Narrowboat Living in the UK

Narrowboat Living in the UK

Life aboard a narrowboat is one of peace and tranquillity. It affords you some of the most beautiful views of the UK at a leisurely pace. It isn't without its challenges; these beautiful boats require heaps of care and attention, with considered renovation, and lots of love poured into upkeep and maintenance.

Narrowboat insurance is an essential is essential for peace of mind out on the canals, whether you’re a permanent resident or weekend cruiser. Whatever you're skill level, we've compiled a range of resources to brush up your narrowboat knowledge and aid you on your journey around the waterways.

4 Must-Have Narrowboat Holidays

In honour of the rising trend that is UK staycations, we've chosen 4 must-have narrowboat holidays which exude breath-taking natural landscapes.

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Buying a Narrowboat: What you need to know

Are you thinking of purchasing a narrowboat? We've put together a guide detailing everything you need to know before purchasing.

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Narrowboat Design

Space-Saving Solutions for your Narrowboat

It's no secret that narrowboats offer a cosy life, but whilst the small interior can be comforting, it can easily become claustrophobic. This guide will talk you through 6 simple storage solutions and clever interior design hacks to make your narrowboat feel clutter-free and spacious.

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Ideal Interior Design Layout

Whether you’re a weekend boater or live aboard your narrowboat permanently, the layout will make a big difference to your time onboard. We have the perfect configuration for you.

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Narrowboat Gardening

Do you aspire to become the next Monty Don? Transform your narrowboat into a floral oasis and grow some fresh produce for your dinner table.

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Incredible Interior Design Ideas

Take a look at some impactful spaces to provide inspiration for your next narrowboat restoration project. Learn how to create a real style statement.

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Modernising Your Narrowboat

Whether it's your favourite hobby or your narrowboat home simply needs a makeover, we highlight our top tips for modernising your narrowboat.

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6 Tips for Space Saving on Your Narrowboat

Narrowboats aren't the largest of vessels and for those living onboard, you probably know the struggle of trying to find space for all of your belongings. Read our tips for space-saving on your narrowboat...

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Punny Narrowboat Names

One of the greatest ways to personalise your boat is by choosing the perfect name. Here are our personal puntastic favourites...

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Tips for Naming Your Narrowboat

Choosing the name for your narrowboat is a big decision and one not to be taken lightly! We've got a few tips and ideas to give you some inspiration, from funny puns to hidden meanings...

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DIY Narrowboat Hacks

Whether you’ve taken on a restoration project or you’re wanting to give your boat a little TLC, we’ve got some great narrowboat DIY hacks for you to take the strain out of the labour.

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Essential items you need onboard your narrowboat

We’ve compiled a list of essential items to take aboard your narrowboat, that you don’t want to be without whilst cruising the canals.

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Become an expert on narrowboat maintenance

We have collated videos from a series of experts to provide useful hints and tips for the maintenance onboard your narrowboat...

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Winterising Your Narrowboat

Find out how to winterise your narrowboat with our top ten expert tips! Follow our guide and you'll help keep your vessel in top condition for the next season.

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Keeping Warm in Winter

Once winter swings by, living on a narrowboat can become quite chilly and it's important you're prepared. Read our top tips for keeping your narrowboat warm in winter.

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Your Narrowboat DIY Guide

The ultimate Narrowboat DIY Guide

Living on a narrowboat in London: what you need to know

Narrowboats London

The community of narrowboat owners in London is booming. The lure of a simpler life away from the hustle and bustle of the pounding streets is strong, with this alternative characterful accommodation providing solace to many residents of the bustling capital. It offers the chance to be at one with nature, finding peace in waking up to birdsong in the morning.  There is a real sense of belonging that is strong amongst fellow boaters that owners come to crave. That’s not to mention the need for affordable living that has driven so many, without knowledge or experience, to trial life on the water. 

The hardships of life aboard a narrowboat are not to be underestimated. The cosy interior, toilet emptying, demanding maintenance routine and exposure to the damp and chilly Great British weather may not appeal to everyone, but there is a certain charm to the simplicity of life on board. Considering taking the plunge yourself? Well here are the basics to consider…

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Canal Route Finder

Narrowboat destination finder

Narrowboat Insurance

Get a quote for narrowboat insurance

Narrowboats are vulnerable to the elements and with your worldly possessions contained onboard, it’s crucial to choose insurance that will give you adequate cover. If it’s your first time buying narrowboat insurance, or you’re looking to change insurance companies, read our Buyers Guide to Narrowboat Insurance to find out what a typical policy includes and what specific features to look for.

With 0% interest finance options available, get narrowboat cover from GJW Direct. Whether you’re travelling up and down the canal or moored up at a marina, we have a range of options for full peace of mind.

Some features of our narrowboat cover include*:

  • Automatic liveaboard cover
  • All risks contents insurance
  • Third-party liability of £5,000,000
  • River Canal Rescue membership
  • Marina benefits

*subject to exclusions and limitations



Narrowboat Safety and Security

Keeping your vessel protected is probably one of your main priorities, especially if you leave it for long periods of time at various locations around the country. Read our blog to find out our top tips...

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Guarding Against Theft

The prospect of thieves and vandals targeting your vessel is a big worry as a narrowboat owner - follow our 5 steps to help keep your belongings secure.

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What is MyBoat?
MyBoat is a free online portal for the boat owner community. It’s the only free boating service in the UK! MyBoat keeps all of your important boat information in one place and sends you
alerts using its easy-to-use digital organiser. It also keeps you updated with the latest news, views and weather, tailored to your travels as well as offering you some amazing discounts.

How can I receive discounts with MyBoat?
To gain these discounts you have to have insurance from GJW Direct and have an account on MyBoat. Once on MyBoat, navigate to the My Discounts tab, where you’ll be able to see all of your own discounts. We’ve partnered up with some amazing companies to ensure you receive great discounts off boat essentials, including:

● Safety products
● Boat fittings
● Cleaning products
● Narrowboat accessories
● Travel insurance
● Holidays


Narrowboat Resources

Narrowboat FAQs

Are you a new narrowboat owner? Or seasoned in canal life, but wanting to solve some unanswered questions? We answer those niggling questions...

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How to Keep Your Narrowboat Running Costs Down

Find out how to keep your narrowboat running costs low with our useful tips and tricks. Owning a canal boat can be expensive, but with some careful consideration and planning, you can save money!

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5 Things Every Narrowboat Owner Should Know

From finding a mooring spot to knowing the local speed limits, our blog delves into the 5 things every narrowboat owner should know, and the reality of living on onboard…

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A Guide to the UK's Best Moorings

Whether you're upping sticks and moving from your current location or you're new to the waterways, be sure to download our guide to top mooring spots.

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Beautiful Holiday Routes in the UK

Whether you're after a peaceful weekend escape or a two-week adventure, we've selected six of the most beautiful narrowboat holiday routes in the UK. Take your pick!

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The Best Floating Shops & Cafes

If you’re a narrowboat owner you’ll no doubt have heard of floating shops and cafes. Found along the rivers and canals of the UK, narrowboat based businesses are providing unique goods and services to those travelling the inland waterways. Here are a few of our favourites.

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5 Easy Meals to Cook Onboard

Cooking onboard your narrowboat can be tricky when there’s not a vast amount of space and fresh ingredients may not always be easily accessible - so it’s all about forward planning and knowing what to cook with the utensils that you have. Here are the best, easiest meals to cook onboard your narrowboat…

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Staying Eco-Friendly

Living in such close proximity to nature subconsciously prompts you to be more environmentally conscious. So with our top tips, here’s how to keep being eco-friendly on your narrowboat.

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How to Make Your Barge Pet-Friendly

Making your barge a comfortable, roomy place to live can be a task in itself, and that’s before you’ve even begun to try and make it a pet-friendly space, too.

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