Anchors aweigh… my friends.


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The Julia Hoyt Dutch Canal Barge (type Tjalk- 1870’s)  is now officially for sale. For specifications and price, please see the Specification page.  All offers will be handled through the contact page on this site. If you are interested in this very special canal barge, please leave a comment and contact us for further information.



As featured in Maison Sud Ouest

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The Julia Hoyt is known for her style as well as her character all along the Canal du Midi and Canal de Garonne. Featured in Maison Sud Ouest magazine, she shows off her twilight colors as well as a comfortable and personal interior. A pdf copy of the article is available upon request.

Welcome aboard the Long Village!

“Here’s to those who showed up!”  This is the traditional toast that we cheer when opening that first bottle of Champagne when guests arrive on the Julia Hoyt. I’ve been toasting this for over 25 years… Since 1987, the year I sailed the Julia Hoyt south from Enkhuizen in the Netherlands to Southwest France over a thousand guests, friends and family have crewed and cruised with me.  I called my floating home  “a one table restaurant and two room hotel”  and the inland waterways “My Long Village”.  In 1995, I wrote the recipes and stories of my early years cruising along the Garonne River canal in a small cookbook called  A Culinary Journey in Gascony. 

Life aboard the Julia Hoyt is about discovering the Canals and Rivers of France in their nook and cranny villages, bustling cities and quiet green spaces. Best of all, I love the quiet moorings like this one at Lagruère on the Canal de la Garonne. From summer fêtes with the entire village to sleepy morning coffee alone in the wheelhouse, living on a barge on a French or Belgian or Dutch canal is living in a long village.

Original cover photograph for A Culinary Journey in Gascony by Kate Hill

published 1995 by Ten Speed Press.

Nuts & Bolts of a Dutch Tjalk

JH w: awningName: The Julia Hoyt

Type: Freisland Tjalk

Size: length 25 meters, beam 4.25 meters, height above water line 2., draft less than 1 meter.

Engine: DAF 575 120hp.  This marinized diesel engine is the workhorse of the Dutch barge fleet


  • 1872- Built Koostertille Shipyards, Freisland, Netherlands
  • 1938- First motor installed
  • 1968- Converted from sailing cargo barge to family pleasure boat-  Liu Willem
  • 1986-converted to luxury charter barge- The Julia Hoyt
  • 2001 Engine overhaul, transmission rebuild, new closed cooling system installed
  • 2012- refit and new wheelhouse construction

In continual service since she was built in the late 1800’s, the Julia Hoyt has been surveyed and cared for on a regular basis by the current over for 28 years. She has been a sailing cargo ship, a family pleasure craft, a luxury charter vessel and a live aboard home. She has cruised the inland waters, sheltered seas and navigable rivers of Europe for over 140 years. She is solid, stable, and comfortable living quarters with plenty of below decks storage with generous headroom, tool and engine room workspace. Her well made riveted hull is a work of industrial design art; her elegant superstructure has a light and airy salon, kitchen and wheelhouse dining area; three double cabins and en-suite bathrooms complete the living quarters; a crew’s quarter or children’s berth provides extra sleep space for up to 8; the  spacious steel deck provides outdoor dining and lounging area forward as well as aft storage for bicycles, boats and other toys.

The Julia Hoyt has hosted over a thousand guests in last 30 years. Souvenirs of sleeping on the gentle canals of France, sharing meals under a starry sky, and creating lifelong memories are a part of her legacy. Now it’s your turn. For more detailed information see Specifications page.

Living afloat for 25 years

…like a Chinese lantern afloat on a calm sea, she beckons us to take a peek.

The Julia Hoyt was made for comfortable cruising and living. More than a 100 square meters provide generous living quarters and her steel beamed decks create garden terrace living with a canalside view. Quality materials used within and without include teak, mahogany, northern pine, and red cedar. For years, I have taken my morning coffee in the large wheelhouse ( dubbed the Sky Lounge) where a comofrtable sitting area and custom dining table provides an alternate dining area to the salon or outside deck.

A bright open salon with a view of the passing canal is a rare thing on a barge. The Julia Hoyt was designed by a naval architect who raised the salon floor, old growth pine planks, creating a commodious storage space underneath as well as leveling the seating area to window height. I love the light and views of passing boats (ocean kayaks to Baltic barges!) and kingfishers as well as the 215cm head room.

There are three cabins on the Julia Hoyt, two forward and one aft. Each forward cabin has a built in Queen size bed with storage underneath and the aft cabin can accommodate Twins or a King size bed. Portholes and hatches contribute to good airflow and light, while providing privacy. Each cabin has a marine toilet, sink and shower; the aft cabin has a full size bathtub as well. There is also a fourth cabin with two bunks that adjoins the forward cabin by a hidden door and can be used for families, crew or just storage.

Two people can easily handle The Julia Hoyt for cruising and she can sleep 6-8 in her comfortable cabins. Her electrical and plumbing systems are simple to maintain, there is ample storage and she drives like a … well, like a barge. She is referenced all along the waters ways of France for her looks, but those who have lived aboard her know she weaves a magic spell. Living afloat is more than a dream, it’s a solution to an active and present life. After twenty-five years of cruising and living on the Julia Hoyt, I offer you the chance to take her to the next level.