It’s being a while since my last blog.
With new reality of COVID-19 and change of daily life, my energy went into homeschooling and being with my family.
But as we learn to live in the new world with many restrictions and rules, we have to find the way of how we still can go out and explore, travel but stay safe.
After many months of staying put, we couldn’t bare it anymore, so we decided to explore more of Cotswolds, the region of extraordinary beauty in the U.K.
Designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) in 1966, the Cotswolds covers 787 square miles (2,040 km2) and, after the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales national parks, is the third largest protected landscape in England.
We have visited some parts of this region before but for the area spreading from south-west from just south of Stratford-upon-Avon (Birth place of William Shakespeare) to just south of Bath, we still have plenty to explore.
To stay more isolated and to avoid crowds, we decided that glamping will provide us with not only a great base camp for going on the daily road trips in surrounding area but also it will allow us enjoy outdoors. Moreton-in-Marsh Experience Freedom Glampingwas an excellent choice as pods were modern, specious, providing all necessities and what most important -very clean. There are about 10 pods (5 on each side) with a good space between them. So we felt happy to be out and still stay away from big crowds.
On our way to the camp site we stopped at Cotswolds Distillery as it was highly rated as one of the “must visit” attractions in Cotswolds.
I have to admit it wasn’t much fun for the kids but the place was in a beautiful setting with building perfectly fitting in Cotswolds architecture style and surrounded by lavishly blooming lavenders. It was a hard choice to pick the merchandise but we ended up with the bottle of limited summer addition of Cotswolds Gin and few small bottles of chocolate liquor. The Cotswolds Distillery offers guided tours (check their website for details ) which were not available yet at the time of our visit.
Next we were driving through many tiny villages making unplanned stops to take photos of picturesque cottages with thatched roofs and beautiful streets.
We stopped for lunch at Stow-on-the-Wold and I was determined to find the magical looking door by St.Edward’s church, which I have seen so many times before on all social platforms. The entrance to the church is located right in the middle of the town yet it was tucked away in a narrow alley, making it a bit tricky to find.
The place is truly remarkable, with two beautiful ancient yew trees growing tall, merging into the stone walls on both sides of the door, making it look like a door from fantasy wold and possibly a portal to mystical realm….
Rumor has it that J. R. R. Tolkien visited this church and the entrance inspired his Doors of Durin in the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
In the next few days we drove to Bourton-on-the-Water, where kids enjoy playing in a shallow creek with its clear ice cold water. We had a takeaway of Fish and Chips and had picnic on the grass by the river.
This town offers many shopping and dining opportunities as well as choice of galleries and museums.
Bourton-on-the-Water is always very popular so there were a lot of people which made it harder to socially distancing ourselves and we thought it was time to move on to our next location.
Next destination was Burford,
located in north Oxfordshire, twenty miles west of Oxford.
A beautiful old Cotswolds town, with its High Street sloping down, providing beautiful views over the attractive stone houses and further away the countryside.
The picture perfect town of Burford was the site of a fortified fort in Anglo-Saxon times. The town grew to become a very wealthy wool town and is today very popular tourist destination.
Another stunning little village is Bibury and located only 9 miles from the market town of Burford.
With beautiful Cotswold cottages along the river Coln this small charming place captures imagination. One street is especially famous as it’s one of the most iconic and photographed location in Cotswolds – Arlington Row. It even appears on the inside cover of UK passports
Arlington Row, is in care of the National Trust. The structure was originally built in the 14th century as a wool store, it was converted in the 17th century into a row of weavers’ cottages.
Our short yet eventful 3 days flew by and it was time to go back but we made great memories and added new places to our adventures.
Cotswolds still has many more places for us to explore so we definitely will have to go back.