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Nothing beats a bit of Water Wellness than a Hot Tub – but what about a Hot Tub Boat in London as you cruise the Thames waterways of Canary Wharf? If you’re going to do something, make sure you do it in style! Even better still – do this experience in the autumn and winter months as we did. You’ll really appreciate its warmth on a super cold day! You seriously forget it’s nearly minus degrees in the air above you.
This experience is nothing short of being seriously cool. Well, not cool, it’s a hot tub, but you know what I mean. Skuna Hot Tub Boats have a prime location on West India Quay, where they have everything you need. Just bring something you’re comfortable wearing in the hot tub, a towel and some flip flops! The rest is taken care of.
Nordic Hot Tub Boat in London
Embrace the Nordic tradition with a difference by cruising along the Thames and around Canary Wharf in one of Skuna’s Hot Tub Boats. What makes it Nordic? There is an ancient history behind this tradition. But essentially it is due to the heat coming from a wood burner. The wood burner on these hot tub boats is at the front of the little vessel. Its steam coming out the prominent steel chimney adds to the ambience of the experience – making it almost look like a little tug boat!
Don’t take the Nordic spa tradition too far though – this popular style of hydrotherapy normally involves going straight from hot to cold temperatures to strengthen your immune system and purify the body. However, on this occasion, we wouldn’t recommend dunking yourself into the Thames from the hot tub. It just wouldn’t be pleasant! Stick to the tub and just relax, soaking up the London vibes!
From heated, wooden sauna style changing rooms, lockable benches for your belongings, an onsite bar to purchase up to 2 drinks to take onboard and great customer service on offer, you’ll be smiling from the moment you arrive.
One of London’s most unique outdoor experiences
We opted for the Hot Tub Boat Guided Historical Docklands Cruise. Not only is this the best value for money experience, but it’s also a brilliant way to just learn a bit about the local area. And let’s be honest, it was the cheapest way to get into one of these hot tubs!
@travelwithnoanchor Get your dose of #waterwellness on these Canary Wharf Hot Tub Boats – definitely recommended! #skunaboat #hottubboat #hottublondon #londonhottub #londonlife #thingstodoinlondon #canarywharf #canarywharflondon #skunaboatcanarywharf ♬ Bathtub Song – Willie Aron & Kristin Mooney
After getting changed in the Scandinavian style, wooden, nicely heated changing room huts, it’s a quick run to the hot tub. It is flipping freezing in London come the autumn! The moment you board the hot tub boat, you realise just how warm and toasty it’s going to be. It actually takes a few minutes to get used to the heat! At a balmy 38 degrees, you soon start to relax, letting the heat work on those tense muscles. The water is crystal clear as you enter – knowing it is fully emptied and cleaned between each use.
These little tug boats are electrically powered so they are super quiet. You can almost creep up on people as they go about their daily lifes along the Wharf. Don’t let this public boat experience put you off though. People tend to look in awe, with a smile or give that sort of jealous look like they wish they were in the tub too. Some even shout out ‘is it warm?’. Either way, as someone who is not the most confident out in public, let me reassure you that it really doesn’t feel like you are exposed to the world. Far from it. Just sit back and enjoy. You deserve it.
Hot Tub or Bathtub?
When you think hot tub, you may think of hot bubble jets in some sensitive places. This isn’t that! It is more hot bathtub than hot tub, but its warmth is still incredibly welcomed. For Alex, who was someone we thought was from America, turned out to be France (we are rubbish with accents!), it was a little too warm. So he was quite happy to sit on the side throughout the tour. He legs were warm enough whilst the rest of him still benefitted from the warmth and steam from the bathtub water.
Our tour guide and Captain for the 75 minutes was Gary who was fantastically entertaining throughout. As it was a mixed group guided tour, 5 minutes were spent getting to know each other a little. I’m assuming this is so a bond is created and therefore if anyone did fall overboard, it wasn’t just down to Gary to save them. He could potentially rely on one of us to go in head first seeing as we already knew them, and maybe liked them! But don’t worry, this is very unlikely to happen (and if it does, there is a ladder to use!) Up to 7 people passengers are allowed on each boat.
Gary highlighted that during the guided tour, there was absolutely no need to be giving a present-day tour of Canary Wharf. Bank. Bank. There’s another Bank. Oh, there’s an office!
The Historic Hot Tub Boat Tour
However, it is the history of the Wharf that gives this place its charm. Learn about its early beginnings. How those before used to live and work on the docks. And how Canary Wharf became the giant that it is today. You’ll be well educated on why West India Quay has been given its name and the tales that have been told over many years. It wasn’t all guided tour though. There was plenty of time to just soak in the atmosphere quietly, with a drink in your hand. Take pleasure in looking up at one of those offices, thinking smugly that you’re glad it’s not you at work today!
The route takes you past glittering skyscapers, Billingsgate Market and the Pergola On The Wharf with a unique perspective. The views are equally as good from the water as they are above.
Our tour started at 4pm (on a weekday), so towards the end, the afternoon light was beginning to change, with sunset glows starting to bounce off the glass buildings. It was pretty magical and definitely added to the experience.
Private Hot Tub Boat in London & Lakeside Location
If you want to ditch the guided tour, Skuna Hot Tub Boats also offer private hire (for up to 7 people). There are also sunset tours at the weekends in Canary Wharf. We highly recommend the sunset tours – not only do you get the gorgeous ambience of the Wharf during golden hour, you can wonder around the dazzling lights around the water well into the evening.
The cost of hiring privately works out great with people sharing the cost – you just have to remember to nominate a captain!
Heading to Essex? They also have private hot tub boat hire on Alexandra Lake, just outside the huge Lakeside Shopping Centre! A former chalk quarry, there is an abunadance of wildlife to spot, with a great buzz from this lakeside location. Make a day of it and combine it with a visit to one of the many bars and restaurants overlooking the lake – perfect!
In the summer time, check out their BBQ boats. They are great for soaking in the summer rays, whilst cooking up your own feast onboard!
Would we recommend this Hot Tub Boat in London? Defintely. They’re quirky. Unique. Something you will definitely talk about to friends and family.
Don’t miss the chance to jump onboard next time you are in London!
Inspirational content to spend more time outdoors, in blue spaces and experiencing Water Wellness.