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Boat ride from Paddington to Camden?

On Rick's radio show some London guides were talking about fun ways to spend a long layover at LHR, and they mentioned that a cool thing to do is take an express to Paddington and very close to the station is a boat quay for the canal, where you can float up through Regent's Park and to Camden market and then come back, and return to LHR - all easily bob's-your-uncle done.

Does anyone know the details of getting on the boat? The agencies listed on google maps are well over £100 for 2 hours or are for an entire barge -- what retailer can a solo or couple use, and where are they located near Paddington Station? TIA

Posted by
885 posts

Someone will have done this, but do you think it’s the londonwaterbus.com from Little Venice to Camden? That is £9/one way (edit: it’s £11/adult each way) and takes 45 min. So you could go and come in 2 hours (depending on departure times) for less than £20.

Posted by
4410 posts

In London for a week in March, just before the pandemic shut things down completely, we came from Heathrow into Paddington Station, and noticed the canal just outside was lined with docked boats. Most were Netherlands-style canal houseboats, but there was an occasional British-style narrowboat. Clearly, lots of canal boats are in London.

We planned to cruise the canal one morning, but March was early season, with some of the tour companies only operating on weekends, if they’d started up for 2020 at all. A day midweek, we went from Little Venice to Camden Market, but just one-way, having lunch outside the market and then walking thru Regent’s Park back to our B&B. Here’s a fairly recent post thread, which included my input:

https://community.ricksteves.com/travel-forum/england/which-canal-boat-tour-is-best-in-london

Posted by
1536 posts

Thanks for your replies; I'm looking further into the links from the other thread, and still keeping this possibility in mind for a way to occupy a long layover in LHR. The others on my mind are a half-hour taxi to Kew Gardens or Richmond green or Hampton Court garden -- all of these depend on the weather so the best course of action might be to pick the option that requires the least pre-made arrangements. And the one time I went through Richmond I only skirted the green and didn't get to sample any of the waterside pub grub...

Posted by
4441 posts

Windsor is the obvious place to head from Heathrow rather than risk the traffic of London.

Posted by
1761 posts

and still keeping this possibility in mind for a way to occupy a long
layover in LHR.

How long is a long layover? I agree that Windsor is a great option though.