Lock-free to Foxton and Watford

~ Scenic cruise ~

Cruising pace: 1/5

Holiday: Weekend getaway

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sheep seen on narrowboat holiday on the grand union canal leicester sectionCruise highlights

  • Picturesque landscape
  • Canalside pub stops every day
  • Explore Foxton and Watford locks without effort


Moor your boutique narrowboat on the towpath in front of Crick restaurantAt a glance

  • 40 miles
  • Entirely lock-free
  • 4 tunnels
  • Suitable for novices

Suggested itinerary

Friday: 3 hours cruising

  • Comprehensive boat handling training at North Kilworth marina.
  • Cruise through Husbands Bosworth tunnel (wide enough for two narrowboats to pass) to the top of Foxton Locks.
  • Turn round (“wind”) just after going under the Gumley Road Bridge (No 60.)
  • Moor up and walk down the towpath to explore the canal museum and famous Inclined Plane.
  • Finish the day with a meal in the bar or restaurant at Foxton Locks Inn (0116 279 1515 to book at busy times).

Saturday: 7 hours cruising

  • You can buy breakfast rolls and coffee at the top and bottom of the locks to ease yourself into the day.
  • Set off back the way you came, back through Husbands Bosworth tunnel.
  • Cruise back past North Kilworth Marina, mooring up for a towpath lunch
  • Continue on through this winding and unspoilt section of the canal until you reach Bridge 12 at Crick, where you can moor up for the night and enjoy a meal at The Moorings (www.mooringscrick.co.uk or 01788 822517 to check food serving times in the winter.)

Sunday: 7 hours cruising

  • Head on through Crick tunnel (wide enough for two narrowboats to pass.)
  • Go under five more bridges until you can turn at the Winding Hole just after Ashby’s Bridge (No 7), immediately before Watford Locks. Moor up and have a little explore – it’s a beautiful flight of locks with stunning views.
  • Go on back through Crick tunnel and moor for a spot of lunch wherever takes your fancy. If a pub is more your style, The Knightley Arms (01788 823555) is a short walk from Skew Bridge (No 19) at Yelvertoft.
  • Moor up at North Kilworth Marina for the night. 


  • Enjoy a final breakfast aboard, before vacating the boat by 9.30am.

Please check that your route isn’t affected by any canal closures before you travel, using the following link:

Live updates on canal closures and restrictions on the Grand Union (Leicester line), Market Harborough and Welford arms.


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