Self-drive boats and canal boat hire

Self-drive boats

An exciting choice of boats for hire,
routes and offers

We have a wide range of license-free, modern cruisers and traditional style canal boats to suit all group sizes and budgets. Relaxed fun for all ages whether cruising as a couple, a family or a group of friends.

Simply select a houseboat or self-drive fleet below,  and click for full details including photos, floor plans, rental prices, reviews and special offers.

Boating with Hotels Afloat is as easy as child's play.


The Penichettes are traditional-style boats, which are provided with modern amenities for 2-12 guests. 
For a more modern style, the Europas and Linssens are very comfortable boats for up to 7 guests.

P1020 FB self-drive

P1020 FB

5 guests

Europa 600 self-drive

Europa 600

6 guests

P1022FB self-drive


3 guests


Nicols operates from 27 bases in five countries: France, Germany, Holland, Hungary & Portugal.
With four classes to choose from, all the boats offer bright and spacious accommodation.

The new "C"  boats include air-conditioning, 220v electricity during navigation and a dishwasher too!

N1160 self-drive


10 guests

N1010 self-drive


8 guests

N QUATTRO B self-drive


4 guests

N OCTO FLY self-drive


10 guests

France Afloat

Discover a selection from the France Afloat fleet with 1st-class self-drive boats for comfortable cruising in Burgundy plus the Canal du Midi and Camargue in the south of France.

Euro Classic 139 self-drive

Euro Classic 139

6 guests

Euro Classic 149 self-drive

Euro Classic 149

8 guests

Euro Classic 129 self-drive

Euro Classic 129

4 guests

Le Boat

With 40 different departure points in 8 countries, Le Boat offers a wide range of modern style cruisers.

Crusader self-drive


6 guests

Cirrus B self-drive

Cirrus B

4 guests

Vision 4 SL self-drive

Vision 4 SL

9 guests

Mystique self-drive


8 guests

France Passion Plaisance

Celebrating 40 years of boating this year, FPP Les Canalous offers competitively priced rental boats throughout France, as well as in Germany and Italy.

Tarpon 32 self-drive

Tarpon 32

8 guests

With the ever-increasing popularity of activity-based holidays, our self-drive vacations allow you to enjoy a variety of pursuits guaranteeing a truly memorable trip, regardless of age and interests. Driving a boat is child's play, and after a short induction course, you will be ready to cast off on a beautiful journey.

For historians and those that love architecture, explore ancient monuments, chateaux, abbeys, and museums.

Sporty? Hire a canoe, a stand-up paddle-board or bicycles. Or how about horse-riding, rock-climbing, tree climbing, golf, fishing or swimming?

Naturalists? The rivers and canals are natural habitats for a wide range of fauna and flora: Coypu, kingfishers, herons, birds of prey, majestic swans, flamingo, beautiful weeping willows, stunning water lilies and more.

Epicureans love our holidays! Visit the vineyards to see how wines are produced, take tastings in wine cellars and explore new cuisine and delicious, fresh food in cosy waterside bistros or Michelin-starred restaurants. On all the self-drive boats, the onboard galleys are well equipped should you prefer to cook. Many lock-keepers sell their homemade produce while local markets ensure that you will be spoilt for choice.

Total relaxation? Bring your sketchbooks and Kindles, card games and favourite CDs. The peaceful waterways provide the perfect backdrop for some 'me' time.

With so much choice each day, this is undoubtedly the ideal family holiday.

Whichever one of the 12 countries you choose to cruise in, and whichever region, you will find plenty to see and do to keep you all happy.

Our team of experts are always pleased to help you choose the perfect destination to suit your particular interests.