Stratford upon Avon

Photo of Stratford upon Avon

About Stratford upon Avon

Stratford upon Avon's link with a certain bard are what make it a must-see destination for many hop-on-hop-off tours of the UK. But in addition to the world class offerings of the Royal Shakespeare Company, the beautifully kept museums in his homes, the survival of Tudor buildings dating from his lifetime, Stratford upon Avon is also a lively little market town and a good base for exploring the Cotswolds. Some of the best places to stay in Stratford upon Avon are actually country house hotels just outside the town where you can take refuge from the bustle of the weekend visitors.

Stratford upon Avon does very well out of Shakespeare and each beautifully preserved half timbered building helps to add to the town's charm and encourage in the crowds.

The 'main event' of any proper trip to Stratford upon Avon must be a play, this is something you really need to organise in advance. Even if you're visiting in a quieter time of year it still pays to book to make sure that they're playing something you fancy!

The town's other main sights are mostly Shakespeare themed, but Stratford upon Avon is also supposed to be rife with ghosts and there are plenty of interesting historical walking tours you can join to hear some good tales - this is also a great way to meet jobbing actors. 'Ghost central' is probably The Falstaff Experience which is a Tudor Museum and famously haunted building.

Shakespeare's birthplace was a house on Henley Street, 16th Century, kept in good 'working order'. The same can be said of Ann Hathaway's Cottage where Shakespeare would have done his wooing. The Bard is buried in the Holy Trinity Church - surprisingly this church is very definitely a working church, not a tourist attraction, so be respectful.

As well as the Tudor and theatrical themed highlights of the town, Stratford upon Avon is close to the magnificent turrets of Warwick Castle, the romantic ruins of Kenilworth Castle and the rolling hills and meadows of the Cotswolds. It has a Butterfly Farm for something a bit different.

What not to miss:

  • Attend a performance at the famed Royal Shakespeare Theatre.
  • Embark on a historical walk and hear tales of the town's supposed ghosts.
  • Visit Shakespeare's birthplace and Ann Hathaway's Cottage.
  • Explore the impressive Warwick Castle and the ruins of Kenilworth castle.
  • Head out of the town and take long walks through the picturesque Cotswolds countryside.

With all this history the little town is a popular spot and the best places to stay in Stratford-upon-Avon do get booked up fast so be sure to plan your trip in advance.

For country house grandeur

  • Ettington Park Hotel is a gloriously grand Neo-Gothic mansion turned country house hotel, beautiful on the outside and comfortable on the inside.

For a central location

  • Church Street Townhouse is in the heart of the bustling, timber framed Stratford where you will find this beautifully restored hotel. Rooms have a modern twist on classic boutique style with pale walls, plush red curtains, black and white tiled bathrooms some with roll top baths.
  • The Arden Hotel is set in the centre of the historical town. Rooms are spacious yet cosy with crisp cotton sheets and luxurious throws. The Royal Shakespeare Company Theatre is just opposite so the bar and terrace are full of atmosphere.

For slightly further afield

  • The Howard Arms is a lovely old traditional inn on a village green overlooking the Stour Valley. Easy going with plenty of character, this inn has comforting dishes and eight comfortable rooms at comfortable prices.
  • The Malt House is a carefully put together B&B in a charming ancient house in a charming Cotswolds village.
  • For a fresh stylish feel, try Dormy House, a recently refurbished country house hotel with enough privacy to accommodate both families and couples comfortably.

For an apartment or cottage

  • If you're travelling with family or a group of friends it may be a better option to book a villa or apartment. For a wide range of properties for all tastes and budgets we recommend you visit our online partner Booking.com.

Travel information

  • Fly to Birmingham Airport which serves both national and international destinations. Another major airport is Gloucestershire Airport, located just 38 miles from the town. By train, travel to Stratford-upon-Avon station, which is well connected across the UK.
  • Stratford-upon-Avon is a year round destination with each season offering its own charm. However, for the best chance of bright sunny days plan your trip in the summer months (June - August).
  • If you plan to hire a car, we recommend you visit our online partner Rentalcars.

Still not sure?


Monthly Weather in Stratford upon Avon

Best Hotels in Stratford upon Avon

  • The White Swan Hotel Stratford upon Avon (Stratford-upon-Avon) 41 rooms from $126

    Local exploring  -  A historic hotel in a historic market-town. Find yourself within walking distance of many of the areas best sights.
    Theatre  -  Watch the famed Royal Shakespeare Company perform in their own theatre.
    Sights nearby  -  Visit the house where the world’s most famous playwright - Shakespeare - was born and grew up.
    Restaurant  -  There's a wide range of food on offer from pre-theatre menus to a la carte dining
    Air conditioningRestaurantDisabled accessNo pets

    An historic hotel situated in the pretty market town of Stratford-upon-Avon. Beautifully restored, the property has kept its original charm, including a mural dating back to 1450. An atmospheric wood panelled restaurant serves up superlative British fare. A charming stay. See More

    Check Availability
  • The Bell at Alderminster Stratford upon Avon (Alderminster) 9 rooms from $128

    Local exploring  -  A great base for exploring the countryside surrounding Stratford-upon-Avon.
    Great walks  -  The surrounding countryside has beautiful walking routes.
    Sights nearby  -  Visit the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust.
    Restaurant  -  Recommended.
    RestaurantGardenParkingNo pets

    Set amidst rolling Warwickshire landscape, The Bell at Alderminster is a charming country hotel. The smart rooms are comfortable and feature crisp colour schemes. Enjoy delicious food from the restaurant out in the garden or in the hotel's atmospheric dining room. See More

    Check Availability
  • Church Street Townhouse Stratford upon Avon (Warwickshire) 12 rooms from $141

    Great walks  -  The Cotwswolds, a haven for ramblers are close by or why not embark on one of Stratford's walking tours.
    Sights nearby  -  Visit the birthplace of the bard and many of his family homes including the popular Mary Arden's Farm.
    Sailing  -  Take a long boat down the River Avon.
    Designer  -  Uniquely designed interiors.
    RestaurantParkingNo pets
    Recommended by  -  Mr & Mrs Smith, Good Hotel Guide

    In the heart of the bustling, timber framed Stratford you will find this beautifully restored hotel. Rooms have a modern twist on classic boutique style with bold statement wallpapers and smart en suite bathrooms. Downstairs there's a good bar and gourmet bistro popular amongst locals. See More

    Check Availability
  • Hotel du Vin Stratford upon Avon Stratford upon Avon (Stratford-upon-Avon) 46 rooms from $147

    Local exploring  -  Ideally placed a short walk from the shopping streets and 10 minutes’ to the riverside Royal Shakespeare Theatre
    Great walks  -  Anne Hathaway's Garden - 9 acres of gardens and grounds including a lavender maze, a woodland walk and the Shakespeare arboretum
    Sights nearby  -  Discover numerous sights nearby including Shakespeare's Schoolroom, Hall's Croft, Shakespeare's Birthplace and the Guild Chapel
    Designer  -  Uniquely designed interiors.
    Air conditioningRestaurantPet friendlyParking

    An Edwardian red-brick townhouse featuring plush velveteen upholstery, contemporary art and a trendy palette of midnight blues and charcoal greys. Rooms are hip and cosy with statement wallpapers and sumptuous woollen throws. The top-notch French bistro cuisine is also not to be missed! See More

    Check Availability
  • Hotel Indigo Stratford upon Avon Stratford upon Avon 93 rooms from $160

    Theatre  -  The Royal Shakespeare Theatres are just two minutes away on foot making the hotel a great option for those travelling for a show
    Foodies  -  The restaurant is a real lure with carefully sourced produce including the likes of muntjac, roe and fallow deer on the menu
    Restaurant  -  Contemporary British cuisine is served in Woodsman restaurant. There's also the option of private dining and a high tea
    Sights nearby  -  Visit Anne Hathaway's Cottage, Shakespeare's Birthplace, and Warwick Castle
    RestaurantGardenDisabled accessParking

    A characterful historic hotel well positioned just steps from Stratford-upon-Avon's famed theatres. Rooms are split across the old building & a new extension. Both are luxurious but the older ones benefit from period features. With a particularly good restaurant, this is ideal for theatre goers. See More

    Check Availability
  • Ettington Park Hotel Stratford upon Avon (Alderminster) 48 rooms from $160

    Sights nearby  -  Only six miles from Stratford upon Avon, and ideal base for exploring the Cotswolds
    Restaurant  -  The Oak Room restaurant has 2 AA Rosettes
    Swimming Pool  -  Indoor Pool
    RestaurantSwimming PoolGarden

    Neo-Gothic mansion turned country house hotel just six miles from Stratford upon Avon. Perfect for the Royal Shakespeare Theatre or simply exploring the Cotswolds. Spacious and well appointed bedrooms, plus swimming pool and 2 AA Rosette dining. See More

    Check Availability
  • Baraset Barn Stratford upon Avon 16 rooms from $179

    Local exploring  -  With a popular restaurant and Stratford-upon-Avon's RSC theatres nearby this is ideal for those visiting for a show
    Country Escape  -  Set in a scenic rural spot with pretty walks and cycling opportunities in the area
    Restaurant  -  The restaurant serves an innovative menu with Asian inspired dishes
    Sights nearby  -  Take a tour of Warwick Castle located just 15 miles from the hotel
    Air conditioningRestaurantGardenDisabled accessParkingNo pets

    A popular restaurant with rooms set in a pretty rural setting just outside Stratford-upon-Avon. Rooms are chic and contemporary with statement headboards, plenty of light, and the best have terraces. The atmospheric restaurant serves dishes with an Asian twist. A good base for local exploring. See More

    Check Availability
  • The Arden Hotel Stratford upon Avon (Stratford-upon-Avon) from $240

    Great walks  -  With The Cotswolds in striking distance the quintessential british countryside is waiting to be explored
    Sights nearby  -  Explore the years of history in Warwick Castle
    Recommended by  -  Good Hotel Guide, Small Luxury Hotels

    Set in the centre of the historical town of Stratford-Upon-Avon. Rooms are spacious yet cosy with crisp cotton sheets and luxurious throws. The Royal Shakespeare Company Theatre is just opposite so the bar and terrace are full of atmosphere. Don't forget the Cotswolds are on your doorstep..Perfect! See More

    Check Availability