LLANGOLLEN Canal has been ranked amongst the most popular waterside destinations to visit in the UK.

The picturesque canal, which crosses the border between Wales and England, saw an average of 4,775 monthly searches on Google, which placed it fifth out of 128 waterside destinations from the Canal & River Trust.

Research conducted by boat insurance experts at InsureMy analysed Google search data to establish which UK waterside destinations are being searched for the most. 

The Canal spans 46 miles, features 21 locks, and has gained over 14,000 hashtagged posts on Instagram, making it 23 percent more ‘Instagrammable’ than Rudyard Lake in Staffordshire.

Sowerby Bridge in West Yorkshire topped the list of most popular waterside destinations, with a monthly average search volume of 17,508. 

The Leader: The Llangollen Canal attracts thousands of visitors every year.The Llangollen Canal attracts thousands of visitors every year.

Sowerby Bridge, once a bustling industrial hub, has transformed into a vibrant destination with trendy cafes and pubs housed in historic canal buildings. This picturesque destination offers a range of recreational activities, including cycling, fishing, walking, sightseeing, and canoeing along the scenic River Calder.

In second place is Rudyard Lake in Staffordshire, with 8,652 searches a month on average. It's a favoured destination for families seeking a day of leisure, providing opportunities for walking, boating, sailing, fishing, and steam train excursions along its scenic reservoir. Rudyard Lake has gained over 11,400 hashtagged posts on Instagram, with posts ranging from picturesque views to wildlife and paddle boarding.

In third place is Wigan Pier in Greater Manchester, with an average of 8,125 monthly searches. Popular leisure activities at the destination include dog walking, cycling, canoeing, picnics, going to the local pub and boat trips.

Camden Locks in London comes in fourth place with 7,425 average monthly searches. This vibrant area ranks as one of the liveliest atmospheres in the top 10, ideal for indulging in people-watching, spotting boats, and enjoying various dining options. The hashtags #camdenlock and #camdenlocks have garnered over 180,000 posts on Instagram, showcasing the location's bustling atmosphere and popular attractions.

With Llangollen Canal in fifth, rounding out the list was Earlswood Lakes in the West Midlands, which saw an average of 4,600 searches per month. Earlswood Lakes consists of three scenic reservoirs and has activities such as sailing, walking, bird spotting, and a local craft centre.

In seventh place is Caen Hill Locks in Wiltshire, with 4,550 searches a month on average. It has one of the longest continuous flights of locks in the UK, with a total of 29 locks.


Trent Lock in Nottingham is in eighth place, with 3,350 searches a month on average.

Just after that is Dundas Aqueduct in Monkton Combe near Bath, with 3,325 searches on average. 

Finally, in tenth place is Goytre Wharf in South Wales, with 2,617 monthly searches on average.

Stewart Barnett, Head of Marketing for InsureMy, said: “Brits visit waterside destinations for a variety of reasons, whether for a peaceful escape, nature watching or a leisure activity.

"With the ongoing costs of living crisis, many people choose to have day trips out to scenic UK locations instead of going abroad. These findings feature stunning landscapes that offer visitors the perfect places to visit during the likes of the Easter Holidays.  

“It's fascinating to see a diverse range of locations featured in the study's top 10 rankings, with West Yorkshire claiming the top spot and London securing fourth place.

"Despite their contrasting atmospheres, both destinations offer unique experiences. The various locations in the study also highlight the different options available for potential visitors regarding travel distances.”