Getaway to Blissful Tranquility: Our Family Weekend in the Cotswolds

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Who doesn’t love a weekend away from the crowded city life, with nature, sunshine and fresh air? The Cotswolds is the perfect location for a family weekend.

Planning the Perfect Family & Dog-Friendly Getaway

While when we travel to Italy it’s now impossible to take Amber with us, when we travel through the UK then it’s absolutely a must to choose a destination and an accommodation that suits us, but also her. She’s 11 now, so even more tricky to pick a place! Yet she loves exploring new places, she really brightens up and loves the smells and the dew and the cooling grass on her tummy. It makes me happy to see her so bouncy too, and makes it worthwhile.

Basset fauve de bretagne close up

Exploring the Cotswolds Together

The Cotswolds are a gorgeous area of the UK; there is so much to see and do, and the villages – in their typical honey coloured stone houses – are picturesque and pretty. We have been here a few times before, but not since before COVID, so a visit was overdue.

We picked Broadway again: not only the small town is stunning and offers enough to spend a few days, it is also coveniently located. Amongst the things we did was a sunset trip to Broadway tower, impromptu: it was fantastic, with plenty of people enjoying the late golden hour and the gentle breeze, the views over the Malvern Hills and the deers.

Sunset at Broadway Tower

I also followed a church trail, visiting the saxon Odda’s Chapel and nearby mindblowing romanesque Deerhurst church, paying a repeat visit to Hayles Abbey and the RollRight Stones amongst others.

St Michael’s at Great Tew, beautiful church in a peaceful location

We also of course enjoyed a bit of time at the large Broadway playground, perfect for families!

Broadway Foodie Stops

Not wishing to spend extra with hotel breakfast, we had one breakfast at cute Broadway Deli meeting the lovely Sue from Netherton Foundry, a second at coffee shop and bakery Otis & Belle and finally a delicious, lovely cooked breakfast at N32. All these places are dog friendly and within a short walk from the Lygon.

We enjoyed an evening dinner at the Broadway Hotel (in a room where all tables had a dog – which was sweet and hilarious); we also drove to nearby Willersley where we enjoyed a simple but tasty meal at the friendly Bell pub. One lunchtime between church visits and family friends, we stopped at a farm shop along the route, but let’s just say it wasn’t worth a mention!

Unwinding and Relaxing as a Family at the Lygon Arms

When we were here years ago we hired a lovely self catering cottage; this time for our Cotswolds family weekend we treated ourselves to the beautiful, historic, Lygon Arms hotel.

The hotel is located in the middle of Broadway, and is a period building with plenty of charm, dog and family friendly. It has outdoor space with food and drinks service, two car parks and an extensive, manicured series of gardens which are perfect to walk the dog and to seek some tranquility.

Amber in the sun at the Lygon Arms

Steeped in over 600 years of fascinating history, the Lygon Arms hotel has been host to royalty as well as notable rebellious figures throughout the centuries.

We had opted for the cheapest type of room (at almost £400 a night for 3 of us and the dog). These are, in my view, the most unique as they are housed in the main hotel block and are the oldest. Wood beams, wonky floors, ancient hidden passages and small windows to the outside.

We had all the necessary comforts, but oddly no mini bar (useful for keeping wet dog food) and, being two floors up, not ideal with an elderly dog, which meant we had to carry her up and down most of the times. Still, we had a dog bed, bowl, treats and poo bags in the room with us.

The hotel has a number of restaurants, all with local celeb chef James Martin behind. It’s possible to dine with dogs in the lounge, the outside terraces and the bar area, so plenty of options. There is even a dog menu! We had one dinner in the Grill and while we found the quality excellent and the portions abundant, overall the prices are possibly even more expensive than central London so we opted to dine out the rest of the weekend.

We made the most of the onsite pool which allows family time twice a day and the small gym, too; their use is included in the room’s cost and adds to the value of staying here of course.

Antique artworks in the Lygon Arms: portrait of basset fauves!

Overall the hotel is stunning, with friendly service, and as a treat, was the perfect choice.


There is so much to see! from the MotorMuseum in Bourton on the Water to medieval churches, from the steam railway to pub dining and country walks, the Cotswolds are an area that offer something for everyone, and one that I never tire of visiting.

“Tolkien Door” in Stow on the Wold

Packing Essentials

Of course, moving humans and a dog requires some planning in packing. We had sunglasses and wellies, wolly hats and teeshirts. For the dog specifically, you might wish to take:

  • dry food and any wet food ideally in single portions packets
  • a portable bed
  • treats and dental sticks
  • poo bags
  • leads and harnesses
  • a soft toy to make the dog feel at home
  • water bottle and bowls


A long Cotswolds family weekend is never enough to explore everything, but just as well – always an excuse to come back!

Do you feel inspired to visit? Let me know in the comments!

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