They say the best things in life are free, so we’ve complied some suggestions for things to do that won’t cost a penny…..
Changing of the guards at Windsor Castle
Changing of the Guard is one of the highlights of a visit to Windsor and whether you want to watch the actual Guard Mount ceremony inside Windsor Castle or see the Guards marching up the High Street, you can find out more here(the changing of the guards ceremony lasts about 30 minutes). Make sure you check the date you plan to visit as the Windsor Castle Guard can change at different times and on occasions without music or ceremony.
Windsor Great Park
A large deer park of 5000 acres, the park is located to the south of the town of Windsor and can be accessed via the famous Long Walk. A four and a half mile circular walk around the lake, passing the famous totem pole, is highly recommended. Find out more here.
Dorney Lake is a 2,200 metre purpose-built rowing lake near the village of Dorney, Buckinghamshire, and is around 3 km west of Windsor and Eton, close to the River Thames and owned by Eton College. It’s used for international regattas, and indeed the 2012 Olympic venue for Rowing. As well as the water sports themselves , the grounds of the lake are open for cyclists, joggers and walkers who can enjoy an arboretum with an ever-growing array of flora and fauna. Find out more here.
Go out on your bike – Swinley Forest, Bracknell
Swinley park is a large woodland area full of wildlife. It is well known for its mountain bike trails. The forest has a 15-mile cycle network which can challenge highly skilled riders, but is also a fun day out for beginners and young riders. The Green (beginner), Blue (intermediate) and Red (advanced) mountain bike trails follow numbered ‘runs’, and are mapped at the start of each trail. If you would prefer a more peaceful bike ride, you can use the wide forest tracks which are shared with walkers and stretch for miles.
It is also a great place to walk. There are three main walks marked out, the Forest Walk, the Heritage Trail, The nature rail and ramblers route. Find out more here.
Pub & walk at Hurley Island, Thames
Head over to the historic Hurley Village, with river parkland, wooded river islands and The Olde Bell, a 1000-year-old pub. When the weather gets warmer, it’s the perfect spot to try wild swimming. We went in the summer and the kids loved it!
Higginson Park Marlow
Higgenson Park is the main park in the center of Marlow just near the bridge. The park has a large children’s playground, indoor and outdoor catering, public toilets and a skate park which is open all year. There are many trees and large expanses of lawn with formal flowerbeds and a brick in grass maze, created by Adrian Fisher to mark the Millennium. Find out more here.
Stile free walks in the Chilterns
Check out these Miles without Stiles walks, with over 20 stile-free walks in the Chilterns, up to 4 miles long.
Black Park Country Park
Acres of woodland, grassland and heathland with a centrepiece lake. Enjoy walking, orienteering, have a picnic. Cafe, children’s woodland playground. Find out more here.
Spectacular views of Aylesbury Vale and 325 hectares of woodland, where you can enjoy a fitness trail, an all-ability trail, or the Firecrest trail of wildlife delights. Pack a picnic and relax in a sunny glade. Find out more here.
A hidden gem set in the centre of the picturesque old town of Amersham, this award winning museum located in a 15th century buidksing is well worth a visit Children go free and there is a small admission of £3 for adults. Find out more here.
Did you know that Penn Woods is one of the largest ancient woodlands in the Chilterns? Penn Woods is home to a herd of cows which manages part of the site as the wood pasture. You will see red kites and buzzards overhead and in the Spring, beautiful blankets of bluebells. The woodland is suitable for all ages and abilities with a choice of different routes for either a gentle stroll or something a little more challenging. End your walk at the Squirrel pub for a well earned drink or meal.
A few months ago, we decided to explore a little further afield and headed to the beautiful village of Turville (junction 5 off the M40). Turville has an impressive screen pedigree – scenes from Midsomer Murders, Lewis and Jonathan Creek have all been shot here. It’s a lovely day out and I can highly recommend lunmch at The Barn Cafe in Turville Heath. Find out more here.