With interest in this year’s Ryder Cup at an all-time high, the biannual event is raising the profile of France as a golfing destination, says European Waterways. Scheduled for L’Albatros Course in Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, just 20 miles from Paris, the Ryder Cup pits the best of European golfers against top American players. It is being held in France for only the second time in history, bringing new appreciation for the country’s many world-class golf courses.
“We’re seeing increasing interest for hotel barge cruises in Southern France from golf aficionados who want to satisfy their love of the sport,” said Derek Banks, managing director for European Waterways. “If they can’t attend, we offer the next best thing – tee time at some of the top golf courses in France, where the scenery is just as magnificent and the sand traps just as challenging!”
A number of vessels cruise just hours from the site of this year’s Ryder Cup, allowing guests to “hit the links” in regions that include Burgundy and the Canal du Midi, as well as neighboring courses in the Loire Valley. Between rounds of golf, guests can also participate in culinary excursions, wine tastings and exclusive tours of castles and stately chateaux – all while being catered to by an attentive crew that includes a master chef who serves up haute-cuisine sourced from local ingredients.
Among the hotel barges available for golf-themed charters, the deluxe 12-passenger L’Impressionniste offers cruises in Southern Burgundy between Fleurey-sur-Ouche and Escommes. With free transfers from Central Paris by private chauffeured minibus to the boat, guests can quickly settle in for a good night’s sleep and be at the top of their game the next morning. Courses include the Club du Pre Lamy in Auxois, the Chateau de Chailly, and Golf de Beaune in Levernois, a vast grass course with nine lakes, thousands of trees, and more than enough bunkers to keep players on their best behavior! Golfer can also “swing into action” at the Golf Blue Green Quetigny Grand Dijon, a deceptively difficult play that is situated on the wine road just miles from Dijon and crossed by the river La Mirande.
In Burgundy, guests can also charter the 8-passenger L’Art de Vivre, which meanders between Auxerre and Chevroches. Courses include the Chateau de Tanlay Golf Club, situated on the grounds of the Tanlay Chateau. The chateau is considered to be the “jewel of the French Renaissance,” thanks to its impressive wall paintings, extensive trompe l’oeil paintings, and frescoes. Guests can also play at the Domaine du Roncemay Golf & Country Club, among other venues.
Known for its outstanding wines and aristocratic estates, the Loire Valley also offers some of France’s most picturesque golf courses. The 8-passenger Renaissance, cruising between Chatillon-sur-Lore and Montargis, is an ideal charter. Guests can play at Golf de Fontainebleau and Golf du Château de Cely. Another popular venue is Golf du Sanserrois, located on the banks of the River Loire and set among centuries-old trees and natural water hazards.
A minimum of four passengers are required for a golf cruise and there is a supplemental fee, applicable for each player. Non-golfing guests can enjoy escorted excursions to castles and chateaux, wine tastings, food markets, and other sightseeing opportunities and attractions.
“France is not the only ideal destination for golf lovers” added Banks. “We also offer the truly dramatic courses of the Scottish Highlands and superb fairways of Wentworth and Sunningdale near the River Thames. Even the most seasoned golfer will be spoiled for choices with our Golf Charters in Italy, Scotland, Ireland and England!”
For more information, call 1-877-879-8808 or visit europeanwaterways.com