The Best Things to Do in Buckinghamshire, England

Bletchley Park is a popular heritage attraction
Bletchley Park is a popular heritage attraction | © Ian Dagnall / Alamy Stock Photo
Photo of Nicholas Grantham
16 November 2020

Set in a beautiful landscape, the English county of Buckinghamshire is full of fascinating places to explore. With macabre mausoleums, educational wildlife centres and code-breaking country estates, there is no shortage of things to see and do. Our local guides have picked the top destinations you shouldn’t miss.

The Hellfire Caves

Historical Landmark
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UK, England, Buckinghamshire, West Wycombe, Church Lane, Hell Fire Caves, interior, visitor in Banqueting Hall
© Neil McAllister / Alamy Stock Photo

Based just outside the village of West Wycombe, the mysterious and macabre Hellfire Caves have been a visitor attraction since 1863. Home of the infamous Hellfire Club, the caves were carved out and visited by several well-known characters, including Benjamin Franklin, John Wilkes and John Montagu, 4th Earl of Sandwich. Today the caves are open to the general public, but with their dark history and spooky setting, they’re not for the faint of heart.

Buckinghamshire Railway Centre

Museum, Train Station
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Steam Locomotive at Buckinghamshire Railway Centre, Quainton, taking on water before giving visitors a trip.
© Miriam Heppell / Alamy Stock Photo

Boasting one of the largest collections of historical locomotives in the country, the Buckinghamshire Railway Centre is a top spot for rail enthusiasts. Established in 1969 and covering 25 acres (10ha), the centre offers a hands-on experience of the country’s steam-powered history. In addition to the trains, the centre has steam-train rides and a miniature railway; it’s also available to hire for special events, including weddings, private functions and conferences.

Bletchley Park

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One of the most important locations during World War II, Bletchley Park played a key role in the breaking of the supposedly unbreakable Enigma code. Often considered the birthplace of modern computers, the park features exhibitions detailing the accomplishments and achievements of the people who worked here during its seminal years. In addition to the fascinating history, the estate has a collection of beautiful gardens and a cafe, perfect for taking a rest stop during your visit.

Chiltern Open Air Museum

Archaeological site, Museum
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1935 MG tourer, YS5081 in red with the bonnet open and hood down,  at the Chiltern Open Air Museum Classic Car Show
© Biblio Photography / Alamy Stock Photo

Covering 45 acres (18ha) in the picturesque Buckinghamshire countryside, the Chiltern Open Air Museum is home to more than 30 fascinating historic buildings. With medieval roundhouses and Victorian toll houses to tin chapels and authentic forges, the buildings represent a genuine slice of England’s history. Along with ancient architecture, the museum also features a historic working farm with a whole host of animals in residence.

Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre

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Roald Dahl Museum & Story Centre, High Street, Great Missenden, Buckinghamshire, England, United Kingdom
© Greg Balfour Evans / Alamy Stock Photo

The Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre is set in an old coaching inn and was brought to life in 2005 after a £4.5m redevelopment funded partly by the Dahl family. With exhibits showcasing the thought processes and creative flourishes of the late great children’s writer, it’s a must-visit for fans of all ages. Tickets are reasonably priced, and the museum stays open throughout the year.

Green Dragon Eco Farm

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Home to some of the country’s rarest and endangered native species, including the Eurasian lynx, silver fox and Scottish wildcat, the Green Dragon Eco Farm’s mission is to educate visitors on the importance of conservation. With different areas, including the Wildlife Zone, Pets’ Corner and Animal Barn, which provides a hands-on experience with the resident wildlife, the centre is fun and informative for the whole family. Be sure to explore the Nature Trail, a beautiful trek through the local countryside.

These recommendations were updated on November 16, 2020 to keep your travel plans fresh.

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