Book your hire car with Gomarbella & Spain now and Then

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Cruising on a Charente river boat

Earlier in August we spent three days aboard this lovely old Eau Claire river boat on the Charente River in France. You´ll see Spurwing tied up to the floating pontoon on the Ile de la Grenouillette with Saint Savinien on the far bank of the river.

We had driven up through Spain, escaping an exceptionally hot August down in Marbella and the cool days and nights in the Charente river valley were most refreshing. What a contrast also to the bustling noisy Costa del Sol night life. Here in France, in San Savinien, the bar owners were hurrying home at six in the evening. Back on the coast they would be sweeping out ready for a long evening ahead.

The wide and gentle Charente River winds its way inland through flat lush green countryside with line fishermen and big square eel fishing drop nets coming up on the low banks from time to time. It really is an ideal river for a relaxing river cruise holiday.

The Isle de Grenouillette nestles in a curve in the river on the edge of a recreational park with riding, boating and masses of sports activities for children. The local hairdresser recommended the nearby campsite to my wife. “They have a very good kitchen,” she said. We walked over from the boat to check it out one evening and were treated to the local line dancers entertaining the campsite guests. Again it looks like a great place for a riverside family holiday in France. Here are their contact details:

Ile Aux Loisirs
Camping and Caravanning
17350 Saint Savinien

A busy little boat rentals enterprise operated off the pontoon where we were moored, renting dinghies, electric boats, zodiacs, motor boats up to larger cruisers where nautical credentials have to be shown. Email them for details at:

Our friends don´t rent Spurwing, the Eau Claire river boat we stayed on but, if you feel that you are ready for something more exotic in terms of boat cruises perhaps even on the other side of world check out the private Phuket yacht charter they also run.

For more information about the area we stayed in and I do want to go back there next summer if not before, there is an excellent tourist office right next to the river.
Here are their contact details, they´ll look after you in more than one language!

Office de Tourisme
1, rue de Bateliers
Isle de Grenouillette
17350 Le Mung

Tel: + 33 546 902107 Email:

Their shelves are loaded with more information about sailing and river cruise rentals on the River Charente. I really recommend it if you are looking for a relaxing river holiday. See you there next year?


Anonymous said...

We may join you!

Mike Drury said...

Dear Anonymous, I look forward to that! Best wishes Mike

Angela said...

Great blog and yes let's try Phuket Cruises.

Anonymous said...

Where IS my comment? I have already written it!!!

Mike Drury said...

And I have already replied! Perhaps the Charente boat cruise page simply needs refreshing in your browser. Oh dear, we´ll need to communicate better to meet up next year!

Mike Drury said...

Angela I look forward to that also. Thank you very much for your interest in the Gomarbella river cruising activities. Mike

Anonymous said...

great see you there next year!! great blog

Mike Drury said...

Fantastic, thank you for kind words! I'ts so peaceful on the river, lovely green banks, great place to chill out, not the Ibiza kind I mean...

Angela said...

Ibiza first then the Charente. Love it.

Jo Summers said...

I would love to bring my family there to Charente River someday. Thank you for the contact details and review. Looks like a wonderful place to try european river cruises.