Domtouren, Utrecht

The day’s challenge…climb to the top of the tallest tower in the Netherlands, Dom Tower.  Challenge accepted! Just a moment, back up the boat!  One day hiking ’round the Leukermeer and the next climbing a church tower!? Well, yea, that’s the Netherlands!  Lots to see with itty-bitty spaces between.  We’d traveled 77.4nm between the Leukermeer and Utrecht;…

Anchoring, Dutch Style

It’s been over 1-year since we dropped and set an anchor from aboard S/V Rode Trip and now, for the first time along our canal travels, we had an opportunity to anchor Detour.  Just like riding a bicycle, right?  Previously we had a completely manual, fantastic system.  We’d communicated well with one another and used the same technique…

Navigating to Venlo

Traveling the Maas River into the Netherlands we’d entered a very different watery world in comparison to France and Belgium.  The river was wide and the surrounding scenery flat with scatterings of homes, trees, and livestock.  There was much commercial traffic, large locks, and oodles of pleasure boats.  We’d been maintaining a tally of commercial…

Welcome to the Netherlands!

Here stood the gateway to the Netherlands; a monstrous lock (a sluis in Dutch) at the intersection of the Meuse River (now Maas River in Dutch) and the Albertkanaal.  We looked ahead at the three locks sprawled across the river, one additionally under construction, and wondered where we had missed the stop where instruction manuals were…

Bye, bye Belgium

Our final stop in Belgium was the city of Liege where, rather than go into the port, we found a quiet mooring place about 1-mile walk from downtown.  Liege was a bustling city!  In the photo below, an upstream view of the Meuse with the diver statue on the right marking the entrance to the port.  We…

“Oy!” from Huy, Belgium

From Dinant, we traveled 14.4 nm of the Meuse River and were lowered through six locks to end our second day in Belgium at the city quayside of Namur.  The scenery en-route reminded us of a storybook; quaint towns, cascading willows, half-timbered houses, and castles scattered here and there between.  The citadel overlooking Namur was free…

Dinant

The Bayard Rock greeted us as we approached the city of Dinant, Belgium and soon we were “Oo-ing” and “Aah-ing” over the city’s waterfront. Row houses, each unique, lined the Meuse River.  Passenger vessels filled to the brim with tourists (the very same vessels which shared the Ecluse Anseremme with us) motored upstream and downstream.  Kayakers paddled…

Welcome to Belgium!

From the bridge, we overlooked Detour at Givet; our last stop in France.  That evening we strolled the streets of Givet, then settled into the cockpit for a celebratory bottle of French wine as the next day’s travel would bring us into a new country.  Hard to believe we’d crossed an entire country prior to crossing an ocean!…

Dames de Meuse

The town of Laifour was simply, adorable!  I’m certain it was the setting for Belle’s “little town” in Beauty and the Beast. Laifour was also one of our most scenic stops, set in the heart of the Ardennes Mountains.  We moored at a quiet, comfortable halte fluvial (3.50-Euros). Small, stone homes with shuttered windows like these in…

Stenay’s Beer Museum

When choosing which small towns to visit, there are a few priorities to take into consideration; availability of grocery stores, nearby hike/bike paths, and availability of wifi all top that list.  The village of Stenay has one thing going for it that really caught our attention, the Beer Museum!  This was of course in addition…