Symbiosis of nature and history
The Cotswolds are a picturesque hilly area approximately 40 by 90 kilometers in size. It stretches across the border of several English counties including Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire and Worcestershire. The Cotswolds are famous for their villages, whose houses are built from the honey-colored Cotswold sandstone. They have fantastic hiking and biking trails, beautiful gardens, lively farmers’ markets and lots of cafes and coffee houses. Study trips to the Cotswolds provide unique insights into the history and architecture of this unique region.
Welcome to Blenheim Palace, the birthplace of Winston Churchill
Blenheim Palace, the ancestral home of the Dukes of Marlborough, is one of the largest castles in England. It was here that the great statesman Winston Churchill was born. The castle, built between 1705 and 1722, has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1987. In Gloucester, on the western edge of the Cotswolds, is the impressive Cathedral of St. Peter, one of the most grandiose Gothic structures in England. Emerging from an early medieval monastery and a Romanesque predecessor building, the church with its breathtaking glass windows combines different stylistic epochs into a magnificent whole.
Bourton House Garden and other attractions
One of the specialties of the Cotswolds is the lovely garden of Bourton House in the lovely village of Bourton-on-the-Hill. The 12,000 square meter property is home to many rare plants and a very interesting topiary department. The Tewkesbury Heritage Center in a faithfully restored 17th century house is located in a former hat shop and provides a unique introduction to the history of the region.
Why not go to the horse race?
Cheltenham, not far from Gloucester, is home to one of the most traditional horse racing tracks in Great Britain. On a trip through the Cotswolds in spring or autumn, one should not miss out on attending one of the large meetings in Cheltenham.
Many other attractions make the Cotswolds a notable travel destination. These include the Arboretum in Westonbirt with its 17 miles of circular paths, the Painswick Rococo Garden or Kenilworth Castle with its Elizabethan garden.
Fascinating fishing village in the south west of Great Britain
Mousehole is a small fishing village in west Cornwall, a few miles west of Penzance. It is popular because it has retained its original character, charm and beauty. Its picturesque harbor is surrounded by narrow streets and yellow houses that create a breathtaking location. Holidaymakers will find galleries, souvenir shops and restaurants along Hafenstrasse, and in the harbor itself a safe and clean sandy beach is popular with families with children. Mousehole developed around its port and appeared in documents as an important fishing port as early as 1266. In fact, part of the South Quay dates back to 1390 – possibly the oldest pier in Cornwall. The fishing industry has declined dramatically over the past 100 years,
The picturesque village with its 850 inhabitants today was sacked by the Spaniards in July 1595 when the whole area was burned down to one house. This house still stands today. Just in front of the harbor is St. Clement’s Isle, a small group of rocks where an old hermit is believed to have lived. A few hundred meters along the coast of the village is a huge cave, which is said to have given the village its strange name. However, this has not been proven, which is why the origin of the name remains a secret. A small, safe beach is located in a sheltered part of the harbor. This is popular with families with young children.
The Christmas lights are switched on in the village in mid-December. This is famous all over Cornwall and is always worth a visit. There are even helicopter tours from Penzance to see the lights from the sky. They stay every evening from 5pm to 11pm until the end of the first week of the new year.
York Minster, built in the Gothic style, is the main attraction of the medieval university city of York. Located in the north of England and Yorkshire, it is considered the UK’s best-preserved medieval town. The eventful history has shaped both the city and the cathedral. In the midst of the narrow streets and crooked houses, the sacred building from the 15th century rises in all its splendor.
Marvel at the impressively painted lead glass windows that blend into the richly decorated exterior facade. Inside, the architecturally impressive star vault awaits you. Get a little closer to the sky and climb to the top of the main tower. The view over the rooftops of York’s old town and the surrounding area with its forests and fields is worth the trip in and of itself. Back in the central nave, pause for a moment and listen to the imposing sounds of the organ.
Then visit the underground vault of the minster. Explore the history of the cathedral interactively in Britain’s most modern crypt. Marvel at unique artifacts from two thousand years of York city history. Starting with the Roman remains of the former capital of North Great Britain Eboracum, continuing through the invasion of the dreaded Vikings to the gospels that are still highly respected and celebrated today.
At the gates of York Minster you have the unique opportunity to look over the shoulder of the stonemasons at their filigree and sweaty work. As part of the restoration work, there are also regular auctions of original fragments. Take a relic of bygone days back home with you as a souvenir of a special trip. Or take a cup of tea in the shadow of the monumental structure and review your experiences in York Minster.