There are a myriad of attractions in Stratford-
For a taste of real history visit the properties run by the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust. Shakespeare’s birthplace still stands as a traditional 17 th century Tudor house, and Anne Hathaway’s cottage and garden is a must visit and the properties are all ideal for children to enjoy and to discover how people used to live.
If you do wish to visit the theatre then The Royal Shakespeare Company has reopened the Royal Shakespeare and Swan Theatres following a four year redevelopment as part of the £112.8 million Transformation project designed to bring actors and audiences closer together. The Company opened its doors to the Royal Shakespeare and Swan Theatres in November 2010, inviting people in to rediscover and explore the building, which includes a brand new 1,000 seat thrust stage auditorium, 36 metre high Tower, new exhibition spaces, new places to eat and drink, restored 1930's features and improved public areas including the new Weston Square.
Away from the Shakespeare attractions is the amazing Stratford Butterfly Farm, which houses butterflies from around the world in an exotic setting filled with ponds and waterfalls. This is the perfect place for families to visit whatever the weather and walk amongst hundreds of tropical butterflies flying freely around in the landscape of a tropical greenhouse. In addition to the butterflies there is Insect City where you can view giant beetles, a colony of leaf cutting ants and stick insects amongst others. For the bolder visitor there is also Arachnoland which includes the worlds largest bird eating spider, measuring up to 25 cm across, and scorpion colonies. Alternatively, for somewhere to relax and enjoy the scenery take a trip on a rowing boat on the River Avon, or an open top tour bus across town.
Stratford is also an ideal base to enjoy the delights not only of Shakespeare's hometown, but also the nearby surrounding shire counties of Oxfordshire, Worcestershire and Gloucestershire. Enjoy Blenheim Palace and the Cotswolds to the south, Worcester and the Malverns to the west, Warwick Castle and Henley in Arden to the north, and all within an hour's journey of Stratford itself. Also, the Heritage Motor Centre motor museum in Warwickshire is home to the world’s largest collection of historic British cars and has great days out for the family with children’s activity packs. They have free guided museum tours twice a day (not on some event days) and activities including a children’s play area, picnic site and Land Rover Experience. Other attractions ideal for families include Hatton Country World and Kenilworth Castle.
Looking for place to stay........................
The ideal place to stay is the Stratford Manor Hotel. Set in 21 acres of landscaped tended grounds, the whole family will love this friendly hotel which boasts a large indoor swimming pool and superb dining. They have spacious family rooms and a well run kids club ‘Quackers’ and special kids dining menu during the main holidays. Ideally located five miles from Stratford town centre, they offer family packages that include tickets to one of the many attractions in the area including Warwick Castle, Butterfly World, Gaydon Heritage Motor Centre and all five of Shakespeare’s houses.