Windsor Day Trip from London: Everything to Know for a Day Out

Windsor Day Trip from Windsor Castle, Windsor Riverfront to the London Walk here is everything you need to know for a Day Out in Windsor

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The United Kingdom has a regal history that is both fascinating and inspiring. In many ways, the royal family is at the heart of this cultural heritage and the House of Windsor plays a pivotal role in the telling of their tale.

Windsor Day Trip from London Everything you need to know

A Windsor day trip is one way to discover this enchanting history and learn more about Britain’s constitutional monarchy and how it has impacted the world over the years. It’s also one of the top day trips from London.

If you’re spending some time in London, then a day trip to Windsor is an easy and convenient experience to add to your itinerary.

You can expect a rich cultural experience, as well as a beautiful environment and delicious local food.  

I have friends that live near Windsor and even though I have visited the town centre several times, this was my first visit to the castle, and I was not disappointed.

How to Get to Windsor from London

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Located on the River Thames in the southeast of England, Windsor is a short 164 kilometres from London.

One of the perks about this short distance is the ease and affordability of booking transport.

You have the option of travelling by train, bus and car when moving from Windsor to London (and vice versa).

London to Windsor by Train

London to Windsor by Train

5 Best things to do in Windsor Engl...
5 Best things to do in Windsor England | Day trip to Windsor Castle from London

The train is the easiest option. A small cost of roughly £10.50 covers your 45-minute journey from London to Windsor.

There are a couple of trains that run every hour from London Paddington. While this is the quickest route, it isn’t direct, and you’ll need to change at Slough.

Alternatively, you can get a direct train from London Waterloo, which runs every 30 minutes.

This option doesn’t require any changes, but the trip does take a little bit longer, bumping up your travel time to just under an hour.

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London to Windsor by Bus

The bus from Windsor costs less money, but more time. Buses depart every 30 minutes during the week from both Heathrow Airport and Central London, with adjusted timetables on the weekends.

Tickets cost as little as £6.50, but the trip is approximately 1.5 hours. If you’re only spending a day in Windsor, then I’d recommend taking the quickest option which for me was the train, so you have more time to explore.

London to Windsor by Car

If you’re a traveller who enjoys flexibility and comfort over budget-friendly public transport, then you can drive yourself to Windsor.

The journey will take around one hour depending on traffic, and you’ll need to consider parking costs once you arrive.

On the plus side, you’ll have complete freedom of movement.

London to Windsor by Car

Getting Around Windsor

Once you’ve arrived in Windsor, you can make use of their comprehensive network of bus routes to get around.

Alternatively, you can rely on your trusty pair of feet to move from one attraction to the next, discovering the town more intimately.

The town centre is quiet small and exploring it on foot is going to be the easiest, plus you’ll get your daily steps in from all the walking.

Things to Do on a Day Out in Windsor

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Perhaps the most iconic attraction to tick off in Windsor is the famed castle. But as Windsor is a symbol of English history and the Royals, there’s a lot more to see and do in the old town.

Stroll Windsor Great Park

Imagine 4,800 acres of lush green lawns spotted with small woods, coverts and giant oak trees.

Stroll Windsor Great Park

Windsor Great Park was historically used as the hunting ground for Windsor Castle and, today, it serves as a stunning space of escape.

The park is open year-round from 7 am until dusk and is free to visit.

Embark on The Long Walk

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The Long Walk is a beautiful stretch of the avenue that covers just over four kilometres, paving the way from Windsor Castle to the 1829 Copper Horse statue of King George III.

From the top of Snow Hill, you can take in sweeping views of the castle. If you’re visiting in summer, make sure to put on sunscreen and wear a protective hat.  

For me, The Long Walk was something that I always wanted to experience as you get the iconic view of Windsor Castle.

So, get your camera ready. It’s also very peaceful.

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Watch the Changing of the Guard


The changing of the guard ceremony is a nostalgic experience that happens at 11 am on the castle grounds.

Led by a Regimental Band, the guards on duty hand over the responsibility of protecting the castle to the New Guard.  

Weather permitting, this handover happens on a Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. These days can change depending on the season and state of the pandemic.

Changing of the Guard

Shop at Windsor Royal Station

If the idea of shopping till you drop tickles your fancy, then you need to include a stop at Windsor Royal Station.

History meets modern style in a collection of shops that are set in the rail station from the mid-1800s.

The elegant shopping arcade has a large number of shops and cafes to explore. Make sure to check out the old-timey styled fudge shop too.

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Take the Windsor Hop-On Hop-Off Sightseeing Bus

Trying to fit all of the attractions into one day in Windsor may feel like a bit of a push.

The Windsor Hop-on Hop-off sightseeing bus makes it possible to fit in as much as possible without compromising any of the iconic sights.

Discover the town at your own pace as the open-top Windsor bus tour transports you between 11 stops across the town.

Windsor Tourist Attractions

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Each of the many Windsor places to visit exudes an enchanting mood. While you can easily get lost strolling the streets, I recommend that you add as many of these iconic attractions to your Windsor day out itinerary.

Windsor Castle

Undeniably the most famous attraction in the town, Windsor Castle is revered as the oldest and largest occupied castle in the world.

It was first built in the 11th century and has housed more than 30 monarchs. It has hosted several royal weddings and was even the main site for the Queen’s “corgi breeding program”.  

Visitors can tour the magnificent royal residence from 10 am to 4:15 pm from Thursday to Monday, with an adult ticket costing £23.50.

While exploring the castle I got a very Games of Throne vibes. Once you visit, you’ll understand.

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St George’s Chapel

Fans of beautiful architecture will fall in love with St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle. The Quire, the Nave and the Lower Ward are all equally beautiful, boasting intricate design and detail worthy of being revered.

St Georges Chapel

The chapel is open to visitors from 10 am to 4 pm every week, except for Sundays.

St George’s Chapel was where Harry and Megan got married in 2018. I would suggest visiting the Chapel first as it is smaller and will be less crowded as most peo3ple will try and visit the Castle first.

So, you can have the chapel all to yourself. That’s what I did.

Then more on to the castle where you can spend more time exploring it.

Something to note is that no photos or videos are allowed in both the castle and chapel. Which I think is great, this ensures that there is a constant flow of people.  

So, no IG photoshoots for you my friends, you’ll have to use your eyes and commit what you see to memory.

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Queen Charlotte Street

This is the most adorable street ever! Queen Charlotte Street is a mere 15 metres and 25 centimetres long, making it the shortest recorded street in England.

The tiny passageway is paved in cobblestone and has had centuries-worth of foot traffic stroll its brief distance.

At the end of the road is Carpenter’s Arms, a pub that is more than happy to quench your thirst.

There is also a quirky little crooked building which is a now a gallery on one side of the street.

Queen Charlotte Street

The Queen’s Walkway

As you can hopefully tell by now, it’s best to wear a comfy pair of walking shoes when following your Windsor tourist map.

The Queen’s Walkway is another experience that relies on your ability to put one foot in front of the other.

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The walking route is a symbolic stretch of 6.373 kilometers in honour of Queen Elizabeth II’s record-reign of 63 years, 7 months and 3 days.

If you want to see an array of Windsor’s best attractions and views, then this is a good walk to do. 

Windsor Riverfront

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Visiting the riverfront is one of the most popular things to do near Windsor Castle. The relaxing waterfront is a delightful spot to enjoy a few moments in the outdoors.

There are plenty of swans, ducks and Canadian geese minding their own business on the waters, waiting to be fed by generous visitors.

If you want to experience Windsor from a different perspective, then you can also chat with the local boat agencies and book a cruise.

Windsor Old Town

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Old Windsor is a charming village and civil parish nestled within the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead, located directly opposite the main gate of Windsor Castle.

The medieval town is home to the Crooked House of Windsor, which was first built in 1592, as well as a choice of shops, restaurants and pubs.

Take note that while the atmosphere is authentic, it’s only really tourists that visit this area, so don’t expect to bump into many locals.

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Eton College

Eton is a charming village across the River Thames to Windsor. A short two-kilometre walk from Windsor Castle will bring you to the ancient world of Eton College.

Known as a modern, forward-thinking school (basically a school for posh rich people, most of the UK’s pass Prime Ministers attend this school, it’s the gateway into UK politics), the archaic building is shrouded in history.

Small tours for the public focus on the centre of Eton College and can be organised in advance.

Places to Go in Windsor to Eat

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Exploring the noble town in a day will have you working up an appetite. Rather than be overwhelmed with the choice of places to eat, stop your belly’s grumbling in its tracks by visiting these spots.

The Prince Harry Windsor

The Royal family is an iconic part of Windsor and what better way to honour their heritage than naming the traditional pub in the heart of Windsor after the handsome Prince Harry?

He’s my favourite royal. Much like the rest of Windsor, the pub has a rich history and was originally built in 1518 when it served as the first Guildhall of Windsor.

Today, it serves an irresistible beef and ale pie, fish and chips, and Sunday roast.

Wagamama

While The Prince Harry Windsor serves traditional British dishes, Wagamama celebrates the Asian culinary influence and has a menu of fresh ramen, curry and kokoro bowls.

Located opposite Windsor Castle, the Japanese spot has a menu full of flavourful food that is both Instagrammable and delicious.

Best Day Trips to Windsor Tours

Best Day Trips to Windsor Tours

Some travellers enjoy the adventure of figuring things out on your own and exploring at your own pace.

Others prefer an organised tour to tick off the main attractions without the fuss or added pressure of organising.

Here are a few top tour options that promise a memorable Windsor sightseeing experience.

London: Windsor Castle, Stonehenge and Bath Full-Day Tour

London Windsor Castle Stonehenge and Bath Full Day Tour

Windsor Castle is one of England’s most heritage-rich sites, and so are Stonehenge and Bath.

To be able to visit all three sites in a single day is a real treat and fully possible with the Windsor, Stonehenge and Bath full day tour from London.

In addition to exploring Windsor Castle, you can visit the ancient circle of Stonehenge and see the famous Roman baths.

From London: Full-Day Windsor, Stonehenge and Oxford Tour

Fancy swapping out the Roman Baths for the historic university city of Oxford? This Windsor, Stonehenge and Oxford tour from London showcases some of Britain’s most educational and enriching historical influences.

There’s no doubt that you’ll feel inspired at the end of the day!

Windsor Castle Tour and Traditional Lunch

Windsor Castle Tour and Traditional Lunch

Get up close and personal with the history of the Royal family with a tour of Windsor Castle, a visit to St. George’s Chapel and an indulgent, traditional English lunch.

This full-day Windsor Castle tour and traditional lunch is an experience fit for a queen and offers an unforgettable way to discover the glorious riverside location and its charming features.

From London: Windsor Castle and Hampton Court Palace

Living in the shadows of Windsor Castle is Hampton Court Palace, a national treasure that was home to Henry VIII and the Tudor Dynasty.

The logistics of being transported from London to Windsor is organised by a reliable guide, and the attractions are explored under the guidance of a knowledgeable local.  

Visit both Windsor Castle and Hampton Court Palace in one go with an organised tour and learn about the history while marvelling at the beauty.

From London: Windsor Castle, Stonehenge, Lacock and Bath

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The Windsor Castle, Stonehenge, Lacock and Bath tour combines a regal narrative with a mysterious history and fascinating culture.

Passing through the adorable village of Lacock is the cherry on the top of a fulfilling tour, and one that you won’t forget.

All Ready for Your Windsor Day Out?

Thanks to its convenience and beauty, Windsor is a wonderful day trip from London. If you’re looking to experience history, heritage and culture in a day, then you can’t go wrong.

Take the time to draft your check-list of attractions and make sure that you’re wearing comfy shoes – and then you’re set!

If this sort of trip is right up your (cobblestone) alley then you may be interested in some other day trips from London that are equally rich in culture and history.

●      Day trip to Canterbury from London

●      York day trip from London

●      Cambridge day trip from London

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