The best view in Oxfordshire?
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It’s a contentious award, but I spent a couple of hours at the National Trust-owned Watlington Hill on Sunday and it was just beee-eautiful. Views down to Watlington on one side, and not-sure-what-I-was-looking-at-but-it-was-damn-pretty on the other, with butterflies everywhere, and red kites gliding all around us. Not much in the way of walking – our attempts to walk along various trails failed as we were attacked by killer gorse – but a brilliant spot for a picnic, a game of football (as long as you don’t kick down the hill – it’s a LONG way back up) and your own bit of kite-flying.
Unaware of the picnic option when we set off, we had lunch at the Fox & Hounds on Christmas Common (two minutes drive up the road). The Fox & Hounds has a lot of fans and I’m one of them – sort of.
There’s a sweet beer garden out the front (though there’s also that annoying British habit of allowing the car park to back onto the beer garden. Why, publicans, why?). There’s a cute rickety bar area, with strange nooks and crannies that I think would work best on a cold winter’s evening, and a newly-built barn-style restaurant opening out onto the garden that’s probably best for a leisurely lunch.
The main reason The Fox & Hounds gets a Muddy mention is its position (bang in the middle of major walking/biking territory) plus the food which is solid gastro-pub fare. The kids gobbled enormous battered cod and chips, whilst S and I paid homage to the body beautiful -or at least the body less disgusting – with a very good parma ham salad. With the weather fine and the kids behaving, it was an ideal half-hour fuel stop.
All in all, a fantastic day. Life feels good when the sun shines doesn’t it?
If you know a better view in Oxfordshire, please let us all know about it! Just click in the comment box below and have your say. x