Top 7 holidays for 2025

Visit Stratford upon Avon on a canal boat holiday

Top 7 canal boat and narrowboat holidays in England and Wales for 2025

Our 2025 holidays are now available to book at 2024 prices with an early booking discount*

1. Cruise through the countryside to Whitchurch and back

On a mid-week break from Bunbury, you can cruise to Whitchurch.  The journey there and back travels 35 miles, through 40 locks and takes around 20 hours. You’ll first head south through Bunbury Locks and on to Barbridge Junction, where the Middlewich Branch meets the Shropshire Union Canal. At Hurleston Junction you’ll transfer onto the Llangollen Canal. Cruise on through the countryside and stop at bridge 12 for a walk to the Farmers Arms in the village of Ravensmoor. Soon after you’ll reach Wrenbury, with the canalside Dusty Miller and Cotton Arms.  Continue on to Marbury, home to the Swan Inn. Then on to Grindley Brook Locks and historic Whitchurch, with independent shops and restaurants, way-marked walks and award-winning Black Bear pub.

2. See the spectacular flight of locks at Devizes

On a short break from Bradford on Avon you can cruise east along the Kennet & Avon Canal to the Caen Hill locks at Devizes. The journey there and back goes through 14 locks and takes around 15 hours.  You’ll pass the canalside King’s Arms pub at Hilperton Marina. The journey continues east through Semington and Seend, with its canalside Barge Inn.  Soon after you’ll reach the base of the Caen Hill flight of 29 locks at Devizes, one of the ‘Seven Wonders of the Waterways’. From the canal it’s a short walk to the historic market town of Devizes, with places to visit including the Wadworth Brewery Visitor Centre, Bear Hotel, Peppermill Restaurant and Dolcipani Bakery.

3. Glide across ‘The Stream in the Sky’ to Ellesmere

From Trevor on the Llangollen Canal in North Wales, the incredible Pontcysyllte Aqueduct is minutes away. This UNESCO World Heritage structure carries canal boat holiday-makers 38 metres high in the air above the River Dee. On a short break from Trevor you can cross the aqueduct and then continue east through Chirk, with a choice of canalside pubs.  Then on to the historic town of Ellesmere in the heart of the Shropshire Lake District. The journey to Ellesmere and back travels 28 miles, passes through four locks and takes around 14 hours.

4. Cruise along the River Thames to the Cotswolds

On a mid-week break from our Oxford base you can cruise along the River Thames to Lechlade on the edge of the Cotswolds.  The journey there and back takes 18 hours and passes through 14 locks.  Along the way, you’ll enjoy views of the peaceful Oxfordshire countryside.  You’ll pass through small villages along the way, including Radcot with its Swan Hotel. And Kelmscott with its picturesque Plough Inn and beautiful Grade I listed riverside Kelmscott Manor, once the inspirational Cotswold retreat of William Morris.

5. Travel round the Avon Ring

On a 10-day or two-week break from Wootton Wawen on the Stratford Canal you can travel round the epic Avon Ring. The journey takes around 58 hours and passes through 131 locks. Heading south from Wootton Wawen, you’ll connect with the River Avon at Shakespear’es Stratford-upon-Avon.  From there, you’ll cruise through the countryside to Evesham and then Tewkesbury, where the Avon joins the River Severn.  You’ll cruise for 16 miles along the River Severn before reaching Worcester. The route then travels up the Worcester & Birmingham Canal to its junction with the Stratford Canal at Kings Norton.  You’ll pass through the mighty Tardebigge flight of 30 locks along the way. At Kings Norton, head south along the Stratford Canal back to return to Wootton Wawen, passing through Lapworth and Lowsonford.

6. Boat to Fazeley and Drayton Manor Park

On a week’s holiday from Great Haywood you can cruise through the Staffordshire countryside to Fazeley and back.  The journey there and back travels 48 miles, passes through 10 locks and takes around 22 hours.  First head south along the Trent & Mersey Canal past Little Haywood, with Red Lion and Lamb & Flag pubs.  Cruise on past the Wolseley Bridge, with canalside Wolseley Arms pub and access to the Staffordshire Wildlife Trust’s Wolseley Centre.  Continue on, now passing through Cannock Chase, a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Cross Brindley Bank Aqueduct and continue towards the historic town of Rugeley. At Fradley Junction transfer onto the Coventry Canal. Next you’ll pass through a series of villages, including Whittington, home of The Swan pub. At Fazeley Junction turn right and moor up between Tolson’s Footbridge and Coleshill Road Bridge.  From there you can walk to Drayton Manor Park.

7. Visit the World Heritage village at Saltaire

On a short break from Silsden on the Leeds & Liverpool Canal you can travel to Sir Titus Salt’s model town at Saltaire.  The journey to Saltaire and back travels 18 miles, takes 13.5 hours and passes through 22 locks. Along the way you’ll encounter the Bingley Five Rise locks, one of the ‘Seven Wonders of the Waterways’. These cavernous chambers raise (or lower) boats 18 metres.  They open directly from one to another, with the top gate of one forming the bottom of the next. It takes around one-and-a-half hours to pass through and there are lock keepers on hand to help. Cruise on through Stockbridge and Riddlesden and then you’ll reach Saltaire, near Shipley.  Now a World Heritage site, Sir Titus Salt built the textile Mill and entire village for his mill workers at Saltaire. Today, Salt’s Mill is home to examples of the work of Bradford born artist David Hockney.

*If you book your 2025 canal holiday by 31 August 2024, you can book at 2024 prices with a 10% discount. T’s & C’s apply.

To check availability and book click here or call us on 0117 463 3419.


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