Canal boat hireBuilding and renting canal barges for over 30 years

If you’re considering a boating holiday then you’re in the right place for hiring a canal barge! Canal boat hire is an excellent way to explore a region as from the waterways you will get to see the area from a completely new perspective. Dotted along the rivers and canals are many interesting places and attractions to visit and it is your canal boat hire that puts you at the heart of this.

Nicols has designed and built 27 different models of boat, divided into four different ranges. The only thing they all have in common is that no previous boating holiday experience or licence is needed.

The Nicols fleet is made up of hundreds of boats which are suitable for crews ranging from couples to large groups. This means that there is a holiday option to match any canal boat hire budget.

To help find the best boat to suit your crew enter your canal boat hire requirements below telling us how many people will be on board, how many cabins are required and the indoor and outdoor features that you’d prefer...

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  • Canal boat hire Nicols

No experience neededfor our self-drive boating holidays


Don’t worry if you’ve never hired a canal boat before. All of our boats are easy to drive and require no previous boating experience or licence. On the day of departure our helpful base staff will provide instructions on how to use the boat including manoeuvres. In no time you’ll be confirmed as the captain!

A useful resource to find out everything you need to know about canal boat hire and all things boating holidays is our ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ section. We have a number of videos that will also help you with choosing your boat or for finding out more about the destinations on offer. If you still have any questions about your canal boat hire then you can contact our helpful reservations team who can help with ideas and the planning of your boating holiday.