Canal boat holidays Wales


If your looking to get away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life then a canal boat holiday in Wales is the perfect getaway. The waterways of Wales represent one of the few ways in which to find the peace and tranquillity that most people crave for. Many people choose Llangollen for their perfect canal boat holiday.

What to expect in Wales

There are not many canals in Wales but the Llangollen canal shows off some of the finest Welsh hillsides and countryside that Wales has to offer. The cruise from Trevor basin along the north side of the Dee valley to Llangollen is spectacular. The two “narrows” section that are only 8ft wide shows how the canal has been cut into the hillside which make for an even more exciting trip on board Miss Molly.

The World Heritage Site; Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and 11 miles of the Llangollen canal.

Would you like to cruise along the World Heritage site; The Pontycysyllte aqueduct and the Llangollen canal? A Miss Molly day cruise takes you from Chirk, over the Chirk aqueduct, through two tunnels, under the lift bridge at Fron basin and then over the daring Pontcysyllte aqueduct.  

The aqueduct was designed by Thomas Telford and built by William Jessop.  It took ten years to build and was opened on 26th November 1805 at a grand cost then of £47,000! It is also a Scheduled Ancient monument and a Grade 1 listed structure. It comprises of 19 arches, each with a span of 45ft (13.72m) with piers that are 116ft (35.36m) high. At the highest point it is 128feet (39m.) above the beautiful River Dee. It’s quite a drop from the open stern side of a narrow boat! Just like the Chirk aqueduct, the piers are partly hollow to reduce the weight. Telford used only four cast iron arches per span to support a cast iron trough that is 11ft (3.35m) wide and only 5ft 3” (1.6m) deep. The cast iron joints were sealed by means of a waterproofing sandwich of Welsh flannel soaked in a mixture of boiled sugar and lead. It still doesn’t leak, even today!  The upstream edge beam is only 4 inches wide! This gives the fine impression that one is suspended in mid air as one crosses the aqueduct and has quite rightly given the structure it’s name of a “stream in the sky”.

The total length of this amazing aqueduct is 1007 feet (306.93m). I am assured by a Welsh family on a recent Miss Molly day cruise that a literal Welsh translation of Pontcysyllte means the “Bridge that connects” and it certainly does that! After crossing over this spectacular structure, either on foot or by boat, one can only wonder at how they constructed it 205 years ago. One can really appreciate why it has now achieved the World Heritage status it so well deserves. 

For more information on our fabulous canal boat holidays in Wales and hire details contact us on 01352 781784, alternatively click here.

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