When I first visited Canterbury, an unbelievable five years ago (I can’t believe my little baby sister starts going on university open days next year – where has the time gone?!), one of the first things I noticed was the river winding around the city. And the numerous boat tours along it. I remember saying how lovely it seemed, how I’d definitely make time to do one of those.
All I can say is that I am so, so glad I made the time to do this. What I was imagining to be a rather wasteful use of money turned out to be a hugely enjoyable 45 minutes. Our guide (Rob, the guy with the beard, if you’re wondering!) was hilarious and hugely knowledable about Canterbury. He managed to tailor his talk to be entertaining to us two as students, and the slightly more mature audience making up the rest of the boat.
We ducked under extremely low bridges, found areas of Canterbury I didn’t know existed, talked about the best pubs in the city, came too close to comfort to some nesting pigeons, said hi to some ducks. We had the most gorgeous view of the cathedral, floated adjacent to Abbott’s Mill. We passed restaurants, gardens, sculptures and many other boats. We went under the main high street. And yet it never felt as though we were in a crowded area, never felt like we were in the middle of Canterbury.
It may be a little pricey, but the Historic Riverboat tour is something I truly loved. I’d also highly recommend trying to get Rob as your guide/driver – he had us in stitches, not least when watching him try to duck under the lowest bridges of the journey. I learnt things about Canterbury I wish I’d known earlier, located places I’d have loved to have visited more.
But most of all? This was the perfect way to round off my time in the city. It provided some of the most stunning views of Canterbury, showed off the best and most gorgeous parts of the city, and got us away from the hustle and bustle of the high street. I fell back in love with Canterbury, remembered why I’d chosen to come to university there.
Disclaimer – we were paying customers, I just loved it enough to post about it!
How do you like to explore a city?