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Self catering holiday cottages in Stow-on-the-Wold

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Stow-on-the-Wold is the highest town in the Cotswolds and offers great hill-top views of the surrounding countryside. The large market square is the focus of the town, with surrounding houses, pubs and shops built in the traditional Cotswold stone. According to the Guinness book of records, The Royalist Inn (now a pub and hotel) is the oldest inn in England, dating back to 947AD. The medieval market cross harks back to the days when thousands of sheep used to be herded here for sale. Unlike Bourton-on-the-Water, Stow-on-the-Wold has few actual 'tourist attractions' but still draws people in with its historic features and intriguing little shops.

Chipping Campden, right in the Northern part of Gloucestershire, is one of the prettiest Cotswold market towns. It has a long high street lined with typical Cotswold stone buildings. One of these is the Jacobean Market Hall, which is now owned by the National Trust. There's also a Wool Church, of course, in the form of the 'mini cathedral' St James. Dovers Hill, set high above Chipping Campden, was once the site for the Cotswolds' equivalent of the Olympic Games, established during the reign of James I by local lawyer Robert Dover. In their hey-day, the games were attended by up to 30,000 people and included 'shin kicking' and 'jumping in bags'. Visitors today can still witness the festivities on the first Friday after Whitsun.

Also close to Chipping Campden is Hidcote Manor Gardens. Horticulturalist Lawrence Johnson created the gardens in the early twentieth century and the National Trust now owns this 'Arts and Crafts masterpiece'. The gardens are structured as a series of outdoor rooms, each with their own special character. There are all sorts of unusual plants from around the world, including some beautiful old roses.

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