Bert's Barge of Bert and May. / David Butler

Drift off to sleep while floating on water

Bert’s Barges - England

The beds-on-boats trend is having a moment. The latest addition is Bert’s Barges, a boutique barge brand which opened its first boat hotel on the Regent’s Canal in East London, this summer. More are due to follow in Bristol, York, and Little Venice soon. The boat, Lyris, available to hire in its entirety, is about as hip as houseboats can get, with grey wooden walls, and monochrome retro-inspired furnishings.

The boat has one bedroom, a kitchen, a bathroom, and a living-dining area. It also comes with under-floor heating and a roof terrace as well as free use of Brompton folding bikes and a vintage rowing boat. In true East London fashion, the welcome hamper includes bottles of craft beer.

67 Vyner Street, London E2 9DQ (0203 744 0776; bertsbarges.com). From £250 a night based on a two-night stay, B&B. Sleeps four.

Yellow Submarine Hotel - England

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Yellow Submarine Hotel, Liverpool

A bespoke vessel once used in movies such as The Hunt for Red October starring Sean Connery, this submarine now resides above water in Liverpool’s Albert Dock. Not so much a hotel as a waterborne self-catering apartment, it’s been refurbished in Sixties style, with a banana-yellow exterior, and interiors decorated with psychedelic prints, leather seating, animal print cushions, and even some of the Beatles’ gold records.

Albert Dock, Liverpool, L3 4AS  (07885 295413; yellowsubliverpool.co.uk).  From £199 per night, self-catering.  Sleeps six.

Salt & Sill - Sweden

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Salt & Sill, Tjorn

Consisting of six two-storey houses built on a pontoon, Salt & Sill is actually technically not a boat. It is, however, Sweden’s first floating hotel, off the west coast island of Tjorn. The bedrooms are decorated in Scandinavian-chic style, with white linen, rough wooden floors, and simple, functional furnishings. Guests can relax on the roof, which is a large sun deck, or head down to the catamaran SS Silla, which is moored next to the hotel.

Kladesholmen, Tjorn, Bohuslan, Sweden (0046 304 67 34 80; saltosill.se/hotel). Doubles from SEK1,990 (£147), B&B.

St Katharine - Spain

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St Katharine, Barcelona

Moored in Port Forum on the outskirts of Barcelona, this bobbing B&B has lots to offer. The 80ft boat has five cabins, including three en-suites. The bedrooms each have their own portholes and come with map-themed wallpaper on feature walls. The boat also has an indoor lounge, as well as an outdoor sundeck that is complete with sun loungers and private Jacuzzi. There’s even a small dinghy which guests can use to explore the rest of the Marina.

Carrer de la Pau 12, Sant Adrià de Besòs, Barcelona (0034 616 38 02 66; bed-and-breakfast-barcelona.com). Doubles from €99, room only.

Boatel Charlie - Serbia

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Boatel Charlie, Belgrade

Located on the Danube in Belgrade, this floating hostel is a peaceful and pet-friendly option close to the heart of Serbia’s thriving capital city. The boat has eight bedrooms which are simply decorated, with wooden floors and full-length windows overlooking the river. The boat also houses a common room, communal kitchen, and a dining room, and is an easy 20-minute walk from the city centre. Bikes are also available to rent, to explore the city further afield.

Bulevar Nikole Tesle, Belgrade,  Serbia (00381 64 2038 386; boatelcharlie .com). Doubles start at €43, room only.

Modern Boat - Germany

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Modern Boat, Berlin

Floating on Lake Rummelsburg in the centre of Berlin, this houseboat is self-catering accommodation with a difference. One side is entirely made up of glass windows that look out on to the water, letting light into the boat’s living area. There is also an open-plan kitchen area, a toilet, and one double bedroom, with an additional double sofa bed in the living room. It’s decorated in shades of grey and is kept cosy by a wood-burning fireplace.

Lake Rummelsburg, Berlin, Germany (00 49 163 737 2509; welcomebeyond .com). Nightly rate from €180, self-catering. Sleeps four.

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