All our Berkshire collections:
Just west of London, many visitors will visit Berkshire without realising it when they step off the train at Windsor. But there's even more to the county than Windsor Castle, Eton, Ascot and Bray - of three Michelin starred The Fat Duck fame. There is also a good selection of accommodation here and our pick of the best places to stay in Berkshire ranges from character filled pubs with rooms, to country house hotels to sophisticated top notch luxury retreats.
Berkshire is where you'll find the Prime Minister's country pile, but it's also popular with the royal family - Windsor is apparently the Queen's favourite castle - and celebrities. It is close to London, but feels properly countryfied, so it's a great escape.
Reading is one of the largest centres, known for gaoling Oscar Wilde and in more recent years for the music festival. It might not be the most obvious travel destination, but it's surrounded by some of Berkshire's most green and picturesquely rolling countryside, with plenty of thatched roofs thrown in for historic colour.
Windsor and Eton are more obvious highlights. The castle's changing of the guard is definitely worth getting up early for. And it's also worth hanging round Eton 'til you've seen a few formally tail-coated school boys and marvelled at the old traditions. On either side of a bridge spanning the Thames, Windsor is where you'll find the shopping and the Great Park, and Eton is where you'll find antique shops and art galleries.
Maidenhead, and nearby Cookham, are worth a look. The former for the famous railway bridge designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel, and the latter because it has an excellent gallery and restaurants - and it's one of the best places to stay in Berkshire if you're looking for a picturesque English village.
If you're interested in Egyptology (or a fan of Downton Abbey) you'll definitely want to visit Newbury. This is where you can find the seat of Lord Canarvon of Tutankharmun fame. It's called Highclere Castle and, while still being the family's home, is open for tours, as well as having an excellent museum.
Of course Newbury is also where you'll need to be for the races - or Ascot.
The best places to stay in Berkshire make ideal weekend boltholes, but extend your stay longer and really get to know this fascinating county.
Still not sure which to book? Browse through our list of all the best places to stay in Berkshire, or contact one of our friendly Gurus for advice. If you want to widen the net, why don't you take a look at our recommendations in Oxfordshire?
Situated in the beautiful Lambourn Valley, this hotel encapsulates the charm of a bygone era. The restaurant serves a classic English menu accompanied by a great wine list. The bedrooms are akin to traditional Inn rooms but with luxury, contemporary touches such as power showers and sumptuous beds.
Hearty, old traditional inn. Unpretentious gastro-pub restaurant. Tennis courts and nearby walks on the Thames. Crisp bedrooms with lots of natural light.
A grade II listed Georgian inn on the banks of the Kennet, in picturesque Kintbury. Eight lovely rooms are decorated in classic country house style, with feature wallpapers & luxurious bathrooms - river rooms with private terraces. Formal and pub style dining ensure something for all.
Large stylish townhouse hotel in the centre of Reading. Modern interiors, bright colours, all the mod-cons. Suites and apartments. Restaurant and hip bar.
An historic rural pub with rooms providing contemporary countryside accommodation with comfortable, cosy interiors and a relaxing restaurant for perfect weekend getaways. Some rooms have a private hot tub and terrace. Plenty of country pursuits and outdoor activities nearby.
5* country escape close to Newbury in Berkshire, just an hour from London. A 30,000 strong wine cellar in a luxury hotel with award winning spa for the ultimate pampering. Spacious rooms and suites offer elegant comfort. The perfect country getaway for romance, girlie breaks or simply a great meal.
Ultimate foodie venue with three Michelin stars, on the banks of the river Thames. Run by top chefs Michel Roux and his son Alain. Sumptuous suites and bedrooms.
Quintessentially English countryside experience. Superb equestrian facilities and polo fields, restaurants and bars, eco-luxury spa. A beautifully decorated hotel in the height of luxury.
Grand country house hotel close to London, expensive but luxurious, with history