It’s not just worth your while flying into and staying near Heathrow Airport because of its handiness for London, but also because there’s a good deal of great attractions outside of the capital and in the vicinity…
- Legoland Windsor (Winkfield Road, Windsor SL4 4AY) – Very family-friendly (one may even say child-oriented), this place is a firm favourite with locals and tourists alike thanks to its dedicated focus on the iconic Lego toy brand; themed rides and interactive and/ or learning-based activities such as Lego-brick building workshops are very much the order of the day
- Chessington World of Adventures (Leatherhead Road, Chessington KT9 2NE) – boasting a zoo as well as some of the UK’s most popular adventure rides, this offering also hosts several seasonal and annual events (not least in the school holidays), so it’s worth checking if something worthwhile attending coincides with your visit
- Thorpe Park (Staines Road, Chertsey KT16 8PN) – generally speaking, this theme park offers up water-based rides and mostly caters to a teenager/ young adult audience, as evidenced by the fact it also hosts club nights.
- Windsor Castle (Windsor SL4 1NJ) – one of the most famous royal residences in the world (it’s HM The Queen’s favourite of her several homes), it also happens to be the longest occupied in Europe; owing to its centuries of existence, it boasts a combination of architectural styles, everything from Gothic to Georgian and Baroque to Rocco – inside, be sure to check out the State Apartments and Queen Mary’s Dollhouse
- Hampton Court Palace (East Molesey, Surrey KT8 9AU) – originally home to the ruthless Cardinal Wolseley before it was ‘acquired’ by his employer, the legendary King Henry VIII, Hampton Court and its grounds have been in Royal hands ever since – and been added to since then too, ensuring that like Windsor Castle it’s a fascinating example of stately style from different centuries; many eclectic and popular events are held in its grounds the year round, ensuring it’s more than worth considering for a visit if you’re staying at one of the hotels near Hounslow Central station, like the Park Grand London Heathrow hotel.
- Royal Botanical Gardens, Kew (Riverside, Richmond TW9 1TH) – known to all and sundry as Kew Gardens, this enormously popular stretch of parkland is blessed with 30,000 different types of plant, enough to have ensured it’s become recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage site; it’s truly worth a visit, though, for all the exotic, extraordinary flora housed in its differing greenhouses, each of which maintains a microclimate for its contents.
- Richmond Park/ Old Deer Park (187 Kew Road, Richmond TW9 2AZ) – Richmond Park is a charming, nay aristocratic expanse of green with strong ties to Royal heritage dating back through the centuries; it contains a golf course, a cricket ground and the 360-acre Old Deer Park, of course, which is home to more than 650 deer and some of England’s oldest and greatest oak trees.