ceremonial but non-administrative county of England

For other places with the same name, see Berkshire (disambiguation).

Berkshire is a county in the South East region of England, located immediately to the west of London. Whilst its proximity to the capital and its own centres of commerce ensure a large and affluent population, Berkshire still possesses much rural scenery, including long stretches of the River Thames. A visit to Windsor and its royal castle is a must for any first-time visitor to Britain.

Towns and villages edit

Map of Berkshire

The following towns and villages may be of interest to visitors:

Towns edit

Villages edit

  • 13 Bray – home to three-star Michelin restaurant and molecular gastronomy pioneer, The Fat Duck
  • 14 Streatley
  • 15 Twyford

Other destinations edit

  • Beale Park, Lower Basildon, Pangbourne, 0870 777 7160. Mar & Oct: 10AM-5PM; Apr-Sep: 10AM-6PM). A 350-acre park dedicated to the conservation of birds and a smaller selection of mammals, with children's playgrounds, cafeteria and steam train. £6.00 adults, £4.00 children.

Get in edit

By car edit

The M4 motorway from London to Bristol, Cardiff, and Swansea goes through Berkshire and is close to Reading, Maidenhead, and Slough. The A34 expressway from Winchester to Bicester, bypassing Newbury, brings traffic to Berkshire from the South Coast and Midlands.

By train edit

Reading, Maidenhead and Slough are on the Great Western Main Line from London Paddington to Penzance and Swansea (also Bristol, Cardiff, Exeter, Plymouth etc) served by Great Western Railway (GWR). Reading is a major rail interchange, and is also served by Crosscountry services originating or terminating in Bournemouth or Southampton on their way to and from Oxford, Birmingham, Sheffield, Leeds, Manchester, and Newcastle upon Tyne. Local services, operated by GWR and South Western Railway (SWR), serve Reading from Basingstoke, Guildford, and a number of other towns in Hampshire and Surrey.

By plane edit

London Heathrow (LHR IATA) is the nearest airport, being just over the county border in Greater London. It is next to the M4, making everywhere in Berkshire less than an hour's drive, and some places considerably less. There are also bus connections from Heathrow to Reading, Slough, and Windsor. The Elizabeth line offers an indirect train service from Heathrow to Slough (30 min), Maidenhead (40 min), Reading (1 hr), and some smaller towns in between: take a London-bound train to Hayes & Harlington, then change for Reading-bound trains running in the opposite direction. If travelling to Reading, the direct Rail Air bus is slightly quicker than the train.

London Gatwick (LGW IATA) is the second-nearest airport, being around 50-75 miles (80-120 km) by road to Berkshire, depending on where you're going. GWR also operate direct trains from LGW to Sandhurst, Wokingham, and Reading (roughly 1 hr 30 min).

Get around edit

See edit

Do edit

Eat edit

Bray has 3 Michelin-starred restaurants, the most in one place outside of London.

Drink edit

Go next edit

Stay safe edit

On the whole Reading is a safe place, but, like most towns and cities in the country it can have its problems. The centre on a Friday and Saturday night can be intimidating for someone if they are not used to the kind of atmosphere generated.

Just west of Reading town centre, and in particular the Oxford Road district, though improved, has suffered from drug abuse and the sex trade. These areas are similar to those found around London, and are best avoided at night. The Forbury Gardens and Abbey ruins, though attractive during the day, are best avoided after dark.

As always just be cautious of your surroundings; it's obvious in Reading when one enters into arougher area, but generally one's chances of being a victim in Reading are slim.

This region travel guide to Berkshire is an outline and may need more content. It has a template, but there is not enough information present. If there are Cities and Other destinations listed, they may not all be at usable status or there may not be a valid regional structure and a "Get in" section describing all of the typical ways to get here. Please plunge forward and help it grow!