If all the world’s a stage, then Stratford is the part of it where William Shakespeare takes a starring role. Born in this still distinctly Tudor town in 1564 he then came back to die here in 1616, in the interim penning some of the greatest works of literature ever known. These days, he’s become more than a cottage industry here, with everything from novelty mugs to performances of the plays he wrote drawing the visitors in.
Whether you head to Stratford just to take in a play, on a deep literary pilgrimage, or indeed are not wholly fussed by the Bard, and are more interested in quaint English towns, we’ve searched high and low to find the right hotel for you. There a fair few around given Stratford’s size, though with so many people passing through, inevitably a few tourist traps mar their number. Stick to the five below and you can’t go wrong!
From £60/ night
Welcome to deep England. Named after Shakespeare’s mother (from the more prosperous side of his family), this inn is the living embodiment of the British countryside, easy to imagine being here since time immemorial. That it’s so comfortable and offers free WiFi in its public areas is just an added bonus. There’s a log fire in the lounge in cold months, and a garden for the warm ones. Then, of course there’s the bar and restaurant on site. A little out of Stratford itself, the Mary Arden is best stayed in if you have a car.
From £70/ night
Boasting a perfect blend of the trendy and traditional, this is English country living in style! Three minutes outside of Stratford by car, The Stag is a great place to explore not just the town itself but the rest of Shakespeare’s beautiful country. The building is as old as the bard himself, not that that has stropped the management from installing all the necessary mod-cons: yes, that means TVs and WiFi throughout. Terrific value, there’s a restaurant and bar on site: both great for Falstaffian evenings.
From £99/ night
An extraordinarily homely vibe persists in this hotel just a kilometre from Stratford’s centre. The rooms are extremely comfortable, warm and well accommodated. There are even DVD players, just in case you’ve picked up a film of a classic Royal Shakespeare and Company performance and want to watch it then and there. There’s a bar too, and plenty of restaurants within walking distance. Breakfast is included in the price.
From £95/ night
As its name would suggest this place has the feel of an English country inn combined with a more classic hotel. The staff are excellent, keeping the rooms impeccably tidy, and cooking delicious breakfasts from scratch. Rooms come with TVs, tea and coffee making facilities, and en suite bathrooms as standard, while you can pick up free WiFi in the public areas. Truly the stuff dreams are made of.
From £75/ night
Because there are chain hotels in Stratford – should their known-quantity be more your thing – and this Best Western is one of the best. Housed in a beautiful listed Georgian building (not quite as old as Shakespeare, but still, y’know, old) this centrally located hotel offers all the top end services that Best Western’s global quality has led us to expect. These include flat-screen TVs in all rooms, WiFi throughout, and 24 hour room service to keep you energised as you read your newly purchased copy of The Complete Works deep into the early hours.