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General information

The Traveler is a lovingly maintained Spits who is frequently Traveling with agricultural products between the Netherlands, Germany, Belgium and France. Often long journeys are made to the southern France, Arles and Sete. A complete trip to the South of France and back takes sometimes eleven weeks. It is possible to experience a part of a journey. You can also chose a specific part of the route, or in combination with your cycling holiday. A flexible trip setting is necessary. In the French channels through the many locks the daily distances are not so great. You can also take your bike with you on board, so you step after breakfast on the bicycle and are in the evening/ overnight back on board.

The owners

The Traveler is owned by Piet and Suzanno Bouchier. Peter has worked for 22 years at the University of Groningen, he also did photo shoots and he designed gardens. Suzanno has a varied career behind her. Suzanno has all the necessary papers and is in fact the captain.

Their love for traveling and discovering took them all over the world. In October 2004, they decided literally to change course, Home and hearth was sold and a ship was bought which they called "Traveler". Traveling, life and work have since been there credo, A free and unique way of life, on a Spits cargo schip.

Piet and Suzanno about their company called "Pescargot" living on a Spits cargo schip, and the French channels we sail as an escargot = snail , as the French say, "Les Bateliers sont comme des escargots, ils portent leur maison sur le dos ". Or: "Boaters are like snails, they always have their house with them." In addition, this name remembers to our love to nature and passion for fine food. All these aspects, always on the move with cargo , gently through the beautiful French country and enjoying the good French life, for us the essence of life, our way of life.

Experience this special "way of life" a few days aboard the Traveler!

The ship

The Traveler is a Merelbeke Spits, a type of ship built specifically for the dimensions for the smallest French channels.

  • Length: 38.99 m
  • Width: 5.07 m
  • Year: 1961
  • Load capacity: 339 ton
  • Engine: Scania DI 12 M. 6 cylinder in line. 221 kW 300 hp
  • Bow thruster Daf 1160. 6 cylinder in-line 120 hp

Special details

The Traveler has a beautiful handmade wheelhouse. If the ship travels under the lowest bridges in France the wheelhouse roof and window,s wil be taken of. They will be steering "cabrio" .

Hidden in the roof, invisible to the eye, but not for the sun the Traveler has solar panels. "2040 WP". Normally it give,s enough power for all equipment on board, so that no polluting generator needs to be started. Of course the guest,s get also a boast of energy, enjoying the French sun during your stay on board.


The space and privacy on a small freichter are limited. In the front is a simple guest cabin. This is accessible by a ladder. This cabin also is the schips storage space. The guest cabin can be called "no nonsense". There is a bed for two. There are no windows or private sitting area, so you can only sleep here . You do not have a own douce/toilet but uses that of the owner. Traveling with the Traveler means: charm, experience, explore and experience.


Of course, the ship has a modern Internet connection through the air. In consultation with the skippers you can check your mail.

Cruising through the France cannels,what a journey !

For anyone who dreams to go once with his ship traveling through France it can be an educational eye opener to go first a week with the Traveler on the road. Sailing the French canals has its own unwritten rules and laws. Piet and suzanno know all routes, canals, locks and tunnels on the way to the south and they can give you valuable tips and travel advice.

Cycling and cruising

For holiday cyclists we offer the opportunity to embark on the go even a few days. You can stay on board, according to B & B, possible to leave the luggage on board while you enjoy the day cycling the beautiful paths, and again in the evening overnight aboard. Tip (you might one day do not feel like pedaling a bike just stay on board and enjoy the day with a drink and a book on the front deck!).

Additional information

The locks in the most (small) canals in France stop at +/- 19.00. Around that time, the ship stops for the knight.this give,s you the opportunity to explore a vilage, or go for a walk / bike ride.

The space on a Spits is limited, you are staying in the private property of the owner This asced for some respect.

Price Information

Price p.p.p.n € 63.00

Prices include breakfast, coffee / tea

Afternoon lunch. p.p. € 10.00

Diner (menu of the day) pp € 17.50 euros.

Car on board in joint consultation, if the situation permits € 125.00. If the move the car more often and to be hoisted on board, where the situation allows it and always only in dry weather € 35.00 per hoist.

Bookings costs €17,50

Sheets, towels, and final cleaning are included. Bicycles free on board.

Current location of the Traveler

The map below shows the current location of the Traveler. The blue line shows today’s and yesterday’s already covered distance of the ship.