Document created by fschumpert on Jul 16, 2014
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England is my favorite country to travel. In my experience, the English are quite hospital to Americans, especially those who remember what our country did for them in WWII. After you've been to London, my advice is to head for the countryside, but don't try to take in too much at one time - enjoy each section of the country over a period of time. This might seem elementary for some, but hopefully, helpful to all who look forward to visiting England:

England is generally divided into the South, Midlands, and the North, with particular sections (Burroughs) bearing old Saxon names, such as Essex and Sussex, or "Shires", such as Cambridgeshire, Gloucestershire, Hertfordshire, Lincolnshire, Oxfordshire, etc., each with its own distinctions.

The Motorways (what we call Interstates), or M-Roads (M-1, M-4, M-25, etc.) afford high-speed travel between major cities, while the A-Roads are tributaries into smaller towns, with B-Roads off the main thoroughfares, but not to be avoided. The M-25 is the greater ring road around London and connect with Gatwick Airport on SE side, Heathrow on the SW, and smaller, regional airport, Stansted on the NE, just off the M-11.

Where to begin? How much, which section to plan on visiting at a time? For my first installment, I'm suggesting Oxfordshire and the Cotswolds, some 45 minutes SW of London and approximately one hour driving from Gatwick Airport, taking the M-23 from Gatwick to M-25 25 and then the M-40 to Oxford. Oxford, with many one-way streets, is not an easy city to drive in, but it's doable, or you can park on the outside of the city at "Park 'n Ride" and take the bus into the city and walk around. There are also designated parking lots in the city several blocks off the High Street.

After visiting Oxford (couple of days at least, so much to see!), often called "Gateway to Cotswolds", making sure you eat dinner at Brown's Restaurant on Banbury Road - Browns Restaurants Afterward, drive out the A-40 to Burford, park and walk around the town, perhaps eat lunch, and then drive south to Lechade and Faiford; then to Bibury, visiting the Bibury Inn and Abington; drive north to Lower and Upper Slaughter and walk about the picturesque town; then Burton-on-the Water, and spend the night in Stow-on-the-Wold. The next day, drive A-424 to A-44 to Broadway and walk about the lovely town and the shops; drive down the lovely B-4632, stopping by Sudeley Castle, near Winchcombe; drive around Cheltenham to B-4070 and stay in Painswick (SW gate to the Cotswolds), stay overnight at Cardynham House in heart of the town: Cardynham House Guest House and Resturant, Painwick(Tell Carol Keyes the Schumperts from Chattanooga sent you.) Walk through the lovely town to especially  wonder at the sculptured shrubbery.

Another route would be to drive north on A-44 from Oxford, stopping by Woodstock and visit Blenhelm Palace (Churchill's home), Blenheim Palace Oxfordshire - A great day out at Britain's Greatest Palace

or A-429 from Stow-on-the-Wold  to A-3400 and visit Stratford Upon Avon and take in a Shakespeare play, visit Ann Hathaway's house.  I usually stay at the lovely Monks Barn Farm B&B just on outside of town: MONKS BARN FARM - Stratford upon Avon bed and breakfast- See photos

Another route would be to drive from Painswick to Cirencester, take A-429 to A-350 toward Chippenham and A420 to Castle Combe, one of the loveliest small towns in the area and site of opening scene in the movie, "War Horse".

Next stop:  Somerset and Cornwall (SW England)