The Best Hotels to Book Near the Watercress Line Railway, England

Rooms at the Winchester Royal Hotel face a calming garden
Rooms at the Winchester Royal Hotel face a calming garden | © Winchester Royal Hotel / Expedia
Photo of Kim Gregory
8 October 2021

Explore, learn and ride on the historic Watercress Line Railway, where restored steam trains depart from Alresford or Alton, and chug through the Hampshire countryside in England. These nearby Winchester hotels are perfect bases, from indulgent spa hotels to family-friendly pubs – book your stay now with Culture Trip.

The George & Falcon

1130a023 The George & Falcon
© The George & Falcon / Expedia
Posh grub and homely rooms await at this 16th-century, Grade II-listed inn and restaurant. You’ll appreciate the traditional features, like archways and beamed ceilings. The highlight is the lush garden with its lovely heated terrace that leads straight to the banks of the River Meon. Bring all the family, including your dog – they’ll love this Warnford retreat as much as you.

The Winchester Hotel & Spa

b7f3a31f The Winchester Hotel & Spa
© The Winchester Hotel & Spa / Expedia
Refresh with a stay at the Winchester. Colourful, contemporary bedrooms have king- or super-king-size beds, and suites feature Nespresso machines, robes, slippers and luxury toiletries. Book the Grand Suite, and you’ll have a TV at the end of your bath. Days are for relaxing in the spa’s hot tub, swedish sauna or aromatic steam room. There’s time for a lava shell massage and Mii makeup glam-up before dinner on the terrace: Hampshire beef burgers are a restaurant highlight.

Winchester Royal Hotel

d17bf57a Winchester Royal Hotel
© Winchester Royal Hotel / Expedia
Choose from pretty, garden-view rooms or grand, antique-strewn suites at this central 16th-century hotel. The Garden Restaurant is award-winning: enjoy excellent Sunday roasts or evening meals like oven-roasted lamb rump. Don’t miss the lovely walled garden, where you can tuck into Royal Afternoon Tea with thoughtful gluten-free or vegan versions. The onsite parking comes in handy, as Alresford is around a 15-minute drive away.

The Old Vine

6b5e1a40 The Old Vine
© The Old Vine / Expedia
Winchester Cathedral is a short walk from this 18th-century inn. Tuck into Old Vine beer-battered fish and chips, washed down with local ale, before heading to your room that’s classic but characterful, thanks to vintage-pattern curtains, colourful rugs and rustic bed frames. Book the annexe for modern chic or the cathedral-view suite for luxury. All come with nice touches, like Noble Isle toiletries and complimentary soft drinks. Look forward to breakfast options, from traditional to loaded ciabatta.

Hotel du Vin & Bistro Winchester

475ecd2e Hotel du Vin & Bistro Winchester
© Hotel du Vin & Bistro Winchester / Expedia
Revel in decadence at this 1715-built central hotel. Individually styled rooms and suites offer nostalgic glamour decor and some period features. All have deep baths; the Signature Suite has an end-of-the-bed rolltop tub. You’ve several dining choices in the cosy bar, elegant bistro or the courtyard featuring a fountain and fairy lights. A sommelier will help you pick from the extensive wine cellar; pair your red or white with a cigar if the mood takes you.

Holiday Inn Winchester

06e4252e Holiday Inn Winchester
© Holiday Inn Winchester / Expedia
There’s something for all the family here. You can relax at the spa, with its Mud Rasul Suite, hydrotherapy pool, ELEMIS treatments and afternoon tea, before cocktails or local ales on the terrace. Children stay and eat free, and they’ll love the restaurant pizzas. For workers, there are a 24-hour Business Centre, 8 flexible events spaces, free wifi and an open lobby for remote working. Use the gym for a post-work workout. Parking is free, so you can explore Winchester at your leisure.

The Fox

00cbe71e The Fox
© The Fox / Expedia
The Fox is one for the foodies. This rustic-chic pub’s menu focuses on local and seasonal produce – that’s why it alters daily. You’ll love the freshly caught fish dishes and 48-hour wood-fired, slow-fermented pizzas. Pints come from local microbreweries, and there’s a Gin Wall with botanicals and speciality drinks. Boutique-style rooms come with Nespresso coffee machines, Bramley toiletries and, in some cases, original features and roll-top tubs. Wake each morning to a cooked breakfast made from Hampshire produce.


c9098955 Esme's
© Esme's / Expedia
Make yourself at home at this traditional house with a welcoming host. Your room features homely touches like pretty fabrics, flowers and pictures lining the walls. Expect a coffee maker and complimentary biscuits. The stylish, tiled bathroom features a rainfall showerhead and toiletries. You’re a short walk from Winchester city centre, and there’s free parking, so you can easily reach the Watercress Line Railway.

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