Summer is almost here and we’re looking forward to those warm evenings! River and canal barging has become increasingly popular over the past few years as unique way of experiencing the UK. We’ve narrowed down a selection of the best ‘rings’ amongst the 2,000 miles of navigable inland waterways for you to choose from just in time for your waterway holiday this year.
The Avon Ring - Journey time: approx. 60 hours
No. of locks: 17 - 42.2 miles
Travelling through the heart of England, this stunning route in the South West of Birmingham is filled with picturesque views and centuries of English history. 109 miles long and featuring 131 locks, The Avon Ring route takes the River Avon from Stratford-upon-Avon and completes itself at the Worcester and Birmingham Canal.
The Thames Ring - Journey time: approx. 115 hours
No. of locks: 175 - 245 miles
Start your canal boat holiday at Braunston which takes you to the Grand Union Central, Stoke Bruerne and its Waterways Museum. Continuing through Milton Keynes, this leads you to the Chiltern Hills successfully meeting the River Thames at Brentford Lock (West London). Prior to this, The Paddington Arms leaves and forms part of the London Ring through Little Venice, Camden Lock and London. From Brentford, a small section of the River Thames follows through to Teddington Lock. Take in the stunning sights of Windsor Castle and Hampton Court where you will eventually arrive at Oxford.
The South Pennine Ring - Journey time: approx. 80 hours
No. of locks: 198 - 71 miles
Following two out of three trans-Pennine canals, the Pennine Ring is a remarkable journey ideal for those who are experienced in taking lengthy canal boat holidays. This 71mile circular route is an enjoyable way to experience the cross between Manchester and Huddersfield. Begin your boating break by starting at Sowerby Bridge and cruising to Manchester. This takes you to the heart of Summit whilst enjoying some delightful scenery.
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