One of the longer of the canal system’s cul-de-sacs, the Ashby-de-laZouch Canal originally ran for some 30 miles from Marston Junction on the Coventry Canal to the coalfields near Moira (it never made it to Ashby).
Closures resulting from mining subsidence have reduced its length to 22 miles of meandering, almost entirely rural canal – and a real lazy boater’s route, with no locks to work at all. It isn’t without interest, though: there’s Hinckley town, a whole series of quiet country villages on or near the route, the Battlefield Line steam railway running alongside from Shenton via Market Bosworth to Shakerstone, and the Bosworth Battlefield visitor centre commemorating Henry Tudor’s defeat of Richard III. And for canal interest, there are a couple of aqueducts and the short Snarestone Tunnel passing right under the village.
One day, you’ll be able to cruise all the way to Moira: the first few hundred yards have just been reopened, more is under way, and there’s an isolated restored length at the far end with a trip-boat in operation and the historic Moira Furnace alongside it. You can already explore it on foot or by bike: there are trails following the old canal or the nearby disused railway line all the way to Moira.