There are few more quintessentially English experiences than Henley Royal Regatta. On one week in July this sleepy Thameside town comes alive to welcome the elite of the world’s rowers for a nail-biting explosion of aquatic excellence. Straw boaters and floaty dresses are the order of the day as you sip a Pimm’s cup and cheer on improbably large boys in Lycra onesies. Does it make sense? Not a bit of it, but for sheer passion and spectacle, the Henley Royal Regatta simply can’t be beat.