France » Canal latéral à l`Aisne et Aisne | Canals and Rivers in France

A west-east connection in Picardy

Canal latéral à l`Aisne et Aisne | Canals and Rivers in France: Characteristics & Overview

Rating of waterway

Length of waterway: 87 km
Number of locks: 13
Lock dimensions: 38.50 x 5.08
Max. depth: 1.80
Max. headroom: 3.50
Degree of difficulty: Some experience is an advantage
Requirements: Boating license essential
Character of waterway: no rating
Profile of waterway: Commercial traffic and tourism
Facilities groundside: Sufficiant

Weitere Informationen

Waterway has access to:

Canal de l`Aisne à la Marne | French Canals
Canal de l`Oise à l`Aisne | French Canal
Canal des Ardennes | Canal of France
River Oise et Canal latéral à l`Oise | Waterways in France

Canal lateral à l’Aisne
Side canal of Aisne, Picardy
River Aisne has its source in the Ardennes and flows first in a huge bow to the north and then easterly towards the Oise. Once it has reached the valley it accompanies first the Canal des Ardennes and then the Can. lat. de l'Aisne. It is navigable from Condé-sur-Aisne. In the northeast of Compiègne it flows into the Oise. The entire length is 335 km, together with its lateral canal des Ardennes it is connecting the Meuse (Maas) with the basin of Paris. There is hardly any commercial traffic. It is over long distances very charming but there is barely any leisure navigation as well, a pity really.

The side-canal
The connection between Condé-sur-Aisne and the Canal des Ardennes at Vieux les Asfeld. At Berry au Bac the Canal de l'Aisne à la Marne turns off southwards to the Canal lat. à la Marne.
Information for your house boating holiday in Picardy:
Advantages: A pleasant way from the southeast of Belgium to the basin of Paris, only a few locks.
Disadvantages: Barely developed for tourism, infrastructures deficient on the water side.  If you’d like to hire a houseboat, you’d have to do so at Bar le Duc at the Canal des Ardennes.

Soissons is the central town of this region. To offer the slightly increasing numbers of visitors a pleasant stay, a new port with all amenities has been built. Also the much smaller town of Rethel with its Celtic origin invites for a visit. There is a port offering a lot of comfort too.
Over the last 400 years this region had to stand the racket of all sorts of battles. On meets therefore a lot of soldier's cemeteries and war memorials. However, they can be avoided since they are not directly along the waterways.

A lot of pork is served here and meals are not very refined. Rather unusual are recipes like "Crêpes au Jambon des Ardennes" or pasta-salads with ham of the Ardennes. Even though near to the Champagne, there is no wine-growing in this region. An Arbois from the French part of the Jura can be recommended.