Leaving behind the hustle and bustle of Oxford, your journey now takes you northward towards Thrupp, immersing you in the enchanting world of North Oxford. As you glide along, catch glimpses into the lives and gardens of locals, offering a unique perspective on canal-side living. Be mindful as you pass through the bustling canal community in Oxford, showing respect for the moored boats that serve as people's homes.

Upon reaching Wolvercote, your first lock awaits, signaling the start of action for your crew. Just before the lock lies The Plough Inn, a perfect overnight stop on your return journey, conveniently close to our boatyard. Alternatively, consider the Anchor at bridge 240 or mooring opposite our boatyard, a mere 15-minute stroll from the city center. Many opt to return to Oxford a day early to delve deeper into the renowned university city.

Following the operation of Wolvercote lock, it's wise to have at least one crew member disembark as you approach the first lift bridge, followed by another shortly after, and then Dukes Lock. Once past these obstacles, regroup on board and continue your journey.

After two more locks and approximately two hours of cruising past Kidlington and Yarnton, you'll encounter another canal community at Langford Lane. Show courtesy and reduce speed as you pass, respecting the residents' homes. Around the bend, the picturesque village of Thrupp will soon come into view, marking the next chapter of your canal adventure.


Thrupp welcomes you with its charming canal-side setting and two delightful eateries, The Jolly Boatman and The Boat, conveniently located near visitor moorings. Take care as you pass by the numerous private boats moored along the canal. Thrupp is a bustling hub for both walkers and boaters, with easy access to catch a bus on the main road for a visit to nearby Blenheim Palace in Woodstock. Fun fact: scenes from the beloved Inspector Morse series were filmed right here in Thrupp, including at the house just outside our boatyard gates in Oxford!

As you glide beneath yet another lift bridge and along the scenic Thrupp Wide, you'll enter the serene Cherwell Valley. The canal's contour design becomes evident as you spot the Shipston-on-Cherwell church perched on the bank to your left. The canal gracefully curves around the churchyard while the River Cherwell flows alongside, offering picturesque views of meadows to your right.

Approaching Shipston Weir lock, with its distinctive diamond shape, the canal merges briefly with the River Cherwell for about a mile. Keep to the right to avoid collisions, especially around bends where visibility may be limited. Take advantage of another excellent opportunity for a dog walk up to Bakers lock, where the river diverges from the canal under a charming iron bridge, only to rejoin later and run parallel to Banbury.

Continuing onward through Bakers Lock, you'll pass the bustling marina at Enslow. Exercise caution as you navigate past these boats, as they are treasured possessions of their owners. Keep an eye out for boats undergoing maintenance out of the water. Beyond the marina lies the winding hole – just remember, it's not at the marina itself!

Our Customer Reviews

We felt like welcome guests from the time of booking until our return. Will was awesome at showing us around the boat and giving us instructions. We can’t wait to...

- Trinity


If there was an excellent box, instruction, reliability and staff would get a tick.

- Jamie & Nikki


Absolutely loved our time on Nuffield, a very relaxing way to meet people and see sights.

- The Gray family


Excellent service… special shout out to James for advice on where to moor… lovely team.

- Edmund & Yaiza


We enjoyed every moment of it, thank you. ☺

- Edmund & Yaiza


An incredible weekend away. Cary’s and her team were very knowledgeable and helpful when planning our trip. I couldn’t recommend more and looking forward to returning

- Lauren D.


My partner and I just spent a week on Magdalen. It was clean, comfortable and well equipped. It was lovely having the log burner as it was late October. Cary’s...

- Jane O.


“Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.” ― Kenneth Grahame, The Wind in the...

- Chris G.


We spent a week on the Exeter. Very comfortable boat. A special thanks to James who explained how everything worked and made us feel comfortable hanlding the Exeter (one of...

- Kees v.


We had such a good time! Such a lovely team to help you off on your holiday. We were a couple with a 7-month-old. Tricky first day learning how to...

- Edmond O.


Julesa lovely holiday. Big thanks

- Jules


Piroska we have had a wonderful trip on this boat. Thank you

- Piroska


Lucy lovely trip on the river Thames, lovely staff, lovely boat. Thank you

- Lucy

our latest on social media

Funafloat Ltd trading as College Cruisers Registered in England and Wales

No: 03469314
VAT: 685699260

01865 554343

©College Crusiers. All content is protected. Privacy Policy