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Bridgwater & Taunton Canal

Bridgwater Taunton Canal - Moorings, Canalside Pubs, Barge Hire and Canal Holidays. 

The tabs above will give you information you need for the planning of your Bridgwater & Taunton Canal narrowboat holiday, cycle route, towpath walk or favourite fishing spots with the canal guide being printable to use while on your canal adventure. Using information through our Bridgwater and Taunton Canal guide, Bridgwater and Taunton Canal map and photo galleries we can help you find narrowboat hire bases, mooring spots, places to eat at canalside pubs and restaurants, towns, villages and landmarks of interest. Information of all kinds is added all the time so if you can’t find some information at this time be assured that we are working hard to get it on the site as soon as we can.

 

The lucky few who manage to cruise the Bridgwater and Taunton Canal have the privilege of gently motoring through some of the best scenery in Somerset for 14 blissful miles. The reason the canal cannot be linked further through the River Parrett is that the river is salt water and silt laden, and other than the fact that the canal would also become silt laden, it also performs a dual function of not only providing drinking water to Bridgwater but also as flood relief from the River Tone, in short through necessity and population pressure the canal will always stand alone.

Waterways Leisure is a valuable resource for information on canal pubs, barge hire and places to eat and drink. In addition we also offer a range of country clothing and country wear and clothing which is suitable to be embroidered with our top embroidery service.

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The Following Bridgwater Taunton Canal Guide is not only a guide for people are lucky enough to cruise the canal but is written to be just as handy for activities along the towpath with information of attractions, highlights, land marks, mooring spots, food shops , canalside pubs and other places to eat in the settlements along the Canal. Both the canal map and canal guide can be printed off by clicking the icon on the right to be taken with you as you enjoy your time on the Bridgwater Taunton Canal.

The lucky few who manage to cruise the Bridgwater and Taunton Canal have the privilege of gently motoring through some of the best scenery in Somerset for 14 blissful miles. The reason the canal cannot be linked further through the River Parrett is that the river is salt water and silt laden, and other than the fact that the canal would also become silt laden, it also performs a dual function of not only providing drinking water to Bridgwater but also as flood relief from the River Tone, in short through necessity and population pressure the canal will always stand alone.

For a stretch of canal that has such a fine reputation for idyllic rural scenery through the lowlands of Somerset the canal starts relatively inauspiciously in the centre of Taunton diverging from the River Tone below the French Weir and heading out of Taunton in an easterly direction. The surroundings at the point of origin are somewhat industrial, cosseted between a railway line and a retail park, however the Somerset County Cricket Ground is close by and the banks of the canal and nearby river are green and tree lined with most of the noise of urban life drowned out by the nearby weir. Taunton offers much to do, there is a wide choice in parkland, shopping, dining, a golf course, museums and the impressive St Mary Magdalene Church to explore.

The canal takes a short route out of Taunton and soon leads past the village of Bathpool, there is a small marina here with several boats usually moored up. The village viewed from the canal looks relatively unspectacular, being mostly modern housing bordering the banks, but there are places to eat and drink within the village.

After leaving Bathpool the canal crosses under the M5 for the first of two times, by this time the canal is dipping through arable farmland offering up reed lined banks and contented waterfowl. Before the deafening noise of the M5 is properly left behind the canal comes into the village of Creech Saint Michael, a very pleasant village bordering the canal, set amidst a tight border of fields. The village offers a convenience store should provisions be required. It is from this point for the next mile or two that the railway line that has been a field or two away for some time now comes much closer, and the intermittent raucous noise of trains have to be tolerated.

Once away from the village the low lying land gives far reaching views across endless farmland punctuated by thickets of trees and a peaceful golf course bordering the left side of the canal. Once the canal and railway diverge the true rural idyllic charm of the area can be fully appreciated. Tiny hamlets such as Hedging and Lower Durston are just beyond sight and sound and the wildlife seems to thrive all the more for it.

Maunsel Lock is where the Somerset Space Walk is centred around, which is a scale model of the Solar System that runs along the towpath. There is a tea room in the area and the well manicured grounds of Maunsel Hall can be seen to the left as you serenely cruise down past North Newton into the quietest stretch of the canal. The canal runs on a more or less northerly course through flat arable farmland coming right down to meet the reed banks on the canal, this is where the canal provides peace for cruisers and a rich habitation for a broad range of wildlife. Traffic on the canal is so low due to no large boat hire companies operating along the canal. However you choose to enjoy the waterway whether a cruiser, cyclist, canoeist, walker or fisherman, all get to appreciate the fine wildlife rich surroundings in relative peace.

The canal heads west once more and passes under the M5 for the second and last time and heads past the industrial area to the south east of Bridgwater, where the River Parett comes into sight on the right, the tree lined banks mean that much of what lies beyond the river is unseen. The views to the left alternate between residential area, open parkland, fields and small lakes which is very pleasant for an otherwise urban setting. The canal ends abruptly at Bridgwater Docks offering a convenient point to jump off and explore the town. The centre of Bridgwater is certainly worthy of spending some time exploring, the buildings around the Cornhill market are exceptional, and the town offers a pleasant environment to shop and a choice of places to eat and drink in.

Waterways Leisure is a valuable resource for information on canal pubs, barge hire and places to eat and drink. In addition we also offer a range of country clothing and country wear and clothing which is suitable to be embroidered with our top embroidery service.