Britain’s canal and river network provides a unique viewpoint of the country and it's not just the boaters who can make the most of the opportunities on offer. Walkers are well catered for by the canals with mile upon mile of canal towpaths, waterside pu
Whether you enjoy walking to keep fit, walking as part of a group, slow saunters through the countryside or longer jaunts the length of the country, there will be a route along the canals and rivers to suit every ability and interest. With over 1,500 miles of walking routes around the country, linking to thousands of miles of footpaths, there's more than enough to keep you occupied for years to come.
While many people opt for a day out by the water, spending a little longer opens up so many more possibilities and a walking holiday on the canals is the perfect way to make the most of the British countryside.
In addition, the NHS says: “Walking will increase your muscle tone, boost metabolism, ease stress, raise energy levels and improve sleep, which combined can also help you lose weight.” What more of an excuse could you want to book some time out of your usual schedule and make your way down to the water?
It's not just health benefits that make a walking holiday on the canals an attractive option. Where else but by the water would you get to see such a diverse range of wildlife? Whether you are a twitcher at heart or just enjoy feeding the ducks your crusts, the bird life by the canals is unrivalled.
Our canals and rivers are also home to cuter creatures, with water voles and otters gracing lucky walkers with occasional sightings. If you're walking with children, try keeping their interest throughout the day by compiling a list of butterflies and other flying insects.
Our canals and rivers provide a huge range of walking options for all abilities. As many canals are relatively flat and accompanied by canal towpaths, they make an excellent option for those new to walking holidays or those who like to have a more firm footing. And it's almost impossible to get lost.
Accommodation is never a problem by the canals with a number of options to suit all tastes and budgets.
Hotels and inns can be found the entire length and breadth of the canal and river network, while for those more adventurous types camping is always an option. Hotel boats offer a more unusual alternative for those who want to immerse themselves in a watery experience and there are even companies who will organise your accommodation for you with luggage transfers included.
A weekend is long enough to enjoy a couple of days walking and you could perhaps take in a circular route one day and the next set out in the opposite direction and catch public transport back to your starting point. For a longer family holiday why not alternate days between walking and leisure attractions near the canals?
Our canals and rivers provide a perfect holiday setting year-round. What could be more satisfying than frost covered trees overhanging the canal in winter, spring bulbs and ducklings or summer greenery accompanied by birdsong?
Last date edited: 6 September 2017