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What to Wear: Packing for Your Barge Cruise Image

What to Wear: Packing for Your Barge Cruise


The Barge Lady's Ultimate Guide to Packing for a Barge Cruise

One of the biggest concerns for our guests as they prepare for their barge cruise is packing. Over the years The Barge Lady has mastered the art of packing for a barge cruise (or any other trip for that matter) to a tee.  Accompanying her advice, we have compiled a wealth of pictures of The Barge Lady and our guests as they dress during their cruises.  Voila! Without further ado, we present The Barge Lady's Ultimate Guide to Packing for Your Barge !

The Basics

When The Barge Lady and Monsieur le Barge Lady go barge cruising, they bring comfortable, “casual smart” attire. Comfortable walking shoes are a must for daytime. Remember the villages are cobbled streets, and you are on a BOAT during the day! Another thing to keep in mind, storage for luggage on board is adequate, but limited. Guests usually over pack.

Is Your Barge Cruise in the Spring, Summer or Fall?

April, May and October are cooler and more unpredictable, while July and August tend to be hot. For guests barging in April, May and October, we advise you to bring many layers (sweaters, turtlenecks, jackets), as the weather can be cool and changeable over the course of a single day. A light rain coat is advised.

Dressing for the Day

 Barge Lady’s Daytime Cruise Attire
I wear mostly “Chico’s” brand clothes, especially the wrinkle free type.
Interchangeable tops and bottoms that you can get a lot of mileage out of are ideal.

Monsieur le Barge Lady’s Daytime Cruise Attire
Daytime: He wears a knit polo shirt with jeans, khakis or shorts.

Biking Attire
One of the highlights of a barge cruise is biking along the towpath or into town as the barge cruises. We recommend bring a pair of gymshoes or comfortable shoes for those interested in biking.

What to Wear in the Evening

At night, most guests change into something slightly dressier, although this is not necessary. There may or may not be a “Captain’s Dinner” on your cruise. The format varies widely from barge to barge, but will bear no resemblance whatsoever to those fancy affairs on the large cruise ships! Guests may dress up a bit for the last night, but this is not mandatory.

The Barge Lady’s Evening Cruise Attire
At Night: I will upgrade an outfit in the evening by adding a cardigan or a scarf for a fresh look. I bring one change of shoes for the evening, usually a pair of flats that can match all my outfits for the week.

Monsieur le Barge Lady’s Evening Cruise Attire
At Night: He might replace his polo with a button down shirt, and please, no shorts at dinner for the men.
He also brings one change of shoes, something slightly dressier

The Barge Lady’s Captain's Dinner Attire
The Captain’s Dinner: I usually add a blazer to a previous outfit, or wear a dress/skirt. High heels and jewelry are NOT required, although we cannot guarantee what other guests will or will not be wearing

Monsieur le Barge Lady’s Captain's Dinner Attire
The Captain’s Dinner: He would wear a button down shirt. SOME men may be wearing a jacket, although it is not required.

Dinners Ashore

One or more dinners n shore may be a feature of your barge cruise! We recommend “smart casual” attire, the kind you would wear at a restaurant or club at home. The men do NOT need to wear a tie or jacket (although a jacket could be worn for warmth during spring or fall); the ladies do NOT need a dress or heels.


What About Swimwear?

Several of our barges have a hot tub or pool on deck. If your vessel has a pool or hot tub and this is something you are interested in, be sure to remember your bathing suit!