If you’re looking for a pretty little place for a quiet retreat, look no further than Broadway in Worcestershire. Nestled within the beautiful English Cotswolds region, you’ll find the picture postcard village of Broadway. It’s a historic village full of picturesque scenery, adorable restaurants and cafes, and quaint architecture. Broadway has a fairly iconic image – rolling country hills, honey coloured Cotswold stone houses, and a chestnut tree lined High Street. It’s also the heart of the Cotswolds, and a perfect spot to begin your adventures through this part of the country.
Wandering around Broadway
Broadway is a beautiful place to visit throughout the year, whether it’s in the summer sunshine or in the heart of the festivities of December. Quite literally a ‘broad way’, you’ll find the main street scattered with boutique stores, delightful restaurants, hotels, and antique stores.
One thing worth doing is simply walking the streets to look at the beautiful houses. These amazing Cotswold stone buildings likely date back to the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and are a real delight.
Broadway itself likely gained prosperity from the wool trade back in medieval times. The village gained a boost in the coaching era when a turnpike road going south to Snowshill was replaced in 1736. Then, a new road was constructed up to Fish Hill. From this point, much traffic was generated through Broadway as a resting point on the way from Worcester to London.
When Broadway was at its busiest, there were over thirty coaching inns lining the iconic High Street. Each provided accommodation and refreshments to the travellers, some of which live on into today. You’ll see evidence of these adorable inns as you walk along the street.
The Lygon Arms
The most famous coaching inn of the eighteenth century is the Lygon Arms, which remains today. Once a manor house, it has hosted some impressive guests. Once, you may have found yourself rubbing shoulders with the likes of Charles I, Oliver Cromwell, Elizabeth Taylor, and Prince Phillip.
Arguably Broadway’s centrepiece, the Lygon Arms on the High Street hides behind a wisteria draped entrance. Inside, it’s just as beautiful, with elegant furniture, mahogany panelled walls, and antiques. Every element of its hotel and restaurants reflect its fascinating history. If you’re a guest at the hotel, you’ll stay in one of 86 plush rooms across three acres of stunning grounds. There are even pamper rooms, a swimming pool, and an award winning restaurant and cocktail bar.
While we were celebrating a special occasion, we popped into the Lygon Bar & Grill for lunch. It was Sunday, after all! Plus I didn’t want to miss out on the incredible things I’d heard about their roast dinners.
All four of us chose the roast beef, served with beef dripping roast potatoes, market vegetables, and Yorkshire pudding. It’s a little on the pricy side, but the food was delicious and the surrounding environment is delightful.
Just across the road from the Lygon Arms, you’ll find Broadway Deli. It’s a beautifully curated delicatessen in a historic building that you must pop inside. Outside, you’ll see a traditional cart topped with a colourful array of fresh fruit and vegetables.
Head inside and it gets even better. Serving Broadway since 2002, visitors can enjoy a breakfast and lunch menu at the cafe, or head to the deli. The shop itself stocks some amazing pantry delights from around the globe and independent retailers.
You can find anything from delicious sandwiches to platters to homemade salads and the freshest of cakes. I really struggled to resist emptying my bank balance on all the amazing treats on offer.
Beyond the Deli, the rest of Broadway has a lot to offer. The village regained popularity in the Victorian era, with visitors such as JM Barrie and Henry James bringing wealth to Broadway. Prominent figures such as these helped transform the old houses to beautiful buildings, many of which you’ll see as you wander.
Pop into the nearby shops along the high street, and don’t miss the Cotswold Chocolate Company, or Cotswold Gin. Towards the quieter upper end of the High Street, you’ll discover the Norman Old Church of St Eadburgha.
How beautiful is this cottage? I want to live here now…
Another iconic spot of the village is Broadway Tower. Although we didn’t make it there this time, it sits high up on the Cotswold hill overlooking the village. It’s the second highest point in the Cotswolds so well worth a climb if you’re after the view.
Broadway’s such a beautiful village that is so worth a visit. If you’re looking for other lovely places to explore in the Cotswolds, don’t miss Bourton-on-the-Water.
There’s my guide to Broadway in the Cotswolds! Where are your favourite spots in the Cotswolds?