Learn About the History and Architecture of Besancon on a European River Cruise

Besancon is the capital city of the Franche-Comté region of northeastern France. It is situated near the border with Switzerland.  Held in a loop of the river Doubs, it was once known as the first green city of France. Since 1986, the city has been labeled a ‘Town of Art and History.’ Besançon’s Vauban citadel was listed as a UNESCO world heritage site in 2008.

Besancon has a very ancient history. The city was first mentioned in 58 BCE as Vesontio in the Book I of Julius Caesar’s Commentarii de Bello Gallico (Commentaries on the Gallic War). However, in fact, Gallic tribes are considered to have inhabited the area as long ago as 1,500 BCE.

Besancon has an interesting history as it was ruled by many states over the passage of time. It has been a part of Charlemagne’s Empire, the Holy Roman Empire, being independent, under the Duke of Burgundy, and under Spanish and French rule who continued changing hands frequently between them. It gained much significance during the Napoleonic Wars when the town was bombarded by the Austrians in 1814. It was also important during the Franco-Prussian War, and captured by the Nazis during World War II.

The Citadel of Besançon is a major tourist attraction in the city. It was built by the famous architect Vauban in the 17th century and is visited by about a quarter of a million visitors every year. The Citadel houses many museums, a restaurant, shops and a zoo where you can see and touch lions, baboons and fish. The place exudes such an ambiance that everybody gets enthralled by the wonderful experience.  You will get an opportunity to see spectacular views of the countryside and the town while strolling around its fortifications.

Besancon is one of the best-preserved Renaissance cities. The historic part of the city located in the “Boucle” of the river is simply stunning with the remains of what is supposed to have been a theatre in Castan Square-eight Roman Corinthian columns among the town’s most ancient allures.

Another high point of Besancon is Granvelle Palace, the museum of time. The Tuscan, Ionic and Corinthian columns along with three gothic windows which used to be the characteristics of the Granvelle Palace once have become part of the splendid museum of time now.

The museum of Fine Arts and Archeology is yet another attraction of the city and a must visit place. It boasts of being one of the oldest and richest museums of France and exhibits collections from Primitive and Renaissance painters.

Get aboard our European river cruise and enjoy a wonderful family vacation to Besancon!

For more information contact: Europeanbarging, 888-869-7907, jan@europeanbarging.com

Europeanbarging Presents Their 2014 Brochures

Europeanbarging – the company established in 1998 and specializing in European barge and river cruise products presents their cruises through three new brochures for 2014.

Barge Brochures

spainBarge Brochure is an extended edition of the 2013 updated with new offers on cruises. Those are: 24 passenger Raymonde cruising Champagne France, 24 passenger Madeleine cruising Alsace Lorraine, 24 passenger Anne Marie cruising Provence and the 6 passenger Wine and Water cruising southern Burgundy. All of these new cruises are 6 nights and include excursions, wine with meals, open bar and bicycles for cycling.
Raymonde explores the Canal Latéral a la Marne and the Marne River, so that it gives fantastic insight into the riches of French heritage. The Canal Latéral a la Marne was built between 1840 and 1846 in order to improve navigation conditions and to promote trade. The canal is 67 km long, of which 16 km -go through the Montagne de Reims Natural Park, it has 15 locks along its route and it is used most often nowadays as part of the network of “Green Ways”, or cycle paths. This water way in north-eastern France is significant because it connects the Paris Basin to both the Rhine and Saone rivers. The Canal Latéral à la Marne links Vitry-le-François to Dizy, with the towns of Chalons-en-Champagne and Epernay and the village of Hautvillers, birthplace of Champagne, along the way. From that point onwards, the canal joins the Marne River which is navigable all the way to Paris, and passes through the towns of Chateau-Thierry and Meaux before it reaches the French capital city. The Marne canal and river form an important structuring axis for the areas and villages through which they pass, and they are intimately linked to the history, economy and social life in the valley.

Madeleine cruises between Strasbourg and Xouaxange. This section of the canal, also called the Green Route, flows through the plains of Alsace and the Vosges. It forms the link between Strasbourg and Saverne and is the gateway to Alsace at the foot of the Vosges Mountains. Its route takes it through a wooden massif as far as Lutzelbourg in the Moselle. Its spectacular course, which can be seen in many works of art and paintings, follows the inclined plain at Arzviller – unique in Europe – where boats are hoisted up a cliff before they reach Xouaxange – a pleasant commune in the Moselle.
Anne Marie cruises the Canal du Rhone and Sete. It discovers authentic landscapes as a journey through the two beautiful regions of Provence-Alps-Cote d’Azur and the Languedoc Roussillon. The current canal du Rhone-à-Sète is made of previously constructed canals: the canal de Beaucaire, the canal de Radelle and the canal des Étangs. The canal is about 98 km long and from it you can observe the rich variety of fauna in the lakes, as well as watch professional fishermen. From Avignon to the port at Frontignan, the cruise begins on the Rhone, a mighty river and a great power source. Next come the historic twin towns of Tarascon and Beaucaire (with its port), where the canal joins the Rhone. Then at the foot of the Costières plateau, St Gilles du Gard can be seen with its beautiful landscapes and its magnificent 12th century abbey. Next town of Aigues-Mortes has a tumultuous history. It is in the heart of the Camargue region, with its bull breeding farms and white horses. Finally the route takes you across the lakes and you reach the port of Sète.

The last news for barge cruising is Wine and Water cruise in southern Burgundy. It starts in Vandenesse and ends in Dijon.

Check Out Two Different Itineraries in Spain

Europeanbarging River Cruise Brochure offering 2 different itineraries in Spain on the Guadalquivir and Guadiana Rivers as well as some new cruises in Bordeaux and more short cruises throughout Europe as well.

Casual Bike & Barge Brochure introduces two 20 passenger casual bike and barge vessels cruising in tandem in Provence, so Europeanbarging can offer groups of 40 barge cruising together now. There are also a few dates available on a new Main River cruise itinerary between Miltenberg and Bamberg and for passengers who want an unstructured bike and barge itinerary Europeanbarging prepared the 6 passenger Johanna cruising Flanders in Belgium with great itineraries of Flanders Fields, Chocolate and Beer as well as Art Cities.

Europeanbarging is an ARC accredited company located in Spring Texas a suburban area north of Houston Texas.
Contact information:

Jan Baumgartner – Europeanbarging 25132 Oakhurst suite 130 Spring, Texas 77386 USA
Telephone: 713-240-6753 fax 281-419-3920 Toll free 1-888-869-7907
Email: jan@eurpeanbarging.com