Come with us as we travel round Europe in our floating home

Saturday, 17 August 2019

Auxerre to Chatillon-en-Bazois

Hello again,

It's been a while since my last blog. I have two excuses, one it's been too hot and two the internet signal has been too weak to upload photos.

It was another heatwave while we were in Auxerre  with temperatures reaching 43'C. The day before we left there was a huge fire just across the river.  The smoke was very thick and black and by going on the local town news feed I found out very quickly that it was at the local scrap yard. 400 cars waiting to be "de-polluted" had set on fire. The fire brigade had it under control within around 2 hours but the smoke was full of oily soot that settled on the boats. It took Roger a whole day to wash it off

After Auxerre our next notable mooring was at Saussois beside the cliffs.

where we watched the climbers and absailors.

The next reasonable sized town was Clamecy where we stayed for 3 nights. It's very popular with hire boats who arrive en-mass from 4pm onwards. During the day it's very peaceful and has a really good restaurant the Hostellerie de la Poste. It's also a good town to re-stock the cupboards and freezer as the big Leclerc supermarket is a short bike ride away.

To reach the summit of the canal du Nivernais we needed to travel up the Sardy flight of 16 locks.  It's one of the most beautiful sections of canal I've seen for a while

and there's still plenty of water here with the bywashes running freely

There's plenty to see while you're going up the flight with a bohemian style cafe playing heavy metal music

and a local sculptor exhibiting his works along the towpath

The locks are painted different colours too: red, blue, yellow, purple, green, pink

and the bollards are very decorative 😀

The 16 locks are then followed by a trip through 3 tunnels

and very narrow overgrown cuttings that are one-way and travelled in convoy with small electric trip boats

And the mooring at the end of the day made it all worthwhile.  This is the Etang de Baye, a beautiful reservoir that is still almost full and where we stayed for a couple of days.  We watched the sailing dinghies and did a lot of exploring on the bikes and generally chilled out.

The sunsets were spectacular 😀

The only draw-back to the canal du Nivernais is that there aren't many shops and we were running out of food (and beer) again so had to carry on to the next town of Chatillon-en-Bazois which is where we are at the moment.

We're moored right below the chateau and are staying for a few days.

The water in front of the chateau is the remains of it's moat and this morning I saw a shoal of baby catfish in it.  They were about an inch long and there must have been 200 of them!

Last night a festival was held beside the lock.  There was a bar, set meal of sausage and fries and entertainment from 2 bands

A marching band playing foot tapping rousing tunes

and a trio playing mostly English songs.  Both were really good and we had very pleasant evening out.

We're really enjoying this canal and, as cruising options are very limited this year due to the drought and canal closures, we've decided to turn round and go back to a few of our favourite moorings.  Obviously internet reception will be poor again but I'll write another blog again soon.

Take care, bye for now X


  1. Lovely to see more of your fantastic journey. Your pictures are so good - quite the professional! Xx

  2. This looks like a lovely trip! I've always wanted to do this