Monday, May 27, 2024


Amazing Rideau Canal Cruise – A Unique CRUISE HOLIDAY WITH LE BOAT

A luxury houseboat cruise on Rideau Canal with Le Boat can be a unique option if you’re looking for an…

By Chan , in Travel , at October 3, 2022

A luxury houseboat cruise on Rideau Canal with Le Boat can be a unique option if you’re looking for an unusual boating holiday. Le Boat is Europe’s number one provider of boating holidays along canals. Now, Canada has Le Boats cruising the Rideau Canal, from Ottawa through Kingston.

Rideau Canal Cruise – Self Drive Houseboat With Le Boat

The Rideau Canal is not something many people think about, and it is a shame. The Rideau Canal is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and cruising it feels like a small piece of Europe in the middle of North America. Dave and I have travelled to Ontario from beginning to end, but the Rideau Canal in Ottawa is the only place we’ve ever explored this waterway. We didn’t know we could self-drive a yacht down the Rideau Canal, even if we didn’t have a boat. Le Boat has changed everything. Le Boat allows novice drivers to explore Ontario’s lakes and rivers in luxury.

Le Boat Luxury Houseboats on the Rideau Canal

Le Boat houseboats don’t look like your grandparents’. These luxurious floating yachts are large, spacious, and easy to use. It is an unforgettable experience to take a cruise down the Rideau Canal.

Horizon By Le Boat

Our Horizon 3 houseboat is docked at Smiths Falls, Ontario. We boarded it. This boat is ideal for large families and couples on vacation. The boat has 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, an upper and lower deck, and a huge kitchen. You can enjoy great nights under the stars with the sink and barbecue on the top deck.

Self Driving A Le Boat House Boat

Although I was nervous about driving a luxury 45-foot yacht worth EUR450k ($650kCAD), I did it because that’s what I wanted to do for the next seven days. Le boat is not worried at all. It’s completely safe for novice drivers.

Doug from Le Boat visited us after we unloaded our gear (packing lists coming soon). He showed us how to use the upstairs deck barbecue, run the air-conditioning, and tie knots. The most difficult task was learning how to drive a boat.

Dave and I invited Jim, my brother and Janice, to join us for the trip. These are both avid boaters and have a lot of driving experience. Doug asked me who I needed to learn, and I immediately responded. Doug covered all aspects of boat piloting, and we were on our way to an hour-long lesson.

Can you drive a Le Boat if you have previous boating experience?

Janice and Jim have boating licenses and assumed they would drive the boat for the week. No experience is required to rent a houseboat on Rideau Canal. A boating license is not required. You can drive a Le Boat without any prior experience. Every boat has speed limits that limit of 10 km/h. There are bumpers around the entire boat and a secret weapon on the boat – thrusters.

Thrusters on our HouseBoat

The thrusters on all Horizon Le Boats allow you to navigate the water easily. The bow and side thrusters make it easy to manoeuvre the boat. Our side thrusters allowed us to turn the boat in the middle of narrow channels. We were able to glide up to docks with no bumping or floating. Once I mastered it, I was hooked on the thrusters. I don’t know why anyone would want to drive a boat with them.

We learned how to steer, park, and drive the boat straight. Doug joined us to help us get the hang of it.

Waiting at the first Lock of the Rideau Canal

Once the boat is locked, the people at the lines keep it in place as the locks fill up with water.

Jim and Janice were rope-duty while I was driving. Dave was also watching as he would be sharing driving duties during the week. As we waited for the water to refill, I was able to breathe inside the lock.

The neutral throttle quickly became my best friend. The neutral throttle gave me the engine power, which enabled the thrusters to control the boat during docking.

I also learned that I could put the boat in reverse to slow it down. With ease and a lot of stress, we sailed through the lock. Once we were on the other side, Doug was dropped off, and we began our week-long trip south from Smiths Falls.