The Thames may be the most iconic waterway in London, but it’s not the only one that matters.
The canals of London offer a more local alternative to walking along the river.
In addition, it’s a fun way to see colourful canal boats and watch the city’s day-to-day life unfold.
I enjoy strolling along Regent’s Canal. It is an 8.6-mile canal filled with happy boats and divides several of London’s most interesting areas in the north.
Regent’s Canal starts from Limehouse Basin by the Thames in the east and finishes at Little Venice in the west.
Things To Do Around Regents Canal
Explore Little Venice
At the end of Regent’s Canal, you’ll find this beautiful spot in London where it meets Grand Union Canal. The narrow canals are dotted with bright narrowboats, and you may walk from one destination to the next at the water’s edge. The stunning Regency style houses with their wrought-iron balconies and gorgeous bow windows give the area an elegant touch.
Visit a Barge and Watch a Puppet Show
Movingstage theatre company founded the 55-seat Puppet Theatre Barge in 1978, which was converted from an old barge. In 1986, it was then moved to Little Venice where is has been a popular intimate playhouse ever since.
Between October and July, the showboat puts on regular puppet shows for both children and adults. It is moored in Richmond between July and September.
Observe the Rolling Bridge
If you find yourself walking along the Regent’s Canal, keep your eye out for the Rolling Bridge. Its innovative design allows it to curl up into an octagonal shape, making it a striking and unique sight. The bridge, designed by Thomas Heatherwick, is composed of eight triangular segments that unfurl to form a walkable surface on Wednesdays and Fridays at noon and Saturday at 2 p.m., rolling up into an octagonal ball to allow boat passage.
Drift Down the River on a Traditional Narrowboat
On a traditional narrowboat, glide between Little Venice and Camden on the Regent’s Canal’s calm waters. The year-round London Waterbus regularly runs on weekends (taking a break only during winter months), and the 50-minute journey takes you past stunning waterfront mansions and through the Maida Hill tunnel.
Take a Kayak Tour
Experience London in a new way by kayaking down Regent’s Canal.
With London Kayak Tours, you will paddle past all the major sights along the canal such as London Zoo, Camden Town, Regent’s Park, and Little Venice.
This 90 minute tour is perfect for anyone, regardless of experience level. You’ll be in good hands too, as the tour is led by British Canoe Union instructors.
Where does Regents Canal start and finish?
Regents Canal starts in Limehouse Basin and finishes in Little Venice.
Can you walk the whole of Regents Canal?
Walking the the whole of Regents Canal will take around 3 hours. It is possible to walk the entire thing, with stops for food and to take in the sights.
How many locks are on the Regents canal?
There are 12 locks along Regents Canal.