I am a freelance writer living in Manly. I enjoy writing reviews for Weekend Notes.
I enjoy the outdoors and anything to do with the water. My interests are travel, Live Theatre,The Ballet and Restaurants that serve delicious innovative food.
Published August 13th 2016
A magical experience
I have just returned from a tour of England, Scotland and Italy. One highlight of my trip was the Cotswolds in England. I hope you enjoy this review and photos. I also hope it inspires you to visit the area at some stage as it is a wonderful experience.
The Secret Cottage Tour (Beautiful thatched cottage)
The Cotswolds in England dates back for hundreds of years with its thatched roofed cottages and perfectly manicured English country gardens. As you go from village to village in this magical place, it's like a scene out of The Hobbit. You can imagine Alice of Alice in Wonderland or Cinderella walking through the doors of the cottages.
Lovely flower covered cottage
I was lucky enough to find a tour of the Cotswolds on the website called Secret Cottage Cotswold Tour with Becky. The tour started at the beautiful cottage at the top of he article. We were taken by car to some of the prettiest villages in the Cotswolds that are off the beaten track.
A water mill Lower Slaughter
I saw a lot of villages that most tourists don't see and returned to Becky's home for a beautiful lunch. You are also taken back for an English high tea. The effort put into the details of this tour are amazing. It really is a first class experience.
Lunch back at the Secret Cottage - A great spread
The Cotswolds is situated in south central England. It has many rolling hills. The boundaries of the Cotswolds are 25 miles across and 90 miles long, stretching from Strathford on Avon, to just south of Bath. It has various counties including Gloucester, Oxfordshire and others. I visited Stratford on Avon before going on the Secret Garden Tour. A friend and I went to a Shakespearean play. We walked along the River Avon and saw many beautiful swans.
Beautiful Swans on the river Avon Stathford on Avon the Cotswolds
An interesting fact about the swans that are in many parts of England is they are looked on as being royal and belong to the Queen. Nobody is allowed to harm them, so they do not end up on anyone's dinner table. I actually don't think many people would even think of eating a swan - they are too majestic. They are rounded up each year and counted to keep a track of their mortality. They really are beautiful like the ballerinas in Swan Lake.
The Cotswolds stone is a yellow Jurassic limestone rich in fossils. It's a unique honey colour. This stone is used to build many cottages in the Cotswolds. The colour of the stone can vary in different areas.
The Cotswolds is an area of an outstanding beauty. The villages have stayed the same for hundreds of years. Anyone who chooses to live in a Cotswold Village has to build a cottage that fits in with the unique character of the area.
Back to some picturesque villages we were taken too on the Secret Garden Tour.
All these lovely villages have an English pub and a charming tea room. I visited so many tea rooms in England which served lunch and a typical English afternoon tea of scones with jam and cream.
I loved these tea rooms; they were often run by families who were very warm and welcoming.
Lovely thatched cottages in Great Tew
A typical English pub in Great Tew
We visited Lower and Upper Slaughter both lovely villages on our Secret Garden Cottage tour. They are very close together and I thought they were particularly attractive.
The Villages of Lower and Upper Slaughter
The lovely villages of Lower and Upper Slaughter
The village of Burton on Water was not part of The Secret Garden Tour. I visited it for personal reasons as someone who was very close to me lived there for many years. He told me how beautiful it was with a lovely river running through the centre. I told him before he passed away I would go there one day.
A beautiful village with a special relaxing feel about it, we wandered around and had a meal in one of the lovely restaurants overlooking the river. It will always have a special place in my memory.
If you go to the Cotswolds for a holiday or a stay in London, I would recommend you do this tour. As Becky is a local she can give you a unique experience of the best the Cotswolds has to offer.
You can come by train from London or Oxford and be picked up at Morton on Marsh railway station. The tour starts at 10.15am and finishes at 4.30pm. You will be dropped back at the station if necessary.