Home to the world’s largest inhabited Castle and the most prestigious Horse Racing circuit in the UK; the county of Berkshire is considered to be an almost Royal region. Sharing a border with the River Thames and sat less than an hour east from the Centre of London, the county offers a number of great getaway activities to escape the city life.
From the UK’s Highest Bungee Jump to Jet Ski Safaris on a 300 acre lake; Berkshire provides a small number of high quality experiences aimed at utilising the picturesque countryside and ranging terrains that being a Royal county has required. Having bore the world’s greatest explorer; Ranulph Fiennes, the county is now home to 0.8m residents, the UK’s most exclusive school – Eton, and one of the country’s biggest theme parks – Legoland.
With such rich heritage to appreciate in one of the UK’s oldest counties, it is also possible to combine a few extra curricular thrills with tours using this guide.
Berkshire is not only considered Royalty for housing the Royal Family and being one of the ‘home’ counties; it is also the resting place for the King of Bungee Jumps. The 300 foot jump in Windsor Bray is perched over a lake and is the highest jump available in the UK throughout the year. Jumpers are strapped in by the waist and ankles, crane lifted to 300 foot and given a few seconds of unbridled scenery before plunging into one of the most intense adrenaline rushes that man has thus far discovered. At nearly double the height of every other jump in the UK, Britain’s Highest Bungee Jump is Bungee Royalty and a Monarch of the Adrenaline Rush family.
4×4 Off Road Driving
Inducing an altogether different sensation than the UK’s Highest Bungee is achievable in Berkshire with a technical sport that requires more brains than brawn, and less haste than height; 4×4 Driving. One BORDA qualified supplier in Berkshire offers a range of extreme excursions on Berkshire’s renowned countryside, traversing tricky terrains and muddy mounds in a range of timed experiences and in depth courses. The technical sport demands patience and an opposing set of driving laws, which can be learned during taster sessions, hourly private sessions or even in groups for parties and celebrations.
Remaining with driving experiences, Berkshire is also home to a number of Indoor Go Karting centres. Opposing 4×4 Driving and the slow & steady techniques; Go Karting is a fast paced, scaled down version of motor racing that has exploded with the developments of the last half century. One centre in the county offers Karts that reach 45mph (3x the average for the UK) and a 370m indoor circuit. The centre also has one of the highest Karting Bridges in the UK and supplies all of the equipment for the day. With chicanes, straights and hairpin bends; racers aim to complete the circuit in less than or around 25 seconds.
Wakeboarding is extremely popular in Berkshire as sitting geographically inland restricts the county’s water sport activities to those operated on lakes. Since the developments of ski boarding in the 1980’s, Wakeboarding combines techniques from Water Skiing, Snow Boarding & Surfing and has flourished to establish itself as one of the finest and most enjoyable on lake water sports. One operator in Berkshire offers courses and experiences from a 330-acre lake, catering for skill levels from the beginner right through to the expert. Naturally the summer months are more suitable for Wakeboarding as the weather and water temperature add greatly the experience quality.
If Wakeboarding is perhaps a little too tiring or difficult to get the hang of, riding a Jet Ski may be a more viable option to get out on the water. Whereas Wakeboarding will encompass an uncomfortable start and many bailouts, Jet Skiing is the marine version of Motor Biking and is very easy to get started. Bray Lake is not only the Palace of the UK’s highest Bungee Jump, but the 50-acre stretch of water also plays host to a range of Jet Ski sessions and safaris designed to test the 45mph PWC (Personal Watercraft) Jet Skis.
Naturally the UK’s counties are extremely limited to the amount of experiences conducted with or on snow, and Berkshire is no different. However, Bracknell has a 160m indoor Ski Slope using specially designed plastic sheets known as ‘Perma-Snow’, which improves the skiing experience by removing the holes usually associated with dry slopes. Lessons and singular experiences are readily available at the centre which opens from 10am – 10pm.
Whilst Berkshire is not the most enthralling of extreme entities, the county does adhere to a high quality of the activities it does provide. The Highest Bungee in the UK is a factor within itself for Adrenaline Junkies, whilst the unspoilt countryside and Royal connection also adds another dimension to getaway seekers searching for more than a high octane rush..
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