'Weekender' Cruises:Are you a couple with only weekends available because of weekday work commitments? Perhaps you prefer to reserve your annual leave entitlement for foreign holidays in warmer climes. One of our 'Weekender' Breaks might suit you and your partner as a treat that doesn't impinge on that pool of annual leave days. Alternatively it might be something that could be 'given' as a celebratory gift (Birthdays, Anniversaries, Christmas). Although described as a 'Weekender', these cruise are available starting on any day of the week.
Our tariffs for all our cruises are fully inclusive of all cruise costs, relevant meals, and morning and afternoon refreshments (ie teas/coffess etc).
So, one of our 'Weekender' Breaks on Willow might just suit. The standard 'weekender' cruise would typically start at 9am on the Saturday at our Falkirk Wheel Basin moorings, returning back there by 5.30pm on the Sunday. We call it a 'Weekender', but these cruises are available starting on any weekday if required. As a private charter operation you will be our sole guests for the cruise, with professionally qualified crew and hosts.
The 'Weekender' Route:Leaving our Falkirk Wheel moorings at about 9.30am on the Saturday, we climb the Falkirk Wheel and pass through the Antonine Wall via the Roughcastle Tunnel - then ascend a set of 'staircase' locks onto the original course of the Union Canal. We pass through the impressive rock hewn Falkirk Tunnel (630m long) and cross the spectacular Avon Aqueduct (highest/longest in Scotland). We often lunch literally on top of the aqueduct and there's plenty of time to get off Willow for a wander and 'look over the edge'.
Then, following the 75m contour, we skirt around (and above) Linlithgow onto a meandering rural stretch of canal with panoramic views; of the Ochils to the north; Firth of Forth to Fife in the east; and the Pentland Hills to the south. There are embankments and wooded cuttings - and it's a 'quiet' canal. We are likely to meet few, if any, other moving boats. Wildlife abounds, with Kingfishers and Roe Deer to look out for. Just short of Ratho, we moor up late afternoon at the Lin's Mill Aqueduct (also known as River Almond Aqueduct). Lin's Mill Aqueduct is the second highest in Scotland. Our mooring is often in the 'lade' (minature canal) beside the aqueduct.
On the saturday (or first) evening we serve a three course evening meal, with complimentary glass of wine. Morning and afternoon tea/coffee with biscuits and cake or scones are also included on both days.
Rising on the following morning to a cooked breakfast, we then cruise back to Linlithgow Basin where we will stop for lunch. Time for a short wander at Linlithgow Basin, before heading back along the Union canal and to finally descend the Falkirk Wheel to our home moorings. That's a two day cruise over 45 miles.
Although Willow is around 65ft in length, we carry only one couple on 'Weekender' cruises - because of our bedroom capacity.
If this is the first page you have visited on our website, you may not be aware of the calibre of Willow. She is not merely a short open day hire vessel with wooden bench seating. We all know that the weather in Scotland is predictably fine (??) - but should it rain or get chilly, our centrally heated glazed bow observation cabin protects guests from the elements. Coming with us on a 'weekender' couldn't be simpler - just pack an overnight bag - free car parking at the Falkirk Wheel (with overnight security patrols).
Under UK legislation it is unlawful to smoke on board Willow.
The Costs of a 'Weekender' Break Cruise:So, how much does it cost to privately charter Willow for a 'weekender' cruise - possibly less than you think. For one couple the all inclusive fee is £360 for the above weekend cruise - that's just £180 per person, based on two sharing the guest suite. It includes all the accommodation and catering as described and, of course, the cruise costs. For those wishing to join us on the night before, rather than on the morning of the cruise start, we can add a 'B&B service' on board Willow for a supplement fee of £40 per person (our normal B&B rate, when not added on to an accommodation cruise, is generally set at £45 per person).
These cruises have been costed with 'a couple' in mind, but as always we do not wish to exclude lone passengers. We hope that lone guests understand that actual cruise costs are not reduced by mere reduction of the number of passengers. We can provide the above described weekend cruise for a lone guest for an inclusive fee of £320.
All bookings must be made in advance with a 50% booking deposit.
In the UK booking deposit payments can be made by Internet Banking Transfer; or by using the 'Chip & Pin Faster Payment' service (similar to Internet Bank Transfer but carried out over the counter at any branch of NatWest or RBS) - both of these payment methods are free from Bank Fees. You can also make booking deposit payments using credit/debit card using the paypal system (the suggested method for overseas clients paying small booking deposits).
Having paid the booking deposit the balance is payable (and must be 'bank cleared') on or before the start of the cruise. For those wishing to pay the balance on arrival at Willow on the day of the cruise we do require that payment by cash only (there are no facilities for taking credit/debit card payments on the boat). Guests often find it most convenient to pay the 50% deposit using bank transfer or PayPal - then pay the balance in cash at the start of the cruise.
The dates we have made available for 'Weekend Break' cruises are detailed on our 'Available Dates' page. To book contact us by phone or email to discuss your requirements. Click here for our contact page.
Bookings are only accepted on the understanding that all passengers accept our standard booking conditions as detailed on this website. Click here to view. In particular please discuss with us, at the time of booking, any potential mobility issues there may be with any of your party for the purposes of getting on and off Willow.