Canalboating is a wonderfully relaxing way to travel: not only are you in a beautiful setting, steeped in incredible history, but you get to set your own pace, traveling for 4 or 5 hours a day or just staying put to enjoy your floating home and explore the surrounding towns and countryside. You can moor up in the heart of a beautiful city like Bath, or find a quiet spot in the country and walk to the local pub for dinner. Travel on canals is at a leisurely pace, no more than 4 miles per hour, and you find yourself just relaxing, having a cuppa on the foredeck while taking in the scenery and all the sites along the way. My wife especially enjoyed the stable water on the canal; no concerns with motion sickness.
We were aboard Moondance, and she is a beautiful vessel--65 feet long and 10 feet wide (widebeam) with plenty of room aboard. She has a kitchen, dining area, living room, two cabins, and two bathrooms, one with a Jacuzzi tub! We shared our 11 day voyage through the English countryside with another couple, and it was a wonderful vacation. Nikki and her staff at Moonraker did an excellent job of preparing Moondance for us--flowers and chocolates were waiting for us as we came aboard-- and it really was exciting to see our home-afloat for the first time! We received a full set of instructions on how to pilot Moondance, as well as details on negotiating locks, mooring, and the daily running of the boat; it really is quite simple. Nikki was great to work with throughout the planning process and during our trip. She even arranged for one of her staff to come and give us a hand negotiating the Caen Hill locks; it takes a few hours to transit the 29 locks with a 237 foot rise.
We enjoyed our time so much that we're planning our second trip with Moonraker. We intend to traverse the eastern part of the Kennet and Avon and then make our way on to the Thames. We can't wait! -skipper of Moondance in June 2012