Jump aboard to see the Broads

Boating on the Broads is a truly memorable experience. It’s a place where timeless beauty meets unkempt nature. Winding, interconnecting waterways move through whispering reed marshes, open fenlands and shrubby heaths. Britain’s waterland national park is also the third largest inland waterway, with miles of lock-free waters to cruise.

Discover a timeless nature wonderland, featuring some of Britain’s rarest plants and wildlife, for a perfect getaway from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Cruise past the many reed marshes, meadows and woodlands at a leisurely pace, while relaxing on deck or casting a rod into the waters. And with no locks to bother with, the Broads couldn’t be simpler to tour.

A holiday to remember

Holidaying on the Broads

Breathtaking landscapes and tranquil waters, teeming with unique wildlife, has made the Broads National Park a favourite location for holidaymakers. The rich boating heritage of these historic waterways started in the 19th century, with pleasure boating becoming a popular pastime with both locals and tourists.

Explore the many lakes, rivers and canals maybe anchoring at one the idyllic market towns and villages you’ll find dotted around Norfolk and Suffolk.

Beautifully-kept, comfortable and sturdy vessels are available to hire for touring the Broads.


The Electric Eel boat trip at How Hill

A day trip is one of the best ways to see everything the Broads has to offer. Boat trips give you a chance to fully relax, spot and take pictures of some of the region's rarest animals and plants and tour the waters. With everything taken care of on deck, you can can sit back and capture the spirit of the Broads as you float on by.

Enjoy the enchanting landscapes while learning about the origins of the Broads, as you slowly drift through its fascinating maze of waterways. With such a diverse, extensive network of trips in operation, whether it’s history or nature that you’re interested in, you’ll find much to fascinate you.

The Broads Authority themselves offer a handful of boating tours too. With each trip starting from one of three visitor hubs, you’ll see for yourself what brings people back to the Broads time after time. Take a wildlife water trail along the hidden dykes behind the How Hill Nature Reserve. Make your way through the undisturbed upper reaches of the river Bure in the Edwardian styled ‘Liana’, or stay close to the city with a trip round the Great Broad at Whitlingham, just on the outskirts of Norwich.

A different way to discover the Broads

With freedom to move on your own terms and a different perspective on the beauty of the Broads, intrepid explorers should consider taking to the waters by this less conventional craft. As two of the fastest growing watersports canoeing and paddleboarding in the calm waters of the Broads are suitable for all ages.

Experience wildlife like never before while uncovering the hidden corners of the Broads, set deep in the heart of the waterland.  And discover the many nooks, crannies and otherwise inaccessible areas out of view from both passing pedestrians and larger pleasure boats.

With exceptional views and a vast array of flourishing flora and fauna, some being unique to The Broads National Park, these thriving waterways and landscapes are best explored up close.

Anyone from a first timer, all the way up to an experienced enthusiast can take part. Whether you want to enrol in a half day trail, or complete a 3-day bushcraft camp, there’s an adventure to be had out here for everyone.

And with a variety of canoe and paddleboard hire centres, you can choose a trail based on its length and location to best suit you.

Canoe trails

The Broads has hundreds of kilometres of navigable waterways to explore and what better way to get into the action than by canoe. We have over ten different canoe trails, ranging from short paddles to all day excursions, and have created handy guides for you that provide maps and more essential information.

You can find more canoe events in our boating listings.

Catch the wind in your sails

Learning to sail at Whitlingham Outdoor Education Centre

Exhilarating and affordable, sailing holidays on the Broads have been a traditional pastime since the turn of the century. Explore the many unique landscapes and while completely immersed in nature, you’re never too far away from civilisation. Take in the surrounding peace and open space on your yacht. At dusk, beautiful sunsets shimmer over the waters, creating mystical glows and mesmerising colour palettes for you to appreciate on deck before enjoying  a supper under a sky full of stars.  Courses are also in place for beginners. Take part to get your sailing skills up to speed for your next visit to the Broads.

Choose from either the cabin yacht or half-decker style boats. For those who want to stay on deck for the whole holiday, a cabin yacht is essential. Featuring home comforts, living space and cooking appliances, these deluxe vessels ensure you have a comfortable ride. Although not as luxurious, half-deckers can really enhance your Broads experience, getting you as close to nature as possible.  They’re the perfect solution for a day trip.

Skilled boat hand or complete novice, a sailing trip on the Broads with your friends or family is sure to be a memorable experience. Whether you take on the waters for a spot of relaxation, a feeling of freedom or a maybe just a sense of achievement, a sailing trip here remains a holiday to be enjoyed by many for years to come.