This canal runs from the River Severn Navigation at Gloucester to the tidal Severn at Sharpness and was designed to allow boats to bypass a dangerous stretch of the river.
It is 26.5 km (16.5 mi) long, has two locks and at one time, was the broadest and deepest canal in the world. Commercial traffic had all but ceased by the mid-1980s and since then, it has largely been used for recreational purposes.
The canal is part of the Cotswolds Ring for pleasure boating. There is a host of wildlife en route for nature lovers, especially on the tidal flats at Sharpness. Purton Hulks near Sharpness Docks is a fascinating graveyard for wrecked vessels which have been beached in an effort to prevent tidal erosion.
Fishing and walking are also popular here.