Walking or Cycling along the Stratford-upon-Avon Canal towpath and looking at the canal's beautiful brick built and wrought iron bridges, locks, aqueducts and other features.
The 25.5 mile long Stratford-upon-Avon Canal runs between Kings Norton Junction near Birmingham (where it connects with the Worcester and Birmingham Canal) and more or less travels in a south easterly direction to the market town of Stratford-on-Avon in the English County of Warwickshire (where it links up with the River Avon).
The canal was authorised by Act of Parliament in 1793 and after some delays finally opened between Kings Norton Junction and Lapworth in 1803 and eventually connected with the
River Avon at Stratford-upon-Avon Town at the end of June 1816.
The Stratford-on-Avon canal starts off by passing through residential areas of Birmingham's suburbs for around 5 miles but you would hardly know this - the route is often heavily tree-lined and very peaceful. The canal is quite wide for narrowboats and the towpath is generally in really good condition as far as Dickens Heath with just one short stretch where it has become or tends to be muddy. Although quite a short canal the route is packed with features including the huge flight of locks at Lapworth where the
Lapworth Link provides a connection with the Grand Union Canal
and another series of locks at Wilmcote - and there are some really beautiful old brick bridges too as well as three cast iron aqueducts to admire!.
The market town of Stratford-upon-Avon itself is not a particularly large place however because of the William Shakespeare connection the town becomes incredibly busy with tourists particularly on weekends and especially on Sundays in the summer. If touring around in England then visiting Stratford-upon-Avon is therefore ideally done during weekdays if possible - not so many tour groups and so on allows a much more peaceful wander around the town.