I often walk or run down the side of the Thames in Reading. From my house I can run 5km with a great portion of it by the river. Often I will go for a walk on a weekend morning, usually around by the river.
As a result I am very familiar with Thameside Promenade. The houses, fields, river and nature. In the winter seeing the snow, the early morning mist rising off the water. Sunrise over the fields, and the sound of rowing clubs practising on the Thames.
As a result I have never been on one of the cruises run by Thames Rivercruise although I know lots of people who have. One year I almost attended a Christmas Party cruise, but I couldn’t make it. Among the options are a number of different cruises around the area, some with food, afternoon tea or live music. Mapledurham, Goring and Abbey Ruins are amongst the destinations
We did a simple cruise from the mooring point at Caversham Bridge to Mapledurham and back. It lasted 80 minutes, but felt a lot quicker. There were refreshment facilities on board (including snacks, a licensed bar, hot and cold drinks) and the boat (Caversham Lady) was clean and well maintained.
The trip starts at the mooring next to the bridge and heads out past Caversham Court, the fancy houses of the Warren, down past Purley and on to Mapledurham.
We turned around at Mapledurham weir, after enjoying lovely views of the watermill and house then headed back the way we had come.
On the trip we saw a number of heron, lots of geese and swans, some ducks and a cormorant. The skipper gave a commentary during the cruise, which was informative. I learned a lot about the area and also about Reading festival.
The cruise was £11 which was great value. We had a wonderful day. The sun was shining, it was a warm day and the time passed quickly. It was a fantastic way to get a different perspective, learn some facts and history on the river, and the festival.
Once again I learned a lesson. There are lots of things to do in our area. I put this one off for a long time and I wish now that I had done it sooner.
Have you done local tourist things in your area?