The next day our hosts took us to visit the delights of their local town, St. Florentin. I'd done no research so didn't know what to expect - and they didn't mention anything - but shortly after parking the car and walking through a nearby park I saw what appeared to be the top of a boat - a large "plastic" cruiser - poking above a hedge. Then I realised it was actually crossing an aqueduct - the aqueduct of St. Florentin on the Canal du Bourgogne (Burgundy).
|Canal du Bourgogne aqueduct at St. Florentin|
|The aqueduct ends in a lock!|
|The view from the bottom gates towards the aqueduct|
Later that day we were taken to Auxerre, on the River Yonne, where amongst the flotilla of pleasure boats moored on the opposite bank to us, but too far away to see much detail, were the distinctive red-and-white counter bands of an English narrowboat!
And that wasn't all. From the train back to Paris the next day** (running 50 minutes late due to "une probleme technique" - but no apology) we glimpsed a huge (but empty) push-tow barge on the Seine and another, even larger one, from the Eurostar** (30 minutes late leaving Paris - "people on the tracks") somewhere in northern France.
Canals? You just can't keep away from them!
**and at this point I have to say that the two Virgin Pendolinos we caught to and from London at the start and end of the holiday were quick, exactly on time, and more comfortable than anything we rode on in France! I did, however manage to get one over on SNCF, whose website managed to let me buy a reduced-price "Senior" ticket without explaining that I would need the equivalent of a Senior Railcard to make it valid. However, SNCF's ticket checking is as hit-and-miss as Virgin's and Trans Pennine Express so I got away with it.