When hubby and I married in summer 2006, we spent one day of our honeymoon in Windsor. Since, then, we’ve been back once, prior to last weekend. Hubby planned a weekend getaway as a Mother’s Day surprise. It was a wonderful surprise indeed! The town is truly picturesque. Located on the Thames River you don’t have to walk far to find yourself close to the river. There is much to do around the river. Then, of course Windsor Castle, is a big attraction. You can see it clearly from the high street. The Castle is the oldest and largest occupied castle in the world and has been home to 39 monarchs. Today, the Queen spends most of her private weekends there. Although the castle is open to visitors, we didn’t pop in. We enjoyed Windsor like a local.
Saturday In Windsor
When we left home we drove directly the Windsor Leisure Centre for a family swim. The leisure swim pool has quite a few interactive features to keep all in the family entertained. The wave machine is always a delight. Slides are thrilling! They’ve got a family slide, the dual rider slide water AND a Tornado Waterslide! Let me tell you that tornado was super fun but I can’t tell a lie, I felt discombobulated when I came out the other side. My son’s laugher brought me back to reality. Little ones will luv the water cannons.
FYI: their lockers require a padlock you can bring you’re our or purchase a padlock reception for £4
There’s a café on site which looks out to the front of the building, we bought some snacks and headed in to town.
Windsor Royal Station
Nestled in the heart of Windsor, the Windsor Royal Station offers covered a promenade filled with stylish shops and selection of eateries. It has a mix of independent stores like Gregory & Tapping https://www.gandt.shop/ (for homewares), the cigar merchants Havana House, cafes, as well as, fashion chains such as Hobbs.
We ate at Bill’s known for their cocktails, cuisine and chandeliers too! It’s the ideal place for ladies who lunch, although, equally welcoming to families with young children. Their menu is comprised of seasonal produce. Other dining choices include but this is not the extensive list: There’s All Bar One, the Cattle Grid, Paeonia Bubble Tea Room (tre chic) and Café Rouge.
Side note: Dum Dum Donuts are out of this world! I went ga ga for a dum dum. Their donuts are baked so all the flavour with less grease. I had a Nutella Ring it was so good!
Charity Shop Shopping
On the Windsor high street, you will find boutique charity shops and one’s that specialise in antiques. We popped into a few but that occasion we didn’t find much for our home. What we came away with was a couple shirts for hubby and me, a trainer for Ang and a hand-blown vase for the conservatory.
You will find the usual branches like Oxfam, Cancer Research, British Heart Foundation and several other charity shops. .
2022 is a special year for Windsor as it marks the Queen’s platinum jubilee. If you will be spending more than 24 hours, be sure to check out the itinerary of events to mark the occasion. Additionally to get more inspiration to suit your needs have a look at their events for the Spring season .
If you are a fan of walking tours you could try the free app The Windsor Seat Guide and explore the streets and find out about the hidden gems of the area
Looking for something a bit different how about the Escape Experience Windsor. You can solve the mystery of Area 51 or find the lost Aztec Artefact in the Temple Hidden.
Sightseeing By River
If you got your water legs, then why not take a river cruise?! French Brothers run boat trips on the River Thames from Windsor, Runnymede and Maidenhead. Choose from a short return trip or a full-day cruise. The 40-minute round trip costs £11. Not a find of the water, then how about a walking tour. Windsor also has Duck Tour which allow you to see the town by land and water. From the river you will see get views of Windsor Castle and Eton.
Where We Stayed
On this occasion we stayed at the Holiday Inn Express Heathrow which roughly 20 mines drive from the town centre through the riverside village Datchet to the hotel. We’ve always had good experiences with Holiday Inn and this was no expectation. The room was lovely, the bathroom modern and a good size. Service was excellent and of course the British full English brekkie was so yum. This Holiday Inn is close to Heathrow airport and is the hotel of chose for those flying from Terminal 5 or visiting Lego Land and of course Windsor. (When we visited back in summer 2016 we stayed at a campsite and glamped in a chalet.)
Our family room had a pull out sofa bed for the kids. At time of our stay our room with brekkie costed just under £60.
On Sunday, the actual Mother’s Day, we went for a walk in Bushy Park and finished of with a buffet lunch in Kingston.
Where will you be visiting this spring/ Do share by commenting below. To read about our previous road trips and staycations click here