When it comes to showing off the prettiest villages in England I knew I'd struggle to whittle them down. England is rich in picturesque quaint villages, each of them unique and special in their own right. Pastel coloured cottages with hanging flowers baskets, winding cobbled lanes and churches which have stood proud for centuries. Close knit communities with locals who know each others names and meet for a chat while buying the newspaper in the morning. These villages have been chosen by some of the Uk's top bloggers as their all time favourites.
Corfe Castle, Dorset by Sophie from Escape to Britain
Nestled in the Purbeck Hills in Dorset, the stunning village of Corfe Castle is an absolute must-see on your next British adventure. Close to the salty sea breeze and surrounded by the kind of charming countryside that is so synonymous with West Country England, 'Corfe Castle' is not only the name of a village but also that of a historic castle which stands high and proud above the rest of the settlement and is well worth a visit in of itself.
There's been a fortification on site since at least the 10th-century, though it wasn't until the Normans arrived around a century later that the castle grew to true prominence in the surrounding region. During the Middle Ages, Corfe Castle was often said to be the 'most fortified castle' in England. Unfortunately, the complex of buildings were badly damaged during the Civil War, and today romantic ruins can be explored for a small fee.
Elsewhere in Corfe Castle, there are a myriad of delightful corners to discover, including several eateries and the smallest town hall in England which houses a free to visit museum. A visit to Corfe Castle parish village and its castle can easily be combined with a trip to the nearby Jurassic Coastline, making for the perfect English escape
Recommended place to stay Mortons House Hotel
Lavenham, Suffolk by Sherianne from OutOfOffice.Blog
Do you like tilted homes? Do you like Harry Potter? If so, the English village of Lavenham is a place to add to your England bucket list. Lavenham England is a quirky village 76 miles northeast of London and is easiest reached by car. Spend your day wandering the city streets admiring the half-timbered tilted homes, the town is full of them. Harry Potter’s Godric’s Hollow was modeled after this village, be sure to visit the DeVere House where Harry was born and his parents were killed by Voldemort. Have tea in a crooked house at Munnings Tea Room and shop for souvenirs on High Street and Market Square. I ate an amazing lunch of bangers and mash at Ashby’s, a small restaurant of six tables above a candy and ice cream store. I still think about those potatoes. History buffs will want to browse the WWII memorabilia at the Airman’s Bar in the Swan Hotel, discover Lavenham’s history at the Guildhall of Corpus Christi, or visit the Little Hall Museum, a 14th-century weaver’s home and the oldest house in the town (1390). Fun fact, Lavenham was once the fourth richest town in England. The town had so much money that several of the families were fined by Henry VII for displaying too much wealth. Unfortunately, the town went broke and was not able to rebuild when the homes made of greenwood began to tilt.
Recommended place to stay Rectory Manor
Tissington, Peak District by Katy from Otis and Us
Last year we camped at Ashbourne Heights Holiday park. Ashbourne Heights is situated in the stunning Peak District in Derbyshire, on the edge of the Tissington Trail. The Tissington Trail sits at the entrance to Ashbourne Heights Holiday Park and offers a 13 mile trail which follows the former Buxton to Ashbourne railway. The trail is traffic free and there are plenty of spots along the way to stop and enjoy a picnic, ice-cream or bite to eat. This is where we discovered Tissington Village. Tissington Village is a picture perfect village and surely one of the prettiest villages in England, with the most stunning cottages built around an old hall, church and duck pond. Tissington sits beside the A515 Buxton to Ashbourne road, approximately 3 miles north of Ashbourne and near to Dove Dale. It is considered one of the prettiest and unspoilt villages in Derbyshire. I can highly recommend visiting Herbert’s Tea Rooms to relax with family and friends or to enjoy the sunshine outside in the picnic area - watching the world go by.
Recommended place to stay Fire Brigade Barn
Bourton-on-the-Water by Katerina and Maria from It's all trip to me
There is nothing quite like the English countryside. With its rolling hills, misty footpaths and fairytale-like villages, it feels as though it has sprung out of the pages of a storybook. Among the prettiest villages in England, Bourton-on-the-Water stands out for its old-fashioned charm and exquisite scenery which render it one of the most beautiful villages in the Cotswolds, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in Southern England.
Bourton-on-the-Water is a charming village which features an utterly picturesque High Street. The latter is lined with traditional honey-coloured cottages and long wide greens. The River Windrush runs peacefully through Bourton-on-the-Water while its five arched footbridges have earned the village a very alluring nickname: Venice of the Cotswolds.
Although walking around the quaint streets and having a picnic by the river are excellent reasons to visit Bourton-on-the-Water in their own right, the Cotswold Motoring Museum is yet another good reason to plan a trip there. With a collection of 20th century vintage cars, the museum takes its visitors on a uniquely nostalgic journey through time. Bourton-on-the-Water is also the ideal destination for hiking lovers as many paths and local walks start, finish or pass through the village.
Last but not least, summer is probably the best time to visit Bourton-on-the-Water so as not to miss the chance to watch the quirkiest football match one could ever imagine. This is in essence a game of medieval football with goalposts set in the river itself and spectators enjoying the occasional... shower with every goal that is scored!
Castleton, Peak District by Roshni from The Wanderlust Within
One of the quaintest villages in the Peak District, Castleton in Hope Valley, has long been a hotspot for hikers, outdoor lovers and history buffs. Situated in Derbyshire, the village can be reached by car or train. The train journey from Sheffield is only half an hour, making it highly accessible.
The charming village of Castleton, is known for being home to Mam Tor, also known as Shivering Mountain. The top of Mam Tor provides dramatic views of the Peak District, and the hike takes only two hours from the village centre, making it a popular amongst families aswell as seasoned trekkers.
Looming high above Castleton is also the 11th century ruins of Peveril Castle, one of England's earliest Norman fortresses. The castle makes for another great hike in the area as it is perched well above Hope Valley.
For those who would rather take in some history, Castleton is home to some of the best show caves and caverns in the country, such as Speedwell Cavern, Peak Cavern and Treak Cliff Cavern. To end your visit a traditional afternoon tea or a pub lunch is a must, especially when visiting such a beautiful English village.
Recommended place to stay Innkeepers Lodge
Cadgwith Cove, Cornwall by Annabel from Smudged Postcard
Tucked away in a peaceful part of Cornwall in south west England is Cadgwith Cove. This little Cornish village features pretty whitewashed thatched cottages surrounded by gardens brimming with flowers. Pathways and narrow lanes wind their way down to the fishing harbour where colourful boats sit on the pebbly beach at low tide.
The village has a lovely local pub, the Cadgwith Cove Inn, which hosts live Cornish folk music each week. There are scenic walks along the nearby coastal paths including good views of the Devil’s Frying Pan, a collapsed sea cave.
Cadgwith Cove has a wonderful community feel, best witnessed in the summertime when the locals put on a fun BBQ evening. The foodie evenings see the streets filled with locals and tourists, delicious grilled fish on the menu: proceeds go to local charities.
Unlike many places in Cornwall which swell with visitors come summertime, Cadgwith is located on the Lizard Peninsula, a far quieter part of the county which remains surprisingly under the radar despite its stunning beaches and appealing fishing villages. Not far from Cadgwith is the most southerly point in the UK, Lizard Point, not to be confused with the most westerly, Land’s End.
Recommended place to stay Cadgewith Cove Inn
Lower Slaughter by Wendy by The Nomadic Vegan
The Cotswolds is full of picturesque villages, and it's hard to know which ones to choose. If you're looking to get away from the crowds and enjoy a combination of cute houses and peaceful nature, then Lower Slaughter should not be missed. Most of the buildings are constructed in the traditional Cotswold style of architecture, with limestone walls and steeply slanted roofs.
Not as popular with tourists as some of the more famous villages in the area, Lower Slaughter feels a bit more authentic and unspoiled than many others. Perhaps it's the name that scares the tourists away? I'll admit, the village's name did give me some cause for concern, especially as a vegan traveler. But thankfully, it's not a reference to slaughtering animals.
The origin of the name lies in the Old English word "sloh". This can refer to a marsh or bog, and in this case, it's a reference to the wetlands surrounding the village and the Eye stream running through it. This watery scenery is a big part of Lower Slaughter's charm. The stone footbridges crossing the Eye are some of the most photogenic spots around, and a few years ago the road following the stream was even voted the "most romantic street in Britain".
A short walk away is the neighbouring village of Upper Slaughter, and strolling between them takes about 25 minutes and is highly recommended. Just follow the stream until you reach the next village.
Recommended place to stay The Slaughters Monor House
Bibury, The Cotswolds by Lucy from Faraway Lucy
There is absolutely no shortage of pretty villages in the Cotswolds but the one that most stands out to me is Bibury. Just a short drive from Cirencester, this enchanting village in Gloucestershire is like something straight out of a fairytale. It was once described by William Morris as "the most beautiful village in England" and I’d have a hard time disagreeing.
fIt is the weaver’s cottages of Arlington Row that draw in tourists from all around the world. With their quintessential stone exteriors and steeply pitched roofs, these charming cottages date back to 1380. Easily recognisable thanks to Instagram, Arlington Row makes for a picture postcard photo. You might have also spotted these cottages in blockbuster films, such as Stardust and Bridget Jones's Diary!
But there is more to Bibury than first meets the eye. Whilst Arlington Row is undoubtedly the most beautiful part of this village, I would also recommend visiting the Church of St Mary, Bibury Trout Farm, and Arlington Mill.
Once you’ve soaked up the beauty of Arlington Row, seen the sights of Bibury, and gone for a stroll along the banks of the River Coln, it’s time to tuck into some delicious British pub grub at The Swan or The Catherine Wheel. And if that doesn’t whet your appetite for Bibury, you can even stay in 9 Arlington Row, a two-bedroom cottage with heaps of character!
Recommended place to stay Bothy
Dobcross, Lancashire by Helen from Helen on her holidays
It may not be on many lists of the prettiest villages in England, but Dobcross and the area around is a true undiscovered gem. Dobcross is a small village in the Pennine hills to the east of Manchester. It’s one of a number of villages that make up an area known as Saddleworth; these days Saddleworth is in Lancashire, but it’s historically been part of the neighbouring county of Yorkshire, and the move is still hotly contested by the locals.
The centre of Dobcross is also said to be the geographical centre of Saddleworth, and it’s the prettiest spot in a beautiful area. A road leading up from the bridge that gives the village its name (Dobcross means horse crossing) emerges in Dobcross’s pretty, cobbled square surrounded by picturesque buildings. The old Saddleworth Bank still has its old sign, and in the centre of the square you’ll find a historic monument erected in honour of the area’s first doctor. All good villages should have a village pub, and the Swan dates back to 1765. It’s just as much a centre of village life today as it was over 200 years ago when it was built.
To see Dobcross at its best, visit in the summer, when hanging baskets and planters burst with beautiful colour. If possible, try to coincide your visit with one of the area’s traditional events; Whit Friday in late May or June sees brass bands from all over the UK and beyond compete in each Saddleworth village - it’s been described as the greatest free show on earth. Another fantastic day to visit is Rushcart weekend, when Morris dancers perform in each village while pulling a traditional rushcart. You could also visit during Yanks weekend, which celebrates the World War II film starring Richard Gere, part of which was filmed in Dobcross.
Lacock, Wiltshire by Laura from What's hot blog
Lacock is a stunning English village that’s just 30 minutes from the city of Bath. You’ve probably never heard of it but it has become increasingly popular over recent years as groups of tourists come to visit the village’s numerous film locations. Given that you can walk from one end of the village to the other in 10 minutes, it might surprise you to know that lots and lots of famous films and television series have filmed scenes in this quaint little village. But why do they come?
Lacock has attracted many a film crew because it has managed to retain its medieval spirit and looks like a slice of times gone by. Walking through the streets of Lacock, you might well believe that you are walking through the streets of a period drama. The village was founded in the 13th century and retains much of its original character.
Lacock is home to Lacock Abbey, a stunning property that contains cloisters, beautifully preserved halls and more. The Abbey is pretty magical; so magical in fact that it doubles up as Hogwarts in some of the Harry Potter films. Inside, you will find Hogwarts corridors, Snape and Quirrel's classrooms, as well as the room the Mirror of Erised once sat in. Outside of the Abbey, you'll find even more Harry Potter film locations in Lacock Professor Slughorn's hideaway, the Potters home in Godrick's Hollow and Budleigh Babberton, for example.
For those who aren't so interested in the village's long history with British filmmaking, there are plenty of quaint British pubs and bakeries for a summer pint or a spot of afternoon tea. As you walk through these charming streets you may also see lots of honesty boxes containing products made by or grown by locals. It's impossible not to fall in love with this place!