We like the canal route planner from CanalPlan AC it will help you work out how many hours per day to travel, where to stop for the night - a great tool for say the Cheshire Ring or the Four Counties. When using the route planner the start and end place you should enter is Boothstown Basin.
The Boaters Handbook - Please have a look at this if you are planning a trip on the canals. It is a very useful resource to help you master how to do some basic manoeuvre's and make sense of canal etiquette and it will help you feel confident about using a boat on the canals. Here is a link to the Boaters Handbook DVD on YouTube - recommended if you are hiring a narrowboat in the UK but remember the Bridgewater canal has no locks.
In October 2016 Star Narrowboat Holidays achieved QAB status! As a member of the British Marine Federation we have been assessed on our handover competence and customer service. British Marine run the scheme with licence from VisitEngland, they say 'the Quality Accredited Boatyard Scheme is not a star rating scheme, it's an accreditation, that offers reassurances of safe and legal practices together with good customer service. The assessments are carried out every three years with random inspection during the 3 year cycle.' As the business who has the QAB we say where it reads 'Boatyard' please read 'Business'.
You can cruise our boat to Liverpool from our base - ask us for more info if you are interested or book your passage online.
A great website useful for canal boat holiday planning, excellent for info on routes, culture and history of the canal system in the UK.
The Cheshire Ring - a narrowboat holiday route for the serious holiday hirer! This is a 7 day minimum trip through Manchester, the Peak District, the Cheshire Plains and back to base at the Bridgewater marina - 97 miles and 92 locks. Really varied scenery and stunning views. Take 12 to 14 nights to experience a more relaxed trip.
As a side trip from the Cheshire Ring you could experience the Anderton Boat Lift, built in 1875 it is one of only 2 working boat lifts left in the country. You could take 'Queenie' on the boat lift down onto the River Weaver. There is now an online booking system for you to book your own passage.
Dunham Massey park is within close walking distance to the Bridgewater canal as it passes towards Lymm. There are red deer in the grounds and the house is a place that Haile Selassie 1 spent time when he was exiled from Ethiopia in 1936!
'Opening 11 May 2021: RHS Garden Bridgewater, a new spectacular 154-acre garden, transforming the historic grounds of Worsley New Hall in Salford into a beautiful green place for the local community and visitors to enjoy all year-round'. The Garden is less than a mile from our base.
We don't offer day boat hire but our friends Ellerbeck Narrowboats do - they have 3 great day boats and operate on a beautiful stretch of canal in Addlington, Chorley.
Equally distant from the Macclesfield and Trent & Mersey canal - Jodrell Bank can be a day trip from a narrowboat holiday. 'In 2019, in recognition of its internationally significant heritage, science and cultural impact, Jodrell Bank Observatory was awarded UNESCO World Heritage Site status and has been inscribed on the World Heritage List. Jodrell Bank now joins a prestigious group of sites across the globe recognised by UNESCO’s international community as sites of Outstanding Universal Value. The World Heritage Site inscription acknowledges Jodrell Bank’s tremendous scientific endeavours and its role in achieving a transformational understanding of the Universe. It places the site on an equal footing with the likes of Stonehenge and the Taj Mahal and represents an enormous accolade not only for Jodrell Bank and The University of Manchester, but also for the region, and the UK as a whole.'
Poster (left) designed and sold by Stephen Millership.
In New Mills - High Street Book & Records. When you do the Cheshire Ring, moor up in New Mills and walk to the top of the high street to find this, one of our favourite book shops in the High Peak! They also have a selection of vinyl downstairs. New Mills has some grocery shops, a vegetarian cafe plus millions of charity shops.
Ethical Consumer is a resource we use to look up the ethical credentials of various companies who make the eco-friendly cleaning products we use. EC started in Manchester :)
Every other year the Manchester International Festival comes to town - the next one is scheduled for the summer of 2021 and it looks as though it is really happening!! Patti Smith is playing this year.
The Pontcysyllte Aqueduct is a World Heritage Site - findout more - it can be reached in a very comfortable 3 week (return) cruise from our base. The image has been taken for the Canal and River Trust website.
For information about the Bridgewater canal - the canal from which Star Narrowboat Holidays operates. The Bridgewater canal is a canal with no locks.
Findout more about Sonia Rolt who campaigned for the Inland Waterways Association (IWA) until she died in 2014.
The Campaign for Real Ale - find real ale pubs along the canal network.
The home of the Halle Orchestra - the Bridgewater Hall, a 5 minute walk from Castlefield (the canal hub in Manchester city centre).
Band On The Wall is a legend for live music in Manchester.
If you have any ideas for other links to useful information please let us know by email