Stratford-upon-Avon -brings out the artist in you!
Just two and a half hours North of London is this blossoming town of Stratford-upon-Avon. Famous for Shakespeare and theatre. I’m no Shakespeare fan but, since our trip to England involved 18 days we needed another place to visit which is close to London and on our way to Gloucester. I wanted to visit Gloucester as I have childhood friends that live there and I couldn’t not visit at Christmas time! Old friends are like wine, it only gets better if taken care of. After many a research Stratford-Upon-Avon won it’s way into our itinerary. And what a place it holds in my heart. Out of all the places I visited in the 18 days in England Stratford-upon-Avon is my favourite.
Check for traffic when going on a road trip
Unfortunately, our trip from Thatcher’s Hotel, where we were staying (check out our review of this place here) to Stratford-upon Avon was supposed to take only 2.5 hrs but it took over 4 hrs due to high traffic. Therefore many unplanned toilet and snack stops. We then arrived at Holiday Inn Leamington, situated just outside Stratford-upon-Avon, in the early afternoon instead of late morning. This hotel was not our best choice in fact it was not a nice place at all (check out why here). So after just leaving our suitcases, we headed to the town and immediately fell in love with the bohemian feel of this place.
Arriving in town
When you enter into the town there are lots of Car Parks to choose from we used them once and on other times used a car park in the centre of the town. Parking is reasonably priced and it is useless to try and find alternative free parking as it would mean a long walk. After parking we walked towards the canal and was greeted by a flock of ducks, geese and swans. I remembered that I had a bag of bird food in my pocket from a visit to Birdworld on Andrew’s birthday. Just one throw of the seeds in the air and they came from far and wide, seagulls, pigeons and all sorts. It was a festival of flight. You can imagine the joy of my boys!
After this, we started looking for our picked restaurant. My husband is a big foodie and he wanted to try this highly recommended pub called Dirty Duck. The recommendations were right! Apart from being an old lovely house it also had a great choice of food. The children’s menu was amazing and had so much healthy choices to choose from. My little Andrew was not too well so I didn’t want him eating fast food, in fact he took a children’s size grilled chicken with carrots and cucumber (yes, I’m lucky he loves them). I just felt like a good warm soup and then I pigged out on nachos. Jamie had a home-made burger and Derek had a risotto with fresh fish. As you can see there was a large variety of food.
We finished our dunch (yes this is a real word) at around 4.30pm and by that time it had got dark. We walked towards the main street and all the Christmas lights were on. A spectacle in itself. We did some errands at Boots and bought some warm socks but apart from that we just enjoyed the walk around. We needed the energy for the day after. We had plans to visit Warwick Castle, another must do of the surroundings. So, with that in mind and our little one getting tired we decided for an early night.
For more on what we did and how we spent our 3 days in Stratford, keep in touch. Our Itinerary had not foreseen such a beautiful place and if we could have we would have stayed more. The next post continues from day 2.