We love and care for your canals and rivers, because everyone deserves a place to escape.

National Waterways Museum

With its stunning location on the banks of the Mersey and the Manchester Ship Canal, extensive in-door displays, boat trips and historic buildings, the museum makes a great family day out in Cheshire, where time slows down and history comes to life.

There's so much to explore from the handsome Victorian buildings, which house the museum's displays, to the locks and moorings vibrant with historic and visiting narrow boats. With a year-round events calendar featuring everything from beer festivals to historic boat rallies, there's always a reason to visit.

Designed by Thomas Telford under the direction of William Jessop, the docks at Ellesmere Port were still in use as late as the 1950s. They were a marvellously self-contained world and when you visit the museum today you can still walk round its locks, docks and warehouses and visit its forge, stables and workers cottages.

Canals are havens for wildlife. Look and listen out for the many birds that live here or travel through - pied wagtails, swans, coots, ducks, cormorants, moor hens - you may even catch sight of a kingfisher or even hear a sky lark!


National Waterways Museum

South Pier Road
Ellesmere Port
CH65 4FW

Opening times

Museum: 10am to 5pm

Shop: Open daily, 10am - 5pm

Waterside Cafe: Open daily, 10am - 4pm

Christmas opening: The museum, shop and cafe are closed from Christmas Day to 2 January