Windsor & Eton is one of the most famous, must see, short break destinations to visit when you are coming to the UK. Crowned by Windsor Castle and linked by the River Thames, it has a wonderful mix of history, culture, heritage and fun for all of the family. With internationally renowned events, superb shopping and dining to suit all tastes, it makes it a truly memorable weekend for families, couples or business professionals alike.
Windsor boasts two of the top ten UK attractions with Windsor Castle and Legoland Resort. When visitors come to Windsor they immediately have images of Windsor Castle, the worlds oldest and largest inhabited castle. The town boasts royalty, park land, changing the guard, the River Thames and the famous Eton College.
The town of Windsor is considerably older than the castle it dates from the 7th century with royal land owning probably from the 9th. At first Windsor town was located three miles away from where it is today but moved to its current site before 1110, changing its name to New Windsor.
With so much to see and do in Windsor we have decided to give you a selection of the not-to-be-missed sights.
The iconic, memorable, historic image of Windsor is the oldest inhabited castle in the world and is also the oldest royal residence to have remained in continuous use by the monarchs. Built by William the Conqueror within what was a royal hunting forest (now Windsor great park) after the Norman Conquest of 1066, Windsor Castle has been successfully and continuously enlarged, adapted and rebuilt from Henry II to Queen Elizabeth II. The castle has a vast amount of artifacts that are on display for the public to see.
The inspiring buildings and playing fields of this 15th century school dominate the small riverside town of Eton. Founded in 1440 the beautiful chapel and houses line the route into the town and surrounding streets. Over the centuries to this day the school has educated the sons of royalty and the military but also its alumni have forged great careers in politics, art, literature, science and exploration. A stroll past the wonderful historic buildings is highly recommended.
To discover more about our luxury Eton Apartments that overlook the large Gothic chapel, the heart of the old school, click on the links below:
This iron bridge is the now pedestrian crossing from Windsor to Eton over the historic River Thames, it was constructed in 1822 and replaced a succession of various timber bridges built over the years. Windsor bridge was seen as incredibly important as it brought vital trade to Windsor’s market, underpinning the new town’s economy alongside the new guildhall.
The long walk is definitely not one to be missed, no matter if you are looking for a long days hike or an after dinner stroll, the long walk and its beautiful setting is wonderful for everyone. The ceremonial route from the castle to Windsor Great Park, stretching 2.65 miles to the Copper Horse, the equestrial memorial to George III. Originally laid out by Charles II in 1685, it was an avenue of oak and elm trees used by the King for walking and hunting stag in the Great Park. Queen Anne added the central carriageway in 1710. Jeffry Wyatville redesigned it in 1824 as a ceremonial route to the castle. State visit processions enter the castle via Park Street and the Long Walk. The Long Walk leads into Windsor Great Park which gives walkers a lovely long route to discover more of the surrounding areas.
This gate is a symbolic link between castle and town, it was originally constructed with a moat and drawbridge. Henry VII built this gateway in approximately 1511, the panel above the archway displays heraldic badges of the king with the pomegranite of Queen Charlotte of Aragon, his first wife. This gateway can also been seen from our townhouse property windows which is the closes accommodation to the castle in Windsor, see our townhouse property here
Windsor guildhall was designed by Sir Thomas Fitz and was built in 1691 and replaced the first guildhall built in 1360 which faced the castle gates. In the late 17th century the royals favoured the newer palaces that were closer to London, such as Whitehall or Hampton Court and so the result was that Windsor Castle and the surrounding town was neglected. For the town this was a major disaster, its economy was all based upon the castle and so the town commissioned a new guildhall in an attempt to give new life to its economy, bearing in mind that the town could barely afford a new guildhall this was quite a feat.
By the late 13th century Windsor had established itself as a successful new town and so by the late 13th century the temporary market stalls were replaced by permanent shops covering the area now known as Guildhall Island. The medieval market place was not a gentile place; its streets were unpaved until the 18th century and it was dirty owning to its many noxious
trades. Fish sellers occupied Fish Street which is now Church Street.