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Top tips for canal boaters

Narrow boating is one of the many favourite pass times for people of all ages, and it can be an enjoyable time, wandering through the beautiful British canals in the best parts of the British weather!

To help make your canal boating experience a lot smoother, we’ve put together our top tips for beginners.

1. Planning

One of the best things about choosing a canal boating holiday is that there is a lot of information out there that you can research and learn more about your trip. Take time to have a look at the route map and the different alternative routes available. You should also be realistic about how many miles you’d like to travel a day, as dusk till dawn cruising can be quite stressful, so you may want to consider a break and choosing a location where there are local amenities such as restaurants, cafes etc. for a quick pit stop.

2. Packing

When it comes to canal boating trips, less is not always more! It’s always best to pack all essentials plus extras, just in case the journey lasts longer than originally planned.

3. Boating season

If you decide to book your trip in the main holiday boating season, which is usually between March till October, expect the most popular canals to be busy and sometimes large queues at locks and popular mooring sites will also fill up fast. So it would be worth planning ahead and check the busy periods of the canals you wish to visit.

4. Day boats

If it is your first time, it may be worth considering renting a day boat for a taster session, before you embark on a long journey. This way you can get a better feel of the boating experience.

5: Don’t stress

The most important advice we can give is to enjoy the experience. There will be moments where you may come across difficulties, but it’s important you stay calm for your self, and for your fellow crew members, as this can cause unnecessary panic around the boat. Talk to each other and come up with a solution together.

Canal boating is a great opportunity to experience the open air and enjoy the beautiful scenery and wildlife you wouldn’t normally get to see in any other holiday.