You will be surprised how much you can pack into 48 hours in Leicestershire. Take some inspiration from our weekend guide.
Start your day with a trip to the University of Leicester Botanic Gardens and be sure to take your camera. The garden is one of the most diverse in the region with an extensive collection of plants from all over the world. It also includes the Attenborough Arboretum, opened by David Attenborough in 1997.
From the Botanic Gardens, head into the city and to Mrs Bridges Tea Rooms, on Loseby Lane. This charming cafe serves up a slice of history alongside its delicious menu. The tea room was built in 1723 and is now part of the popular Leicester Lanes area. Choose from a feast of gourmet sandwiches and light bites, with traditional teas and home-made cakes.
Take a short walk from your lunch spot to the King Richard III Visitor Centre in St Martins. Here you can learn about the life, death and rediscovery of Leicestershire’s most renowned resident. Then, follow the Richard III Walking Trail, which takes approximately one hour. The trail tours the key sites connected to the last Plantagenet King and the medieval Leicester he would have known.
The city centre is the perfect place to find some of Leicester’s famous curries. To sample some of the most authentic dishes, head to Shimla Pinks on London Road and, for sheer variety, order one of the banquet set menus. Enjoy crispy poppadoms with Indian chutneys and a variety of curries served with fluffy saffron pilau rice and freshly-baked naan breads.
Take a short walk from your lunch spot to the King Richard III Visitor Centre in St Martins. Here you can learn about the life, death and rediscovery of Leicestershire’s most renowned resident
There is nothing like a stimulating country walk and few places more picturesque than north west Leicestershire. Swithland Wood is particularly magical during the early part of the morning. It is incredibly quiet, peaceful and calming, with just the sounds of birdsong and the spectacle of morning sunlight dappling through the trees. The wood is especially beautiful during late April, when it is adorned with a carpet of bluebells.
In the nearby village of Anstey is the award-winning restaurant, Sapori, which is Italian for ‘flavours’. The restaurant offers a selection of meat, fish and vegetarian dishes, prepared with authentic Italian ingredients such as fresh tomato, pesto, mozzarella and olives. Desserts are also home-made, including the gelati and sorbets.
For an afternoon of culture, take a trip to Leicester’s Phoenix. The venue hosts regular exhibitions and showcases a variety of independent films and movies from all over the world. Whatever you choose, you’re sure to find something delightfully different and a fascinating conversation piece.
The White Peacock, on King Street, offers a sophisticated menu featuring locally-sourced seasonal ingredients. The menu is varied, taking inspiration from world cuisines, and includes some rather exciting vegetarian options. Chef Patron, Phillip Sharpe, cooked for the Queen, Prince Philip and the Duchess of Cambridge during their royal visit to Leicester.
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