Choosing Your Holiday Route



For a few relaxing days, or to see what a holiday afloat is all about, a short break on a narrowboat is perfect.

canal holiday route planning

A three or four night break is long enough to unwind and get used to the slow pace of life.
We have short break boats available from all start bases, each with a number of splendid routes to choose from. Take a three night weekend break starting on Friday, or a four night midweek break starting on Monday. Remember that these boats are also available for weekly hire and, by adding a short break to a week, you can also take a longer break of 10/11 nights.

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There is a unique feeling of freedom when you cast off and set off up the canal. You can stop when you feel like it and above all choose from a multitude of routes. Each canal has its own distinct character ranging from the earliest contour canals which twist and turn through the countryside, to the later more direct routes with their high embankments, deep cuttings and tunnels.

Click here to see more information on all our canal routes.

Our Hire bases

Alvechurch Marina – Worcestershire – 0121 445 1133
The marina is at the heart of an extremely varied canal network, with a fine selection of ring routes. Features include the impressive 30 lock Tardebigge Flight. On-site pub “The Weighbridge” with bar food and real ale.

Anderton Marina – Cheshire – 01606 79642
With the Cheshire Ring, the remote and beautiful Leeds & Liverpool Canal heading north and the Trent & Mersey heading south, plus of course the Anderton Boat Lift.
On-site licensed restaurant “The Moorings”.
(01606 79789 /

Aldermaston Marina - Berkshire - 01189 714123
With access to the beautiful Kennet and Avon Canal and a trip down to Bath and Bristol and also the Royal River Thames.

Blackwater Meadow Marina - Shropshire - 01691 624391
Located on the outstanding Llangollen Canal, this base offers routes to Llangollen, crossing the Pontecysyllte Aqueduct, or rural adventures into the Shropshire countryside.

Falkirk Base – Scotland – 01324 627212
Explore the lowlands of Scotland with easy cruising and very few locks on the recently restored canals, including experiencing the incredible Falkirk Wheel, linking the Union Canal and the Forth & Clyde Canal.

Gayton Marina – Northamptonshire – 01604 858685
Routes from Gayton are typified by rolling Northamptonshire arable landscapes, the rural countryside punctuated by fair sized towns and villages easily accessible from the canal side.

Hilperton Marina – Wiltshire – 01225 765243
Our most southerly marina, Hilperton is well located on the restored Kennet & Avon Canal, often considered one of the very best for natural beauty and wildlife.

Wrenbury Mill – Welsh Borders – 01270 780544
For pretty scenery and stunning views, little compares to the Llangollen Canal with features including the Ellesmere ‘meres’ and the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct.

Union Wharf Marina – Leicestershire – 01858 432123
Union Wharf is located in the attractive and historic market town of Market Harborough. The Wharf itself is home to a number of impressively refurbished canal warehouses. The Wharf is at the terminus of the canal close to Foxton Locks and the historic Incline Plane.

Worcester Marina – Worcestershire – 01905 734160
Based at the southern end of the Worcester Birmingham Canal in the 19th Century ‘Port of Lowesmoor’, our Worcester base is an ideal start for routes into Shakespeare
country via the Rivers Severn and Avon, or trips north into rural Worcestershire where you will pass through the heart of the picturesque ‘Archers’ country.

Whitchurch Marina – Shropshire – 01948 662012
For tranquillity and beauty, start from Whitchurch and meander along the Llangollen and Shropshire Union Canals, enjoying the wide open spaces and hillsides of Wales and the north-west and the Pontcysyllte aqueduct.

Rugby Base – Warwickshire – 01788 562183
This is a rural area based on the North Oxford Canal which is ideal for a number of interesting and contrasting routes. Why not make your way to Warwick and visit its beautiful castle or take a gentle cruise through pretty countryside?

Gailey Base – Staffordshire – 01902 790612
Perfectly placed to discover parts of the West Midlands, Staffordshire, Cheshire and Shropshire. Travel along the Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal, where you can head north towards the Potteries and rolling countryside of the Peak District, or go further afield into Shropshire towards the Cheshire Plains and its dramatic scenery.

Goytre Wharf – South Wales – 01873 880516
Explore the beautiful Monmouthshire and Brecon Canal which meanders through the Brecon Beacons National Park. Although only 36 miles long this canal is considered one of the most relaxing and scenic.

Click here to see more information on all our canal routes.