A wide choice of self-drive canal
boat holidays with Viking Afloat throughout the Waterways,
(Canals and Rivers) of England and Wales.
Afloat will introduce you to one of Britain's best kept secrets,
the 2000 mile network of waterways and navigations, for which
the canal boat was specially designed, that meander across
some of the most beautiful countryside, and past pubs, cottages
and warehouses. Here you will discover the Britain most tourists
miss on their holidays.
We will introduce you to Viking Afloat
one of Britain's largest and most successful canal boat holiday operators.
First time boaters are given a friendly welcome by everybody
on the canal. But you won't be inexperienced for very long,
for within a short time you will be gliding serenely around
the first bend into a whole new and different world.
The specially designed canal boats are easy to handle and
of course, everything happens at a relaxed pace. You will
be given all the instruction you need by the holiday company
and will soon head off on your very own adventure like a seasoned
Your canal boat will be fully equipped with every modern
amenity, so self-catering becomes a pleasure, but there are
also many canalside pubs, once essential 'staging posts' for
the working boats of the last century, which are now popular
watering holes for holiday boaters; and most offer great food
at reasonable prices.
Most visitors appreciate the independence, the peace and
tranquillity of 'getting away from it all'. You can choose
between the challenge of some of the densely belocked stretches
of canal - quite astounding feats of engineering - or choose
lazy days drifting along the many stretches with very few
locks. The canals and rivers go through the heart of the
cities as well as through open countryside, and your boat
can be a mobile base for exploring the history of our great
trading routes, or for the diverse entertainment you will
find in our largest city centres.
Two thousand miles of tranquil waterways, threading their
way through some of Britain's most beautiful and unspoiled
countryside, offering a haven for wildlife and an insight
into our industrial heritage. A network of waterways taking
you to the heart of major cities, with all the entertainment
and leisure facilities that they provide.
There is nothing quite like a holiday on Britain's Inland
waterways. Camaraderie when you meet other boaters, friendliness
when you tie up at the pub for a drink or a meal. A holiday
of contrasts, taken at a slow pace. The variety is endless,
city, town, village and country, wide canal, narrow canal
and river. Every bend brings forth some new feature. You can
never see it all, no matter how many times you return. But
why worry?A Canal Boat Holiday
is for relaxation, for unwinding from every day pressures,
for doing what you like, when you like.
Week end breaks:You start out on a Friday afternoon
around 3.00 pm and following a full demonstration of how to
handle the boat and work the locks (all very straightforward)
you are off on a carefree 3 night break, exploring the real
Britain. Saturday and Sunday are yours to do with as
you please and the only thing you really need to remember
is that these Weekend breaks finish at 9.30 am on the Monday
morning, when you have to hand the boat back to the boatyard.
Mid week breaks: These equally popular breaks, have
you cruising away from the boatyard around 3.00 pm on a Monday
afternoon and the good news is that you don't have to be back
until Fiday morning at 9.30 am! This gives you a full
four nights away and yet the price is exactly the same as
for the Weekend.
We rate personal choice very highly - choice of cruising
routes from one of our four bases; choice of hire periods,
including Short Breaks, one and two week holidays; choice
of no less than four different start days and a remarkable
choice of boats which are fully equipped for parties of two
to ten people. We want you to enjoy the special experience
of a holiday with Viking Afloat and so we try to make your
booking as all inclusive as possible whilst at the same time
offering genuine flexibility.
As a result of listening to what our customers say, we provide
one of the most extensive inventories to be found on a hire
craft anywhere in Britain. We are also one of a very few companies
that provide pure filtered drinking water on all of our boats
and as part of the service, we provide everyone with a full
demonstration of the boat and its systems, as well as teaching
newcomers how to handle the boats and how to work the canal
locks. Every boat has on board a comprehensive manual and
we provide expert help around the clock with our 24 hour emergency
For your added convenience we are now able to offer an online
booking availability request. Just select a base and class
of boat, decide when you would like to take your canal boat
holiday and then click on the 'check availability' icon
Our Holiday Centres
Heart of England - WORCESTER
Our base at Worcester is situated on the Worcester/Birmingham
Canal close to its junction with the River Severn and close
to the heart of the historic Cathedral City. It's the
ideal starting point for a number of great holidays and short
breaks, including the Stourport Ring and the Avon Ring.
Welsh Borders - WHITCHURCH
From our Whitchurch site, on the spectacular Llangollen
Canal, you can cruise to Llangollen itself, visit Chester
or take two weeks out and explore the waterways of the North
West of England.
Shakespeare Country - RUGBY
Our Rugby Wharf site is on the northern section of the
idyllic Oxford Canal, close to the town of Rugby, from where
you have an extensive selection of rural routes to explore
and enjoy, including the very popular Warwickshire ring.
Potteries and Peak District - GAILEY
Located on the Staffs and Worcester Canal just a few miles
from Stafford, Gailey Wharf is the perfect starting point
for a variety of trips, including the outstanding Four Counties
Ring or a visit to the delightful Caldon Canal.