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No.21B - Cruising with a Twist of Jazz

No.21B - Cruising with a Twist of Jazz

A tour-cruise especially for band lovers as our serene cruising along the waterways of Burgundy is complemented by some great entertainment from John Beckingham and his JB's Swing Band.

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During our week we enjoy some 70km of gentle cruising on the Canal du Nivernais and River Yonne, with excursions on the coach to some of the great local attractions of Northern Burgundy.  And John and his colleagues will entertain us throughout the week!


Total cruise time and distance approx 24hrs, 70km, 35 locks


Passing through scenic and sparsely populated country on the western edge of the Morvan regional park, the Canal du Nivernais is widely held to be the prettiest of the many canal cruise routes in central and eastern France.  The Canal provides a link between the Loire Valley to the south and the Paris basin to the north, and its mix of river and canal sections make it an infinitely varying and interesting waterways journey.


We cruise for three full days covering the entire distance between Auxerre and the medieval town of Clamecy, and for the other three days the coach takes us to some of the region's highspots, including the UNESCO-listed Basilica at Vézelay; the prehistoric Caves d'Arcy (noted for the second oldest known cave drawings in Europe); the remarkable castle-under-construction project at Guédelon as featured in the recent BBC TV series; and we schedule wine-tastings at La Croix Montjoie near Vézelay, and in the iconic wine town of Chablis.   There is also plenty of free time in which to explore historic Auxerre, and we visit the restored Cistercian Abbaye de Reigny for an evening meal there.


During our week we enjoy three full days of cruising between Auxerre and Clamecy on the scenic River Yonne and Canal du Nivernais.  With quite regular pauses at locks, there is plenty of opportunity to stroll the well-maintained towpath.


On cruise days an on-board lunch is included and a free bar operates throughout.   As well as teas, coffees and soft drinks, the bar stocks bottled beers and a range of wines including local Chablis, Bourgogne Aligoté and Irancy rouge, Crémant de Bourgogne, and a Provence rosé.  Lunches-out are also included on our excursion days.  Dinners are served at the hotel but on one evening we dine-out at the nearby Cistercian Abbaye de Reigny.


The Band!


Formed as an offshoot of the JB Jazz and Blues Band in order to accommodate the smaller venue, the JB Swing Band has one aim in life – to have fun! The band was voted Band of the Year by Stafford Jazz Society in 2008, 2010 and 2017, and is well-known through festivals, clubs, theatre performances and a TV appearance on John’s son Simon Pegg’s hit  series “Spaced” on Channel 4.


The Band has also starred in Jazz events in Spain, Germany, Holland, France and the Channel Islands, and of course many festivals and jazz holidays in the U.K.  The band recreates the sound of the Swing and Jump Bands of the 40’s and 50’s, influenced by the small groups of Louis Jordan, Fats Waller and Louis Prima.   With a line up of John Beckingham on Piano and vocals, Paul Holder on Drums and vocals, Andy Loveridge on Saxes, Flute and Clarinet, and Tony Capaldi on bass and vocals, expect some memorable performances of jazz and swing – all contributing to a great holiday!

Below is a list of pick-up points available on this tour.

Below is a list of pick-up points available on this tour.

Name Address Contact Details
Ashford International Htl Ashford International Hotel
Folkestone Bus Station Bay E, Folkestone

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Buzzlines Travel
Unit G1, Lympne Distribution Park, Lympne, Nr. Hythe, Kent, CT21 4LR
01303 261 870

Opening Hours

Monday – Friday
09:00hrs – 17:00hrs

Saturday & Sunday