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Windsor Castle

Windsor Castle

Berkshire

Things to Do in Berkshire

With so many places to visit in Berkshire, you can easily forget you're right on London’s doorstep. A wealth of towns, villages and countryside to explore make this county the perfect antidote to city life. To get the most out of your stay, start planning your days out in Berkshire here.

This romantic county is renowned for its connections with the Royal Family, the River Thames meandering along the northern edge and its many beautiful gardens ablaze with colour. Windsor Castle, Eton college, Ascot Racecourse, Savill Garden and The Look Out Discovery Centre are top quality attractions, all located in this wonderful county and there are plenty of great things to do in Reading.

Things to do in Berkshire this weekend

Many of Berkshire's tourist attractions are open all year round so find something to do today with activities listings each showing a map and opening times for your convenience. Or why not browse our events guide to find out what's happening this week.

Berkshire is also the birthplace of the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton. Born on the 9 January 1982 in the Royal Berkshire hospital in Reading, Kate was raised in the quaint village of Buckleberry where her parents’ home is still located today. It was in the village of Pangbourne in Berkshire where she spent her school days at St Andrew’s School. 

Situated on the River Thames, Pangbourne has been cited as the inspiration of many famous authors’ novels including Kenneth Grahame and Jerome K. Jerome. Full of character, Pangbourne is a great place to visit. Berkshire is also home to many other picturesque towns and villages such as Hurley, Cookham, Bray, Littlewick Green, and Waltham St Lawrence. There is no better way to spend a day than drifting from one pretty village to another in search of a charming country inn concealed among delightful leafy lanes.

Look Out Discovery Centre

Whether you're looking to follow the footsteps of Royalty, or stroll through the scenic country lanes, or perhaps extend your stay for some well-earned rest and relaxation in one of the quaint inns or B&Bs, Berkshire has something to suit the needs of everyone: 

For more about Berkshire, including ideas on days out, where to stay and things to do in Berkshire, browse through the below selection of towns and villages that collectively make Berkshire such a memorable destination to visit.

Towns and places to visit in Berkshire

In this section

Areas to Visit

Sunninghill

Novello Theatre, Sunninghill

Sunninghill means 'the home of Sunna’s people'. Most of the development around the large country houses of the 18th century was accelerated by the...

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  1. Add Streatley-on-Thames to your Itinerary

    Streatley-on-Thames

    Type

    Towns & Villages

    The village of Streatley-on-Thames stands on the opposite side of the River Thames to Goring; Oxfordshire on one side and West Berkshire on the other, linked by a bridge which was built in 1923

  2. Add Sunninghill to your Itinerary

    Sunninghill

    Type

    Towns & Villages

    Sunninghill means 'the home of Sunna’s people'. Most of the development around the large country houses of the 18th century was accelerated by the discovery of health-giving salt springs and rapidly increased with the advent of the railway in 1841.

    Today Sunninghill is a favoured residential...

  3. Add Datchet to your Itinerary

    Datchet

    Type

    Towns & Villages

    Despite much modern development, Datchet still manages to retain many features of the quiet riverside settlement it once was. The older buildings cluster around The Green with its central oak tree commemorating Queen Victoria’s Jubilee, while those of later periods line the roads towards the river...

  4. Add Runnymede to your Itinerary

    Runnymede

    Type

    Towns & Villages

    Location

    Windsor Road, Windsor

    Runnymede is famous for its monuments, the most famous being the one to commemorate the Magna Carta. The area is a riverside setting of meadows, grassland and woodland with a network of pleasant paths and pleasure gardens.

  5. Add Hurley to your Itinerary

    Hurley

    Type

    Towns & Villages

    Hurley is a scattered parish which includes the hamlets of Burchetts Green, Cockpole Green, Warren Row, Knowl Hill. It lies halfway between London and Oxford, being 55 miles from each by river. The river has always been an important part of the village’s history with records of a ford as early as...

  6. Add Wraysbury to your Itinerary

    Wraysbury

    Type

    Towns & Villages

    During the 14th century. Wraysbury (or Wyrardisbury) was a Royal Manor and its lands often featured in the dowries of English Queens. The village grew up around the Church of St Andrew which, although of 12th-century origin and containing some original features, was largely rebuilt in the 19th...

  7. Add Reading to your Itinerary

    Reading

    Type

    Towns & Villages

    Location

    Reading

    Perhaps the most bustling and energetic town in Berkshire, Reading is an appealing combination of excellent shopping facilities and historic buildings.

  8. Add Horton to your Itinerary

    Horton

    Type

    Towns & Villages

    Despite the rather unfortunate Saxon meaning of its name, Hor-tun or 'Dirty Farm', the village today is a clean and wholesome place clustered around its small triangular green, but with more modern houses on the roads to Wraysbury and Colnbrook.

    The name most associated with Horton is that of...

  9. Add Newbury to your Itinerary

    Newbury

    Type

    Towns & Villages

    Location

    Newbury

    Set along the banks of the River Kennet and the Kennet and Avon Canal, Newbury has a fresh, rural atmosphere combined with great shopping facilities and new attractions.

  10. Add Old Windsor to your Itinerary

    Old Windsor

    Type

    Towns & Villages

    Old Windsor was the oldest Saxon town in Berkshire and the seat of Edward the Confessor. It continued in importance up until about 1100 when it was gradually overshadowed by the building of Windsor Castle two miles upstream. The parish includes within its boundaries most of Windsor Great Park,...