LONDON EVENTS – Be your own Captain – London’s first self-drive boat trips

For the first time ever, Londoners and tourists alike can charter their own electric boat – without the need for a captain or tour guide.

Moored at Paddington Basin, GoBoat London is bringing a truly independent waterway experience to anyone looking for a fun, new experience. The concept has been hugely successful in Copenhagen and now two Londoners are bringing it to their home town.

The favoured route is to go along Regent’s Canal to Little Venice, past London Zoo and on to Camden Lock where skippers can about turn and head back to Paddington Basin. For an extra special experience, passengers can also bring their own food and drink on board for no extra charge.

The boats are eco-friendly, made from 80 per cent recycled plastic bottles, fitted with electric engines and sustainably sourced wood. The ride is a casual 3 ½ knots, approximately 4mph, the perfect cruising speed for a lazy waterway journey.

With prices starting from £55 for one hour, punters can invite up to seven friends to join them on a unique waterways voyage for less than £7 a head. It’s a perfect activity for date night, families or groups of friends.

Grant Sweeney, founder of GoBoat London said: “We first saw the concept in Denmark a couple of years ago and couldn’t get it out of our heads – nothing like this existed back home [London]. The reaction so far has been incredible, people love being able to go on a mini city adventure without the need for a tour guide. Our GoBoats provide Londoners and tourists a fresh perspective on our awesome city – something that’s rarely seen.”

Local business group, The Paddington Partnership, believes in the business so much that it has offered significant investment and the The Canal & River Trust is backing the business too. Jon Guest, London Waterway Manager at Canal & River Trust, said: “The GoBoats are a tremendously exciting addition to Paddington Basin and will give people a brand new way to explore the water. We are delighted that GoBoat London will allow more people to experience the Capital’s beautiful canals.”

GoBoat London is based at Merchant Square, also home to London’s first Floating Pocket Park, forming a new vision for Paddington that includes a Water Taxi service, Floating Visitor Centre and new Café Barge – also launching this summer.

GoBoat will be open until late Autumn from 10am til dusk daily. Tickets are available to book on the GoBoat London website here.

–          GoBoat London is open 7 days a week, 10am until dusk (around 9:30pm). Based in Merchant Square, Paddington.

–          Introductory offer prices start at £55 for 1 hour, £85 for two and £115 for three hours. A three-hour journey is recommended for the most complete experience. 8 people can comfortably fit into a GoBoat.

–          Edgware Road and Paddington underground stations are less than five minutes’ walk away.

–          Alcohol can be consumed on the boat, but the captain must always remain sober.

–          Boats go at a max speed of 4mph / 3 ½ knots and have GPS trackers on board in case of any emergencies.

–          Customers don’t need a licence to drive, but will be provided with a full safety briefing and instructions on how to control the boat before the adventure starts as well as having life jackets on board.

–          Book via www.goboat.co.uk

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