Living in Henley-on-Thames
Voted by The Times as one of the best places to live in the English countryside, Henley-on-Thames offers its residents a bustling town centre amidst a breathtaking backdrop of acres of woodland, meadows and riverside recreation. Offering everything one could want from a place to live, we will explore local shopping destinations, community activities and more below.
Eating out in Henley-on-Thames
This Oxfordshire town is awash with excellent, independent places to eat and drink. Whether you're looking for a morning pick-me-up or a relaxing Sunday roast in one of the area's charming pubs, there are plenty of options to choose from when dining in Henley.
For a traditional British pub experience on the waterfront, The Angel on the Bridge will offer you a warm welcome and some excellent pub grub with tranquil views. Or, if you're looking for a spot for breakfast or lunch with family or friends, pay Bistro at The Boathouse a visit for a varied menu and a prime location on the river.
Shopping in the Area
Peruse the independent shops of Henley-on-Thames; from clothing boutiques to charity shops, established jewellers to gift shops, Henley's cobbled streets are lined with many great retailers. Many well-known high-street brands, such as Mint Velvet, Robert Dyas, and Boots, can also be found along Henley-on-Thames' four main shopping streets.
Transport and Connectivity
Obtainable via road and rail, Henley-on-Thames is a well-connected town served by public transport and several main roads.
The town's railway station and that of nearby Shiplake are both easily accessible from Central London thanks to the brand-new Elizabeth line, which stops at Twyford, Shiplake's neighbouring station, offering journey times into London Paddington in just over an hour. The town can also be accessed by car using the A4130, A4155 and the A321, with the M4 motorway also running just south of nearby Twyford. Similarly, several bus services serve the local area, connecting residents of Henley-on-Thames to nearby key destinations.
Theatre and Cinema
From tribute nights to comedy shows and jazz performances to film adaptations, Kenton Theatre's jam-packed programme ensures that residents of Henley always have something in the calendar to look forward to. Movie lovers looking to catch the latest Hollywood blockbusters can visit the Regal Picturehouse. Sit back and enjoy a cinematic experience at Henley's only cinema in an art-deco setting.
Boating in Henley-on-Thames
Well known for the annual Henley Royal Regatta which attracts many of the finest rowers worldwide to compete in this exciting calendar event, the regatta is at the very core of Henley-on-Thames' culture. Take to the water yourself by hopping on one of Henley's organised river cruises, or hire a boat for the day to venture the waters of Henley or further afield if you wish!
Walking Routes in and around Henley-on-Thames
The Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) is an idyllic escape covering 324 square miles of peaceful English countryside. Peppered with walking paths, cycle routes and waterways, whether it's a leisurely dog walk, a challenging new cycle trail, or you want to explore the beautiful bluebell woods, you'll be amazed by the spectacular scenery in this beautiful part of the world. This AONB also has several accessible routes for less-able people, including special trails for wheelchair users and pushchairs.
Clubs and Community in Henley-on-Thames
Whether it's maintaining your self-grown fruit and vegetables at an allotment, being a member of a social club or being part of the local choir, residents of Henley-on-Thames benefit from a great community with a choice of activities to keep busy with. Those interested in the arts might enjoy volunteering at The Arts Society Henley, whilst those passionate about playing chess will want to join the Henley Chess Club.
If you enjoy some gentle sport, walking football is fantastic exercise and takes place weekly at Henley Leisure Centre. Alternatively, join the Henley-on-Thames Bowling Club and participate in some light competition down at The Pavilion. For casual swimmers, Henley Leisure Centre boasts a 25m swimming pool and offers 'Swim fit,' 'Swim for all,' and 'Water workout' sessions daily. Open water swimming is also popular in Henley thanks to its riverside location, where more competitive swimmers enjoy participating in the annual Henley Swim event.
Local Events in the Area
Henley Festival – established over 40 years ago – is one of the area's signature annual events taking place every July with a smart, black-tie dress code. Recognisable artists, including Tom Jones, Jamie Cullum and Katherine Jenkins, have been known to perform previously.
Held over six days every summer, the prestigious Henley Royal Regatta sees head-to-head races along Henley's stretch of the Thames. This renowned annual event is a summer highlight for residents of this Oxfordshire town, attracting spectators from across the local area and beyond.
Henley Literary Festival is one of the UK's largest book festivals held annually in Henley. Ticketholders can enjoy talks from leading authors as well as other small-scale events throughout the 9-day October event.
Retirement Living in Henley-on-Thames
Shiplake Meadows will set new standards for retirement living. Those seeking a sustainable retirement residence that benefits from a warm community atmosphere with exceptional on-site amenities should look no further than Shiplake Meadows.
Set to comprise 65 new apartments, penthouses and cottages located within a close-knit retirement village; residents will benefit from assisted living where required with services provided by leading home care provider Home Instead.
The village clubhouse will be the home of a luxury bistro and bar serviced by local favourite, Pavilion, as well as a fitness suite and outdoor terrace for relaxing al-fresco in the warmer months.