About some of the users of Tom Sommers' EuroCanals Guides
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"Tom, Just an update on our first summer on the French canal system. It was absolutely the finest time we have spent in many years. The canals were everthing you have written - perhaps even better! In 151 days, 2000 km, 193 locks, and two rivers (Rhone & Saone), we never had one bad experience along the way. The people (including lockkeepers) were wonderful to us. No problems anywhere! What a great experience. Thanks for all your input and great articles." ..George
Jim and Judi (USA) bought a beautiful 24 meter tjalk in Holland that had been converted and lived on by a retired Dutch barge captain. In 2002 they traveled from Nijmegen, The Netherlands to Paris, accompanied by the captain, who trained them in barge handling during the trip. They stored the barge in Burgundy for the winter, then returned to cruise in the summers of 2003, 2004 and 2005.
Morris and Maggie (Canada) (and their dog Rhett) shipped their 28 ft sailboat from Vancouver to Antwerp. They first settled in to European cruising at Ghent, Belgium and then cruised south through Belgium and France to the Mediterranean Sea, heading for Tuscany, Italy and then on to the Greek Isles.
Charles (USA) and Robert (UK) each separately ordered the fabrication of their own replica steel Dutch barge at a shipyard in northern England, then crossed the English Channel to cruise through Belgium and France.
Eric (USA) is refurbishing a US Navy Captains Launch which he will ship to Amsterdam for several years of traveling the continental waterways. An avid reader of the EuroCanals Guides, Eric has also frequently used the services of Tom Sommers to check on design details for his project.
Peter and Susan (South Africa) are constructing a new steel sailboat (12.5 meter) that they will sail north via St Helena, Ascension and Cape Verde islands to Seville, Spain. There they will decide whether to enter the French canals from the Atlantic side at Bordeaux or from the Med side of the Canal du Midi. They are especially interested in Eastern Europe and plan to cruise down the Danube. EuroCanals Guides and services have helped with the design details of the boat, to assure compatibility with the canals and locks.
Jim M (USA) was inspired by the EuroCanals Guide for the Waterways of Brittany to book a two-week cruise in July 2004. Tom Sommers supplied his own personal recommendations regarding the route and other sights to visit in the region before and after the cruise.
Said V (Sweden) successfully searched for a barge, with assistance from Tom Sommers, that fit his specific needs; an excellent 17-meter barge was located in the Limburg province of The Netherlands. He and his wife are now cruising in the south of France.
Tom H (USA) used the EuroCanals Guide: "Buying a Barge in The Netherlands" and the advice and support of Tom Sommers to locate and purchase a newly-renovated Dutch barge in in Friesland.