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Week in the Cotswolds (Chipping Campden) -- Christmas 2011

Week in the Cotswolds (Chipping Campden) -- Christmas 2011

Dec 2nd, 2011, 11:06 PM
  #1  
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Join Date: Dec 2011
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Week in the Cotswolds (Chipping Campden) -- Christmas 2011

My husband and I have rented a cottage in Chipping Campden for the week before Christmas. This is our first visit to England, and we are hoping to have a relaxing holiday. We love long walks, nature, and slow-paced tourism. I am hoping to organize our trip a bit before we depart, and I have a few questions:
(1) What will the weather be like in mid-December? We live in Southern Italy, so our idea of pre-Christmas weather may not prepare us for weather in the Cotswolds.
(2) Are there any spots/towns we should be sure to visit?
(3) Are there any Christmas events happening in the area that we shouldn't miss?
(4) Any favorite restaurants/pubs?
(5) Any other suggestions would be highly appreciated.

Thanks in advance for your assistance.

M
Margaret_Russo is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2011, 12:39 AM
  #2  
 
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"(1) What will the weather be like in mid-December? We live in Southern Italy, so our idea of pre-Christmas weather may not prepare us for weather in the Cotswolds."

As with anywhere in the UK, the weather is unpredictable, so it's not really possible to say at this stage what it will be like the week before Christmas.

You MAY get an idea if you check the BBC weather website for the 5 day forecast a day or two before you travel to the Cotswolds but that may only be a rough guide.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/weather/2642200
Hooameye is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2011, 02:56 AM
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Hi Margaret,

mm - weather? at the moment it's unseasonably warm [10C in Cornwall today, December 3rd] but who knows by the time you get here? it's certainly unlikely to be warmer than that, so think winter in Turin or Milan, and you won't go far wrong.

as for what's on and what to see, here's the link to the local website. if you google, you'll find a few more.

http://www.chippingcampden.co.uk/

I had to remind myself where Chipping camden actually is, and it turns out that it's wonderfully positioned in the middle of a lovely area - Stratford to the north [there's a production of Robin Hood there this year which is getting rave reviews] Oxford to the south, and cheltenham to the south west. yo couldn't really go wrong with any of those as well as exploring the more immediate area like Moreton in Marsh, Stow on the Wold, Tetbury [my favorite south cotswolds town] the Slaughters, etc. etc. etc.

if the weather were very mild, you could even think about the Arboretum at Westonbirt or the wildfowl sanctuary at Slimbridge.

there are also lots of threads here about staying in the Cotswolds including ones by people who have done long-stays which you might enjoy reading.

Have a great time!
annhig is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2011, 05:20 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
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Chipping Campden is a great town in the north Cotswolds. Badgers Hall is my favorite tea room in CC and there are a number of good food shops on the High Street.

Most towns in the Cotswolds are having their Christmas Markets now and they will be finished by mid December, but look for concerts, Christmas lights and other Christmas activities.

Christmas activities at the church: http://www.stjameschurchcampden.co.uk/

Christmas at Batsford Arboretum:
http://www.batsarb.co.uk/

Hidcote Gardens (National Trust) closes for the winter on Dec 21:
http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/hidcote/

You are close to other lovely Cotswold towns (Broadway, Blockley, Moreton in Marsh, Stow on the Wold, Winchcombe) - all will be fun to explore. They all have good tea rooms, pubs and restaurants. One of the best restaurants in the area is Russell's in Broadway (expensive). Market Pantry in Broadway is good for lunch. The Plough Inn, a pub in Ford near Broadway, is a good gastro pub. There are lots of good places to choose from.

The walking is excellent in the north Cotswolds - get walking guides at the book shop or tourist office - or just follow one of the "Public Footpath" signs.

We are having a mild and dry autumn/winter so far, but last year we had snow for most of December (and driving was difficult). The days are short - dark by 5pm. But the light at this time of year is beautiful. The stone buildings look their best, I think, and the huge trees without their leaves are magnificent. Have a wonderful holiday.
PaulineK is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2011, 07:04 AM
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Margaret:
I recommend for lunch or dinner dining,

http://www.thefoxandhoundsinn.com/

Located quite near Moreton-in-Marsh. We first discovered it in 1980 and have returned a few times since. A fine country inn/pub experience...nothing fancy, but the offerings from their kitchen are varied, excellent and quite reasonable.

If it were spring or summer, I would have recommended The Mill Dene Gardens in Blockley (mentioned by Pauline above), a small village near Chipping. It's one of the more informal types of English gardens. Drop into Blockley at any rate.
Enjoy your Christmas in the Cotswolds.
stu
tower is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2011, 09:46 AM
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The Falkland Arms in Great Tew is a charming pub and a picturesque spot. The town of Burford is lovely. You might want to have a stop in Woodstock where Blenheim Palace is if you're coming or going through Heathrow.
mclaurie is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2011, 10:04 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2005
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Your real issue is making sure you can find and book a restaurant (or buy groceries) for Christmas Day, Boxing Day and the Monday since this is a pretty small town, and England in general closes down for the Christmas holiday.
Ackislander is offline  
Dec 8th, 2011, 07:13 AM
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Stratford upon Avon Christmas market is open in the main street (Bridge St) every Thurs until Christmas. Stays open late alongwith many of the shops. Recommend 'The Church Street Townhouse" in Stratford for lunch or dinner. 'Box Brownie' in Henley St near Shakespeare's birthplace for coffee and 'brownies'.
Cotswold House Hotel in Chipping Campden has excellent dining or afternoon tea. The production of Robin Hood at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre is brilliant
bellini is offline  
Dec 8th, 2011, 08:23 AM
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"England in general closes down for the Christmas holiday."

It doesn't.

Boxing Day and Dec 27 are among the busiest days of the year for retailers in towns like Chipping Campden - and usually THE busiest two days of the year in their pubs and along the local footpaths (the only days we ever encounter other people on most paths)

Some things that matter to London-centric tourists (like major museums and art galleries) close throughout the break: but all chain convenience stores and supermarkets are open everywhere in England (except a few city-centre locations) more or less 8-6 (and possibly a bit more) on Christmas Eve, Boxing Day and Dec 28.

So are all pubs (again except in a few places like the City of London), and in the microtowns half the Midlands goes for a walk from, virtually all restaurants.

I'm appalled no-one's mentioned the Chipping Norton panto (currently on): by universal consent (well, The Times theatre critic, the Prime Minister and Ben Kingsley agree) the Chippy Panto is Britain's overwhelmingly outstanding pantomime. There MIGHT be a few pre-Xmas tickets still left.

Visiting Britain near Xmas and not seeing a panto is as great an example of cultural vandalism as visiting Rome and ignoring St Peter's. Except that the singing's better in Chippy than in the Vatican - and the audience joins in a great deal more enthusiastically and tunefully.

It's not clear whether the poster's here on Boxing Day of course. But if she is, the gathering of the Heythrop Hunt at Chipping Norton (1045 on Boxing Day: for obvious reasons, in front of The Fox pub) is an amazing spectacle, which demolishes the absurd idea England's closed.
flanneruk is online now  
Dec 8th, 2011, 02:30 PM
  #10  
 
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Thanks to all the posters for the great information on pubs and other dining establishments. Bookmarking for a future trip.
Dee_Dee is offline  
Dec 9th, 2011, 06:33 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
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An outstanding pub with excellent food is only a couple of miles from Chipping C and on the way into Moreton - the Horse and Groom in Bourton on the Hill

http://www.horseandgroom.info/index.html

Just walk around - in the towns and villages, on some public footpaths. Don't drive too much, Relax and enjoy!
Texastrips is offline  

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