Marlow: Retreat of The Compleat Angler
This Thames-side town, 56km (35 miles) northwest of London and 13km (8 miles) east of Henley-on-Thames, is a miniature version of the better-known Henley. To reach it from Henley, take Route 4155 and just follow the signs. Many prefer its more pastoral look to the larger Henley.
Along this middle reach of the Thames is some of the most beautiful rural scenery in England, a land of green fields and deep woods, of stately mansions and parks. It was in these surroundings that Izaak Walton wrote his immortal work on fishing, The Compleat Angler, published in 1655. On the south bank of the river facing Marlow itself stood the inn in which he stayed. That inn still stands and is named after his work.
Where to Stay -- Frankly, Marlow attracts mainly well-heeled fishermen who like to stay at the Compleat Angler, a very pricey hotel because of its associations with Izaak Walton. If you're a frugal traveler and find yourself trapped in the area for the night, you can discover reasonable but hardly spectacular accommodations at Glade End, 2 Little Marlow Rd., Marlow, Buckinghamshire S17 1HD (tel. 01628/471334; www.gladeend.com), where doubles go for £110 to £125 a night.