Nothing beats mooring up and quenching your thirst in a cosy pub after a day on the waterways – especially on a cold, winter day. Here are ten of our favourite places to eat and drink in.
Corn Mill – Llangollen
If you’re looking for home-cooked food and some fantastic views – then look no further then the Corn Mill just a few yards down from the wharf on the Llangollen Canal. The pub has an amazing history dating all the way back to the 13th Century. Originally a working mill that was closed in 1974, the interior retains a lot of its original features – even the water wheel that turns slowly behind the bar. Sitting directly over the River Dee customers can take in the breathtaking views of the rapids whilst enjoying one of the many real ale’s that the Corn Mill has to offer.
The Manor Arms – Rushall
The Manor Arms claims to date back to the 12th Century, making it one of Britain’s oldest pubs. It has an incredible canal-side location and perhaps most interestingly – a bar room with no bar. It’s a Marston’s house offering Boondoggle, Hobgoblin and Sunbeam ale.
Black Lion – Consall Forge Village
Tucked away in the heart of the Churnet Valley on the Caldon Canal, the Black Lion is the epitome of Staffordshire tradition. With moorings right outside the pub visiting by canal boat couldn’t be easier, they even offer a boaters shop that will deliver groceries directly to your boat. As well as selling more established brewer’s beer, the Black Lion also offers beer from the small Peakstone’s Rock brewery in Alton.
The Three Horseshoes – Hemel Hampstead
The Three Horseshoes is located in the tiny hamlet of Winkwell, it lies between the railway line and the Grand Union Canal. The pub dates back in parts to 1535, it was once a popular stopping point for working narrowboats where they could stock up on groceries and stable their horses. They keep a great stock of real ales that they change up regularly; you can keep track of what they’re via their website. The food is quite expensive but the buzzing atmosphere and monthly ‘Comedy on the canal’ event make having to pay that little bit extra more than worth it.
Barge Inn – Wiltshire
The Barge Inn’s construction in 1810 coincided with the opening of the Kennet & Avon canal and lies right on the canal bank making it the perfect destination after a day on the cut. The pub itself has become synonymous with aliens and UFO’s after a crop circle was discovered in the area in 1990. As a result, all of the locally brewed ales and ciders follow that theme – ‘The Alien Abduction’ is a local favourite (it also just happens to be green). Even if aliens and UFO’s aren’t your cup-of-tea the pub still offers a beautiful canal-side location and a campsite with lots of amenities.
The Two Boats Inn – Long Itchington
The Two Boats is a traditional canal-side pub that was built in 1743. Located in a stunning location right on the tow path of the Grand Union Canal, customers can enjoy an amazing selection of real ales, ciders, bottle and draught beers and homemade pub food. During the winter months you’ll often find the log fire roaring away making The Two Boats the perfect end to a cold day on the canal.
Old boathouse – Astley
The Old Boathouse has been next to the Bridgewater canal since the 18th Century where it was originally a boatman’s pub. Nowadays, it’s open to everyone – offering excellent home-cooked food and a wonderful selection of draught beers and ales (Timothy Taylor’s Landlord is particularly good).
Rising Sun – Shackerstone
This traditional family owned free-house can be found right in the heart of Shackerstone Village, near the Ashby canal. They offer traditional real ales (Marstons Pedigree and two guest cask ales from around the country) as well as well as a 42 inch plasma screen television and pool-room.
Bridge 61 – Foxton
This traditional canal-side pub can be found right at the bottom of the Foxton Locks on the Grand Union Leicester Line. Treat yourself to one of their local Cask Marque ales and watch the boats drift by. Set in what was believed to be the old accommodation quarters for the workers of the Inclined Plane; it’s decorated with traditional canal artefacts and has an open fire for the colder months. Bridge 61 is dog friendly (must be kept on leads) and children friendly (must not be kept on leads) making it the perfect end to a family day out.
The Riverhead Brewery Tap – Marsden
Situated close to the Huddersfield Canal, the Riverhead Brewery Tap is home to the famous Riverhead micro-brewery that is housed in the cellar of the pub. They offer a huge range of superb ales, typically offering five different each week. Situated in the picturesque village of Marsden the upstairs dining room offers fantastic views of the riverside.
Do you have a favourite pub that you think should have been on this list? Tell us about it in the comments below this article, or on our Facebook page.
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