Leading boating holiday specialist Waterways Holidays is highlighting family-friendly attractions and events on Britain’s canal network this Easter.
“Britain’s canals are open all year, but the hire season really kicks off at Easter,” says managing director Nigel Richards. “Our team has picked our top five family-friendly attractions which can be visited during an Easter narrowboat break.”
- Easter Boat Gathering: National Waterways Museum, Ellesmere Port on the Shropshire Union Canal, 14-17 April. This annual gathering of narrowboats is a colourful illustration of canal history, with dozens of vintage boats on show. The museum itself is fascinating and fun and at Easter there are live performances and kids’ activities. Family ticket £19.
- Black Country Living Museum: a few minutes’ walk from the Dudley Canal in the heart of the West Midlands, 8-23 April. This exciting open-air museum covers 26 acres and brings the industrial revolution to life with recreated streets, tram rides, crafts and industries. Easter egg hunts, egg rolling, fresh hot cross buns from the Victorian bakery. Family ticket £44.10.
- Cadbury World: Bournville, Birmingham, 8-23 April. The Birmingham and Worcester Canal passes through Bournville, with the chocolate-lovers’ attraction within 15 minutes’ walk. Live shows with magicians, ventriloquists and other family-friendly entertainment every day, plus Easter Egg Hunts and Bonnet competitions over the bank holiday weekend. Family ticket £47.44.
- Warwick Castle: 8-23 April. The Grand Union Canal runs through this historic Heart of England town, where the amazing castle sits above the River Avon. From the Horrible Histories Maze to the Dungeons, the castle makes learning fun for kids of any age. Individual tickets from £13.
- The Egg: Bath Theatre Royal, throughout April. The theatre’s children’s centre is busy throughout the Easter holidays, with shows such as Eloise and the Curse of the Golden Whisk 18-23 April. The Egg’s patron is Sam West, son of celebrity narrowboaters Timothy West and Prunella Scales, who helped restore the Kennett and Avon Canal which runs through Bath. Variable ticket prices.
This Easter, a week’s narrowboat hire through Waterways Holidays starts at £795. That’s for a four-berth, 50-feet long narrowboat such as Phoenix, starting from Norbury on the Shropshire Union Canal. From here, either Ellesemere Port (for the National Waterways Museum) or Dudley (for the Black Country Living Museum) can be reached during a week’s cruise.
Waterways Holidays: 01252 339023, www.waterwaysholidays.com