Top 11 Destinations to Visit at Windsor, UK

Windsor, Berkshire, is a tiny town on the south bank of the River Thames, 22 miles west of London, with plenty of sightseeing options and entertaining things to do. It has a charming medieval appearance with its lovely old half-timbered buildings, winding passageways, and cobblestone paths.

Windsor Castle, one of the Royal Family’s principal residences, has made the town a renowned tourist attraction. Be prepared to spend the better part of a day here (and bring a lunch), whether you’re visiting as part of a day trip excursion from London or elsewhere in England. There are so many interesting historic areas of interest to uncover.

Make frequent use of our list of the top tourist sites in Windsor to help you make the most of your time in this lovely ancient town.

1. Visit Royal Windsor Castle

Windsor Castle, a majestic medieval palace constructed atop a chalk hill, has been the summer abode of British Royals for almost 900 years. It’s not only one of Britain’s most stunning palaces, but it’s also the world’s largest inhabited castle, with additions made by several rulers, including William the Conqueror, who erected the initial castle here in 1078. Windsor Castle is a fun place to explore at your leisure, thanks to its stunning grounds (the estate spans 13 acres).

The magnificent St. George’s Chapel, which is the traditional home of the 26 Knights and Ladies of the ancient Order of the Garter; the State Apartments, which house the Queen’s Gallery; and the Great Park, which stretches for nearly six miles along the south side of the castle, are among the attractions.

There are informative guided tours of the residences and precincts available, and attending a special evening tour is one of the best things to do in Windsor at night. If you visit at 11 a.m. on a Tuesday, Thursday, or Saturday, you’ll be able to see the changing of the guard ceremony; a highlight is the opportunity to see the guards walking from Windsor up to the Castle.

2. Frogmore House & Gardens

Windsor Castle’s adjoining Frogmore Estate is worth visiting, even if it is only open to the public for a few days each year. If you arrive at the correct time, you’ll be rewarded with a rare opportunity to explore one of the lesser-known (but equally luxurious) Royal retreats, which is home to Queen Victoria’s ultimate resting place.

The grounds and gardens have been in royal possession since the 1790s, and have been used as the site of important burials, including those of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, who are buried in the Royal Burial Grounds, which also includes two related mausoleums: the Duchess of Kent’s Mausoleum and the Royal Mausoleum.

Frogmore House has been utilized for partying in recent years, and it was the site of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding celebration.

Visits are permitted on selected charity open days, and private tours of Frogmore House for parties of 15 people (bookable in advance) are possible throughout the month of August.

3. Windsor Festival and Theatre Royal

The Waterloo Chamber, Windsor Castle, St. George’s Hall, and Eton College Chapel host daily events during the annual Windsor Festival, which runs from mid-September until early October. The festival has featured orchestral, choral, chamber, and organ concerts, as well as dance acts and lectures, since its establishment in 1969. International artists are frequently requested to perform a classical repertoire.

Theatre Royal also has a diverse program that culture enthusiasts would enjoy. The theatre, located just a short distance from Windsor Castle, produces everything from theatrical shows to live music and takes pride in being the UK’s only unsubsidized year-round theater (and one of the best outside of London’s West End).

4. Legoland Windsor Resort

Legoland Windsor is a pleasant family vacation destination nestled in 150 acres of parkland. With rides, interactive play spaces, and, of course, millions of the renowned plastic bricks, the attraction is dedicated to the inventiveness and imagination of children of all ages. This popular location, which opened in 1996 and attracts over two million tourists each year, is certainly worth a day trip.

If at all feasible, time your visit to coincide with one of the various themed events held at this massive amusement park. A knight-themed fireworks show, Christmas and Halloween celebrations, as well as specific events for toddlers, are all popular with children of all ages. The on-site medieval-themed hotel is also worth a look.

5. Eton College

Eton, a little hamlet on the north side of Windsor Bridge, is known for its college, which Henry VI founded in 1440. Henry Fielding, William Pitt, Percy Shelley, William Gladstone, the Duke of Wellington, and more than 20 English prime ministers have all attended the institution, which is synonymous with English education and the upper levels of British society. The red-brick main building, which surrounds two quadrangles, dates from the school’s inception.

The school chapel, however, is the most notable feature. Completed in 1441, with images from Mary’s life painted between 1470 and 1490. In the main square, a bronze statue of Henry VI sits, and a corridor connects Lupton’s Tower to the cloisters, which house the hall and library.

Small groups and individuals, particularly those interested in touring the Eton College Natural History Museum, are welcome to attend. This fascinating museum, which opened in 1875, houses a collection of stuffed birds, mammals, and fossils. Summer educational activities are also available at the institution.

6. Visit National Trust – Runnymede and Ankerwycke

Another of the area’s most important heritage sites, Runnymede, is about 15 minutes’ drive from downtown Windsor. Though shortly annulled, this historic charter of rights was notable as the first of its kind and remains vital as a symbol of liberty in the United Kingdom.

Runnymede is not just a significant historic place, but it’s also a lovely green park with stunning views of the River Thames and the pastoral scenery that England is known for. Aside from the Magna Carta memorial, this National Trust property’s attractive park-like environment is home to a number of unique outdoor artworks, with new areas of interest being added on a regular basis to assist highlight the site’s historic significance.

The famed Ankerwycke Yew is also worth mentioning. This 2,500-year-old yew is one of the country’s oldest trees, and it’s located immediately across the Thames from Runnymede (it’s a short drive with plenty of parking). It is said that King Henry VIII courted and even proposed to Anne Boleyn here. Today, the park is noted for its diverse wildlife, which includes green woodpeckers, red dragonflies, and wildflowers. It’s especially lovely in the spring, when the region is carpeted in beautiful snowdrop wildflowers.

7. Place Your Bets at Ascot Racecourse

Ascot, undoubtedly England’s most famous racecourse, is home to 13 of the UK’s 36 main yearly races and is utilized for thoroughbred horse racing. Ascot, which is approximately six miles from Windsor Castle and is closely associated with the Royal Family, hosts 26 days of racing each year, with the highlight being The Royal Meeting in June, which features the famed Gold Cup. There are free guided tours available.

The Royal Ascot Cricket Club and Ascot United Football Club are also based at the racecourse. The neighboring Royal Windsor Racecourse, founded in 1866 and known for its figure-of-eight course, one of only two in the UK, is also worth a visit for tourists.

8. Explore the Savill Garden

The Savill Garden, one of the country’s most impressive decorative gardens, is situated on the outskirts of Windsor Castle’s Great Park and forms an important element of Windsor’s Royal Landscape. It was founded in the 1930s and houses a diverse collection of plants in a beautiful natural setting. On this 35-acre property, you’ll find shrubs, alpine meadows, and a formal garden of roses and herbaceous plants, to name a few attractions.

A collection of 60 sculptures scattered throughout the site, as well as various peaceful locations to stop and admire the surrounding floral glory, are other prominent characteristics. For those vacationing with children, there is also a fascinating adventure playground. Picnicking is permitted, and there are a range of food options.

9. Take a Tour of Dorney Court

Dorney Court, located six miles west of Windsor’s town center, is definitely worth a visit and makes for a great day excursion. This nearly 600-year-old mansion has been occupied by the same family throughout its rich history, making it one of the best-preserved surviving examples of Tudor architecture in England. It’s undoubtedly a stunning site, set amid rolling parkland and featuring lovely gardens, an image heightened by the presence of the pretty Norman-era Church of St. James the Less adjacent to the manor house.

Numerous exquisite portraits and paintings, as well as a café and garden center, are among the interior features. Following that, pay a visit to adjacent Dorney Lake, a rectangular man-made lake intended exclusively for rowing exercise.

10. Windsor and Royal Borough Museum

The Windsor & Royal Borough Museum, housed in the town’s elegant 17th-century Guildhall on Windsor High Street, is an excellent addition to any Windsor itinerary. The museum’s extensive collection, which focuses on the history of both the town and its surroundings, includes objects spanning from the Ice Age to the present day.

A magnificent collection of ancient tools, objects from the Bronze Age, Roman and Saxon periods, and countless items from the town’s Victorian heyday are among the highlights. Those interested in learning more about the Royal Family should take a guided tour, which includes a visit to the Ascot Room, where Prince Charles married his long-time sweetheart, Camilla Parker-Bowles.

Military history aficionados may like the neighboring Household Cavalry Museum Archive, which has a library and a significant collection of images relating to the regiment.

11. Sail aboard a Thames Boat Trip

Windsor
Windsor

Several wonderful viewing tours may be taken from Windsor along the River Thames, which constantly branches off and produces islets, offering some of England’s most beautiful parkland landscape. Passengers are transported not only into London, but also to attractive destinations such as Kingston-upon-Thames (journey time to London is approximately five hours).

The travel to Oxford, roughly 70 miles distant, takes two days and passes through beautiful landscape. Even better, rent a canal boat (or barge) from one of the several firms who specialize in this magnificent means of transportation.

Resorts to stay Overnight When Visit Windsor

Hotels of the highest class:
  • The elegant Macdonald Windsor Hotel, located right across from Windsor Castle, provides beautiful luxury suites, as well as a delicious afternoon tea, soft beds, and an electric vehicle charging station.
  • This posh hotel is adjacent to Dorney Court. A park-like environment, excellent rooms with en-suite bathrooms, a fine-dining restaurant with a patio, and a fitness facility are all available at the Oakley Court.
  • Another fantastic luxury hotel option is the Sir Christopher Wren Hotel and Spa, which offers pleasant accommodations with river views and is only a two-minute walk from the castle.
Hotels of the Middle class:
  • The Castle Hotel Windsor MGallery Collection provides mid-range accommodations in a charming old Georgian building only steps from Windsor Castle, as well as stylish décor and a delicious breakfast.
  • The Crown & Cushion, which originates from the 1600s and offers comfortable rooms, a continental breakfast, and a garden terrace, is also in a convenient central position.
  • Another nice alternative is Charles House, which has decent accommodations and is within a short walk from Eton.
Hotels of the Budget class:
  • The Holiday Inn Express Windsor, a three-star hotel with contemporary decor, complimentary breakfast, and a lovely light-filled lounge, offers a great economical stay.
  • Another inexpensive hotel to consider is the Travelodge Windsor Central Hotel, which offers castle views as well as bright and modern rooms near the railway station.
  • Another inexpensive hotel to consider is the Travelodge Windsor Central Hotel, which offers castle views as well as bright and modern rooms near the railway station.
  • With clean, comfy accommodations and pleasant proprietors, the beautiful Cedar Tree Guest House is another fantastic budget option.

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