Swimming on your canal holiday

Swimming and boating holidays go together like ducks and water! As you travel the canals and rivers you’ll find there is no shortage of great bathing opportunities. Whether it’s diving into the freshwater from your boat or taking a trip to a nearby beach, it’s easy to make a splash.
Read on to discover more and see our recommendations for cruising locations with some of the best swimming opportunities.

Make the most of life on the water


Whether you love to sunbathe on the deck of your boat, swim in crystal clear waters or enjoy watersports and activities, boat rental with Nicols gives you the freedom to make the most of the opportunities on your boating holiday. During your boating holiday you can enjoy:

  • Swimming in rivers and lakes.
  • Sunbathing on beaches.
  • Visiting water parks with pools and water slides.
  • Enjoying the activities at watersports centres.
  • Taking a dip directly from your Nicols boat.

Discover our boating holidays

Where to enjoy swimming on your canal boat trip

All our boating holidays offer opportunities for swimming and water activities and when you embark on your trip your Nicols base manager will be happy to tell you where is best to enjoy the water safely.
Meanwhile, here are just a few of our suggestions for great holiday swimming:

From the Canal du Midi, you can reach the Lac de Jouarres Homps a peaceful lake offering swimming and other water activities such as canoeing, sailing and fishing. Also within easy reach are the famous beaches of La Grande Motte and Palavas les Flots – your invitation for a swim in the Mediterranean Sea.

Canal du midi

If you thought sandcastles are only for beaches then think again! In summer, the banks of the Loire in Nevers become "Nevers plage" – a riverside beach with plenty of sand for castle building, volleyball playing and sunbathing. In this region you can also discover l’étang de Baye with its many nautical activities and great swimming.

Loire Valley

In the Charente region there are numerous beaches and waterside locations to delight families and in the Anjou region at Ménil, the banks of the river have been converted into a beach.



Nature's destination par excellence, the Great Lakes region of Mecklenburg in Germany, which includes Lake Plau (Plauer See), offers a wealth of opportunities for swimming and water activities including canoeing and kayaking.


With more than 300 days of guaranteed sunshine each year and beautiful waters, the Alqueva Lake in Portugal is the perfect destination for lovers of relaxation and swimming.

Grande lago

What our clientssay

"We cruised on the Canal du Rhone at Sète which runs along the Mediterranean coast so the beaches were easily accessible on foot from our stopovers. We were able to swim in the sea all along our journey. The children were delighted and so were we!"

Nicole and Simon – 32 years old, 2 children

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