Canal de la Garonne

3 trips along the Lot and Garonne River Valleys

Sailing along the rivers of Nouvelle-Aquitaine is another way to enjoy your holidays, relaxed roaming along waterways inviting to discover incredibly-outstanding vistas, privileged moments to fully relish in the pleasures of a region as you delight in slow-tourism lifestyle. Ready? Follow me and check out the 3 must-cruise waterways I’ve selected for you around Agen in Lot-et-Garonne.

Canal de la Garonne

1- The Canal des Deux Mers (“Two Seas Canal” aka the Garonne Lateral Canal)

Sailing scope: 193 km from Toulouse, where it joins the Canal du Midi (listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site), at Castets-en-Dorthe (Castets-et-Castillon) where it joins the Garonne.

On what sort of vessels? Licence-free house-boats, excursion boats, individual leisure boats, canoes-kayaks, SUPs.

Natural heritage: The Canal is lined with century-old plane trees, occasionally in triple rows.

Must-visit stop-offs: Agen and its navigable aqueduct; the helical-shaped church steeple in Sérignac-sur-Garonne; the navigable aqueduct where the Canal crosses the Baïse followed by two successive locks; Buzet-sur-Baïse and the junction with the Baïse, the Winemakers’ Cellar; the fortified village of Damazan; Le Mas d’Agenais, its collegiate church and its Rembrandt; Meilhan-sur-Garonne and its panorama; Castets-et-Castillon and the junction with the river, dominated by the Château du Hamel.

The Canal is bordered from start to finish by the Canal des 2 Mers by bike bikeway. It links the Mediterranean to the Atlantic over a 700 km distance, from the Gironde Estuary to the banks of the Étang de Thau. It generally follows the historic towpath.

Canal des 2 Mers
Tourisme Lot et Garonne
Gironde Tourisme

Promenade fluviale sur le canal lateral à la Garonne dans le Lot-et-Garonne

2- The Lot

Sailing scope: 72 km from Fumel (Saint-Vite) to Nicole, its confluence with the Garonne. A “canalet” (French term for a canal branching off a major canal) can be used to reach the Garonne and circumnavigate the confluence sandbanks.

On what sort of vessels? Licence-free house-boats, excursion boats, individual leisure boats, rowing boats, canoes, hydroplanes, waterskiing, SUPs.

Natural heritage: The Lot flows placidly into an extensive plain. The Pech-de-Bère, towering over its confluence with the Garonne, is a wild hillside interspersed with tracks, including the Santiago de Compostela route.

Must-visit stop-offs: Lustrac and the final downstream cliffs; the picturesque village of Penne-d’Agenais for its streets and its panorama; the fortified town of Villeneuve-sur-Lot; Casseneuil the shores of the Lède; Clairac and Aiguillon beaches. Agricultural holdings propose pontoons to reach their farms, to visit them and/or to purchase provisions.
The Villeneuve-sur-Lot and Castelmoron-sur-Lot locks are the highest small-sized locks in France.

The Vallée du Lot bikeway runs along the river as close as possible.
Tourisme Vallée du Lot
Tourisme Lot-et-Garonne
France Vélotourisme

Port fluvial de Nerac

3- The Baïse

Sailing scope: 61 km from Valence-sur-Baïse in Gers to the confluence with the Garonne (at Saint-Léger), departing from Buzet-sur-Baïse.

On what sort of vessels? Licence-free house-boats, excursion boats, individual leisure boats, canoes-kayaks, SUPs.

Natural heritage: The green-watered Baïse mainly flows between two shelterbelts, riparian woodland, home to many birds. Its bed is registered as a natural monument on the site of the municipality of Nérac.

Must-visit stop-offs: Moncrabeau, the village of liars which hosts the famous Festival of Liars; the medieval town of Nérac; la the fortified village of Vianne; the junction with the Garonne Lateral Canal at Buzet-sur-Baïse (a double lock to move down from one to the other) and the Buzet Winemakers’ Cellar.

Albret Tourisme
Tourisme Lot et Garonne

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