England's Hidden Gem

The canals of England are not only part of the nations rich historical heritage, but they also still provide the perfect place to spend a holiday, go for a walk, run or simply just take in its natural splendour, with the finest nature found all around.

Close to my childhood home, in North Staffordshire are a network of canals that saw great use during their heyday in the industrial revolution, during the 18th century. Back then these canals were used to transport large quantities of natural resources from the nearby coal mines, and the essential materials used with the pottery industry. Goods would travel miles and then naturally link into other canals, allowing goods to be transported regularly nationwide and even worldwide.

Nowadays, many of these impressive waterways are given over for recreational purposes, whereby people from all walks of life, can get outside and explore the many different beautiful routes on a canal barge holiday. Fantastic walks can also be enjoyed, as the paths are usually flat, soft underfoot, well maintained and very peaceful, with some of the finest natural surroundings you will find for miles around.

Many of these canals cut through the nearby towns and cities and their raw, rugged urban landscapes. Unearthing stories from days gone by and their historical past. They meander and weave through the countryside and into many delightful places, where butterflies, birds and fish life, live side by side. In my eyes, these wonderful places form part of England's hidden gems. Places you think you know, but you never really know, until you have the time to fully explore and appreciate them.

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