Chichester Canal Chichester Basin Road, England, PO19 8DT

Chichester Ship Canal – Chichester’s secret waterway, where you can enjoy boat trips, watersports or walks to the coast or into the countryside.

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A 10 minute walk from Chichester City Centre is one of Chichester’s best kept secrets – the 200-year-old Chichester Ship Canal where you can enjoy boat trips, watersports or walks to the coast or into the countryside.

This secret waterway was once part of the former Portsmouth and Arundel Canal, which opened in 1823, linking Chichester to the sea, and is now a leisure waterway, navigable for two miles to Donnington, where the Canal continues on to Birdham.

What is there to see and do?

This tranquil haven sits just a short walk from the railway and bus stations and the city centre. Here you can enjoy narrow boat trips, rowing, canoeing, rambling, fishing, and cycling.  The tow path is a designated public footpath, now part of the extended Lipchis Way and affords fabulous views of the Cathedral and the South Downs.

Join a scheduled return boat trip (which run up to four times daily depending on the time of year) and learn about the canal’s history, see unique views of local wildlife, the iconic Cathedral and the beautiful Sussex South Downs.

You can also walk the towpath the entire four miles as far as Chichester Marina at Birdham.


a picture showing a canal boat on chichester canal and a person fishing

Chichester Canal by David Millar (Chichester Canal Photo Competition 2021)

Watersports and fishing

You can kayak, paddleboard or canoe along the canal and take in the views from the water yourself. It’s also a great spot for fishing. Permits for these sports are available from the Canal office at the Canal Basin.


Wildlife and Nature

Chichester Canal is a hotspot for local wildlife including moorhens, coots, mallards, swans, herons, kingfishers, whitethroats, common sandpipers, spotted flycatchers, woodpeckers and much more, which make it a popular spot for local photographers.



Photo credit: Meryn Woodland


Other things to do

Golf at Goodwood

If you’re looking for great golf in the South Downs, then looks no further than Goodwood Golf. The Goodwood golf club, home to the renowned Goodwood Downs Course and The Park Course, offers something for all golf enthusiasts, no matter what their ability.

A dog on the South Downs Way

If Britain is a nation of dog lovers then Sussex is undoubtedly the county of dog lovers.

It will come as no surprise then, that the Chichester District – or the Great Sussex Way as we’re known – is home to some of the best dog walks in the country. Come and explore what’s on offer.

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