Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Planning our getaway!

It's official: at the end of July this year, we will be off again for another proper cruise! We have about 4 weeks (if I continue to work while James single-hands the 'boring bits') and so now the exciting task of planning our trip begins.

Canalplan AC is obviously the place to begin. I'm sure all boaters use it, but for everyone else, Canalplan is a great site that lets you plan trips on the inland waterways. Plug in your preferences and it gives you an intinerary! Last year we used the Canalplan itinerary as a 'stakeboat', trying to keep at least a day ahead of it.

So, where to this year? As you may have gathered from various musings on the blog recently, London is likely to be our destination.

St Pancras Basin (Image from LILO)

Camden. Image from Urban Travel Blog
There are several reasons for this:

When I lived in London, we walked the canals a lot, dreaming of one day cruising them in our own boat, but when we did eventually arrive in London in 2008 after buying the Duck, everything had started to go wrong, and our memories of London boating are not happy ones. Firstly, I was in the midst of wrangling with my old work who still owed me £700 which we desperately needed. Secondly, while we were in Paddington Basin, Scrappy, one of the two lovely cats I grew up with was run over and had to be put down. And to top it off, the prop shaft continued to come loose from the coupling, resulting in a lot of dreary walks around London looking for hardware stores who would sell us grub screws. So, it would be great to do London again, with a more reliable engine and fewer worries.

Also, having spent a bit of time in the East End, visiting my sister Esther, and Indigo Dream, we've really fallen for the waterways of London, and want to explore them properly by boat. A friend of ours who used to live out at our old mooring on Rowanberry is also now living afloat in London so it would be great to catch up with her.  

This great 'London Underground' style map shows just how much there is to explore in London:

Image found here

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