What to see along the Thames Path
2021 events & Festivals
What is there to see along the Thames Path? We provide quite a lot of information on our page About The Thames. But there are also many festivals & events taking place along the Thames Path. Use these to help you decide the best time to walk the Thames Path.
COVID 19 UPDATE: Sadly all of the events below were either cancelled in 2020 or moved online. We have listed those that are currently scheduled for 2021.
University Boat Race 3 April MOVED TO ELY, CAMBRIDGESHIRE
Slightly out of the walking season. Starts at Putney Bridge and finishes upstream at Chiswick Bridge. 4 miles and 374 yards.
Reading Beer Festival CANCELLED
Held in Christchurch Meadows which is on the other side of the river but accessible over the new Christchurch footbridge
Chelsea Flower Show 18-23 May POSTPONED TO 21-26 SEPT
Held at Kew Gardens which is on the right bank of the Thames between Richmond and Hammersmith. Can be visited whilst walking the Thames Path.
Hampton Court Palace Festival 8-19 June SCHEDULED FOR AUG 13-24
10 nights of music featuring Rick Astley, Tom Jones, Lionel Richie and George Benson among others.
Marlow Town Regatta 12-13 June
Apart from the usual races, there is a dragon boat race on the 14th
Marlow Regatta 19 June
Not to be confused with Marlow Town Regatta, this is an international event actually held at Dorney Lake (between Maidenhead and Windsor)
Garter Ceremony, Windsor 14 June
Knights of the Garter gather with the Queen at Windsor Castle. Knights include UK Royal Family members, European Kings and Queens, and ex-prime ministers and senior civil servants.
Royal Ascot 15-19 June
The premier horse racing event of the year attended by the Queen. Just 7 miles from Windsor so why not take a day off from the walk?
Wimbledon Tennis Championships 28 June - 11 July
Wimbledon is just 3 tube stops from Putney Bridge in West London
Henley Royal Regatta 29 June - 4 July PROVISIONALLY SCHEDULED FOR W/C AUG 9
It's a great time to visit Henley but book early as Henley will be very busy during this time
Henley Festival 7-11 July POSTPONED 15-19 SEPT
An upmarket music festival for more mature pop fans. This year's line up includes Madness, James Blunt, Kathy Sledge of Sister Sledge, and Classic FM. Like the Regatta held in the previous week, accommodation will be limited.
Goring & Streatley Regatta 17 July
One of the smaller regattas but set with the beautiful backdrop of Goring Gap
BBC Proms July - September
Considered to be the largest classical music festival in the world, this mostly takes place in the fabulous Royal Albert Hall in London
Fairford Air Show 16-18 July CANCELLED
The airbase is a mile or so north of the Thames in the upper reaches between Cricklade and Lechlade. Expect to see (and hear) fighter jets.
Swan Upping Sunbury to Abingdon 3rd week of July (to be confirmed)
Swan Upping is the process by which unmarked swans are assigned to the Crown and two livery companies from the City of London. Starting at Sunbury, the three groups row as far as Abingdon and mark the swans they catch.
Wargrave and Shiplake Regatta 6-7 August
Another regatta! Smaller than the others but also less crowded.
Reading Festival 27-29 August GOING AHEAD
This is a rock festival held on farmland adjoining the Thames. The Path goes right past the festival and diversions are in place only at night. Expect loud music if staying near Reading during that time. This year's acts include Stormzy,and Liam Gallagher
Henley Literary Festival 2-10 October
This festival attracts some high profile speakers. 2019's guests included Theresa May, Paul Merton, Mary Berry and Sir Alastair Cook.
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