Berkshire is a very popular holiday destination for international tourists due to its historic attractions and close proximity to London.
Ascot Racecourse, Berkshire
The famous Royal Ascot Racecourse in the small town of Ascot in Berkshire covers an area of 179 acres and features two race tracks, the course 1 mile 6 furlongs in length. Founded in 1711, the first race held was ‘Her Majesty’s Plate’ held on 11th August 1711 in which seven horses competed and comprising of three separate four-mile heats. Recently having undergone a recent £200 million redevelopment and new Grandstand, this is a world class sports and business events venue and makes for a great day out, sporting or social.
Synonymous with quality, style and excellence, Ascot Racecourse attracts over 500,000 race goers a year and it’s not just international horse racing either, there are other attractions to enjoy as well such as live concerts and great food. The King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes race is held at the Ascot Racecourse in mid July and is considered to be the best race in the UK and one of the top races in the world, The Queen Elizabeth II Stakes is held here in late September.
The famous Royal Ascot is the world’s oldest race meeting, held annually for 5 days in mid June and featuring a parade of the Royal Family at 2PM daily in horse-drawn carriages, a tradition that dates back to 1925. This is a big event in the UK calendar and is Britain’s most popular race meeting, welcoming over 275,000 visitors over the five days. There are 16 races with over £3,000,000 prize money on offer.
Legoland Windsor, Berkshire
Legoland in Windsor, Berkshire is a child-oriented theme park based around the famous Lego toy building system, and nearly everything you see is ingeniously built from Lego using approximately 55 million LEGO bricks. Opened in 1996 on the site of the former Windsor Safari Park, within close distance of Windsor Castle, about 8 miles west of London Heathrow Airport and just over 12 miles from the Waterloo Hotel, Legoland is ideal for 3 to 12-year-olds or those young at heart!
Legoland Windsor offers over 50 interactive and superbly themed rides that will keep the kids entertained for hours, from gentle rollercoasters and log flumes, to driving a JCB digger, car or flying a plane, battling a dragon or saving the day at the Fire Academy, children will love the variety. Legoland is the perfect family break with live shows; daily theatre shows, puppet shows, a live stunt show and an amazing 4D mediaeval experience, building workshops, driving schools, models and of course the rides.
Explore ‘Miniland’, one of the greatest attractions in the park where you can admire landmarks from across the world which have been recreated in LEGO.
The Dragon is one of the most thrilling rides in the Legoland – a journey of twists and turns as you travel through the heights and depths of the castle, past animated LEGO models including a giant red dragon before exiting the building and flying through the treetops. The Dragon is suitable for children as young as four – a perfect starter for young children or wary adults!
New for 2010 is Pirates Landing, join the pirate crew at the Pirate Training Camp where you can try out your swashbuckling and seafaring skills and then climb aboard the Jolly Rocker, the swinging LEGO galleon, the first ever pirate ship in any LEGOLAND park, swinging to an incredible 18 metres high! Then set sail for a soaking and follow the pirates on a hunt for treasure on the ‘explosively’ enhanced Pirate Falls Dynamite Drench. With new interactive water cannons, it’s one adventure that’s bound to go with a splash! Take a break from the action yourself to watch the new 4D Movie as Clutch Powers and his gang take on a special mission.
One of the best things about Legoland Windsor is that there are stacks of LEGO bricks lining the queues of many rides, meaning everyone is occupied whilst queuing! Why not take a picnic to enjoy in the 150 acres of park, and at the end of the day there are plenty of places to buy a souvenir or some more LEGO to add to your collection!
Official website: www.legoland.co.uk
Windsor Castle, Berkshire
Windsor castle in Windsor, Berkshire, is the largest inhabited castle in the world and the oldest in continuous occupation.
Dating back to the time of William the Conqueror, Windsor Castle has a rich history of nearly 1000 years and together with Buckingham Palace in London and Holyrood Palace in Edinburgh is one of the main official residences of the British monarch.
The Castle covers an area of about (13 acres) and you will find such highlights as the magnificent State Apartments, furnished with treasures from the Royal Collection including paintings by Rembrandt, St George’s Chapel, one of the most beautiful ecclesiastical buildings in England and the burial place of 10 monarchs, and Queen Mary’s Dolls House, a miniature masterpiece.
Wellington Country Park, Berkshire
Wellington Country Park is 350 acres of beautiful natural parkland and woodland used for a wide range of activities, from camping, picnicking and walking to fishing, boating, crazy golf and other children’s activities. Established in 1974 by the Eighth Duke and Duchess of Wellington, today the park still forms part of the Duke of Wellington’s estate, and the glorious Hampshire countryside includes a 35 acre lake, parkland, coniferous woods, nature trails, picnic sites and superb play areas and equipment.
Open daily from February to November, Wellington Country Park is fun for all the family add has plenty to keep the kids happy. These include an adventure play area, toddler’s area, sand pits, water play, slides, miniature railway, nature trail maze and crazy golf. There are four nature trails to walk providing a great way to see the park and its wildlife in their natural habitat, including one which allows you the closest contact with our Red and Fallow Deer herd. There is an admission charge to enter Wellington Country Park.
Official website: www.wellington-country-park.co.uk
Look Out Discovery Centre, Berkshire
The Look Out Discovery Centre in Bracknell is Berkshire’s premier hands-on interactive science and nature exhibition and features over 90 exhibits to entertain and educate children and adults alike. Make learning fun – ideal for a family day out, school trip or birthday party, educational concepts come alive in front of your eyes at this unique tourist attraction.
Set in 1,000 hectares of woodland with nature walks, cycle trails and a free adventure play area, there is plenty to do and also free car parking. The main attraction at Look Out Discovery Centre is the Hands-on Science and Nature Exhibition, featuring a number of different zones. In the ‘Light and Colour Zone’ see yourself in a new light when you gaze through the looking glass, makes music by plucking the laser beams of the Light Harp or freeze your shadow on the wall.
In the ‘Forces & Movement Zone’ launch a hydrogen rocket, spin a giant orb, send a huge hot air balloon skyward, build a wobbly bridge or try to steady the balancing broomsticks. You can also make your own short film and animate it. The ‘Body & Perception Zone’ is where you challenge your body and brain. Find out how fast your reactions are on Batak or challenge your mind on the Puzzle Carousel.
In the ‘Water and Woodland zone’ you can design a tree, float leaves in the stream, do your own leaf rubbing or crawl through a giant mole hole. There is mountain bike hire, a picnic area, coffee Shop and gift shop and shows on throughout the Year, there is just so much to see and do at The Look Out Discovery Centre. For more information or tickets please ask the Waterloo Hotel.