The rivers shown on this map are among the most important waterways in Europe. They are drawn here in their full length, from source to sea, even though only a portion may be navigable. Nearly all of them flow to the north; only the Rhône/Saône flows south to the Mediterranean Sea and the Danube flows east to the Black Sea.

The green lines are approximations of the higher elevations that create the watersheds associated with these rivers. Waterway connections across these lines are made by summit canals; man-made canals rise through a series of locks to the summit then descend the other side through another series of locks.

This is especially important for those considering a trip between the English Channel/North Sea to the Mediterranean Sea; note that there is no direct river connection from north to south, and in fact the 19th-century canals across the center of France are restricted by locks 5.0 meters wide and stone-arch bridges with 3.5 meters clearance.

Select a river below for the EuroCanals Guide describing that river.

Tom - As someone who recently bought a canal boat and knows nothing about canal boating in Europe, I subscribed to your online library. Last night I spent about five hours reading about the Netherlands — where my boat is now — and parts of France. Your guides are providing me with exactly the kind of information that I've been looking for but not finding, or at least not finding in such a clear and understandable form, in other books on the subject. In particular, I love the suggested routes for each area, as they give order and clarity to what otherwise would be just be an overwhelming amount of information. Thanks, Richard