Moret-sur-Loing was a fascinating town, complete with old church and gates and of course, narrow cobblestone streets. The Impressionist painter Sisley lived here and some of his works are on show in the Musee d'Orsay.
Moret was also a convenient place to go and visit Fontainebleau. We caught a train and bus there, and joined the throngs... Fontainebleau is an eye-opener to the excesses of the nobility in those times, the decorations, paintings, furnishings are sumptuous and really over the top to modern tastes. You can really understand how the peasants felt.
From Moret we headed south along the canal through small towns and villages including Nemours, Souppes-sur-Loing, Nargis, Cepoy, Montargis. Most of the canal was bordered by forest with occasional villages. The towpath was good for riding the bikes. Many of the locks had beautiful flower boxes, the eclusiers obviously taking pride in their lock. Being Summer, the real eclusiers were on holiday and their place was taken by Uni students.
At Rogny we saw the famous 7 Locks, which were the first to link Marseilles with Paris.
From Rogny we headed for Briare, the site of the Bridge-Canal that crosses the Loire River. It is 660m long and was built by M. Eifel's company. It certainly is an odd experience being up about 80m in the air while travelling in a barge!
Some other photos from Google Earth
We bypassed the branch canal to Briare and went on the Chatillon-sur-Loire for a night before coming back to Briare. Here we left "Anja", Peter and Allie in our Avis car for some more exploring on land.