Canoe 2 Routes & Hire

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Bundle 12 - Rushden Lakes to Fotheringhay, B&B at Islip/Thrapston & Barnwell


3 Days


All-Adult Group

Adults with Children all aged 10 or over


26 miles (10, 8, 8)

Route Description

Great 3-day paddle, starting at our base, The Boathouse at Rushden Lakes, paddling 26 miles in total, with overnight B&B stops at Islip/Thrapston) on your first night, and Barnwell for your second night. You’ll have a choice of The Woolpack at Islip (just a few seconds walk from the river), or just across to the other side of the river into Thrapston, you could choose to stay at The Bridge Hotel. You’ll be well looked after at both, and after a hearty breakfast, you can set off for your second day paddling, continuing downstream to Barnwell where you’ll stay overnight at the excellent Lower Farm B&B. At the end of your third day, we’ll pick you up from Fotheringhay and take you back to your start point at Rushden Lakes.


Minimum 2 people. Price shown is PER PERSON £258.00
Family Discount, PER PERSON (family of 4 or more, including at least two children aged 5 to 16) £-25.00

Route Details

  • At least Three Great Backwaters en-route

  • This trip takes in all our favourite pubs & tea rooms

  • Wonderful overnight stops, including the excellent Lower Farm B&B at Barnwell


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More Information

Day 1

Setting off from our base at Rushden Lakes you head down river. Take in the moving water in the backwater around Stanwick Lakes Nature Reserve before rejoining the main river. The Water Mill Tea Room at Willy Watts Marina, Ringstead provides a great place for lunch on the river.

In the afternoon continue your journey on the winding river passing Woodford and Denford Locks before reaching your overnight point at either The Woolpack Inn or The Bridge Hotel.

The Woolpack Inn located in the quiet village of Islip just steps away from the river and extensively refurbished in 2014, The Woolpack makes for the most convenient overnight stop with its excellent Bar and Grill. All 9 fully refurbished chalets have en-suite bathrooms.

The Bridge Hotel offers a warm and friendly welcome, and features old oak beams, and period furniture. Each room boasts complimentary Wi-Fi and tea and coffee making facilities. The cosy dining room is one of the oldest parts of the hotel, and guests can enjoy a wide range of food made from local ingredients.

Day 2

You′ll be getting onto the water at the Nine Arches Bridge in Thrapston/Islip no later than 10.30am to begin your paddle. The King′s Head at Wadenhoe is well situated for lunch and reckoned by The Sunday Times to be the best riverside pub in Britain, where you can step out of your canoe straight into their garden.

Also on this trip you’ll be passing by Wadenhoe’s Norman Church, The Lyveden Way, the beautiful Arched Bridge at Lilford that can only really be appreciated from the river. After this you will discover the splendid Lilford Hall which was once the home of Sir Thomas Powys, Attorney General to King James II.

Your overnight stop is located in the village of Barnwell near Oundle. Tie up your canoe on a small-holding before being collected for a short journey by road to Lower Farm B&B.

Lower Farm will provide you with a comfortable and relaxed country retreat tucked away from busy roads in a picturesque and traditional farm setting. In the evening you can enjoy a stroll along one of several footpaths around the farm or village. Barnwell is a village full of character with its many thatched houses and 300 year old pub, The Montagu Arms Pub is an ideal place to end the day.

Day 3

Will take you on down the river past Oundle Marina or you can paddle the backwater around Barnwell Country Park, taking you around the outskirts of the town of Oundle, and past the little villages of Cotterstock and Tansor. Your trip ends at Fotheringhay, a really lovely and historically important village, being the birthplace of Richard III, as well as the location of the execution of Mary Queen of Scots in 1587, after being held captive in Fotheringhay Castle (no longer standing).

Before we pick you up from Fotheringhay at 3.45pm and transport you back to your car, you may have time to enjoy a drink or a bite to eat at the excellent award winning Falcon Inn.

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Trip Advisor

Wildlife Trust

Rushden Lakes