Regent’s Canal is one of the gorgeous getaways in London. An eight and a half mile stretch of waterway that leads from Docklands to Islington and Camden Town, from there it goes through Regents Park to Little Venice and Paddington - the perfect escape from the noise of the big city..
The Canal was opened in 1820 for commercial purposes and was designed to transport goods, since canals offered an important alternative to the railways which were always overworked. That kind of usage declined in the 20th century, commercial traffic had pretty much disappeared by 1968, when the canal was opened to the public. The most popular spots are the patches between the canal museum (King’s Cross) and Camden Town and also the ones from Camden Town to Little Venice.
The canal’s diverse wildlife includes cormorants, moorhens, crayfish, coots, grey herons and mallard ducks. There is also a wildflower embankment where you will find huge numbers of butterflies.
On weekends, in summer as well as in winter, you can take boat tours on the canal to take it in in all its glory!
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In Paul Talling’s book, London’s Lost Rivers, you can read all about the mysterious disappeared waterways of our city’s past and with this in mind we should celebrate what’s left of our canals because they might not be here forever. Explore Regents Canal from the edges of Little Venice, past the kayakers of the Kingsland Road Wharf and finish up at the wonderfully local, Palm Tree pub on the border of the ecology centre of Mile End Park.
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On the Regent's Canal near Camley Street Natural Park there's a platform with seating that floats on the water, known as the King's Cross Viewpoint. It's a quiet spot for picnicking and nature-watching, as the canal is a favourite haunt of swans and ducks. Created by Finnish architects, it has classic Scandi design, with pointed walls to shelter from the wind inspired by the jagged rocks on the Nordic coasts.