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Best railpass and trains for London, Windsor, Newbury, Stratford upon Avon, and the Cotswolds?

We are arriving at Heathrow and taking a train to Windsor. Does that train leave from Paddington? Then we are going from Windsor to Newbury. I know there is a train station in Newbury, but I don't know what the line is called. Then we need to travel from Newbury to Stratford upon Avon where we will stay. It will be our home base to do traveling by train around the UK. When we fly home our plane leaves at 8 AM, so we should stay by the airport for one night. PLEASE help me sort this out. I have Googles and searched for two weeks now, and I am going crazy trying to figure this out. PLEASE HELP ME!!!!!!
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  • Jeff (Official Rep) June 27, 2018 19:40
    Hi Linda,

    What to purchase for your travels would depend on the specifics of the itinerary itself and various other factors (including everywhere you travel to in England).

    For rail travel through the entire UK (including England, Wales, and Scotland), you would purchase the 'BritRail Pass'. For this pass, you would click here: https://www.raileurope.com/pass/britr...

    For rail travel exclusive to England, you can purchase the 'BritRail England Pass'. For this pass, you would click here: https://www.raileurope.com/pass/britr...

    There is even a pass called the 'BritRail London Plus Pass' that only covers southern England in the areas around London. The BritRail London Plus Pass covers an area as far out as (clockwise from the southwest) Weymouth, Salisbury, Bristol, Oxford, Worcester, Stratford-upon-Avon, Long Buckby, Bedford, Huntingdon, Kings Lynn, and Harwich; as well as all of the coastline in between Harwich and Weymouth that includes Southend-on-Sea, Dover, Hastings, Brighton, Portsmouth, Southampton, and Bournemouth. Notable destinations within this area also include Bath, Cambridge, Windsor, Canterbury, and Reading. Depending on where else you decide to go, this pass may be enough for you. For the 'BritRail London Plus Pass', you would click here: http://www.raileurope.com/pass/britra....

    If you’d like assistance determining the best option for an itinerary, you would call us. We can be reached at 1-800-622-8600. Our current hours are 8:00 AM to 6:30 PM CT Monday to Friday and 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM CT on Saturdays.

    Trains from London to Slough depart from the Paddington station in London. From Slough, you can take a bus that take you directly to Windsor Castle. The train ride from London Paddington to Slough can take anywhere from 15 minutes to 35 minutes. The bus ride from Slough to Windsor Castle takes about 30 minutes. For the bus between Slough and Windsor Castle, you would pay to board locally when you're there.

    Your other option would be take a train from the London Waterloo station to the Windsor & Eton station (Windsor Central), which is a 5-minute walk to the gates of the castle.

    For travel to Newbury, you would first take the train from 'Windsor & Eton' to Slough, or else you would take the bus from the castle to Slough. In Slough, you would switch to a short train to Reading. In Reading, you would switch to a short train to Newbury.

    For travel from Newbury to Stratford-upon-Avon, you would first take a train from Newbury to Reading. In Reading, you would switch to a train to Leamington Spa. In Leamington Spa, you would switch to a train that will take you to Stratford-upon-Avon.

    Connections from Stratford-upon-Avon to London involve changing trains once in Leamington Spa along the way. The direct trains from Leamington Spa to London will take you into the London Marylebone station.

    All of these stations fall within the territory covered by the 'BritRail London Plus Pass'. That includes the stations in London, Slough, Windsor & Eton, Reading, Newbury, Leamington Spa, and Stratford-upon-Avon.

    The 'BritRail London Plus Pass' is also valid on the Heathrow Express trains running between the Heathrow Airport and the London Paddington station.
    • Jeff (Official Rep) June 27, 2018 19:44
      If you'll be staying in London for multiple days and you'll be using public transit to get around, you'd want to consider purchasing either the 'London Travel Card' or the 'Visitor Oyster Card', both of which would cover public transit networks in the city, including the Tube, London Overground, and city buses.

      To purchase the 'London Travel Card' you would click here: http://www.raileurope.com/pass/london...

      To purchase the 'Visitor Oyster Card' you would click here: http://www.raileurope.com/pass/visito...

      To browse other city passes for a stay in London, you would click here: http://www.raileurope.com/train-ticke...
    • Jeff (Official Rep) June 27, 2018 19:51
      Also, one more thing about the 'BritRail London Plus Pass' relating to your itinerary -- It would not be valid to the most common stations known to service the Cotswolds, which are the stations in Stroud and Cheltenham Spa. Stroud and Cheltenham Spa fall just barely outside the territory covered by the 'BritRail London Plus Pass', so an additional fee would be involved should this be the pass you end up purchasing. Otherwise, Stratford-upon-Avon is covered by the 'BritRail London Plus Pass' and is also close to the Cotswolds, so it just depends on the where specifically you want to go.
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