The Cotswolds’ rolling hills, historic manors and stunning gardens are all a stone’s throw from Stow-on-the-Wold holiday cottages. Perched on a dramatic hilltop with spectacular views of the surrounding countryside, this welcoming market town is the region’s highest community at 800 feet, and lies at the junction of eight roads, including the Roman Fosse Way. With its independent shops, cosy pubs and renowned annual horse fair, there’s plenty to do on self-catering holidays in Stow-on-the-Wold.
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The historic town centre is a pleasure to explore by foot, with striking landmarks such as St Edward’s Church, known for its beautiful stained-glass windows. Don’t miss the vast market square, where the region’s biggest livestock fairs once took place, with 20,000 sheep sold on a single day. The square is overlooked by elegant townhouses, an ancient cross and the town stocks, cast into the shade by an old elm tree. In the surrounding maze of narrow streets, you’ll find art galleries and unique shops, selling everything from antiques and crafts to high fashion. The town’s excellent farmers’ market is held on the second Thursday of each month, with stallholders selling high-quality cheese, meat and vegetables from the surrounding fields. To delve into the history of the region’s best-loved sport, visit the Cotswolds Cricket Museum, home to a fascinating display of artefacts.
From your holiday cottage in Stow-on-the-Wold, some of the Cotswolds’ best food is just a leisurely stroll away. Try the Old Butchers for a menu of delicious, seasonal meat dishes that changes every day, depending on which meat is available. Alternatively, book a table at the Queen’s Head, an atmospheric pub with a selection of local ales and a reputation for serving good, fresh fish. For a cup of tea and a slice of homemade cake, head to the award-winning Huffkin’s bakery and tearooms on the Square.
The unspoiled countryside surrounding Stow-on-the-Wold is a paradise for walking and wildlife-watching, with enchanting woods and hills, crisscrossed by scenic footpaths. The area is also home to exciting family attractions, including Batsford Abortorium and Falconry Centre, Cotswold Farm Park and Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens. In addition to the attractions of the famous countryside, there is a plethora of activities to keep you and the family occupied on your Cotswold holidays. Go exploring on your bike, or even your horse, and enjoy the crisp, fresh air. Or see Stow-on-the-Wold from an entirely new perspective and float above in a hot air balloon. For a slightly more adrenaline-fueled day, take the kids go-karting, or take a trekking adventure in a carriage on the back of a Harley with Razorcat Tours. There’s also a great assortment of wildlife centres where you can experience the nature the Cotswolds have to offer at a slightly more personal level. The class and charm surrounding this fabulous town is so addictive, you’ll certainly be tempted to fall in line with the great British public and be back for more.