canal boat holiday

Canal Boat Holidays

A canal boat holiday is the perfect getaway

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The beautiful canals of England and Wales wind their way through a variety of interesting and distinctive canal boat holidays locations offering you the chance to stop off and investigate further at a mooring of your choice or to simply continue cruising onto the next destination.

River Soar

A canal boat holidays information article.

Marina(s) : Union Wharf, Rugby, Gayton

Linked to : River Trent, Grand Union Canal

Locks : 21

Forms part of the Leicestershire and East Midlands Ring

The River Soar is a tributary of the River Trent and flows from Hinckley in Leicestershire to Ratcliffe-on-Soar in Nottinghamshire and was once the most profitable commercial navigation in Britain. As it meanders it way trough Leicester it is joined by the Grand Union Canal at Aylestone.

The River Soar was once notorious for the pink colour of its water, unfortunately a result of pollution from the textile industry. However after years of cleaning the waters have now been restored to its natural state, encouraging the return of bird life, fish and plants that now thrive. According to legend, the body of King Richard 111 was thrown into the Soar after his death. The bridge carrying the main road across the Soar at Leicester is known as King Richard's Bridge.

For an experience that is out of this world visit the UK's largest 360° planetarium. Go on an interactive journey through six stunning galleries, explore the Universe and experience space. The National Space Centre is the only visitor attraction solely dedicated to space. Learn facts and mythical information about the planets. Designed as a news desk 'Space Now' brings you up to date with space related news as it happens.

Divided by the River Soar Abbey Park is Leicester’s premier park and lies approximately one mile north of the City centre. To the east of the river lies the highly decorative Victorian part of the park with its evergreen shrubberies, trees, lakes and formally planted flower displays and to the west of the river lies the fascinating Abbey Grounds. Within this area are the remains of the twelfth century Leicester Abbey and the ruins of Cavendish House, a seventeenth century mansion.

Watermead Country Park is a haven for wildlife and a is developing one of the largest reedbed areas in the Midlands. The Country Park is nearly two miles long and as its name suggests it is a wetland area, with over 12 lakes and smaller ponds. It is an ideal spot for walking, cycling, picnics, bird watching, fishing or more active water sports.

Belgrave Hall was built by Edmund Cradock, a 'nouveau riche' hosiery merchant, between 1709 and 1713. Today it is used as a museum and gives visitors a glimpse of the past, the period rooms show the contrasting lifestyles of an upper middle class family and domestic servant.

Leicester is a diverse city where you can find the big brand names to the small independent shops of St Martin's. The "Golden Mile" is packed with shops and traders selling South Asian food, clothing and jewellery. The has been a Market in Leicester for over 700 years and it is now Europe’s largest covered market. In the Market Centre are many more indoor stalls, selling fresh fish, meat, cheeses and the local specialities of Melton Mowbray Pork Pies and Stilton. The choice of cafés and restaurants in Leicester ranges from lively Spanish tapas bars, to Creole and from romantic French restaurants to Arabic eating houses.

Sileby is a former industrial village located in the Soar Valley between Leicester and Loughbrough.

There are moorings available at Sileby for Canal Boat visitors and it is a good place to stop and stock up with fresh provisions.The village offer a number of shops and has a good selection of pubs close by.

Mountsorrel is an old village that was originally located on the old coaching route from London to Carlisle. The older part of the village touches on the River Soar and there are local shops, pubs and restaurants within easy walking distance of the moorings.

Loughborough is perhaps best known for its internationally respected university, however, in contrast to the cutting edge academic reputation, the town is in fact an ancient one. The town affords many fine example of architecture from the nineteenth century Italian-style Town Hall to All Saints Church in the Medieval heart of the old town. The Old Rectory is a rare example of a 13th century stone manor house and is now home to a fascinating museum. Carillon Court is the towns main shopping centre where 35 high street shops can be found under one roof. As you would expect from a diverse university town there are a vast selection of places to eat and drink.

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