being the town hall and its two main churches. Other memorable sites include the lovely beguinage, the house where Margaret of Parma was born, the Boudewijnstoren, and the 18th-century meat market. Everything is testimony to a rich and lively past. The city has more than 100 historic monuments. Set off on an urban hike taking you to the loveliest areas and tourist sites. Enjoy some free time on your own to see what the city has to offer. We’ll then head over to a distillery. This will be the time to learn about how jenever, gin, and whiskey are distilled. Of course, we'll have a taste! After we return on board, our ship will continue cruising to Péronnes-lez-Antoing. Take advantage of some downtime to relax on the Sun Deck and watch the scenery roll by. We'll cross through the city of Tournai before arriving in Péronnes-lez-Antoing in the early evening. If you'd like, you can work off dinner during an evening stroll. We'll remain in port overnight.

DAY 4: PERONNES-LEZ-ANTOING - MONS

We'll spend the morning cruising on the Nimy-Blaton-Péronnes Canal, a strategic waterway in the center of Belgium. The canal opened in October 1955 and enabled a liaison between the Canal du Centre and the Scheldt River. We'll arrive in Mons at the beginning of the afternoon. Set off on a visit to the Château de Beloeil and the Chant d’Éole vineyard. We'll head over to the Château de Beloeil—nicknamed the Belgian Versailles—which contains a valuable collection of 15th- to 19th-century art, including a library with more than 20,000 books and precious manuscripts. The furniture is a sampling of some of the top work of French cabinet makers in the 17th and 18th centuries. The paintings depict the grand achievements of most of the castle's family members. We'll continue on to the Chant d’Éole estate. The vineyard came to be when a family of Belgian farmers joined forces with a family of eminent sparkling-wine makers. They use the best modern techniques to guarantee a sparkling wine that adheres to Belgian tradition. We'll take a guided tour recounting the vineyard's history. Our enthusiastic guides will explain the different stages of production— from planting to bottling, and everything in between. We'll finish up the tour will a tasting of three signature spirits—the Brut Blanc de Blancs, the Rosé Brut, and the Elixir Saint-Georges. We'll return to Mons. We'll remain in port overnight.

DAY 5: MONS - STREPY-THIEU

Join us for a food tour in Mons this morning. Few cities can boast about their heritage like Mons can. This is a vibrant, modern city with a deep, historic past. The Grand-Place offers a myriad of places to lose yourself in. Our guide will take us to the center of Mons to learn about the city's history and edible delights. This stroll is a combination of history, culture, and anecdotes accented by a tasting of four local specialties. Indulging in the local cuisine makes this tour an unforgettable experience.

We'll return to the ship for lunch. This afternoon, we'll cruise on Canal du Centre to Strépy-Thieu. We'll remain in port overnight.

DAY 6: STREPY-THIEU - HALLE

Get ready for a once-in-a-lifetime experience as our barge takes a boat lift. Using two independent caissons, the lift allows a crossing in less than 35 minutes with a 240-foot height difference (75 m) and single-handedly replaced four former boat lifts and two locks. We'll continue our trip on the Brussels-Charleroi Canal to Halles. The next adventure is the monumental Ronquières Inclined Plane, built between 1960 and 1968. Construction of the plane reduced delays caused by the 14 previous locks. We'll continue cruising to Halle. In the afternoon, we'll take a coach to Brussels for a guided tour of the city and a Belgian chocolate maker's workshop. We'll set off for the Belgian capital. In the city center, we'll see the Grand-Place with its glorious city hall and lavish guildhalls. With its richly decorated facade and impressive tower, the City Hall is one of the most beautiful buildings in the country. Further along, we'll see the iconic Manneken Pis and the Royal Saint-Hubert Galleries. After, we'll visit a Belgian chocolate maker in the heart of Brussels. Learn about our favorite indulgence—from its Mayan origins to the modern creations of master chocolate makers— while watching a demonstration of the meticulous and precise work through windows peering into the small factory. We’ll return on board the ship in Halle. Tonight is our festive gala evening.

DAY 7: HALLE - Brussels

Enjoy breakfast on board this morning before disembarking at 9:00 a.m. Possibility of transfer from Halle to Brussels.

 

Rate includes: 6 night cruise, all meals, wine with meals, drinks from the bar and excursions. Bicycles available for cycling.

 

2025

DATES
SHIP
ITINERARY
PER PERSON RATE
Jun 12, 26; Jul 7, 24; Aug 7; Sep 18; Oct 2, 16
Ghent - Halle
$3195
June 5; Jul 17, 31; Aug 14; Sep 11, 25; Oct 9, 23
Halle - Ghent
$3195