TRAVEL GUIDE: CHELTENHAM SPA

Cheltenham Spa, United Kingdom / May, 2018
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image source: LXA

So a lot of you will know that for my 26th birthday I decided to spoil myself a bit and spend a weekend in the British countryside. I made a promise to myself that this year I would make more effort to explore the United Kingdom a bit more. So Cheltenham Spa, is located in Gloucestershire. I've been to Gloucestershire a couple of times in and out. Every time I drove into Gloucestershire I used to admire the drive and the beautiful scenery, so I decided that would be my first trip in the United Kingdom on my exploring journey. 

"Cheltenham became a Spa Town in 1716 and it received Royal Patronage in 1788 when King George III came to drink the waters. This led to the rapid development of Cheltenham as a fashionable Spa between 1790 and 1840 and the heritage of those times can be seen in the Town’s Regency Architecture." (Friends of Imperial Square Heritage & Conservation - 2018)

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 image source: theluckyonion.com/

STAY

I decided to visit Cheltenham Spa, firstly because it is very small and I was in deep need for a relaxing weekend so a small town did me just good. I really have been wanting to stay in a cottage but I decided to opt for a Bed and Breakfast so I don't have to cook (lol!). It was a good idea though because it was exactly what I needed. I stayed at No 38 The Park which was lovely dainty country-side B&B. I was surprised to know that the owners of this hotel and their sister hotel No 131 in Cheltenham Spa, also own the store Superdry. I really loved the beautiful countryside inspired interior decor the hotel had with a modern twist. It was a Georgian townhouse, and they bought me fresh croissants and orange juice to my room every morning before breakfast! (How fab?!).  My room was really beautiful as I had an amazing stand-alone bathtub and a separate shower-room as well. The location was great because I took a walk on the first day to the shops which were a 15 mins walk and restaurants were not far at all either. The rooms are also equipped with Apple TV - so you can expect an entire day of movies and treats. The breakfast at the hotel was incredible too - I had Eggs Benedict both mornings lol. So it was definitely a pleasant stay - I'd say!

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MUST DO  

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So the main objective for my getaway was to rest so on the Saturday I had breakfast, took a long bubble bath and spent the entire day in bed watching movies and caught up on some sleep (when I mean the entire day, I mean the entire day). In the evening, I took a walk to get some dinner then came home to sleep. Rest was the plan! However, there are quiet a few things to do with a lot of thing close by. On the Sunday, I met up with my brother and we visited the Painswick Rococo Maze Gardens and had lunch by the Gloucester Quays which was lovely. There are actually a few shops there like Calvin Klein, All Saints etc. But the maze garden was really lovely, you can take a quick uphill walk to see the maze garden from the top of a hill or take your dogs for a walk. I think this was actually my first maze garden I have visited. I also went the Cheltenham Museum - The Wilson, where they showcase beautiful furniture from the Arts and Culture movement in the UK. I learnt a bit about British culture and country-side living. That was incredible, I absolutely love museums and artwork. Also there very beautiful gardens in Cheltenham where you can take a walk and read a book surrounded by beautiful flowers. Cheltenham is also not very far from Cotswolds which is an amazing tourist attraction town, with loads of country-side activities, eats and things to do. If you would like to kill two birds with one stone then definitely hire a car or driver and drive down to Cotswold for a day or two to explore more of the countryside. Unfortunately, my time was so limited and I was not able to visit but next time Cotswolds is my next stop.

EAT FOOD

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I had the pleasure of having dinner at the hotel's sister hotel restaurant at No 131 . And it was absolutely incredible, the atmosphere was fun and youthful too. The food was very hearty and delicious. I had the chicken dish with a cheeky cocktail on the side. My main dish was very delicious. However, if you would like to do fine-dining, I heard there are a couple of Michelin-starred restaurants in the area, such as Le Champignon Sauvage which apparently rated Two Star Michelin. I wasn't able to visit but I heard the British Country-side have some of the best Michelin-star restaurants. So if you would like to do an eating retreat then Country-side is your place. 

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image source: BusinessInsider.fr

Overall, if you're looking for a different atmosphere and wanting a country-style little getaway, I would suggest Cheltenham for a short three night stay. It is only 2 hour train from London Paddington station. Hopefully, next I'll be in Cotswolds. x