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About the Reading, England Program

The Reading program is a USAC partnership program. Learn more about on-site program elements and the town itself below.

About Reading

Central Reading, England.

  • Distance from London: 38 miles
  • Distance from Paris: 230 miles

Reading is a historic town situated on the River Thames, about 25 minutes away from both Oxford and London by train. It is a thriving center of commerce and technology and has one of the best shopping and entertainment centers in southern England, The Oracle.

Historical remains of what was once one of Europe’s largest abbey complexes still stand, and the Reading Museum is a treasure trove for local history, including Roman antiquities from the nearby Roman city of Silchester. Reading is also the burial place of King Henry I and the birthplace of Catherine, Princess of Wales.

You can find top-class entertainment in Reading, including everything from comedy to fringe theatre. The annual Comedy Festival each October attracts established and up-and-coming comedians from all over the world. Numerous venues offer a wide range of live music, where top musicians of all genres regularly perform. The Reading Festival is one of the world’s oldest music festivals, with some of the biggest names in contemporary music playing over the three days. Reading’s town center is a wonderful place to relax with loads of cafés, restaurants, galleries, and entertainment. For sports enthusiasts, a League One football (soccer) club, Reading FC, calls Reading home.