10 beautiful north Cotswold villages you need to visit
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They say Cirencester is the capital of the Cotswolds but the quintessential villages that adorn the northern half of the region are equally as beautiful. In no particular order, we pick 10 of the prettiest north Cotswold villages you need to explore
1. Stanton, Gloucestershire
This 17th century hamlet is distinguished by its honey-coloured cottages and manicured front lawns that adorn the high street running through the village. The 2011 consensus stated that Stanton had a tiny population of just 200 villagers. Only a few people are lucky enough to experience the daily beauty of this north Cotswold parish.
At the top of the village is The Mount Inn, a great local pub that has marvellous views over Stanton and the Cotswold hills beyond. In the summer months, the pub's beer garden is the perfect spot to sip a pint and soak up the sunny bucolic views.
2. Snowshill, Gloucestershire
You might recognise Snowshill for St Barnabas Church - one of the most photographed churches in the Cotswolds. Snowshill is also renowned for Snowshill Manor, a National Trust property that was once home to architect and poet Charles Wade. It now houses his extraordinary collection of 22,000 items which is open to visitors throughout certain months of the year.
What we love about Snowshill
Cotswold Lavender Farm is located in Snowshill and it harvests row upon row of stunning lavender in the summer months; so beautiful, that people travel from far and wide to see it. It's even used as a popular spot to propose!
3. Broadway, Worcestershire
We couldn't possibly miss Broadway from our list of pretty north Cotswold villages. Renowned for its scenic high street made up of golden dwellings, shops and thatched cottages covered in wisteria, Broadway is perhaps one of the most famous Cotswold villages of them all.
What we love about Broadway
There's plenty to see and do here. From mooching around the independent shops, to indulging on afternoon tea and relaxing in the cosy pubs, it's a popular place to while away an afternoon - just be prepared to share the experience with lots of others looking to capture a piece of this stunning north Cotswold village. We don't mind though. We welcome friendly tourists who share our love for all things Cotswolds.
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4. Ebrington, Gloucestershire
Warning! A trip to Ebrington may cause some serious house envy as it is home to some of the loveliest cottages in the region. Expect traditional Cotswold stone cottages with period windows and wooden doors.
What we love about Ebrington
Ebrington is the perfect base for exploring the Cotswolds as Chipping Campden, Moreton-in-Marsh and Hidcote Manor are just a stone's throw away. Why not spend a weekend in a traditional Cotswold cottage with the family - or you can even stay at the award-winning Ebrington Arms pub. We think it's one of the cosiest pubs in the Cotswolds.
5. Hook Norton, Oxfordshire
Nestled in the north Oxfordshire countryside lies the tiny village of Hook Norton. Unlike other traditional Cotswold villages that are built using the famously golden limestone, 'Hooky' as it's affectionately referred to by locals, stands on brown ironstone and this is reflected in the village's buildings. The cottages are much darker in colour but still very, very beautiful.
What we love about Hook Norton
Hook Norton Brewery of course! This family-run and independent business supplies thirsty real ale lovers in the Cotswolds with good quality beer. You can visit the brewery for a tour or buy a pint in one of many local pubs that supply their beer. Find the list here.
6. Dumbleton, Gloucestershire
Away from the hustle and bustle of many Cotswold towns, Dumbleton is one of the Cotswold's best kept secrets - until now of course! The village is made up of quintessentially Cotswolds homes made from golden hued limestone and a handful of black and white cottages with thatched roofs and pretty rose gardens. It's peaceful, picture-perfect and we wouldn't change it for the world.
What we love about Dumbleton
There isn't a lot to do in Dumbleton but perhaps that's one of the most pleasant things about it. Take the time to enjoy a ramble up Dumbleton Hill (Oak Hill) where you'll find far-reaching views across Gloucestershire and Worcestershire from the top.
7. Alderton, Gloucestershire
Over the hill from Dumbleton, you'll stumble across the slightly bigger village of Alderton. With a primary school, village shop and dog-friendly pub to its name, it's a great place to bring up a family and just a stone's throw away from the Cotswold town of Winchcombe and neighbouring Tewkesbury too.
What we love about Alderton
The village is surrounded by rolling Cotswold countryside and it's a tranquil and scenic place to enjoy a long family walk on the weekend. Just make sure you swing by The Gardeners Arms afterwards for a pint and something delicious to eat (four-legged friends are invited too).
8. Bretforton, Worcestershire
This historic village has character and charm in abundance. From Victorian terraces and brightly coloured thatched cottages, to higgledy-piggledy Cotswold homes, there are plenty of gorgeous buildings here to fall in love with.
What we love about Bretforton
The Fleece Inn pub has been owned by the National Trust since 1977 and it's the heart of the community. The menu is brimming with tasty pub classics, there's real ale behind the bar and lots of live music events take place here each month. What's not to like?
9. Mickelton, Gloucestershire
Rumoured to be the inspiration behind Tolkien's 'Weathertop' in Lord of the Rings, Mickleton is situated where the region meets Shakespeare country and is the northernmost village in the Cotswolds. Expect an abundance of black and white cottages interspersed with buildings made of gorgeous Cotswold limestone, alongside the quintessential village staples: the Church of St Lawrence, a post office, farm shops, a butchers and two pubs.
Why we love Mickleton:
The Three Ways House Hotel is home to the world-famous Pudding Club, a meeting that unites dessert-lovers from far and wide to enjoy the slightly eccentric institution. For those seeking great views enjoy the Mickleton and Hidcotes walk; two pretty hamlets, two spectacular open gardens and vistas of the Vale of Evesham await you.
10. Weston-sub-Edge, Gloucestershire
You may have heard of the Cotswold Olimpicks, a quirky tradition which featured the world famous shin-kicking tournament? It takes place in Weston-sub-Edge, and although is has been cancelled this year, there's still plenty to see in the beautiful village located near Chipping Campden and Broadway. Ramblers can enjoy miles of the beautiful countryside that surrounds the village or stroll along the honey-coloured cottages, and their perfectly manicured gardens, which are plentiful in Weston-sub-Edge. The church of St John the Baptist and St Lawrence is also worth a visit.
Why we love Weston-sub-Edge:
Roaring fires and charming interiors, The Seagrave Arms is a cosy spot to relax with a pint in hand. If you're visiting on a Monday, take advantage of the pie night where you can enjoy a hearty, homemade pie alongside chips or mash for a tenner!