It was kind of a restful day at the lake. We decided to head to Draveil Draveil, which is approximately 2 1/2 hour up the down the river from Paris.
Port de Palaiscance Port de Palaiscance is in-between two towns, Draveil as well as Vigneux. The port is home to an aquatic park as well as a pony trek, beautiful wooded areas, and a huge park that has tennis courts as well as football pitches. The park is open to the public, too however it is secured with anchorings.
Like every other place we’ve been to there are a lot of houses boats, some in excellent condition, and some that make you wonder how they manage to stay on the water! If you realize that somebody lives on it, it’s quite shocking! Draveil is a great place to shop and eateries close by, which is why we use both. There’s a grocery store and a very nice Artisan bakery.
Then, in the late evening we took our new acquaintances out to Gibraltar Restaurant. There are plenty of spots to relax under a tree or on the river. Because it’s just begun to pour again and we prefer to sit in the canopy instead of inside because it’s extremely warm.
The skies are opened and thunder storms roll into the sky. It’s nearly too for the people in the opposite direction. A few diners begin to move tables because the water begins to pour in, as the storm is actually approaching now.
Then we continue with our wonderful dinner and, once we’re all content and satisfied, the bill will be handed to us (EUR70 for a couple). Then we walk back for a five-minute walk back to the boats.
Today, I’ve had to fight against incredibly bad 3G Wi-Fi to complete my notes, pictures and videos up – not any chance! France appears to have the worst Wi-Fi network in the world! If you’re from Devon and Cornwall I can assure you that ours is much better.
Because of EU regulations and EU regulations, even though I have unlimited data, I am able to be able to use 10GB of data per month the course of. I could use it in just a few days, which means we’re constantly switching devices hoping that everything will go to the cloud and so on.
The evening of this trip we were invited to a boathouse. We were greeted by a beautiful lady who welcomed us to her barge to enjoy refreshments and snacks. She was delighted to show us around her brand new boat, which she had updated to the year of her purchase.
Absolutely stunning – gorgeous kitchen, large dining area with two large bedrooms, and two bathrooms with an extra space on top to relax and sit outside with the proper furniture for your garden to lounge in. Ann lives aboard a yacht for several years, and she moves about whenever she is feeling like it.
She’s an source of inspiration and is a lot of fun! I was amazed by the size of the boat larger than my two boats in the back of my home!
Ann’s lovely barge in Port de Palaiscance
After the drinks or nibbles we welcome Ann, Pete and Carol back to the boat to eat dinner. Captain’s spaghetti is the main course, along and garlic bread is served and even more wine! We continue to chat with laughter for couple hours more, while the next storm roars into.
Tomorrow, we’ll be moving forward. Pete as well as Carol have both said that they’d like to join us to join us, prior to returning and we’ll get an early morning to arrive at Avon Bleiu.
Another severe storm last night and it’s nice and cool today! It’s been a while, but it’s a good time… We’ll set out at 9am. we’ve got 85km to clear and four locks to clear.
The first lock is where there’s an influx of commercial barges, a couple of giants! We know we’ll not make it through the first round and, based on the look around we may not be able to get through the second round, either.
Departing Port de Palaiscance
We chat with the lockkeeper who is pretty fluent in English and states that the lock isn’t functioning properly however, he will test it to determine if the two boats can pass through.
After waiting for about an hour and a half after which we move on and another barge joins us together with us. The convoy soon turns towards the lock next, and we’re through the next lock very quickly. We keep following bars at 7 knots, and get snugly behind them throughout the locks.
The last lock is where we look at three possible options for our over night stay. The first two are crowded with houseboats and there isn’t enough room for two Sealines So we make our way toward Port Fountainbleau – our last resort! It’s an yacht club, and we don’t know what we’ll find.
As we approach to our destination, we will look over various areas and determine which is the most suitable. As we discuss what we’ll do, a nice gentleman shouts that there’s a visitor docking in the distance This is a great idea!
We make our way down, only to receive a call that says we need to moor near the pylons since the recent winter storms have left things a bit fragile and loose… It’s very comfortable! Once both boats are tied to the pylons, Carol and I head to the Capitainaire office to pay. The cost is two nights EUR25 and there’s an adjacent castle that you must visit!
Tied alongside in Port Fountainbleau
We’re not in any hurry. Why is that? Did I mention there’s a washing machine for free and tumble dryer? Carol and I race back for the watercrafts to wash out the washing up quickly! The facilities are great and hot water is plentiful and showers with continuous water flowing (not an open faucet). Lovely!
The three gentlemen, who were able to help us on our the arrival (and we offered the three gentlemen a drink for their assistance) Please tell us about the local area such as eateries, Aldi, two towns bus stops, etc.
The first night we ended in the Buffalo Grill, which doesn’t look very appealing according to Trip Advisor but not sure why, considering it was an excellent dinner for EUR45 each for two people. big dinner and a glass of beer. It’s bedtime. Everyone is devastated.
Brixham seems like an eternity ago, and certain days are merging with others!
Carol, Pete and I we all set off to the Aldi store, where we can take a look and shopping. We will have dinner tonight in their vessel. We can find the restaurant within five minutes of the boat’s mooring! They’re not like the shops in England and they offer totally different merchandise. Fifteen minutes later, I’m done. Bread, cheese, beer and kitchen roll are all taken care of!
After returning, we put everything away and then decide to go up to the castle. Just a few hundred yards, Kev reckons. Three miles and two towns later, we are able to see the castle by the streets, food markets, restaurants, and clothing shops.
The castle is a three mile walk from the marina at Port Fountainbleau
We visit The Imperial Cafe, opposite the entrance. Great service and a great large cup of coffee to help put off the long trek back! However it’s not like it does on the way back. The time is right for a short chill before dinner with the neighbors.
Lovely prawns and a pineapple dish for appetizers, followed by pork steaks with salad and new potatoes followed by a slushie of wine, beer and chocolate! Then I was taught the art of playing a brand new card game (I did not finish last, which is a bonus!) It’s time to go to bed. Another town to visit tomorrow.
We depart from the beautiful Port de Plasaince at 10.30am. It’s a quick run and then a lock to get close to Saint Mammes.
As it is a the weekend is a busy day for rowers. There are plenty of rowers along the rivers. They go wherever they want to go and cause complete chaos!
Enroute to Saint Mammes with another Sealine in convoy
Then we reach one lock. then hook onto the ladder and everything is well, except that the clamps of the Sealine are extremely square. It is necessary to place your foot up on top to stop the line from falling off as the boat moves in the flow of water that is letting in. Next it’s round my ankle and I’m holding it with my legs! A quick adjustment and returned to normal.
We leave the lock, and around the bend, there ought to be fuel. We spot the pontoon and the white building (although it’s difficult to tell) and moor, only to we discover there’s no one in the lock. The place is closed until noon. We suspect that the workers might be eating lunch break so we’ll just sit and be patient. After five minutes, two men arrive in a small Clio and soon fuel is being pumped through the tank.
We are now paying EUR1.64 for a Liter. Ouch! A hefty EUR375 after that and we head across the river to our night mooring. Due to the massive storms that hit earlier in the year half of the moorings don’t longer have cleats. So they’ll be a tight.
Saint Mammes is much more than a small town than I had hoped it would be. It is very charming, however and also the conclusion of our journey along the Seine. From here we’ll start our journey along the canals.
We take a few miles to find out the lock’s location and make sure we can fit in – it will be extremely small! We know what we’ll be required to do and the way we’ll operate the locks.
The first lock on to the canal system
We return to the boat and then meet the two other boats we’re moored with (all British – a Sealine and Linssen). Linssen). Time for a drink (rude no!) in a tiny bar operated by James (a delightfully humorous French man).
Then, after Kev and Pete have a quick haircut from Stephane We then head to the cake shop for tea in the afternoon, followed by taking a nap, and then “out on the tiles” because it’s Saturday night!
I forgot to mention that the town quays have water and electricity, as well as an extremely nice office! But nobody is there to collect money or hook to the services.