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It took nearly five years before Phil Hart found a boat that he felt met all his needs for living aboard. He found Avontuur in Vlaardingen, the Netherlands and brought her over to the UK to a mooring in Chertsey, Surrey, on the River Thames, where he now lives aboard. She is a 100ft (30m) long ship of a traditional

David and Mary  have owned a variety of different boats dating back over 30 years so when it came to building a new boat to live aboard they had some very specific requirements. For a start, they wanted the styling to reflect the lines of a classic Dutch barge but in a newly built ship. They designed Mirage to maximise

Asmall island on the Thames is how the owners of this ex-commercial barge jokingly describe their home. They are not far wrong; at 127ft (39m) Lobelia is certainly one of the larger vessels to feature in this book. Lobelia was built in Belgium in 1962 and is a traditonal type of vessel known as a Spitz. She is now home to

The Meijers family – Frank, his wife Jacqueline, their son Zimmie, daughter Zegna and Isabel the Rottweiler – live aboard Zwerver in the Ertshaven in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. They have lived aboard since 1996. Zwerver is a type of vessel known as a Klipperaak and has had an interesting past. She was built in 1911 as a sailing cargo vessel

Imagine the excitement of discovering a picturesque little village around the next river bend, exploring the countryside by bicycle or cruising right into the centre of a lovely, historic European city in your own floating home. Australians Max and Vicki  decided to turn this excitement into a way of life after hiring a boat on the French canals in 2002

Freedom is the English translation of Vrijheid and it is the feeling of freedom and mobility that a life afloat gives the owners of this classic ship. Bruce and Caroline  are both New Zealanders but have lived in the UK for the last 20 years, 12 of those aboard Vrijheid . She is currently moored at Chiswick Pier on the

Life aboard the Nova Cura is a truly international experience. Colin and Danielle  were born in the UK and USA respectively, and live aboard their Dutch barge in the Netherlands. She is 126ft (38.54m) long traditional Luxemotor design, built in 1928, and their home mooring is in Haringvliet Harbour, Rotterdam. They have lived onboard since 2004, having undertaken an extensive rebuild

Mike and Jill  are the most recent in a long line of caring owners of this classic Luxemotor Dutch barge. Unlike other new boat owners who need to carry out a fair bit of investigative work to piece together a history of their vessel, Mike and Jill were delighted to be handed a complete written history of the barge. This

Home to Simon and Jane , their daughter Ellen and Stanley the cat, Longfellow is a 126ft (37.8m) Luxemotor Dutch barge moored at Putney on the River Thames in London. The family have lived onboard for over eight years. Longfellow was built in Rotterdam to carry grain on the rivers and canals of Europe. She was brought over from the Netherlands

Buying a barge enabled Alison and Roger  to combine their respective passions – travel and boating. The couple had shared many boating holidays together and initially bought Lily to use during weekends and holidays. They soon found that just weekends onboard were not enough so they decided to sell their house and move onboard full time. Alison is a travel and

Emma and Don wanted to buy a house in France for their retirement but couldn’t decide where they wanted to live, so they built a luxury floating home instead that allows them to keep their options open and move around. That home is Libertijn , an 83ft (25.4m) long ship of a traditional Dutch design known as a Klipperaak. She

No matter what the weather, you’ll find Roger and Sue  aboard Harmonie II . She has been their home since retiring two years ago and leaving the UK to begin a new life of adventure cruising on the European waterways. Roger is a former marine engineer so they felt this would be an activity they could manage technically and financially. They