PAINTING IN EUROPE

and other exotic locations with Arte Umbria

Paint & Cruise the Canal du Midi

Exclusive Charter of boat with 2 crew and painting tutor - A trip of a lifetime painting along the Canal du Midi in France

Kelly Medford May 26th 2018 week long cruise

We are very excited to announce this wonderful bespoke painting trip travelling along the Canal du Midi in the Languedoc Rousillon (Occitan) area of France. Experience the charm of France from one of it’s most beautiful, historic and famous waterways - AND you get to paint!

paint and cruise the canal di midi

We are the first to offer a painting trip on a boat for a week painting the glorious sites of this most beautiful of canals. It’s dreamy.

Our journey will begin in Carcassonne travelling to Argens Minervois and returning to Carcassonne. But no sites or towns will repeat so there will be wonderful views and towns to paint and explore. This is a ‘Plein Air’ painters sublime location, you will be spoilt for choice. Glistening water, tree lined route, charming French villages and spectacular medieval towns.

We collect you from Carcassonne on Saturday 26th and take you to our boat to settle in. In the evening we will have a champagne reception so everyone can get to know each other and get to know our boat which will be home for the week.

Accommodation

Our boat is the TARPON 49 QUATTRO PRESTIGE, the perfect way to appreciate luxury French style (air-conditioning, dishwasher, digital TV, DVD player…) as you cruise through one of the most beautiful regions of France. With 5 en-suite bedrooms, this licence-free boat will amply meet all your expectations in terms of comfort and equipment and is perfectly suitable for 5 couples. We are aiming to have 2 boats travelling together so there will be us, your hosts who are in charge of catering and comfort (2 on each boat), the painting tutor, so we anticipate a group of around 10 painters plus their partners. This trip of a lifetime is perfect for couples, particularly if one is a non-painter as there is so much to see and do whilst on the cruise and during trips to town. It’s a ‘no brainer’! Just think of all that gorgeous French cuisine and all the local wines to sample. Free bar on board, snacks and nibbles during the day as well as lovely lunches at mooring spots and a guaranteed feast for dinner as only the French can do.

Whether we stop for a proper lunch during the day or choose to have a delicious picnic with fresh baguettes, wine, fromages for lunch. It is entirely up to us and how we feel.

We are a little biased about France as when we are not running our courses with Arte Umbria, in Italy, we are resident in France and have been for nearly 20 years so we know the country, customs and language well.

During this cruise on the Canal du Midi you will discover Homps, as well as Marseillette and Carcassonne or even Trèbes. The boat(s) is for our personal use and we can choose where we stop to paint.

Breakfast will be on board each morning and we can decide to paint where we are moored or drive further on and stop for lunch at a different location to paint. Each night we will moor close to a restaurant to sample the local cuisine and wines. We, your hosts are in charge of all the supplies on the boats, fresh croissant and pain au chocolat for breakfast, delicious charcuterie for lunch, organic salads and of course all the local wines.

We are all in control of our destiny, where we stop for the night, where we paint.

Bicycles are available for hire if you tell us before hand, there is wifi available and a charging station for phones and tablets.

All linen and towels are provided. L’Occitane (how apt!) soaps, shampoos, conditioners, body lotions are provided as well. There are 4 en suite bathrooms on each boat so no worries about privacy.

We have sourced some authentic French restaurants to guarantee a high level of local cuisine.

You just need to book your flight or your travel to Carcassonne and let us do the rest. Our tutor Kelly Medford will take care of all your painting needs. We are recommending watercolour for this trip, but Kelly is also an oil specialist so if that’s what you would like to do you are most welcome.

Kelly will be providing a list of equipment needed ahead of the trip to help guide you in what to bring. Obviously sketchbooks are essential!

We anticipate 8 to 10 painters plus partners.

paint on the water

The Canal du Midi is a 241 km long canal in Southern France (French: le Midi). Originally named the Canal royal en Languedoc (Royal Canal in Languedoc) and renamed by French revolutionaries to Canal du Midi in 1789, the canal was at the time considered one of the greatest construction works of the 17th century.[2]

The canal connects the Garonne River to the Étang de Thau on the Mediterranean and along with the 193 km (120 mi) long Canal de Garonne forms the Canal des Deux Mers, joining the Atlantic to the Mediterranean. The canal runs from the city of Toulouse down to the Étang de Thau near the Mediterranean.

The Canal du Midi is one of the oldest canals of Europe still in operation (the prototype being the Briare Canal). The challenges in these works are closely related to the challenges of river transport today. The key challenge, raised by Pierre-Paul Riquet, was to convey water from the Montagne Noire (Black Mountains) to the Seuil de Naurouze, the highest point of the canal.
It was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996.

Carcassonne to Argens Minervois on the Canal du Midi

Places of interest and amenities along the way
The canal is a UNESCO World Heritage site and connects the Garonne River to the Thau Lagoon on the Mediterranean. The canal runs from the city of Toulouse in the west down to the Mediterranean port of Sete in the east, passing some of the region’s most beautiful towns, villages and countryside. Here we look at the towns, villages and facilities available in them that you pass between Carcassonne and Narbonne.

Carcassonne
At the heart of Carcassonne along the Aude River lies its famous fortified medieval town – called le Cité – restored to its full glory in the 19th century, and awarded UNESCO World Heritage status in 1997.
Wandering along its narrow cobbled streets, fairy tale towers and ramparts is truly like stepping back in time – a must see for medieval enthusiasts, there are also regular jousting and falconry displays organised here in the summer, as well as a host of events, concerts and theatre. Beyond the medieval city, is the lower part of Carcassonne known as the Bastide, and it is here that our Canal du Midi boat base is situated. Perfect for painting and photography.

Daily itinerary

Canal du Midi 26th may 2018 from Carcassonne going south

Saturday 26th May

Collection from your point of arrival at Carcassonne and transfer to your boat.

We cannot depart before 1600 hrs so 6 days painting. Max speed 3km/hr

Champagne reception on board and general meet and greet.

Carcassonne to Villedubert 2.5 hrs

We will cast off once everyone has embarked and cruise leisurely towards Trebes. we will stop at either L’Eveque or Villedubert where we will moor for the night and eat out locally. About 2.5 hrs

Sunday 27th May Villedubert to Marseillette 3 hrs

After a leisurely breakfast on the deck, Kelly will discuss options where we are for 2 hours painting from 10am until midday or we can move along the canal to another spot. we will then cruise for an hour and a half until we stop for lunch at Trebes - a beautiful medieval village where the Canal is carried over the Orbiel River via the three arched Orbiel Aqueduct.. we will moor and wander round this lovely town and take lunch at a nearby restaurant.

After leaving Trebes we cross an aqueduct over the river Orbiel and stop for 2 hours painting. departing late afternoon we cross another viaduct over the Fresquel river for Marseillette to moor up for our evening meal out. About 3 hrs cruising.

Aperitifs from 6pm. Soft drinks available all day.

Monday 28th May Marseillette to Jouarres 3hrs

As above going past Fonfile, St Martin, to Pulcheric for lunch, 3 hrs cruising, 2hrs or more painting morning and afternoon

Tuesday 29th May Jouarres to Argens Minervois 3 hrs

As above towards Homps, or Pechlaurier for lunch going towards Argens
our halfway point. We stop here for a look round the town at your own leisure and meet at a convenient time and place for dinner.

From here we start our return journey back to Carcassonne.

A couple of the delightful villages we will be going through.

Marseillette - During your journey through the Minervois, you will find yourself surrounded by beautiful vineyards on either side of the tree-lined Canal and going past typical pretty Minervois villages such as Marseillette. The landing stage here is equipped with a fresh water point, and there are two bars-cafes and one restaurant in the village.

Puicheric - The village of Puicheric is about 0.8 km from the right bank of the Canal. The village is notable for its 14th century square towered church, and has a couple of grocery stores and a restaurant. The landing stage is equipped with a fresh water point.

Canal du Midi France

Paint and Cruise the Canal du Midi with artist Kelly Medford

A trip of a lifetime painting along the Canal du Midi in France.

Date: May 26 2018

Duration: Seven days

We anticipate 8 to 10 painters plus partners.

Cost: The cost for this all inclusive trip of a lifetime painting along the Canal du Midi in France (without airfare or travel insurance) is £3500 non painters £2100.

You just need to book your flight or your travel to Carcassonne and let us do the rest.
Our tutor Kelly Medford will take care of all your painting needs. We are recommending watercolour for this trip, but Kelly is also an oil specialist so if that’s what you would like to do you are most welcome.

Kelly will be providing a list of equipment needed ahead of the trip to help guide you in what to bring. Obviously sketchbooks are essential!

How to book

You can simply book now online to secure your place on this exciting trip and pay your deposit:

Pay your deposit

Or, Download a Booking Form and email it to us

Please click on the button below to download our booking form for all of our courses in pdf format.

Booking form

Gallery of Photographs

Click on any of the thumbnails below to see a larger picture