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A characterful 17th-century boutique coaching inn nestled in the heart of the Cotswolds

Stow-on-the-Wold is a lovely part of the world, a pretty market town in the heart of Gloucestershire and the Cotswolds – home to The Old Stocks, a recently refurbished 17th-century coaching inn. Its traditional charm has been retained, but the 16 stylish bedrooms now blend old and new, with original features mixing seamlessly with contemporary design.

In the mood for going all out? Opt for one of their 'Amazing Great Rooms' (we love number 21, be sure to watch out for the uneven staircase), capacious bedrooms complete with a complimentary minibar and bags of character. The 'Cosy House Rooms' are slightly smaller, tucked away at the top of the hotel – think original beams, soothing colours and views down to the Square or the attractive walled garden (filled with plenty of outdoor seating and a pizza oven). There's also a super cool ‘bunker’ family option – as well as a double bed, this spacious room houses a triple bunk bed and games console, the perfect place to keep kids of all ages occupied. Bigger groups can choose to stay at Parson’s Barn, a period cottage owned by the same people, located just 100 steps away from the hotel. Comfortably sleeping up to six adults and two small children, it’s a wonderful alternative.

Fancy a bite to eat? The on-site restaurant dishes up local and seasonal British cuisine – after a drink in the cosy bar area, enjoy the likes of hearty 12-hour braised rib of Longhorn beef with creamed potato and king oyster mushrooms, or crab rarebit on toasted sourdough with Waldorf salad. The dinner menu features an array of sophisticated dishes, such as slow-cooked belly of pork with crispy cheek, apple, caremalised shallot and Purity cider. There's also a quirky café next door filled with upcycled furniture – they've partnered up with Bristol-based roaster Extract Coffee.

The area is full of things to do, ranging from adventure days at Batsford Park falconry centre and animal spotting at Bemborough Farm, to a leisurely walk down to Broadwell (be sure to stop in at The Fox Inn for a pint and a snack). Where better to spend some time?

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