Hubby and I love road trips. We especially love them through the countryside so you know it was just a matter of time before we headed to the The Cotswolds! Have you heard of the Cotswolds? It’s not a specific city, but more of a large region in the English countryside. The Cotswolds boundaries are roughly 25 miles (40 km) across and 90 miles (145 km) long, stretching southwest from just south of Stratford-upon-Avon to just south of Bath.
If you are going to the Cotswolds, be aware of the fact that it’s a region and not a city. There are so many towns within the Cotswolds, so you need to do your research and pick a few before you go. We settled on Burford, Cheltenham, and Stove-on-the-Wold.
T R A N S P O R T
After breakfast, we headed out from London, England via our rented Zip Car. We had a super luxurious Hyundai with child-lock enabled LOL, but we fixed that and the car did what it was meant to do: get us to our destination! We left at 8:00 a.m. on Saturday and enjoyed the stunning two-hour countryside drive until we got to our first little town.
B U R F O R D
The architecture of the buildings was incredible. I basically needed to have my husband on the leash because I lost him a few times as he got lost in the old English architecture. We saw swans and the really old parish, walked through the streets, went into a few of the quaint and quirky stores, and eventually settled on a pub for lunch.
T H E R O Y A L O A K
This pub is voted the number one restaurant in all of Burford. They also claim to provide delicious options for vegetarians and gluten-free diets. I did not expect such accommodation in the English countryside. I sure as heck wouldn’t find any vegetarian options in the Texas countryside haha, so I was pleasantly surprised here. And needless to say, the food was absolutely scrumptious. You can read my full review of this pub in a few weeks!
T H E C O T S W O L D S W A Y
The Cotswold Way is a 102-mile-long distance footpath, running along the Cotswold Edge escarpment of the Cotswold Hills in England. It was officially inaugurated as a National Trail on 24 May 2007, and several new rights of way have been created. It was a gorgeous space to run around in and it seemed like the greens met the skies. We had a great time enjoying the outdoors here and would highly recommend this for families, couples, or individuals.
C H E L T E N H A M
So quaint!! Can’t stop saying that haha. Once we parked on the side of the giant parish, we headed into the city and walked through the town promenade.
P R O M E N A D E
Cheltenham’s famous promenade dates back to 1818, when the avenue of elms and horse chestnut trees were first planted. The colorful Long Gardens are home to Cheltenham’s war memorial. After the promenade, we headed to Milkbar.
M I L K B A R
Located in the Imperial Square, Milkbar specializes in handcrafted gelato-inspired treats for everyone. The gelato is freshly made every day with organic ingredients, so we just had to try it! I had deliciously fresh strawberry ice cream, my husband had a triple chocolate milkshake, and his friend had a rich chocolate/banana crepe!
G A R D E N S
After we were all sugared up, we walked around the town for about two hours. We walked through Imperial Gardens, the Royal Crescent, and the Montpellier Gardens. We love ourselves some outdoor walking, especially in brilliant weather!
W A L K T H E T O W N
The town felt populated but not crowded, and the stores closed pretty early even though it was a Saturday. I think everything closed down by 6:00! There are so many places to eat dinner here that stay open though, so definitely check out a few local hot spots for dinner such as The Hollow Bottom, Halfway House, or House-in-the-Tree.
S T O W – O N – T H E – W O L D
On Sunday morning, we had breakfast at Porch House (built in 947 AD) in Stow-on-the-Wold, which was 30 minutes from where we were staying but only 15 minutes out of the way to get back to London. You can read more about Porch House tomorrow on my Wednesday eats post!
Have any plans for the English countryside?