Romance valley gardens, Ascot


Romantic things to do in Ascot

There will always be something romantic about a trip to the countryside, particularly somewhere as picturesque as Berkshire. Away from the distractions of the city, Ascot offers endless opportunities for couples to indulge in traditionally amorous outings, such as horse-drawn carriage rides and long, lazy lunches. However, for those looking for more unconventional ways to spend a romantic weekend away, there’s plenty of scope to be creative at Coworth Park with this two-day itinerary.

Day one

Start your first romantic day in Ascot in The Valley Gardens, just 10 minutes from the hotel by car.
T: +44 1753 860 222 | Windsor Great Park, Windsor, TW20 0HJ

The Valley Gardens

Spread over 250 acres of beautifully landscaped gardens and wild woodland, The Valley Gardens can be found on the quiet shores of Virginia Water. Visit in spring for the azaleas, while in summer couples can wander among the blue and white hydrangeas.

The Cow Pond is located on the northeast edge of the park, a five-minute walk along Rhododendron Drive from The Savill Building.

Romance valley gardens, Ascot
Lotus flower and plants in a lake on rainy day
T: +44 1753 860 222 | Near The Savill Building, Wick Lane, Englefield Green, TW20 0UU

Cow Pond

The Cow Pond is an ornamental lake laced with thousands of water lilies. Take a stroll around the water’s edge and across the Baroque-style oak footbridge into the Chapel Wood, an enchanting space rich with colourful maples and sweet-scented witch hazels.

Walk back to the car park adjacent to The Savill Building and drive for 20 minutes to The Thatched Tavern for lunch.

T: +44 1344 620 874 | Cheapside Road, Ascot, SL5 7QG

The Thatched Tavern

Often called Ascot’s hidden gem, this 400-year-old tavern is the perfect place to stop and linger over lunch. The restaurant offers a seasonal selection of British classics executed with style, as well as an extensive drinks list, including wine, Champagne and real ales. In summer, though, a jug of Pimm’s in the garden is a must.

From the tavern, take a 35-minute drive to Henley-On-Thames for your hot air balloon flight.

Dining area in the pub on sunny day
Colorful air balloon ride, Ascot
T: +44 1952 212 750 | 359 Reading Road, Henley-on-Thames, RG9 4HA

Hot Air Balloon Ride

What better way to see the Royal County of Berkshire then in a hot air balloon armed with a glass of Champagne and surrounded by sublime views of the quaint English countryside. Virgin offer an excellent selection of balloon flights over Henley-On-Thames, a beautiful town on the edge of the River Thames known for its historic Royal Regatta. Choose an evening flight for spectacular sunset views.

Once back on solid ground, hop in the car for the half-hour journey to The Royal Oak, Paley Street for dinner.

T: +44 1628 620 541 | Littlefield Green, Maidenhead, SL6 3JN

The Royal Oak, Paley Street

This 17th century pub in Maidenhead is a stylish Michelin star restaurant serving British food alongside a comprehensive wine list. Owned by famous British chat show host Sir Michael Parkinson, the traditional pub interior of low-beamed ceilings and worn wooden floors sets the scene for a long, intimate dinner.

The hotel is then a 20-minute drive from The Royal Oak.

Dining tables inside Royal Oak Paley Street

Day two

For a romantic start to the day, pay a visit to Claremont Landscape Garden, half an hour from the hotel by car.
Landscape view of Claremont
T: +44 1372 467 806 | Portsmouth Road, Esher, KT10 9JG

Claremont Landscape Garden

An 18th century garden now owned by the National Trust, Claremont Landscape Garden is the ideal setting for a romantic stroll. Once the preserve of royalty and nobility, this beautifully manicured space – designed over the years by the likes of Sir John Vanbrugh and Charles Bridgeman – is filled with hidden paths, magical grottos and stunning views.

Then, drive for 30 minutes to Petersham Nurseries, perched on the edge of Richmond Park.


T: +44 20 8940 5230 | Church Lane, Petersham Road, Richmond, TW10 7AB

Petersham Nurseries

Petersham Nurseries in Richmond is a self-described refuge from the city, where horticultural inspiration meets seasonal, locally sourced food. There are two lovely restaurants next to the garden: a café serving slow Italian-inspired dishes filled with colourful plants and antique furniture, and a rustic teahouse that specialises in delightfully indulgent cakes.

After lunch, make your way to Kew Gardens, just 20 minutes away by car.

Dining tables inside Petersham Nurseries
exterior of kew gardens, london
T: +44 20 8332 5655 | Richmond, TW9 3AE

Kew Gardens

From immaculate gardens to iconic buildings and glasshouses, Kew Gardens in bloom is a sight to behold. The perfect place to while away an afternoon, couples can wander around the Japanese Gateway, visit the Henry Moore sculpture, take to the trees on the Treetop Walkway, and pause to smell the roses at the Victorian Palm House and Rose Garden.

Then, take a 30-minute drive to Bray Marina, where the Larus, a traditional Dutch Super Kaagkruiser, will cast off for your afternoon on the Thames.

T: +44 7977 448 117 | Bray, Monkey Island Lane, Bray, SL6 2EB       

Boating on the Thames

On a pleasant summer’s day, there’s no better or more relaxing way to take in the charming villages and ancient monuments of the area than by boat. Most boat hires, like the Larus, come with their own skipper who will take care of the navigation, leaving you free to sit back and enjoy the Thames-side scenery.

The skipper of the Larus will then sail you up to The Waterside Inn in time for your dinner reservation.

Boating on thames on sunny day
The Waterside Inn with bridge
T: +44 1628 620 691 | Ferry Road, Bray, SL6 2AT

The Waterside Inn

Located in the picturesque village of Bray is the critically acclaimed Waterside Inn. The restaurant on the water’s edge is one of the best in the country, and has earned three Michelin stars. Led by world renowned Head Chef Alain Roux, the seasonal menus here are a homage to French cuisine.

At the end of the evening, a 20-minute drive will bring you back to the hotel.

All journey times are approximate and subject to variation.


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