Bank holiday rural retreats on the Llangollen Canal

Bank holiday rural retreats on a canal boat

Our beautiful canals take you through some of Britain’s best loved countryside, offering perfect bank holiday rural retreats.

There are places to moor up your canal boat in quiet backwaters.  And the chance to visit historic country pubs and farm shops.

Here’s a list of our top 5 bank holiday boating rural retreats:

1. Napton, Oxford Canal in Warwickshire

From our base at Stockton on the Grand Union Canal it’s a two-hour cruise through the countryside to Napton.  Here, close to the canal a herd of water buffalo can often be seen grazing.  In 1999, the Buffalo Farm at Chapel Green started milking 20 water buffalo, and now the herd is 300 strong.  Napton Village Stores sells the farm’s Buffalo burgers, sausages, meatballs, steaks and ice cream.  They also sell veg boxes, homemade meals, cider and homemade cakes.

2. Great Haywood, Trent & Mersey Canal in Staffordshire

Our base at Great Haywood offers a great bank holiday rural retreat in the Staffordshire countryside. On a weekend break, you can cruise along the Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal to Tixall Wide. This beautiful lake is a peaceful haven for wildlife and a great escape into the country.  The journey takes just half an hour. Before setting off, the Canalside Farm Shop at Great Haywood is perfect for stocking up on local food.  The shop sells a variety of produce sourced from local farms, including homemade sausages, fruit, vegetables, free range eggs and baked products.

3. Llangynidr, Monmouthshire & Brecon Canal in South Wales

The beautiful Monmouthshire & Brecon Canal runs through the Brecon Beacons National Park. The waterway offers the chance to escape to the country and experience incredible mountain views.  On a weekend’s break from Goytre Wharf near Abergavenny, you can cruise lock-free to Llangynidr and back.  The route goes through a series of small villages with historic pubs, including the Lion Inn at Govilon.

4. Stoke Golding, Ashby Canal in Leicestershire

From Springwood Haven, it takes around six hours to cruise to the historic village of Stoke Golding. This bank holiday rural retreat takes you through the Leicestershire countryside along the Ashby Canal.  There are no locks along the way. Stoke Golding has one of the most beautiful churches in England and a choice of pubs, including the White Swan. Before setting off, you can stock up on local produce at the Poplars Farm shop and café near Nuneaton. The shop sells fruit, vegetables, honey, local cheese, eggs, poultry and jams.

5. Chirk, Llangollen Canal in Shropshire/North Wales

On a weekend break from Blackwater Meadow you can cruise through the Shropshire countryside to Chirk and back.  The journey there and back takes around 11 hours and there are only two locks to go through each way.  You’ll travel across the stunning Chirk Aqueduct, crossing the border from England to Wales.  Then on through Chirk Tunnel to Chirk Marina, where you can moor up to visit the National Trust’s Chirk Castle.  There’s a café at the castle, and choice of canalside pubs, including The Bridge at Chirk Bank.