What form of travel allows you to settle into just one place for your holiday, but at the same time visit multiple destinations?

A stay on a houseboat, of course!

From hotel riverboats to barges, yachts and houseboats small and large, luxury to basic, and everything in between, a floating holiday might just be the right choice for you!

It’s one of the best kept secrets of European vacations – for those who are already in the know. With a quick lesson and no special license required, the options are endless. You can rent your own houseboat and begin your adventure on the vast water landscape.

“Living on the water took away the boundaries created by land and custom and introversion. Without fences and driveways, the water provided a constant thread of connection and dependency.”

Lily Graham, The Cornish Escape

So, what are your options for houseboat travel?

In the following parts of Europe, Canalboats are available: Belgium, England, France, Germany, Holland, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Scotland, Spain & the UK. (This is not an exhaustive list.)

You can choose between every style imaginable– from fully catered luxury stays to small group tours, to do it yourself stays- all depending on your preferences.

You’ll be surprised at how many choices there are. How about chartering your own cruise or joining a tour – with the latter, you’ll get to enjoy interacting with small groups of people on a floating hotel.  Everything is built in for you to enjoy!

Renting your own houseboat is one option and one that gives you endless possibilities in terms of what you can do. This includes stopping at local villages, markets, shops, bakeries and patisseries. What better way to get a taste of a culture than to immerse yourself in these daily go-to places? For those interested in taking a bike ride through these towns, bikes are typically available to rent – just take them with you on the boat! Bikes are also a great way to visit local sites and vineyards.

Let us know in the comments: Have you ever been on a houseboat?

Marvel as you travel slowly along waterways that have served for hundreds of years to transport people and goods – so clearly the roads of a bygone era.

Are you looking for a more luxurious experience on the water? How about a full staff – running both the boat and the kitchen on your behalf? Personal chef, anyone? Local fare and delicious wines for dinner?

If all of this sounds like a dream, it isn’t! The good news is that we’re here to tell you it’s easier than ever and very affordable. It wins on so many counts, as the best way to see some countryside with views that only a canal or other waterway can show you. A vantage point that is truly unique.

Are you ready for how great this is?

Do you want to just relax, enjoy spectacular views, and create memories of a lifetime?

With just a few tips, you’ll be ready to navigate the canals, river-ways and locks. Then, it’s time to just admire the view, enjoy the most delectable local foods and wines, and visit some of the great sites along the way. No car or bus, no unpacking and repacking – just settle in for the duration of a magical life-enhancing experience.

Follow us as we bring you different suggestions for tours and itineraries for 2018. We will work with a selection of operators and owners to bring you some really great ideas, so stay tuned!
Click here to subscribe