Castle Combe, the Cotswolds' cutest village?
For those of us who haven't grown up in Britain, it's likely we have a pretty stereotypical, possibly quite rose-tinted view of the country. All Prince Charming in some beautiful palace (Harry, I'm looking at you) and jovial pubs... country lanes lined with stone fences and thatched cottages with ivy growing up the walls, from which a squirrel (SQUIRREL!) will occasionally pop out.
While stereotypes often turn out to be misleading, there's one place in England where the scenery matched my every dreamy vision I have ever had about the country... dreams inspired by images in picture books and fairy tales I read as a child.
The Cotswolds is often regarded as England's prettiest region, and I suspect I have now found it's prettiest village. It doesn't have the dramatic scenery of the Lakes District or the wild landscapes of Yorkshire, but if ever you were to look up 'quaint' in a visual dictionary, this is what you'd see.
With literally only about 3 streets to walk and a cute country market to boot, it made a perfect spot to explore on foot with girlfriends; an easy day trip to do from nearby Bath, about a half hour drive away. Make sure you pop into the cosy Castle Inn afterwards for a drink in one of the loveliest pubs I've yet come across... I cannot possibly recommend their buttered new potatoes enough! Swimming, those taties were. Swimming in golden delicious butter.
Oh England, you do know how to turn it on.