Since we didn’t want to start the driving part of our trip dealing with London traffic, we took a train to Reading and picked up our rental car there. Other than the fact that our GPS stopped working about 20 minutes after we left the rental car facility, we were driving on the wrong side of the road, there are roundabouts everywhere (sometimes one right after another), and some two lane roads are really only one lane, everything went fine.
On the way to our next hotel in Thornbury, we stopped by Stonehenge.
The next photo was taken in the visitors center but shows how precisely the stones are aligned.
Our lodging for the middle part of our trip was the Thornbury Castle. The building was begun in 1511 as a home for Edward Stafford, 3rd Duke of Buckingham. However Edward got crosswise with Henry VIII and was beheaded. Henry took over the property but only stayed here for a few days with Anne Boleyn, after which the castle fell into disrepair.
One day we took a tour of the Cotswolds with a family run company, Secret Cottage Tours, named after the home of the owners. It was a great way to see the Cotswold countryside with a local guide and not have to drive!
And the best thing about the tour: We started with tea and pastries, toured a little and came back to the cottage for a buffet lunch, toured some more, and concluded the day with a traditional Cotswold cream tea.
The other highlight of this part of the trip was a visit to Bath. The city became a spa in 60 AD when the Romans built baths and a temple here to take advantage of the natural hot springs.
Another major attraction in Bath is the Cathedral, Bath Abbey.
In the late 1500s memorials stared to be placed on the abby’s walls,
Next stop: Cornwall.