28 Things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Visiting Stratford upon Avon in England has been a dream of mine since I started reading Shakespeare in high school. I did my research and found so many things to do in Stratford upon Avon I decided to spend at least 3 days exploring the area and finding all the things to do in Stratford upon Avon that we could.

Visiting Stratford upon Avon UK and having the opportunity to not only see where the bard was born but a chance to visit several sites where he began his life as a writer was a chance in a lifetime. Hubs and I were housesitting in a little village called Tanworth on Arden in Warwickshire and we took every opportunity to see as much of the County as we possibly could.

Things to do in Stratford upon Avon - the outside theatre for Shakespearean plays in Toronto Ontario
©Canadian Stage

Thanks to Shakespeare’s England for providing complimentary entry into the Shakespeare Sites in Stratford and to the RSC for complimentary tickets and a tour for the purpose of this honest review. All opinions expressed are my own and as usual brutally honest lol.

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The half-timbered Rose and Crown pub in things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Whether you spend a weekend in Stratford-upon-Avon or a week there are so many things to do here and it makes a great break from London. We spent 3 days exploring all the places Shakespeare was known to have lived, worked and played as well as taking in a superb performance at the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford upon Avon. 

Days out Stratford upon Avon are easy to do from various locations in England and you shouldn’t pass up an opportunity to visit this beautiful medieval city. If you happen to be in England at Christmas time don’t forget to check out the Christmas Market in Stratford you won’t be disappointed.

The main street of Stratford upon Avon, pedestrian only traffic among the half-timbered buildings.

Getting to Stratford upon Avon from London

Stratford upon Avon is a smallish market town in South Warwickshire and known as the gateway to the Cotswolds which is very close to London and the drive is around 2.5 hours. It’s very easily accessible by public transport and by car. Although parking in Stratford upon Avon is pretty tricky.

Stratford upon Avon by car

Distance between Stratford upon Avon and London? Coming from London it’s a pretty straight run of around 101 miles straight down the M40 into Warwickshire and then it is very well signed from there.

Stratford upon Avon by train

The Stratford upon Avon train station has direct links to trains from London including Marylebone and Birmingham New Street.

Stratford upon Avon by bus 

Unfortunately, the buses, although somewhat cheaper than trains take around 3 hours to get to Stratford, so unless you plan to stay over it could be a very long day.  There are National Express coaches that run from London Victoria to Stratford Upon Avon

Getting around Stratford upon Avon

Stratford upon Avon is fairly compact and most of what you will want to see is within easy walking distance of each site. If you head towards the Visitors Centre by the Avon River you can pick up a good map and take advantage of some of the many tours that allow you to experience the town fully.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Stratford upon Avon places to see

When we first wandered into Stratford upon Avon we chanced upon a walking tour and listened in as the tour guides talked about the town. We were really impressed with the depth of knowledge and interesting information that they provided.

We wish we had taken the opportunity to go on one of the tours but we would highly recommend it as a way to truly feel the history of Stratford upon Avon.

The Stratford Town Walk costs a mere £6 and is absolutely superb, they also do a brilliant Ghost Walk with guides who are professional actors and entertainers. 

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

What to see in Stratford-upon-Avon

  • A walking tour of Stratford upon Avon
  • Shakespeare’s Birthplace
  • Shakespeare’s Centre
  • Royal Shakespeare Company Theatre
  • Tour the RSC theatre
  • Take in a Play at the RSC
  • Hall’s Croft
  • Nash’s House
  • Shakespeare’s New Place
  • Guild Hall and Shakespeare’s Schoolroom
  • Mary Arden’s Tudor Farm
  • Anne Hathaway’s Cottage
  • Trinity Church and Shakespeare’s Grave
  • Anne Hathaway’s Tea Room
  • Garrick’s Inn
  • Mad Museum
  • Canal Basin locks and market
  • The Big Wheel
  • A River Cruise on the Avon
  • Fish and chips at Barnaby’s
  • Countess of Evesham Boat dining
  • Old Thatch Pub
  • Magic Alley
  • The Stratford upon Avon Butterfly Farm
  • Tudor World
  • Shakespaw Cat Cafe
  • Alms Houses
  • Harvard House

28 Things to do in Stratford upon Avon

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Shakespeare’s Birthplace Trust

The Birthplace Trust takes you through 5 historic Shakespeare locations that are all in Stratford upon Avon.

Tickets for all 5 locations cost £22.50 and include entry to Shakespeare’s Birthplace, Mary Arden’s Tudor Farm, Anne Hathaway’s Cottage, Shakespeare’s New Place and Hall’s Croft.

Shakespeare’s Birthplace

Right in the very heart of Stratford upon Avon is the place where Shakespeare was born. It is attached and you enter from the Shakespeare Centre which has some fascinating pieces of Shakespearean history and writings.

Shakespeares birthplace Stratford upon Avon

One of the items on display is the first collected edition of Shakespeare’s work, published in 1623. It’s believed that around 230 copies of the book have survived.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

The house attached to the Centre was owned by Shakespeare’s father John Shakespeare who was a glove maker and had his business in the property. Over the years as his business and family grew he purchased neighbouring houses and these are all today one museum.

display in Stratford upon Avon of Star Wars William Shakespeare graphic novel

Shakespeare and his 8 brothers and sisters grew up in this house and he also spent the first 5 years of married life here with Anne Hathaway.

Shakespeare’s parents were so wealthy that this house was the largest one on Henley Street.  The house is located in the centre of Henley street and it is a timber-framed Tudor home built in 1564.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

John Shakespeare William’s father lived and worked in the house for fifty years. in 1568 he became the Mayor of Stratford and because of his Mayoral privilege, his children had a good education at the local grammar school.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

In 1601 John Shakespeare died and his eldest son William inherited the house. When Shakespeare died he left the house to his oldest daughter Susanna and when she died it was left to her only child Elizabeth.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Elizabeth had no children, so when she died the house fell to a descendant of Joan Hart, one of Shakespeare’s sisters. The house was owned by the Hart family until the late 18th century until it went up for sale and was purchased by the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust in 1847. 

The house tour has many items from Shakespeare’s life and even the floors have never been replaced so you are walking in Shakespeare’s actual footsteps.

This is the window that hung in Shakespeare’s birth room. The window panes are etched with the names of visitors over the years.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Ask to have the Witching Mark pointed out to you. It is a mark carved into a timber which is shaped like a map of the house but backwards to ward off evil spirits.

When you exit the house you are treated to several actors from Shakespeare Aloud in the garden performing various great sonnets, scenes and moments from Shakespeare’s plays. This was such a treat and the actors were great.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

As you leave the area don’t forget to check out the gift shop where you can pick up some tempting Shakespearean t-shirts or even his complete works.

A short walk from Shakespeare’s birthplace, near the banks of the Avon River, is the Royal Shakespeare Theater. If you take the elevator up to the tower you can look out over Stratford from a vantage point that Shakespeare would have never known.

The Royal Shakespeare Company

The Royal Shakespeare Company was established as the Shakespeare Memorial Theatre in 1875 and opened to the public in 1879. The original building has been much enlarged from those days and many of the RSC’s speciality areas such as set build and costume rental are nearby but not in the newer building.

the RSC from the canal Stratford upon Avon
©RSC Stratford upon Avon

I would highly recommend you take one of the tours offered by the Royal Shakespeare Company they are simply fascinating and if you love theatre you get to see behind the scenes and it is remarkable.

They offer 3 tours all of which start at £7 which is an amazing value. The guides are brilliant and so informative and can answer any question posed to them.

There is the Behind the Scenes Tour which is the one we took where we got to learn about making theatre. We saw behind the stage from the wings. We got to go into the sound booth and see where the important work of Stage Manager is undertaken.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

We even got to see the costume area, makeup and learned how expensive fake blood is. The cost of fake blood is stupendous literally hundreds of pounds. What makes the tour so fabulous is that all these folks are experts. Just ask the Head of Dyeing and Painting.

 ‘Blood? What kind? There’s veinal blood, arterial blood, edible blood, newly dry blood, crusty old blood… You don’t want it to be too red – that looks bad – but then there are so many types and thicknesses. Ours is a secret recipe, though. And it will remain so.  from the Telegraph

In props, there were goats, crocodiles, ships, suits of armour and a crazy array of stuff you wouldn’t believe.

Another costume trick is that of magnets. Due to many a quick change, very heavy-duty magnets are used instead of things like buttons or lacings. They don’t use velcro as the sound of it ripping can be heard in the theatre.

From Page to Stage is where you can discover how a play actually gets from the script to the public performance.

The Audition Tour is brilliant, you get to peek into the costume hire department, try on costumes learn some Shakespearean lines and all about the history of the RSC.

The RSC even has a costume hire facility that the public is welcome to rent costumes from. This place covers virtually every time period you can think of and even some that don’t exist. Our prices are very competitive. Costumes and accessories are priced individually, so you can hire as much or as little as you need. The cost of a full costume is £90 +VAT for the first week of hire. They don’t rent by the day but only by the week.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Not only were we privileged to see backstage but we were also given complimentary tickets to see As You Like It, one of my favourite Shakespearean plays. The RSC said about their version of the play.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon
28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

It was magical as soon as the play began we were lost in the moment. The actors were superb and to see a woman finally reciting those words “all the world’s a stage” was simply a joy. The antics of a Billy Connelly style Touchstone incited the audience to uproarious laughter, the gender-bending and inclusion of LGBTQ characters was fabulous. I have to say this was without a doubt the best performance of a Shakespearean play I have ever seen.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Visit Hall’s Croft 

Hall’s Croft is a stunning Jacobean house that was the home of Shakespeare’s daughter, Susanna and her husband John Hall who was a Doctor. Susanna was Shakespeare’s oldest daughter born in 1583 and died in 1649.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

The house is incredible given its age and the gardens are a real pleasure to walk through. There is a Mulberry tree in the garden that was planted in 1969 that split in two and is now supported by bricks.

Black mulberries are a childhood memory of mine when we used to eat them straight from the tree. These are not mulberry trees that are loved by silkworms, however. You will see mulberry stains all over Stratford upon Avon and when you eat them your fingers turn purple.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

In Shakespeare’s Coriolanus the hero is encouraged to stand with his head held low:

Now humble as the ripest mulberry
That will not hold the handling.

The House is furnished with period antiques and has some really interesting and gruesome medical displays from the time period including some of Dr Hall’s medical equipment.

There is a lovely little cafe in the house and an outside area where you can take your cream tea.

Shakespeare’s Schoolroom & the Guild Hall

Shakespeare’s schoolroom is where he learned to read and write. They didn’t use paper in those days as it was much too expensive to waste. All their lessons were written down on slates. Latin was taught in school and school started at sunup and went on until sunset even on a Saturday.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Today, you can walk inside the classrooms where Shakespeare was taught and the guides will give you some really interesting information on what it was like to attend school in Shakespeare’s Day. This is not one of the tours that fall within Shakespeare’s Birthplace Trust so the entry fee is £8.50 for adults.

Learning about the Guildhall

 The Guild of the Holy Cross built the Guildhall in Stratford upon Avon somewhere around 1418. Over the years more and more buildings were added including a schoolhouse, almshouses for the poor and a chapel. The Guildhall became the heart of civic life in Stratford upon Avon for over 400 years.

Built from timber frames you can even see the Roman numerals inscribed on the posts to help guide the builders in putting the Hall together. The centre of the timbers was filled with wattle and daub which was made from a variety of items including clay, horsehair, animal dung, straw and wet soil. This was “daubed” between the wooden strips (the wattle) to create the walls.

View of the Guildhall in Stratford upon Avon, England. A long half-timbered building dating back to the 15th century

As part of your tour, you will get to see an example of rare medieval wall paintings with scenes from the bible. The Guild Chapel which is next door used to be part of the Guild  Hall. Dating back to the 13th century the Chapel was originally catholic and in the 1560’s the Reformation ensured that all things catholic were banned. And so the Guild Chapel was going to be destroyed but John Shakespeare, William’s father whitewashed the Catholic murals from the walls. This whitewashing actually preserved the paintings which were rediscovered in 1804 during a restoration of the Chapel.

Nash’s House

Nash’s House is a beautiful timber-framed building and was the home of William Shakespeare’s granddaughter, Elizabeth. The house stands immediately beside the site of Shakespeare’s own home of New Place.

The house holds a museum of local history, focussing on Shakespeare’s life and works.

A viewing platform overlooks the Tudor knot garden of New Place, laid out on the site of Shakespeare’s house. Exhibitions showcase archaeological finds unearthed during the excavation and restoration of New Place.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

The ground floor of the house is occupied by a shop where you get tickets for New Place, while the upper floor holds the exhibition and several activity rooms.

Explore Shakespeare’s New Place 

Shakespeare’s New Place was the location of Shakespeare’s family home from 1597 until his death in 1616. When London was in trouble such as the times of the plague Shakespeare would retreat to his home in Stratford upon Avon.

Shakespeare’s New Place was originally a grand Tudor home, but fashion and style come and goes and so when Susanna inherited the building her husband considered it old-fashioned and it was demolished to build a grand new home.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

On the grounds was a huge tree that visitors and tourists of the day would take branches from in remembrance of Shakespeare. The man that owned the building was apparently a Reverend and he was not happy about this so had the tree removed. He was also asked to contribute to the welfare of the poor through a property tax and being a bad Christian refused. As a result, he decided to destroy the house and today a sculpture of the old tree stands in the glorious gardens.

Things to do near Stratford upon Avon

Mary Arden’s Tudor Farm

Take a trip to the farm where Shakespeare’s mother Mary Arden lived and worked. The Farm was the childhood home of Shakespeare’s mother. To get there you will need to either take a taxi or drive to the farm which is only 3 miles from the centre of Stratford upon Avon, another alternative is to take the Hop on Hop Off bus.

Mary Ardens Tudor Farm Stratford upon Avon

Here at the farm you get to experience all the sights, sounds and smells of a working Tudor farm. The farm’s animators go about their day just as it would have been back in Shakespeare’s times. There are nature trails, falconry displays, archery, and lots of heritage animals and farming methods to be seen.

Anne Hathaway’s Cottage

Anne Hathaway was Shakespeare’s wife and they married when Shakespeare was 18 and Anne was 26 years old and pregnant. Pretty gossip-inducing back in those days. Anne was older than William but she outlived him by 7 years.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Anne’s cottage is heavily touristed so I recommend you get there as early as you can to be able to tour the house and see everything without the droves of people getting in the way.

There is parking just down from the cottage in a pay and display lot or you can take the Hop on Hop Off bus from town.

The cottage is a beautiful Tudor thatched building with 9 acres of gardens. It was built in 1453 and Annes grandfather, John Hathaway, rented it and then eventually bought it. Anne was born here in 1556. 

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Upon buying your ticket you head to the Cottage for your tour. On entering the cottage you are greeted by a tour guide who gives you some wonderful information about the house and the Hathways. These guides are so knowledgeable and their love for the place shines through. They are happy to answer any questions you might have.

The Shakespeare Trust purchased the building from the Hathaway’s who lived here until 1892. The last Hathaway to live here was Mary Baker who got a great deal in the sale, not only did she profit from the house purchase but she negotiated a grand salary for the day as a Tour Guide.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

You can wander through the various rooms that are laid out as appropriate to the times with authentic period pieces.

You can even see Shakespeare’s “second-best bed” which was left to his wife.  Well, it is a bed of the period that is believed to be made from parts of the “second-best bed”. Now, this was considered a romantic gesture at the time, as the second-best bed was the marital bed.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

I loved learning about how this place became a museum! The Hathaway’s lived here until 1892 when the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust bought the cottage.

Can you visit Shakespeare’s grave?

The Holy Trinity Church was the centre of life in Stratford upon Avon back in Shakespeare’s day. He was baptised here along with his brothers and sisters, the family worshipped here and he and Anne were even married here. In the end, Shakespeare was laid to rest in a memorial tomb within the church.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

The entrance to the church itself is completely free but you will have to pay a donation of £4 to see Shakespeare’s grave. Anne’s tomb sits next to him and his daughter Susanna and John Hall her husband are in the sanctuary.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

There is a curse that Shakespeare had put on his gravestone! It reads “Good friend for Jesus sake forbeare, To dig the dust enclosed here. Blessed be the man that spares these stones, And cursed be he that moves my bones”. !

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Visit The Garrick Inn for a Shakesbeer 

The Garrick Inn is Stratford upon Avon’s oldest pub, with parts dating back to the 1400s, originally called the Greyhound its name was changed in the 18th century to honour David Garrick who was a famous Shakespearean Actor.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Nobody knows if Shakespeare patronised the tavern but it is believed that this is where the outbreak of the 1564 plague started. 

 Because of the level of tourists and interest in the pub, you should reserve a spot if you want to eat or drink here in the summer months. It’s not so bad in the winter but in summer insanity prevails.

Anne Hathaway’s Tea Rooms

Although the building dates back to 1610 it was never Anne Hathaway’s Tea Rooms back then. It was known as the George Inn and in its day it has been a bookshop an apothecary and a bootmaker. In 1931 it became Anne Hathaway’s Tea Rooms.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

A cosy little place you can get some delicious breakfasts or lunch here but the speciality are the afternoon teas. Served with a huge variety of loose-leaf tea this is a real treat for your day in Stratford upon Avon.   

Mad Museum

The only one of its kind in the country the Mad Museum is a  mechanical art and design museum. A brilliant attraction for kids and adults alike the Museum is filled with interactive sculptures and kinetic art that marry science, technology and art. Tickets cost   £7.80 for an adult and children (6-15yrs): £5.20

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

The Canal Basin

This is the area between the RSC theatre and the main area of town that runs along the canal. With its pretty waterside garden – perfect for a picnic there are lots of activities and events that take place here. There is a market a few times a week where you can pick up some lovely handmade gifts. There are street food wagons and displays of art and craft.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Often you will find some of the animal welfare groups like the day we were there and they had some owls that couldn’t be returned to the wild due to injuries.

From here you can take a number of boat rides or even paddle your own rowboat on the Avon.

The River Avon in Stratford upon Avon, UK

 The Big Wheel

Directly across from the canal basin you will soon spot the Big Wheel and a children’s park. The giant wheel is right beside the Stratford Rowing Club and taking a ride on it ensures fabulous views of the RSC, the canal and the River Avon. A trip on the wheel costs £5 for adults and £4 for children.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

A River Cruise upon the Avon

We were lucky to be provided with complimentary tickets to a River Cruise with Avon Boating which was a lovely treat. We took an Edwardian electric launch down the river on a 40-minute boat ride.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Passing by the RSC buildings we could see the huge size of the theatre and the apartments built specifically for the actors appearing in plays in the theatre.

Down past the place where Shakespeare is buried Holy Trinity Church, we glided past swans and ducks and just enjoyed the beautiful day.

A narrow boat on the River Avon things to do in Stratford upon Avon

The river is full of small rowboats and sculls along with some stunning canal boats that people live in and travel up and down the waterways of England with. This is a lovely way to spend an hour on a bright and sunny day, perfectly relaxing and so quiet on the Avon with these lovely old boats.

Row Boats you can rent on the River Avon in Stratford upon Avon. The river banks have several boats parked along the shore line of the river bank which has many willow trees

Fish and Chips at Barnaby’s

Right across from the canal is an incredibly busy fish and chip shop and boy do they serve awesome and huge portions of fish and chips.

Barnaby's restaurant where Gordon Ramsay learned to cook. Known for its fish and chips the front of the restaurant is pained blue and there are steel table an chairs on a patio outside

The interior is dated with its vinyl stools, and melamine tables and probably dates back 50 years but the food can’t be beaten. Even Gordon Ramsay who was raised in Stratford upon Avon loves this place.

The Countess of Evesham

Know as Stratford upon Avon’s version of the “Orient Express” the Countess is a 70m restaurant boat that drifts along gently on the Avon while you enjoy a fabulous gourmet meal.

The luxury restaurant cruising narrow boat in Stratford the Countess of Evesham

You can take the lunch boat and spend a gloriously peaceful afternoon on the water, or dinner service with a 3-course meal.  Monday to Friday lunches cost This cruise is £23.50 and evening cruises are £34.00 prices do increase on weekends.

Tudor World

A small little museum set in an amazing Tudor building in the centre of town up from the canal Tudor World recreates different areas of Tudor life interwoven with stories and legends from Stratford’s history.

Tudor World sign in Stratford upon Avon

Within a historic 16th-century building discover what life was really like during Shakespeare’s time. Sit at a feast; lie down on a four-poster bed; go in the pillories; write with a quill and take part in a witch trial! Beware there are low beams, uneven floors and lots and lots of atmosphere! Adult: £6, Children: £3

Shakespaw Cat Cafe

 I just love this idea it originates from Taiwan and is very popular in Japan. Basically, the Cat Cafe is like a hotel for kitties, they live here, and this is their home. The cafe provides a service so that people who are unable to keep their own pets or may not want the responsibility can interact with cats.

The front of the Shakespaw Cat Cafe in Stratford. A white brick building wth the doors and trim in blue

You book a time and go enjoy lunch or a cream tea with some friendly moggies and get all the cat-loving you need and help animals at the same time – what could be better?

The Old Thatch Tavern

The Old Thatch is the oldest pub in Stratford upon Avon. Located in the heart of the city it’s very close to all the Shakespeare sites so you can drop by for a pint or two and rest.

The medieval white tip tilty building of the Old Thatch Tavern with its half-timbered exterior and thatch roofed

Built in 1470 ghost stories abound on this old ground including a murky tale of murder, on Christmas Day 1795, the spirit of victim Joseph Pinfield continues to haunt the place to this day.

Serving traditional English food like bangers and mash, fish and chips mushy peas and homemade pies you can be assured of great comfort food.

Magic Alley

The Magic Alley shop for all things wizardry and Harry Potter filled with wands, spells, broomsticks, dragon eggs and even butterbeer the Magic Alley is a must stop for all muggles. Like Yorkshire, they love Harry Potter here in Stratford.

For Harry Potter fans the Magic Alley shop in a medieval building with half timbers and trimmed in red


There’s even an Enchanted Manor Museum where the magic of storytelling is housed. It’s an interactive puzzle trail exploring the world of fairies, wizards, time travel, and pirates based on the best-selling series “The Chronicles of Wizard’s Thatch”.

The Enchanted Manor is also an atmospheric performance space that hosts magicians, storytellers and travelling theatre productions. 

 Stratford-upon-Avon Butterfly Farm

If you love all insects, crawly things and in particular butterflies then this the Stratford butterfly Farm is the place for you. With waterfalls, tropical plants, ponds and a giant greenhouse to wander through filled with beautiful butterflies.

A beautiful black and white butterfly sits on a peach coloured hibiscus flower

 You can see a butterfly lifecycle in the Discovery Room. Watch stick insects, ants and beetles make their life in Minibeast Metropolis and check out spiders in Arachnoland – home to the world’s largest spider.


The town’s famous row of Almshouses was founded at the beginning of the 15th century by the Guild of the Holy Cross for elderly locals. Standing alongside both the Guild Chapel and the King Edward VI Grammar School, the Alms Houses have now been converted into modern flats.

The famous almshouses of Stratford built in the 15the century. They are white buildings with black timbered beams and leaded glass windows

Harvard House

Harvard House is a magnificent white and black Elizabethan townhouse and perhaps the most ornate landmark of its kind in Stratford upon Avon. Rebuilt following the town’s infamous Great Fire in 1594, the Harvard House was formerly owned by the grandparents of the founder of America’s acclaimed Harvard University. The house and its enormous collection of valuable antiques are now actually owned by Harvard University, although managed on the university’s behalf by the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust. The house is usually opened to the public for special occasions.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Stratford upon Avon hotels

Doubletree by Hilton Stratford upon Avon: In the heart of historic Stratford-upon-Avon, the award-winning The DoubleTree is a boutique hotel that is just a 10-minute walk from the Royal Shakespeare Theatre. there is a great restaurant Quills on site that offers pre-theatre dining and the hotel is within an hour’s drive of The Cotswolds and the Malvern Hills.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Hotel Indigo Stratford-upon-Avon has a great location in the centre of this picturesque town. A wide range of restaurants, pubs, shops and historic Shakespearean sites are just a couple of minutes walk away. The hotel is a Tudor design with modern interiors and is a 5-minute walk from the Royal Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford-Upon-Avon.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Crowne Plaza Stratford upon Avon is a riverside hotel near Shakespeare’s birthplace in Stratford-upon-Avon town centre. The hotel offers modern rooms, a heated swimming pool and a riverside terrace. Stratford-upon-Avon Train Station is just 1.6 km away. The hotel is a 5-minute stroll along the River Avon to the Royal Shakespeare Company and The Swan Theatre. This hotel is set in landscaped gardens beside the River Avon, 42.6 km from Birmingham Airport and a 10-minute drive from the M40 motorway. There’s on-site car parking and the town centre is a 2-minute walk away.

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Tour of Stratford-upon-Avon

Stratford has several walking tours that cost between 5 and 10 Sterling. The Town Walk goes every day even on Christmas Day. The Ghost Walk (Saturdays and Halloween) is entertainment with a difference, exploring Stratford’s darker history.  Good old-fashioned storytelling. The guides are professional entertainers and deliver the Ghost Walk in their own unique style.

Discover the Stratford town ghost, ancient creaky buildings seeping with tales of ghosts, witches, murder and misery.  Hear about the witch who lived in a slum, a 17th-century haunted tearoom, the theatre ghost and a jilted bride.

You can also arrange private tours for small and large groups, on a day and time of choice.  In addition to the Town Walk and Ghost Walk, how about a ‘Town Walk with ghost stories’, or a non-Shakespeare walk ‘Walking Without Will’ (no mention of William Shakespeare).

Shakespeare’s England Explorer Pass – 3 Day Pass

The Explorer Pass is an added value pass giving you the flexibility to visit top attractions in Warwickshire and beyond! Pick a pass duration that matches your visit and simply show your Explorer Pass at any attraction including entering for free. It is sightseeing made easy! Please note a number of the attractions included with The Explorer Pass currently require you to pre-book your visit. You will be emailed instructions on how to do this upon purchase.

Read more about Shakespeare’s England Explorer Pass – 3 Day Pass

28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon

Stratford-Upon-Avon Audio Walking Tour: Shakespeare’s Life

Take a day trip out of London and explore Stratford-upon-Avon. Discover the secrets of this charming medieval town and the history of William Shakespeare with this immersive guide!  Guided by an expert literature historian on this self-guided tour, we’ll visit the most famous historic buildings and beautiful architecture.

We’ll hear the secret stories about Shakespeareʼs life, and learn about the tales, mysteries and family drama that live on in this quaint market town.  Experience iconic key attractions, such as the popular Shakespeare’s Tudor-era house, Shakespeare’s Birthplace & Schoolroom, the Guildhall and the Holy Trinity Church where you’ll find Shakespeare’s grave. Finish the tour by visiting the Swan Theatre and Royal Shakespeare Company to cap off this cultural adventure in this must-see picturesque town.  Note: This is a self-guided audio walking tour and does not include entrance tickets

Read more about Stratford-Upon-Avon Audio Walking Tour: Shakespeare’s Life

That’s not an exhaustive list of things to do in Stratford upon Avon it is a town that you could spend a week in and still have things to discover. The entire county of Warwickshire has a huge amount to offer including Warwick Castle which is only 15 minutes away or even Kenilworth Castle at 22 minutes away and if you don’t fancy that well there are plenty of canalside pubs to visit.

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Have you been to Stratford upon Avon? If you have what is your favourite Shakespearean quote? Mine is…

And though she be but little, she is fierce


28 things to do in Stratford upon Avon


  • Faith was born in Ireland raised in Canada and has lived in over 10 countries in Europe including England, Ireland, Scotland, France, Spain, Northern Ireland, Wales, along with Mexico, Antigua, the US and has slow travelled to over 40 countries around the world. Graduating with a degree in Anthropology and Women's Studies Faith is a student of history, culture, community and food and has written about these topics for over 40 years.

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