Wallingford is a scenic market town in the heart of the Chiltern Hills in Oxfordshire, and if you’ve never been, you might just recognise it from the TV. The town has made many appearances in the BBC’s Midsomer Murders drama as the fictional location of Causton. Aside from Inspector Barnaby, Wallingford is also famous as Agatha Christie’s home for 40 years. The town is also renowned for its independent shops (including us, Feather and Nest!) and its local community feel.
Looking for things to do in Wallingford? There’s plenty to discover beyond the town’s TV and literary fame. Whether you’re a local looking for fresh inspiration or you’ve never visited before, we’ve made a list of great ways to spend the day in and around Wally. Bring your camera!
1. Browse The Lamb Arcade
Just down the road from us on High Street, you’ll find The Lamb Arcade - a treasure seeker’s paradise! Home to over 40 shops selling antiques and vintage finds, The Lamb Arcade is a fascinating place to lose track of time and pick up something unique.
2. Paint a Pot at Busy Brush Cafe
Whether your group is made up of adults, kids, or a mix of both, picking up a paintbrush at Busy Brush Cafe will keep everyone busy for a good couple of hours! Choose your pottery piece and create a masterpiece - the team at Busy Brush will take care of the firing. There’s plenty of delicious cakes to keep you going through those artistic decisions, too.
3. Go for a Walk in Wallingford Castle Meadows
Wallingford Castle is one of the town’s most important landmarks. Now in ruins, the castle was built in the 11th century, described as "one of the most powerful royal castles of the 12th and 13th centuries" due to its position along the Thames and subsequent prosperity. Today, the meadows around the crumbling walls are the perfect place for a scenic walk on a sunny day.
4. Take a Paddle at Riverside Park and Pools
Adjacent to the beautiful River Thames you’ll find a summer holiday hotspot for families. The heated pool and splash park are the perfect place to cool off and enjoy a picnic during the warmer months.
5. Enjoy a Theatre Show at The Corn Exchange
The Corn Exchange is a volunteer-run entertainment venue that brings theatre, comedy and the latest films to Wallingford. Whether you’re keen to get involved in production, volunteer or enjoy a culture-filled evening as a visitor, the grade II listed building is the perfect setting.
6. Go Berry Picking at Sotwell Manor Fruit Farm
Fancy a taste of the sweet life? Enjoy the satisfaction of picking your own strawberries or raspberries at Sotwell Manor Fruit Farm, just outside of Wallingford. Eat them as they come or whip up a classic Eton Mess or delicious strawberry cheesecake when you get home.
7. Meet the Donkeys at Island Farm Donkey Sanctuary
Near the pick your own farm, you’ll find Island Farm Donkey Sanctuary in Brightwell-cum-Sotwell. This charity is dedicated to caring for abused and mistreated donkeys. It’s open everyday from 11am to 4pm and entry is free.
There’s plenty to keep the whole family busy in Wallingford and the Chilterns. Don’t forget to make time for a coffee in one of the great independent cafes and a browse around our neighbouring shops. And of course, we’d love it if you came to say hi! We’re open daily from 9.30am-5pm, except for Sundays. After all, we all need a break!