The 16 counties of Central England have it all, dramatic countryside, the Peak District, the National Forest, Sherwood Forest, the Grand Union Canal plus loads of history, culture, modern cities and a wonderful choice of holiday cottages. Lincolnshire is best known for its seaside resorts, Skegness in particular, but inland are large expanses of unspoilt countryside and nature with a great choice of self-catering holiday cottages. Rutland in spite of being the smallest county in England boasts vast lakes and tasty local gastro pubs. If you want picturesque villages and romantic deer parks try a holiday cottage in Northamptonshire. To combine old and new, urban and rural, head for Nottinghamshire and take your turn in a jousting festival celebrating Robin Hood.
Derbyshire is home to the spectacular Peak District, a magnet for lovers of the outdoors, but there is also a wealth of history, grand castles and stately homes. Staffordshire has great attractions including theme parks, galleries, cathedrals, castles and stately homes plus nature reserves and landscaped parks. In contrast Leicestershire is known for its battlefields, Saxon cathedrals, and medieval guild halls and has more than its fair share of water.
The West Midlands is packed with exhibition centres, theatres, shopping malls, international cuisine as well as woodlands and wetlands to explore. In the heart of Shakespeare’s England is Warwickshire, step back in time and visit half timbered houses, canals and gastro pubs. Buckinghamshire mixes up manor houses, the Chiltern landscape, medieval villages, coaching inns, Grand Prix racing circuits and Olympic rowing lakes! The most popular destinations in Hertfordshire are St Albans Cathedral, the Warner Bros. Studio Tour London, Cassiobury Park and the De Havilland Aircraft Museum. As well as Oxford’s spires, ancient books and cobbled lanes the Oxfordshire countryside is magical and includes the Cotswolds and Chilterns. Moving on the Cotswolds also spread into Gloucestershire and in the west of the county is the Forest of Dean where you may spot a wild boar. Herefordshire and Shropshire are two of the most sparsely populated counties in England so perfect to get away from it all. They are both home to stunning countryside and a wealth of fascinating history and culture. Worcestershire is home to some of England’s most important history with Norman and Gothic architecture. Head for the Malvern Hills for lovely walks, fabulous views and look out for the unusual towers and follies.
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