Take to the waterways of the UK, France, the Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, Ireland, Italy and Canada to explore just as you choose, in your own time with total freedom to moor when you wish to visit villages or attractions en route or find the perfect waterside restaurant or vineyard perhaps. Maybe cycling or water sports are your favourites – you’ll be travelling in the ideal places for these. A little light paddleboarding or kayaking before supper maybe?
Why Le Boat?
This is an ideal experience for novices or experienced river and canal sailors. You really don’t need any experience to captain (or crew) the boat. Choose a boat for two, a family or a group of friends, even take a dog or two. Nothing is more relaxing than meandering along the waterways and finding the perfect spot to stop. Wherever you go there will peace and quiet, tranquil escapes or, if you prefer, lively riverside villages where you’ll join in local life.
The world looks different, better even, from the water.
‘Life is slow on the river – it’s not about getting to a destination, it’s about enjoying the journey. A chance to opt out from the hectic world of rushing crowds, busy schedules and noise. It’s a tiny bit of the world where everyone is friendly, people in every boat wave to you, walkers on the tow path wave and when you stop at a lock everyone will chat,’ explains travel writer Peter Lynch.
What are the boats actually like?
Writer Russell Higham was happily surprised when he saw his holiday accommodation, ‘I was expecting the kind of cramped, slim-hulled narrowboat you might see chugging up the Grand Union canal with a deck barely wide enough to open out the Sunday papers on. What greeted me, however, was something more like the latest plaything of a junior oligarch. The five-star Vision 4 has four cabins, each with its own ensuite bathroom, plus a spacious saloon and fully equipped kitchen and galley with seating that converts to an additional bed, meaning that up to nine people can sleep in comfort and privacy. There’s plenty of room up on deck too, with enough tables and chairs to invite on board any friends you might meet along the way for dinner or cocktails.’ That sounds more than acceptable! Rather lovely in fact.
Enjoy regal cruising along the River Thames
No river is more important is British history, it was a major transport route for centuries and so the historic palaces and stately homes close by, Windsor Castle, Hampton Court and Fawley Court at Henley to name but a few, offer a look at times gone by. Drive yourself on water to pretty Cookham and Marlow, even reach Oxford with its ‘dreaming spires’. What’s more, many of the riverside towns are famous for their breweries and eateries so you can step away from the galley for a meal or two. Although al fresco dining in secluded spots, ideal for wildlife-spotting, is a total joy. For a relaxing staycation, a trip on the Thames is hard to beat.
Scotland – About Loch Ness and the Caledonian Canal
If you have a desire to immerse yourselves in magnificent scenery and countryside, a trip along the Caledonian canal is a marvellous way to see Scotland’s exceptional landscapes. Travelling through the Highlands is utterly beautiful, with time spent on the stunning lochs situated in dramatic valleys of the Great Glen, the fault line which is responsible for the breath-taking natural beauty. Filled with castles, pleasant towns on the lochs, restaurants offering fresh seafood and locally sourced dishes along with a wee dram at the friendly hostelries and the haunting sound of bagpipes. A self-drive boating holiday will give you time to savour it all.
Luxuriate in the laid-back charm of beautiful Canal du Midi
Holidays are the perfect time to explore and on a boat, you can leisurely travel between the fascinating, aged villages, such as Carcassonne, along the Canal du Midi, stopping off to visit the famous vineyards of the Languedoc. Cycling here is a pleasure on quiet towpaths and along country lanes. The canal takes in busy Toulouse for a change of pace and flows down to the Mediterranean. See France in a whole new way.
Holland, Amsterdam and Friesland
Water water everywhere: that’s how The Netherlands seem with rivers, dykes and city canals criss-crossing its flat landscape. There are miles and miles of navigable waterways where you’ll pass working windmills, arable and dairy farms, traditional villages. Why not head into the heart of cities like Amsterdam and Utrecht for museums and a spot of cycling? Easy and laid back, the Dutch approach to life matches the qualities of a Le Boat Holiday.
Visit Le Boat or call our Silver Travel Advisors to book your holiday: 0800 412 5678