I stayed in the UK for about three months from the end of September 2014 to the end of December 2014 and Stratford-Upon-Avon (Shakespeare’s birthplace) is among the places that I have visited during my stay there (not too many though…hehe). I spent most of my time in Coventry as a great friend of mine is studying her Ph.D. there.
Behind me is Stratford-Upon-Avon´s Information Center.
We did a one day trip from Coventry on the 13th December 2014 (Saturday) on a very bright but very cold day. It is only about an hour’s journey from Warwick University to Stratford-Upon-Avon. We rode the X16 Stagecoach bus from Warwick University which was pretty cost saving. A one-day bus pass (Dayrider Gold) costs a person 8.75 GBP.
There were two of us from the university so we could purchase a group pass for two pax – 14.50 GBP. We saved about a pound each.
* A group may contain up to 2 adults & 3 children under 16 or 3 adults. The Dayrider Gold allows unlimited travel on Stagecoach buses. Please refer to the Stagecoach bus fare T&C here.
If you are from London – the best option is to take the Chiltern Railways train from London Marylebone direct to Stratford-Upon-Avon. The journey will be about 2 hours and 12 minutes.
Above picture is the Information center in Stratford-Upon-Avon and
the sightseeing bus is just next to the center.
Stratford-Upon-Avon is not too big but unfortunately, this trip was done in winter which is not the best time to visit this city in my opinion. In winter, the public transportation ie. bus is kinda scarce after 3 pm. Hmmm…and the daylight is pretty scarce too especially in the UK.
We had our one-year admission readied and a full-price ticket for all the houses and gardens per person is about 23.90 GBP. Unfortunately, due to winter, two of the places – Mary Arden´s Farm and New Place and Nash´s House were closed for maintenance. T_T
IMO, the best time to visit here is definitely during summer because of the UK´s weather.
You can check for the ticket price, get your 10% discount when you book the pass online and plan your visit here
We walked to:
- Hall’s Croft
- Shakespeare’s Birthplace
- Shakespeare’s Grave
We took a bus to:
- Anne Hathaway’s Cottage & Gardens
Stagecoach´s X16 bus stop is just around the street with the roundabout above (Christmas decoration). The name of the street is Bridge St and the bus stop is Adj McDonald.
I was holding a plastic bag from Poundland shop
..hehe. We have the same shop in Madrid but almost everything is about 1.50 euro and the shop name is called Dealz instead. Both Poundland and Dealz
are under the same company though.
We had Costa coffee and our packed sandwich and fried rice for lunch hehe. We wanted to spend our 6 hours of precious daylight from 10.30 am to 4.30 pm effectively to visit all the places mentioned above, hence the domestic lunch.
Costa is another one of my addiction when I was in the UK. While in Korea there are ubiquitous and pretty cafe´s there but not the same case as in Madrid. So when I found out that at least UK has Costa
, Caffe´ Nero
, Pret A Manger
, I was clearly satisfied! ^_______^ Big satisfaction smile from me.
It´s time to visit the Birthplace´s house of Shakespeare. It´s the nearest to the city center. We went into the bookshop first mistakenly thinking that the building next to it was the Birthplace´s house but it was a souvenir shop.
So, I asked one of the employees in the souvenir shop for direction. It was pretty straightforward but most of the buildings there look pretty much the same so how can we differentiate them?
The picture above (Bottom-right) is Birthplace´s house of Shakespeare but you need to enter the house by entering the Shakespeare Centre first.
The picture above is from
Birthplace´s house of Shakespeare and Shakespeare Centre.
As there is no suitable place to pray, we prayed just outside Birthplace´s house of Shakespeare. There is a clean toilet for ablution (of course we use the toilet for the disabled..hehe) and there is a small garden outside the house for us to pray.
The above is Hall´s Croft; House of Shakespeare´s daughter – Susanna Hall. Honestly, I think all the houses´ interior was pretty much the same to my eyes at least and as I am not an avid fan of Mr. Shakespeare, I am pretty much clueless..hehe.
Okay…Romeo and Juliet, at least I know one of his works though but just because there was Leonardo Dicaprio in it. Hehe.
We walked quite a bit from Shakespeare´s Birthplace house at Henley Street (CV37 6QW – this is the postcode of the location) to Hall´s croft (CV37 6BG). Roughly 10 minutes. ^^
From Hall´s Croft to Shakespeare´s Graveyard (CV37 6BG) was pretty close. I think maybe just five minutes. The grave was inside the chapel of Holy Trinity Church above and when we about to enter, we saw a sign requesting a donation if we want to view Shakespeare´s grave. Since we already have the annual pass, we didn´t have to pay for the donation.
Our last destination was Anne Hathaway’s Cottage & Gardens which is located on Shottery Road, 2 miles from Stratford-upon- Avon. Transport is usually by car but the house can be reached via a pleasant walk from the town center which takes approximately 30 mins – according to the website here. Please don´t walk…it is quite far IMO hehe… The Cottage is well signposted and parking is available.
We took the Stagecoach bus number 19 (Remember that we have the Day Pass, so we could use this pass as well here in Stratford-Upon-Avon. It is just a strip of paper. Make sure you keep it safe.)
We walked quite a bit from the chapel to the bus stop and waited about another 15 minutes for the bus. However, the bus did not stop exactly in front of Anne Hathaway’s Cottage & Gardens. The bus stopped at Hathaway Green Lane and from there we walked another five minutes.
The garden would be really amazing if only we visit it during summer. Still..it is pretty gorgeous place. Subhanallah.
After the visit, it was close to 4 pm and it was getting darker outside. We didn’t want to is our bus to the center and we walked quickly to the main road but…from here on our nightmare began hehe.
After 4.30 pm on Saturday (in winter) the bus was pretty infrequent. We waited close to one hour in freezing weather and were too hungry so we ate the cold fried rice. Nasi goreng sejuk!!
Luckily there was a taxi passed by and we hailed it until Istanbul Kebab House for about 5 GBP. The driver assumed that we must be freezing cold outside! Seriously. Hehe.
Hot food…and Halal in winter. That matters most to our growling stomach. Istanbul Kebab House is located very near to the train station.
This was for our dinner and not only that, we missed our last Stagecoach X16 bus back to Warwick hence we had to go to Lemmington Spa first and then took another bus to Coventry and then another bus to Warwick.
It was close to midnight when we reached home but all was fine and happy. Alhamdulillah.
Ahh..and only now did I remember. I didn´t get any Shakespeare souvenirs from this town except the pictures that I took..hehe.