Britain’s illustrious Summer Season is renowned across the world. It’s when our countryside and outdoor venues come alive with magnificent events that are a must in the calendar of those who must see and be seen. Here’s how you can experience the best of Britain’s summer season – whatever you’re into:
Love the thrill of the chase?
Go to: Royal Ascot (June)
From the moment the Queen rides up in her carriage from Windsor, there’s a thrill in the air at Royal Ascot. And then they’re off! Wear your finest hat, place a bet or 2 and enjoy a day at the world’s most famous races.
Or: Goodwood Festival of Speed (late June-July)
Prefer your racing on 4 wheels? The Goodwood Festival of Speed is surely the world’s only automotive garden party. Set in the grounds of the glorious Goodwood manor, watch historic motor vehicles race on this eminent hill climb.
Got sea legs?
Go to: Henley Royal Regatta (late June-early July)
Don your best summer outfit and straw boater hat and join the crowds lining the banks of the River Thames in Buckinghamshire to watch rowers thrashing it out over 5 days at the Henley Royal Regatta.
Or: Cowes Week (first week of August)
Follow in the footsteps of King George IV and attend this 8-day sailing regatta that dates to 1826. Back then, 7 boats participated in the races off the shores of the Isle of Wight, but now Cowes Week attracts more like 1,000 boats, dinghies and superyachts.
Want to get into the festival spirit?
Go to: RiZE (mid August)
If you want the festival experience without the grime (the dirt, not the music genre) RiZE has a luxury camping village, a massage tent and hot showers. Hosted at Hyland Park, Essex, this newbie to the music festival scene, replaces the defunct V Festival.
Or: Festival No.6 (early September)
This is a festival with a difference – its location alone is unusual. A mock-Italian village built on the Welsh coast, Portmeirion is truly stunning. And it only gets better when the eclectic Festival No.6 arrives.
Brain need feeding?
Go to: Glyndebourne Opera Festival (May-August)
Enjoy a thoroughly English affair at Glyndebourne Opera Festival, which attracts opera fans from all over the world and yet retains a family-run festival atmosphere. Pack a champagne picnic and your finest attire.
Or: Royal Academy Summer Exhibition (June-August)
Held every year in the Royal Academy on London’s Piccadilly for nearly 250 years, the Summer Exhibition is the only one of its kind on the world, accepting admissions from any artist. Come to open your mind and drop your jaw.