Journey south in the county this winter and you’ll find picturesque villages and historic market towns. Explore country houses, visit local museums and enjoy the unspoilt landscape of the Chilterns, river Thames and the Ridgeway.
Explore country houses, visit local museums and enjoy the unspoilt landscape of South Oxfordshire and the Chiltern Hills. Relax in charming villages and enjoy the historic market towns with their unique mix of independent retailers and high street shops. In this 2 day itinerary we pick out the best things to see and do along the route along the River Thames, through Wallingford and South Oxfordshire, to Henley-on-Thames.Read more...
The University of Oxford’s Harcourt Arboretum (20-minutes via Oxford Bus Company’s River Rapids X39/X40 from Oxford) is in the small village of Nuneham Courtenay. The 130-acre site is open all year round and contains the best collection of trees in Oxfordshire, with seasonal highlights and plenty of children’s activities.
Stroll around the cute-as-a-dormouse village of Dorchester-on-Thames (8-minutes via bus from Harcourt Arboretum), a village of timber-framed houses. The main attraction in the village is the medieval Abbey, built in the 12th Century.
Benson (7-minutes via bus from Dorchester-on-Thames) is a great stop from which to walk along the tranquil banks of the River Thames. Sit and admire the views of green fields, pretty meadows, farmland and forest from the comfort of the Waterfront Café.
For a touch of luxury nearby, treat yourself to a meal or a stay at Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons in Great Milton – Raymond Blanc’s famous Michelin-starred Restaurant, Hotel and Cookery School.
Wander the cobbled streets of Wallingford (10-minutes via bus from Benson), which has been important historically due to its excellent ford, and today the same crossing place has one of the finest bridges over the River Thames. Learn more about former resident, Dame Agatha Christie, in a circular walk taking in places linked to the author, and discover the town’s links with Midsomer Murders, as well as the ruins of Wallingford Castle and the excellent Wallingford Museum.Read more...
The small village of Nuffield (30-minutes via bus from Wallingford) is the location of Nuffield Place, once home to William Morris, founder of the Morris Motor Company, and his wife. Their home and personal possessions are just as they left them, the décor and furnishings intact.
A picturesque riverside town, Henley-on-Thames (40-minutes via bus from Nuffield) is home to the famous Henley Royal Regatta, the River and Rowing Museum and nearby, The Henley Distillery. One of the most beautiful towns in Oxfordshire, Henley-on-Thames is home to independent shops and restaurants. Its riverside location, surrounded by a landscape of wooded hills and green fields, lends itself to relaxation. Explore the town on a self-guided walk or take a stroll along the river.
Discover South Oxfordshire’s towns by clicking on these links: Henley-on-Thames, Thame, Wallingford.
Discover more of Oxfordshire
Didcot Railway Centre is a 25-acre railway museum with trains dating from Victorian times to the 1960s.
Harcourt Arboretum is home to 130 acres of British woodland, open wildflower meadows and trees from around the world.
The doors of the museum open onto the art and stories of the river, the history of Henley and more.
The Oxfordshire Walks app showcases 200+ walks such as Henley-on-Thames, Chiltern Hills and Christmas Common.
The historic Stonor Park is surrounded by 250 acres of sweeping grounds and beautiful gardens.
The Carter Company’s cycling, walking and touring holidays give the chance to discover hidden gems and local secrets.
Waterperry gardens is home to 8 acres of inspirational gardens, a museum, garden shop, gallery and more.
Food and drink
Chef Raymond Blanc’s Restaurant is one of the best places to dine in the country and a site of gastronomic excellence.
The Black Horse is a beautiful pub and brasserie that is simply brimming with character in the heart of Thame.
The Chequers at Burcot is a gastropub located in the heart of Burcot with a menu catering to all tastes.
Secret Adventures organise special adventures including woodland feasts, foraging and wild cooking and more.
This perfume boutique in the heart of Thame features a range of quality unisex niche perfumes and home fragrances.
Wallingford Local Producers Market provides fresh, local and handmade food and crafts, made by members of the community.
Housed in a 18th century barn, The Henley Distillery is a family-run distillery offering gin tours and tastings.
★★★★★ Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons is a luxury hotel-restaurant set in elegant gardens in the Oxfordshire countryside.
★★★★ Close to Oxford, voco Oxford Thames hotel combines its medieval character with 21st-century style.
Self-catering. Snaptrip offers a great range of places to stay from cosy cottages to luxury stately homes in Oxfordshire.
Self-catering. Sykes Holiday Cottages offer an array of properties from pet-friendly cottages to those with hot tubs.
The Chequers at Burcot lies south of Oxford and offers 9 boutique rooms with all the comforts of home.