UK Canal Guide

The canals of the United Kingdom are a vast and fascinating network of waterways that offer a unique way to explore the country. With over 2,700 miles of navigable canals you can explore the bustling cities of London and Birmingham to beautiful stretches of tranquil countryside.

Oxford Canal junction sign
Short break canal boat holiday

Exploring the UK by canal

If you are looking for a unique and relaxing way to explore the UK, then the canals are the perfect way to do it. There are a variety of ways to enjoy the canals, including boating, walking, and cycling.

Black Prince offers nine starting points in England, Scotland and Wales, each featuring a number of cruising routes, from short breaks to longer holidays.

Here are some of the most popular canals in the UK:

Grand Union Canal

The Grand Union Canal is one of the longest in the UK, and it runs from Birmingham to London. It is a popular route for boaters, offering a great mix of countryside and town boating.

Leeds Liverpool Canal

The Leeds & Liverpool Canal is another long and popular route, and it runs from Leeds to Liverpool. It is a great way to see the industrial heartland of the UK.

Kennet & Avon Canal

The Kennet & Avon Canal is a beautiful and historic route, and it runs from Bath to Bristol. It is a popular route for walkers and cyclists, and it offers stunning views of the countryside.

Oxford Canal

The Oxford Canal is a charming and historic route, and it runs from Oxford to Birmingham. It is a popular route for boaters, especially the short breaks to Oxford.

Llangollen Canal

The historic Llangollen Canal is a beautiful route, running from Llangollen to Chester. Highlights include the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and the Chirk Aqueduct.

Union Canal

The Union Canal is a 31-mile canal in Scotland that forms part of the waterway that connects Edinburgh and Glasgow.

Forth & Clyde Canal

The Forth & Clyde Canal is a 35-mile canal in Scotland that connects the Firth of Forth in the east and the Firth of Clyde on the west coast.

Macclesfield Canal

The Macclesfield Canal is a 32-mile canal in Cheshire, England, connecting the town of Macclesfield with the River Mersey.

Shropshire Union Canal

The Shropshire Union Canal, or ‘Shroppie’ is a 147-mile canal in England that connects the River Mersey at Ellesmere Port to Wolverhampton.

Stratford Canal

The Stratford Canal is a 25.5-mile canal in the English Midlands that connects the River Avon at Stratford-upon-Avon to the Grand Union Canal at Kingswood Junction.

Worcester & Birmingham Canal

The Worcester & Birmingham Canal connects the River Severn at Worcester to the Birmingham Canal Navigations at Gas Street Basin in Birmingham. It is 29 miles long and is used for both commercial and recreational boating.