Desperate to escape London for a few nights and to have some time alone, my boyfriend G and I recently booked a trip to The Cotswolds. Neither of us had spent much time there before and we wanted somewhere we could properly explore together. After shortlisting a bunch of gorgeous airbnb’s in the area (guys, making the decision of which one to book was so difficult as so many of them were beautiful) we settled on an old granary conversion, packed our bags and set off.
I wanted to write up a bit of a travel guide to the places we visited as I would really recommend this little trip to anyone wanting to be surrounded by idyllic scenery, with great food at a really reasonable cost (compared to London)!
Our accommodation sat in the tiny village in Cheltenham, smack bang in the centre of the north cotswolds. We chose it mainly because of it’s unique look – the bedroom looked gorgeous with exposed beams, a king size bed, a spiral staircase around a brick wall and a modern kitchen complete with red smeg fridge! It was also in a great location, only a 15 minute drive from all the villages we wanted to visit (below)! The hosts were lovely and the property had a stunning stream running behind the house which we took a stroll through on our last morning (I felt like I was in the forest scene in twilight, ha!)
Also I can’t write this post up without recommending one of the most incredible pub’s I’ve ever been to which was a 2 minute walk away from the property; the Halfway House is a 17th century village inn with the most incredible pub menu I’ve ever seen (and trust me, I have a lot of experience)! They have built a reputation for being one of the first to serve up Yorkshire pudding burgers… you heard it! They’ve replaced the bun with two gorgeous puds and along with the fillings, it’s just out of this world. We ate here on our first evening and actually went back for a Sunday roast on the last day as we were desperate to experience it all again. I would go back to The Cotswolds just to eat here…!!!!
Bourton on the Water
Bourton on the Water was on the top of my list of places to visit after being named one of the most picturesque villages in the Cotswolds, known for it’s little low bridges over the River Windrush. It’s also home to a Model Village which is an absolute must if you’re in the area! It’s a literal little replica of the town, complete with bridges, the running river and even the little tea rooms! We felt like kids in a playground acting like giants and giggling a lot.
We had lunch in a cafe named The Croft (brick walls, amazing brunches and good coffee) before wandering around the town and it’s little bridges. There’s also a Motoring Museum (which has the car Brum in it, anyone remember that) and Birdland; a garden and park home to over 500 birds.
Snowshill might have been my favourite little village (along with Lower Slaughter below) for it’s picturesque stone houses – it’s literally like a miniature town. It’s popular for both Snowshill Manor House and their nearby Lavender fields (neither I managed to go to) but just walking about this town and taking in the scenery was so much fun.
Also who remembers the scene in Bridget Jones’s Diary where she visits her parents for Christmas? Well that was filmed in Snowshill – loved it even more after hearing that fact.
I mainly wanted to visit the Slaughters for the name (being a murderino and such) and I absolutely fell in love with it. We had a glass of Prosecco in a pink velvet dining room at The Slaughters Manor House (I would love to come back and stay here for a visit as the hotel looks gorgeous). There’s also an old mill which is very instagrammable and we also took a romantic stroll along the river bank to the sound of birds and water hitting the rocks.
I was desperate to go back to Broadway in The Cotswolds as I had my Gleam Christmas party there in 2017 and adored it. I took G to the Lygon Arms, a luxury hotel full of log burning fireplaces, wooden beams, seventeenth century panelling and the most beautiful dining hall complete with antler chandeliers.
We had one of the best sandwiches of our lives here in the lounge area – Chorizo, grilled chicken, applewood cheese and chilli jam (drooling just thinking about this) and as it was our anniversary they also bought us some chocolates to celebrate!
I was bought up visiting castles on all family holidays and I’ve grown to love the tradition, so G and I decided to take a trip to Sudely Castle and I think (along with the Yorkshire pud burgers) was a highlight of the holiday. The grounds are stunning but the history behind the castle was just mind-blowing – Sudeley is the only private castle in England to have a queen buried within the grounds – Queen Katherine Parr (the last and surviving queen of Henry VIII who lived and died in the castle).
There’s also a phesantry on the grounds home to so many beautiful breads of rare pheasants from around the world, that are being protected and looked after by the World Pheasant Association. We also became pals with the friendliest peacock I’ve ever met who was more than happy to post for some pictures! I would highly recommend Sudeley; a must visit for anyone in the area.
We also (somehow) visited a couple more villages but only for a drink or two so I can’t report back too much on the location, but Stow on the Wold, Temple Guiting and Northleach also seemed lovely!
Phewwww, that was a mega post but I hope you found it helpful if you’re visiting the wolds anytime soon! I’m desperate to go back already, in the summer next time to make the most of beer gardens and perhaps doing a long walk from town to town also!
Have you been to The Cotswolds?
Disclaimer: Paid for the whole trip ourselves!