48 hours on The River Thames
The River Thames is so intertwined with England’s past it has been described as ‘Liquid History’. From the rolling hills of the Cotswolds to the outskirts of London, it is home to quaint villages and historic towns, castles and great houses.
It has been used as a highway, seen historic battles and provided inspiration for writers and artists. Today, the River Thames is a wonderful retreat, perfect for boating, walking, fishing or simply relaxing in a pub or restaurant with a wonderful view. But for those of you who enjoy a more active break there’s Stand Up Paddleboarding (SUP), kayaking or canoeing.
Not sure where to start? Visit Thames has produced some great ideas for 48 Hours on the River Thames.
48 Hours – Escape! Ideas for Winter Breaks with some great accommodation offers.
Getting to the River Thames by car
Runnymede, Henley and Windsor are easily accessible by car with parking available in each town. Runnymede is two miles west of Runnymede Bridge on the south side of the A3028(M25, exit 13).
Windsor is just 30 miles west of London and easily accessible via the M3, M4, M25 and M40. Henley can be accessed by the M4 and M40.
Top 5 must see places
Hire a boat or jump aboard one of the many passenger boats cruising up and down the River Thames.
Step back in time at the world’s oldest and largest occupied castle and the Queen’s favourite home.
Walk the Thames Path
Stroll along the Thames Path, National Trail - Marlow to Cookham is arguably the most beautiful stretch.
River and Rowing Museum
See exciting, interactive and stimulating exhibitions and galleries giving a real taste of the River Thames.
A weekend break
Whether it’s a weekend or midweek break you’re looking for, we’ve put together some great ideas to make the most of what the river has to offer.
With probably the best choice of hotels a destination can offer, including Cliveden, the AA’s Hotel of the Year 2015, there’s no problem in finding a comfortable bed for the night with wonderful riverside locations!
If you love good food, our restaurants have lots to offer including the Macdonald Compleat Angler’s 3 AA Rosette Riverside Restaurant or stay near Windsor and visit one of the three award-winning restaurants in Bray.
Combine a spa with a beautiful riverside location and you have a haven of tranquillity, offering you a relaxing, pampering experience.
Win a 4-star hotel & spa stay
We’ve brought together some of the finest River Thames short break experiences in our 48 Hours... Escape! leaflet. Don’t miss the fantastic Winter Break offers provided by some of the finest riverside hotels. To launch the new short breaks leaflet we are offering the opportunity to win a ‘Run away to the Runnymede’ break, an overnight stay at the 4 star runnymede-on-thames hotel and spa with 3 course dinner in the Leftbank Restaurant. Includes full use of the award-winning spa facilities. Closing Date 30th November 2015.
To help, you make the most of what the river has to offer, we have developed a set of itineraries for those new to the area, exploring the best bits of what the River Thames has to offer.
If you are short for time, why not try one of our one day or half day itineraries? There are lots of ideas to help you discover this wonderful part of Britain - from peaceful walks through stunning scenery to city breaks and time spent watching the world glide by on a boat.
Of course, you don't need to be new to the River Thames to make use of these great trip ideas - if you live near the river, may be explore a little further afield or take a short break somewhere new? Or you could take time out with a relaxing boating holiday for a real taste of this majestic river.
To find an itinerary simply choose how long a break you would like and then take your pick from the list of places to visit. Each itinerary can be downloaded and printed off so you can take it with you on your trip.
Explore the beautiful, relaxing and inspiring
There really is so much to do on the river and nearby, that a day is not long enough. There are plenty of family-friendly places to stay nearby or on the river. Make your base at one of our family friendly hotels and you can discover history or enjoy a spot of camping...
Fun on the River Thames doesn't always have to cost you. There are plenty of free ways to have a cheap day out with the kids on the River Thames. Take a stroll, get on your bike, catch a fish or play Pooh Sticks...
Don’t forget there are endless ideas for adventure on the river. Check out our ideas for Great Family Days Out. The simplest way to explore the river is a rowing boat For a rainy day visit one of the Thames Valley Museums.