The European inner waterways in summary

Numbers are always fun, so here are a few summarizing our trip through the European inner waterways.

We had the mast removed in Breskens on the North Sea coast in the Netherlands on the 15th of July, and had it put up again in Port Napoleon on the Mediterranean coast in Southern France on the 23rd of September. This makes a total of 71 days, but only 35 days of sailing. We had a two week break in Hasselt, Belgium, where our reverse gear needed a renovation, and Esben and the kids spent 15 days in Valenciennes, France, while I was in Germany to work. Most nights we paid where we spent the night, but 13 nights were for free.


We sailed a total of 1570 km (or 848 nm), which means we averaged 45 km/sailday. Doesn’t seem like that much really!

On the days we sailed, we sailed for 7 hours/day on average, which means that the average speed was 6,4 km/hour – kinda explains why we were sometimes overtaken by joggers running along the canals… But then again, this equals 3,5 knots on average, which is okay for a boat like Chip-Chip.

The trip took a total of 248 hours and 45 minutes, which means that we used 273 liters of diesel. No, our engine doesn’t use that much diesel per hour.

And then there are the locks, which especially on the Champagne-Bourgogne Canal made sure that we were kept busy! From Breskens to Port Napoleon, we went through a total of 269 locks, one boat elevator and 5 tunnels. This means that we went though 7,7 locks per day on average, and yes, this is why are done sailing the inner waterways for the time being – though we had a very good time in Belgium and France this summer.

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