Peaceful and picturesque, this waterway carries canal boats north to join the North Stratford Canal and the Grand Union Canal. The towpath is a popular walking and cycling route and offers lovely views of the narrowboats, locks and the surrounding countryside. Well-known to locals, it’s a ‘hidden secret’ for visitors to discover.
The canal follows a relatively straight path from Stratford-upon-Avon to Wilmcote starting from Bancroft Basin or the steps near the Red Lion pub opposite. Follow the towpath through the countryside and through the village of Luddington, a halfway point on the way to Wilmcote – stop for refreshments at the Four Alls pub. In Wilmcote you can see the lovely cottage exterior of part of Mary Arden’s Farm, where Shakespeare’s mother grew up. Nearby is the Mary Arden Inn. The walk is just over six and a half miles (10.4 km) for the round trip, starting from the canal basin. Alternatively, catch a train back from Wilmcote to Stratford.