One reason that UK canal vacations have been such a well kept secret is that the firms who rent self drive boats or offer hotelboat cruises are mainly family owned and run and sell direct to the customer. The Internet now allows you to deal directly with them. Their web sites show the boats they have and the routes you can cruise. Look through our UK Canals (left) and see which area and canal appeals to you most. You can then link to firms on that canal. Or use the Canal Junction links below left.    Your choice may be limited by the period that you can travel in of course. You can check that the cruise or boat you want is available and make a reservation by email. Most firms will then want a booking form posted with cheque or faxed with credit card details. They are used to entertaining overseas clients so will be able to answer all your questions. Britain is a fairly compact country and has efficient transport systems. The northern most English canals are no more than 3 hours by train from London and if you fly into Manchester or Birmingham airports, for instance, you could be at any one of dozens of canalside boatyards by taxi or bus in under an hour. If you rent a boat or join a hotelboat cruise you will get detailed joining information often including suggestions for local accommodation and attractions.             “But how can we organise our UK canal vacation from 3000 miles away?”  Canal Vacations promotes the wonderful leisure opportunities on UK canals. We don't offer boats or vacations of our own! Our sister site Canal Junction has links to recommended Barge Hire Firms Book Now via Canal Junction!