Canal Plus

Forget those traffic-clogged motorways: if you really want to see into Britain's soul, hire a narrow boat and putter gently along some of the country's 3,200 km of languorous waterways. Britain's 200-year-old canal system, once the country's most important method of freight transport, fell into disrepair by the 1960s as roads and rail transport took traffic away. But over the past 15 years, more than $935 million has been invested in canal restoration, so today visitors can rediscover the joys of a bygone pace of life in city and countryside alike.

Canal building requires tricky engineering over...

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