Friday, January 28 2022

Boating holidays are a wonderful way of seeing the UK. Waterways in the UK are well maintained and all the family can enjoy the experience, including the family dog.

Canal barges are a wonderful leisurely holiday and there are plenty of places you can visit along various routes. Cruises are another way of enjoying scenic countryside and quaint villages as you travel.

Norfolk Broads

This famous confluence of canals and rivers is around 300km of water for you to enjoy a leisurely boating holiday. From the smallest of water pools to large lakes, the Broads are navigable and have been used for boating holidays since the late 1800s.

The Broads cross seven rivers and over sixty broads, which are large lakes. Nick-named ‘Britain’s Magic Waterland’ the Norfolk Broads are just as famous as the Norwegian Fjords. Don’t be mis-led into thinking you will be boat-bound, along the Broads, there is opportunity to cycle, walk and enjoy the local cuisine and for those that love a pint or two, local ale is available too.

Norfolk Broads sailing photo
Photo by mira66

Norfolk Broads sailing, England, UK by Jo Jakeman

Stratford-upon-Avon Canal

Central England offers stunning countryside and Stratford-upon-Avon is the home of Shakespeare and here you will find a beautiful town to browse through. With a wonderful view of theatre and boat restaurants, you can moor up here and enjoy a night at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre and the local butterfly farm is close by to entertain the children.

This canal route spans from Stratford to Kings Norton Junction near Bournville. With 14 locks and over three aqueducts, this stunning area offers history and culture for all the family. Warwick Castle must be seen for a day out and there is the oldest Saxon church in the country at Wooton Wawen.

The Fens

This waterway in Cambridgeshire covers a large area and on this route, you will pass through nature reserves and there are large towns and small villages to enjoy on your route. This flat-land spans over 1,000km and is home to wildlife and wild flowers and if you’re really lucky, you may encounter endangered species.

Visit Huntingdon, the birth place of Oliver Cromwell and Cambridge, to visit the world famous university.

Scottish Lowlands

Scotland must be considered for a boating holiday, given its relationship with Lochs. Cruise the famous Union Canal through to Edinburgh and visit the castle and walk the Royal Mile, where you will find local shops offering a taste of this wonderful area. To reach Glasgow along the Forth & Clyde canal, from Edinburgh, it will take seven days and along the way, there are villages and you might even find time to visit a distillery.

Almost lock-free, this canal runs from Edinburgh to Falkirk Wheel, which is an engineered rejoining of two canals opened by the Queen in 2002. This wheel is the world’s first ‘boat lift’ and will certainly give the children an essay to write on what they did during their holidays.

Union Canal Scotland photo
Photo by amateur photography by michel

Union Canal, Scotland, UK

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