The countryside in the area of Rugby is very pretty with its gentle hills and patchwork fields, and there are some beautiful cross country footpaths where you can crest a hill and see a panorama of what makes England so special spread out before you. Living in the flatlands as I do now, it is wonderful to climb hills and see the shadow plays across the valleys. Another thing I miss in the Netherlands is the hedgerows. I love the way they define the fields, and I think this might even be unique to Britain.
The canals themselves are an enchanting parallel world but I was surprised at how busy they still are even in school term times. Of course although it was very wet much of the time, it is not cold and so the intrepid keep going. The other advantage on the English canals is that you can stop quite easily and wait out the weather if you have the time. That isn't possible over here as moorings are strictly designated and the canals are too big anyway. It all seems very relaxed and easy going on the English canals. I imagine that as long as you aren't in a hurry and can deal with the shenannigans of the hire boat party goers (of which I believe there are many), then there is not much to worry about.
My friend, who has also lived on a barge here in Rotterdam, says it is totally different and much easier to do your own thing in England - one of the reasons she prefers it there. You don't have to worry about commercial traffic at all.
I have posted a number of photos on Facebook, but I have added a few here for my non Facebook friends to see. It was, as the saying goes, most enjoyable!