In the wake of this past bank holiday weekend, I thought I’d share my recent excursion as an example of the assorted travel options one has throughout England whether you’re visiting or relocating to London.
Friday, my husband and I rented a car from Hertz just off of Russell Square and went camping out West in Devon. Beyond Barnstaple, there are a plethora of nice campgrounds to choose from towards the coast. Our Saturday weather was fairly crap, so we went driving in lieu of hiking the earlier part of day, exploring the beach town of Welcombe, chancing on a random festival in little Combe Martin (The Hunting of the Earl of Rone; unfortunately, that pesky Earl successfully evaded us), crossing through Exmoor National Park, and, on the way into Somerset, stumbling on a darling little
medieval village by the name of Dunster. The weather had cleared, so we had a nice stroll through this town, ate lunch at the Luttrell Arms Hotel (which dates back to the 15th century and has a cozy old pub with a secret garden in back), then grabbed a bit of fudge to snack on during the return drive. Once back at our campsite, we had a blast just hanging out with a couple bottles of wine, baguette, cheese, and sausage on the grill as the tunes played on from our car radio.
Sunday brought us into the enchanting Cotswolds–in the village of Ewen, we forewent our tent and sleeping bags for a comfy bed at the Wild Duck Inn, which dates back to the 1500s and likewise has a charming pub/restaurant with a garden in back. Though many non-guests trickled in for meals during the bank holiday, It still feels very off the beaten path and remote, a nice quiet escape from the more touristed town of Bibury. Though Bibury is clearly where more people flock to, it still provides for many-a peaceful stroll among its quaint stone cottages (Arlington Row is a highlight) and the grandeur of Bibury Court Hotel, a 17th-century estate that looks like something out of a Jane Austen movie with its sweeping green views and an utterly serene and secluded garden that non-guests can access through a door from the Saxon Church of St. Mary’s yard.