Berkshire Family Bike Ride: Thatcham to Theale

The Kennet and Avon Canal is a brilliant place to go on a family bike ride in Berkshire.  There are miles of fairly flat, car-free paths and the scenery is stunning. We spotted swans, canal boats, people paddling canoes and an artist painting a river scene.

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We parked at Thatcham station, cycled 8 miles to Theale (stopping at Woolhampton for lunch) and then got the train back to Thatcham. This is a great family bike ride but better suited for confident cyclists as there can be some maneuvering amongst walkers next to the river, a few roads to cross and a short section at the end on road (or pushing along footpath) to get back to the station at Theale. It took us about 2 hours 15 minutes of cycling with under 8’s – plus a stop for lunch in the middle.

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You can park at Thatcham rail station (£2 all day parking at weekend) and pick up the tow path just beside the station, keeping the river on your left.  It’s about 2 miles to Woolhampton where we stopped for lunch at The Rowbarge pub. It’s a brilliant stop right on the river, with lots of outdoor seating and a kids menu.

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We carried on through Aldermaston (about another 2 miles) where there’s also the option to stop at the Aldermaston Tea Room for an ice cream or bite to eat.  From here, it’s a further 4 miles on to Theale where you can get the train back to Thatcham.

canal boats kennet and avon canal

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swan kennet and avon canal

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