If you are looking for a countryside town not so far outside of London, Windsor is a great place to go.
Full of English charm, Windsor is home to what is perhaps one of the United Kingdom’s most beautiful castles.
The larger car parks are available on the outskirts of town, but the walk into the city will take you past some great pubs, restaurants, cafes and shops.
There are several cafes across the street from the Castle. This is a great place to enjoy a Full English Breakfast at a street side cafe overlooking the Castle. If you are going to take the tour of the Castle, I suggest you have a meal before entering as the tour could take you more than a couple hours.
Windsor Castle is the “oldest and largest occupied castle in the world and the Official Residency of Her Majesty The Queen,” as stated on its official website. The Castle has been used by every English monarch since King Henry I in the 11th century.
Walking through the corridors of the State Apartments, you will see beautiful works of art, historical pieces of the royal collection, all while walking the same halls that Kings and Queens have walked for over 1000 years.
One of the most visited portions of the Castle is Queen Mary’s Dolls’ House. It was built in the 1920s for Queen Mary, wife of King George V. The Dolls’ House is not your average dollhouse. This one features running water, working lights, real books in its library by greats such as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and custom made artwork by artists of the time. The house also gives us a glimpse into the life of the royals in the 1920s.
The Castle’s chapel, St. George’s Chapel, is itself a historical site. The Chapel serves as the official Church for the Order of the Garter, the highest order of chivalry in the UK. There is a yearly ceremony in June of each year. The Chapel has been the site of several weddings, most recently the wedding of the Prince of Wales and Camila Parker Bowles. It also serves as the final resting place of numerous Kings, Queens and members of the royal family, including: Edward IV, Henry VIII, Jane Seymour, George VI and his wife Elizabeth.
Across the street from the Castle is the Royal Windsor Shopping. This railway station has mostly been converted into a shopping mall. It’s a great place to shop like a royal.
Grab a bite to eat at any of the local restaurants or a drink at a local pub. You will enjoy the experience and the food.
As far as lodging goes, there are several hotels in the area. We stayed at a converted mansion, the Oakley Court. This 19th century residence has been the site of many films, including Dracula and Rocky Horror Picture Show.
So come be a Royal at Windsor!