Did you know the Queen spent her 86th birthday here in Newbury, watching her horses from the Royal Box of Newbury Racecourse, one of the finest grounds in the UK? Or that Newbury has two Michelin Star restaurants up its sleeve? Or that Downton Abbey was filmed at the stunning Highclere Castle estate just a few miles away? Or that in the neighbouring village of Bagnor you’ll find a picturesque theatre with a worldwide reputation? Or that The Who had a fight in the Corn Exchange – Moon and Entwistle vs Townshend and Daltrey? Honestly, for a sleepy Berkshire town, Newbury is full of fantastic surprises. We’ve pulled together some of our best bits to give you great places to eat, excellent days out, some top-class evening entertainment, and wonderful nightlife. Tick it all off and you’ll need a good night’s sleep in one of our Newbury hotels.
Things to do in Newbury
Take a trip back in time by paying a visit to two incredible castles and one historic house in Newbury. Including the famous setting of Downton Abbey, they head up a fantastic selection of great days right on the doorstep of our hotels. If you’re visiting with family, we have some wonderful wildlife activities to tell you about.
Time your stay in Newbury right and you can enjoy some of the best events of Berkshire’s entertainment calendar, such as the famous Royal County of Berkshire Show, and the wonderful Retro Festival. Beyond that, Newbury is also home to a stellar little theatre, a fab arts centre, and one of the UK’s finest racecourses.
Places to eat
Tuck into some of the finest food you’ll ever eat in one of Newbury’s two Michelin Star restaurants. Visit Henry & Joe’s, hands down our favourite bistro. We’ve also picked out some exceptional exotic options, including a taste bud tantalising authentic Thai restaurant, the best sushi bar we’ve ever been to, and – of course – the best places for a full English in Newbury.
Whether you’re looking for somewhere to enjoy a peaceful drink during the day, or an evening watering hole with pints galore and grade-A craic, our local guide to Newbury nightlife is packed with excellent options. You’ll find canalside pubs, live music bars, a micropub with a perfect pint, and a weekend nightclub with more mirror balls than we can count.
If you fancy some retail therapy during your stay in Newbury, there’s an abundance of shopping options to choose from. The town’s two main retail hubs span both sides of the river. Parkway Newbury is the newer and more popular shopping centre in town. It’s here where you’ll find the town’s John Lewis store, next to the large Marks & Spencer. There’s a flagship Debenhams store, as well as High Street favourites such as H&M, Topshop, Joules, and Jigsaw. If you’re driving from our Newbury Town Centre South (A339) hotel, you shouldn’t have trouble finding somewhere to park as there are more than 500 spaces available. Newbury’s other option is the Kennet Shopping Centre on the south side of the town centre. It’s where you’ll find the Vue Newbury cinema. It’s also home to popular retailers such a Laura Ashley, and restaurant chains like Pizza Express and Nando’s. Alternatively, the Newbury Retail Park is home to several large outlet stores, including Sports Direct, Homebase, TK Maxx, and New Look. You’ll find it south of the town centre, just off the A339.
Newbury town centre is small enough to explore on foot. You can walk from Newbury Station at one end, to our Newbury Town Centre (London Road) hotel at the other in less than fifteen minutes. However, if you’re planning on travelling further afield, to places such as Highclere Castle, then the best option is by car. Newbury does have Uber, or you can choose any one of a number of local Newbury taxi companies. Another option is to catch one of the local bus services. You’ll find Newbury Bus Station on Market Street on the corner of the Kennet Shopping Centre. If you’re planning a day at the races, you’ll be glad to hear the stadium is served by its own Newbury Racecourse Railway Station. It’s one stop down from Newbury Station, the main transport hub connecting the town with direct services to London Paddington, Reading, Bedwyn, Exeter St Davids and elsewhere in Devon and Cornwall.