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Frequently Asked Questions about Boating Holidays

I've never been on a boat before. Are they easy to control?

Our Norfolk hire boats are simplicity themselves. A single lever gives you forward or reverse thrust and a steering wheel is used for direction. You'll be given expert guidance before you set off and so long as you take things easy, you'll find navigating and mooring a doddle. Simply take things easy, slow down your reactions and enjoy.

Do I need a licence to drive the boat?

No. Anyone competent can pilot a river cruiser and you will be given a hands-on demonstration before you leave the marina. Children under eight years are not permitted to helm the boat.

Can I bring my dogs?

Sure. We welcome dogs onto most of our boats. There are many open spaces for them to run around and plenty of walks for you all to enjoy.

Can I smoke?

No Smoking on any Freedom CruiserSorry, all our Norfolk Broads holiday boats are strictly no smoking.

What time can I collect my boat?

We aim to have boats available for boarding from 4pm for holidays of a week or more and 2pm for short breaks. During the winter months when darkness falls early, we endeavour to get you out on the river as soon as possible. Please discuss this when you book.

What time do I need to return the boat?

Please have the boat back at the marina by 9am on the morning of vacation in a clean and tidy condition. We reserve the right to charge for extra cleaning if needed and there's a late charge of £50 per hour or part if the boat is returned after 9am without permission.

Can I bring a bicycle?

The potential for injury and damage from a cycle is high within in the confined space of a boat and for these reasons, we do not permit cycles upon our vessels.

How far can I travel?

If you average about four hours cruising a day, you can travel over 80 miles in a week. Putting that into perspective, it gives you the opportunity of exploring most, if not all, of the Northern Norfolk Broads during a week's holiday.

Can I fish?

Sure. Fishing is a very popular pastime for boat hirers and being able to move from place to place allows you to try different waters. Remember though that the Norfolk Broads are subject to the standard fishing season (16th June - 14th March). Fishing the Norfolk Broads outside of these dates is illegal. There's a tackle shop at Ludham Marina and you can buy your rod license from the local village Post Office.

Can my children drive the boat?

Local Broads Authority Bylaws permit only children of eight years and over to be at the helm of a motorised vessel and then only under supervision.

How fast can I go?

It's not a question of how fast, but how slow. A Norfolk Broads holiday cruiser is about slowing down. Remember, it's the most relaxing adventure holiday you're likely to have. River speeds are between 3 and 6 mph. Excessive speed causes river erosion and may damage other craft. There's also a maximum £1000 fine, so please stick to the speed limits.

Where can I moor?

Member - Broads Hire Boat FeberationSo long as there aren't any specific notices indicating that you can't moor (private land or because of dangerous banks, etc.) you can moor almost anywhere. If you want to be secluded amongst the trees, pull up carefully and tie up. If you prefer to be around others, there are plenty of designated public moorings with solid quay headings and mooring posts/rings. You can even drop your mud weight in the middle of a broad (though please stay out of the traffic channels). You can also moor in any boat yard that is a member of the Broads Hire Boat Federation. Watch out for the logo.

What about bridges?

There are only a few bridges on the Broads that pose a problem for cruisers. Both Potter Heigham & Wroxham bridges have a pilot to take you through and some boats are simply too large to make it. Others will only-just make it at low tide. Most other bridges are easily passable, though you should always take the canopy down to ensure you don't collide with the structure. Many of our boats will pass under Potter Heigham Bridge at suitable tides.

Can I charge my phone?

All our boats feature a standard car-style cigarette lighter connection for connecting 12volt applicances like mobile phone chargers - though you must supply your own charger.

Can I use my hair dryer?

Some boats have full 240volt mains power systems capable of the considerable power requirements of modern hair dryers, but many don't. We do have some 12volt hair dryers available for hire with your holiday and, whilst some people would argue that these are better than nothing, don't expect a "Nicky Clarke" blow-dry experience.

Boating Holiday Search

You can book from any day to any day. Short Breaks Welcome.

Guest Book Comments

We would like to praise the helpful staff who made us feel welcome on arrival. Especially our Guide who gave us practical advice & really useful information. Many thanks to you all. Scott & Linda
Linda Halksworth
Sweet Freedom
February 2012

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