Berkshire is a county in the South East region of England, located immediately to the west of London. Whilst its proximity to that city, and its own centers of commerce, ensure a large and affluent population, Berkshire still possesses much rural scenery, including long stretches of the River Thames. A visit to Windsor and its royal castle is almost a must for any first time visitor to London.
Towns and villages
The following towns and villages may be of interest to visitors:
- Bray — home to three-star Michelin restaurant and molecular gastronomy pioneer, The Fat Duck
- Beale Park, Lower Basildon, Pangbourne, 0870 777 7160, . Low Season (March & Oct) 10AM-5PM; High Season (Apr-Sept 10AM-6PM). A 350 acre park dedicated to the conservation of birds and a smaller selection of mammals, with children's playgrounds, cafeteria and steam train. £6.00 adults, £4.00 children.
- The Bear Hotel Hungerford, Charnham Street, Hungerford, Berkshire, RG17 0EL (M4 Junction 14), ☎ + 44 (0) 1488 682 512, . The Bear Hotel is a Historic Hotel with a modern feel. Situated on the banks of the River Dunn in the thriving market town of Hungerford. On the borders of Berkshire, Wiltshire and Hampshire, The Bear is perfectly located for exploring the North Wessex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. We have 39 individually designed en-suite bedrooms and an award winning Brasserie and Bar, free WIFI and ample parking. For the best, fresh, local and seasonal food, Head Chef Phil Wild has created an A la Carte menu and a Specials menu that will appeal to customers who like the freshest foods simply cooked. The wine list is carefully chosen from the major wine growing regions of Europe, South America, South Africa and Australasia. The Bear Hotel has a real choice of places to eat from fine dining in the restaurant, a courtyard for summer and warm days, informal bar dining, snug room, a riverside terrace and a private dining area for hire. All offer a splendid mix of the old and the new. Phil has received numerous awards for his cooking abilities, and with over twenty-one years experience, he has been Executive Head Chef at a number of highly acclaimed hotels and restaurants around the country. edit
On the whole Reading is a safe
place, but, like most towns and cities in the country it can have its
problems. The centre on a Friday and Saturday night can be intimidating for
someone if they are not used to the kind of atmosphere generated.
Just west of Reading town centre, and in particular the Oxford Road
district, though improved, has suffered from drug abuse and the sex
trade. These areas are similar to those found around London, and are
best avoided at night. The Forbury Gardens and Abbey ruins, though attractive during the day, are best avoided after dark.
As always just be cautious of your surroundings; it's obvious in Reading when one enters into a rougher area, but generally one's chances of
being a victim in Reading are slim.