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Sunday, June 26, 2016

The Cute Cotswolds

I'm not sure there is a more quintessentially English areas (at least what Americans think of when they think of England) than the Cotswolds. Rolling hills, tree canopied lanes, 
thatch roof cottages, adorable little villages more picturesque than a painting, this region is indeed gorgeous. Joy riding in a car is indeed the way to experience this area.
Armed with our trusty Rick Steve's guide to the area we took off towards towns with the sweetest names. Bourton-on-the-Water, Stow-on-the-Wold, Chipping Campden...what's there not to love?
Each little town was indeed a sight to behold. Sweet streams, beautiful exteriors, charming shops, ice cream shops, churches...Picturesque does not do this area, designated as an area of outstanding beauty in England, justice. Upper and Lower Slaughter, whilst beautiful, could benefit from a name change!See those baskets flanking the door? They were used for hay to feed the horses back in the day.Love the pub, flowers and kegs!
Driving a car in this area allows for stumbling on villages that you might've missed had you been on a train. This is perhaps my favorite view from the whole journey...a beautiful old church yard, with a modern, iconic red British phone booth in front of the property! The car allowed us to zig when we might've zagged and being treated to some wonderful sights.
In one of the villages, we spotted this gorgeous tree. Legend has it that this door and tree was Tolkien's inspiration for the entrance to Moira. Regardless, is is a stunning sight.
The thatch-roofed houses were absolutely gorgeous. The patterns of the thatch were so lovely and so unique. I was constantly telling Doug to stop and pull over so I could get a better look. At one point he just dropped me off and I thought I might be stuck there forever as he was quite disgusted with my constant demands!
Chipping Camden is a well preserved market town. In the center of the village sits the old market hall. Very cool to imagine people bringing their good to town for trading. Wonderful that the stall still stands in the center of the village.The Cotswolds are indeed an area of outstanding beauty and just cute and fun to wander through. If you get to the UK, grab a car, brave driving on the left and joy ride through this sweet area.