Stratford is the birthplace of William Shakespeare who was born here in 1564. There are 5 houses linked to Shakespeare and his family and each offers a unique experience of the Stratford world in which the famous dramatist was born, worked and was buried. Stratford is also home to the Royal Shakespeare Company and its ‘Courtyard Theatre’ in which you can take a backstage tour. Of course, as well as all things Shakespeare, the 800 year old scenic market town has a number of other attractions so if you are more interested in music, sport, movies or dining out there is plenty to keep you busy. The town is also a pleasant place to stay to take in nearby attractions such as Warwick and Kenilworth Castles to the north, and the picturesque Cotswolds region to the south.
Visit Britain's Show me Britain Stratford Episode
Shakesepeare Houses, Stratford
The Shakespeare properties: include his birthplace at Henley Street, where he also grew up, which also includes an exhibition on his life; Anne Hathaway’s Cottage – where he courted his wife; his mother Mary Arden’s Farm, Hall’s Croft – where his daughter lived; and New Place – where Shakespeare ended his days. They are open all the year round and feature rare period furnishings and domestic items of the day.
Holy Trinity Church
Holy Trinity Church, Stratford
Holy Trinity Church, possibly the most visited church in Britain is where Shakespeare is buried.
Royal Shakespeare Theatre
Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford
The Royal Shakespeare Company have been performing his works in his home town since the 19th century. The Royal Shakespeare Theatre have performances here daily which enable audiences and performers to participate in his work in a 1000 seat space Shakespeare would have approved of.
Swan Theatre, Stratford
The Royal Shakespeare Company also perform at the Swan Theatre which has a daily production of another of the Bard's great works. It shares a foyer and box office with the larger Royal Shakespeare Theatre but has a much more intimate feel with only 450 seats.
Sightseeing Bus Tours
Sightseeing Bus, Stratford on Avon
Sightseeing tours of the town can be taken on a hop-on hop-off bus, or you can take a boat cruise down the Avon River. Both give a full commentary.
What's in the area?
Warwick Castle, Warwick
Warwick Castle is a well preserved medieval castle set on a grassy embankment, with huge towers and ramparts. Despite being commercialised, the sense of history and informative displays make it a ‘must see’,
Kenilworth Castle, Warwick
Kenilworth Castle is not as popular as nearby Warwick, but is far less commercial and great in it's own right. A great audio tour enables you to wander through the dramatic ruins at your own pace. English Heritage
Alcester, Central England
The ancient market town of Alcester, set amid the gently rolling hills of Shakespeare Country is just eight miles west of Stratford-upon-Avon. It has a fine selection of historic buildings, pubs and tearooms.
Shipston on Stour
Shipston on Stour, Stratford
Shipston on Stour was once an important centre of the wool trade. Today the market town has many houses dating back to the 17th century and is an attractive town for browsing around.
chipping Campden, Cotswolds
Chipping Campden just 11 miles south of Stratford is the closest Cotswolds town, and has a wonderful 17th century Market Hall with elaborate timber roof and gables. St James Church is also well worth a visit. Other Cotswolds towns close by include Broadway and Moreton-in-the-Marsh. (See Cotswolds page for more information)