Tuesday, 26 August 2014

My Favourite British Canal

I recently came across LOOK's What Floats Your Boat campaign which see's them count down the Top 5 Canals in Britain....while I was pleased to see the inclusion of the Leeds-Liverpool Canal I did think it was a shame not to see Exeter included so I thought I'd tell you all a bit about why we love spending time there!

As some of you who follow my little postings of family life on the internet via my Blog, may know, me, Jon and Tyne currently live in the South West of the UK in dear old Devon.
For those that have never visited, it really is a gorgeous part of the UK, and we often feel torn about where to go on family days out. Not far from where we live, we have a choice of destinations to fill family days with fun and wonderful memories.

We have some of the best beaches in the UK, from dear old Torquay, with our very own English Riviera on the South Devon Coast, to Woolacombe on the North. 
We have National Parks such as Exmoor and Dartmoor with their own wild beauty. There are pretty market towns such as Barnstaple and city visits to Plymouth and Exeter, and it’s in Exeter that well feel we have a real oasis of calm in the form of the Exeter Canal and Quayside!
Located not 10 minutes’ walk from the bustling city centre heart of Exeter is a wonderful quiet, but cosmopolitan, retreat- Ideal to unwind in after a busy days trip to our nearest city!

In this relaxing corner of Exeter lie restaurants, shops, boating activities, wonderful cycle rides and walks, and a thriving local community. 
This may sound too good to be true but when visiting the Quayside, you would not believe that only 10 minutes’ walk away was a major UK city.

For the more energetic among us, from the Quayside you can walk or cycle the 4 miles to the pretty, historical maritime town of Topsham taking in some of the most wonderful canal views in the UK.

The canal itself was begun in 1563, running from Exeter to Matford Brook, and was the first English Lock canal. The canal became essential to Exeter’s Wool trade, before becoming an international destination for trade vessels from all over the world.

Should chilling out and enjoying great food with a canalside view be more your thing then there’s Bar Venezia, a fantastic Mediterranean restaurant. Then there’s the Waterside with its more traditional, and scrumptious, English menu, and a visit to the Quayside is never complete without a delicious locally made ice cream!

Spending time at Exeter Canal is a pure joy. 
Tyne loves seeing the ducks and swans, and whoops with delight at the passing canoes, kayaks and larger boats.
 On sunny days a picnic by the canal side is a slice of Heaven and you can spend hours sitting watching the University racing boat teams practice, the pedalos, the waterfowl and the historic Butts Ferry, one of the five remaining floating bridges in the UK!

So if you do decide to visit our little part of the UK, make sure you take time and take in the fantastic idyllic oasis that is Exeter Quayside.

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