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Bilbury or Chipping Camden

We have a car and have 24 hours to visit the Cotswolds. If you could choose one small quaint village - which would you pick? I like the looks of Bilbury and Chipping Camden but am open to others. We are also looking for a small charming B and B . Something cozy, with ceiling beams, quilts, and old English cuteness. Not looking for anything new. Any ideas are sincerely appreciated.

Thank you,

Posted by
1264 posts

Do you mean Bibury? It's certainly attractive and must have featured on a thousand chocolate boxes and tourist brochures. Whenever I've driven through it -not for a few years - however, it was very busy with people, coaches and cars vying with each other to get across the bridge. Parking might be an issue. In the end, there's not much to see once you've taken some photos. Chipping Campden is at least a proper market town, if a small one.

Posted by
28145 posts

Do you mean Bibury - with Arlington Row?

I'm sorry I don't know a Bilbury. (with the "l")

Bibury is very nice, a nice row of houses (with or without a yellow painted vehicle purposely put there to put off tourist photos), a fish pond, a small stream, a pub, a restaurant and lots of tour buses. Not a lot after that though.

Chipping Campden (with the "p") is particularly beautiful (just airbrush out the cars and the tourists, or buy an old photo of the high street a hundred years ago, very scenic) with an ancient butter market, thatch, lashings of Cotswold honey golden stone, tudor and a little later (and a very few tudor revival - means Victorian) little shops, plenty of pubs to suit all tastes, plenty of tea rooms and restaurants, and fabulous church, all set in a beautiful hilly setting, and two top-level world class gardens very close (Kiftsgate and Hidcote Manor Garden).

Both the village and the town have appealing features and plenty of tourists.

Pays your money and takes your choice, says I.

Posted by
1800 posts

While driving ( and lost! ) we came across Bibury. We loved it. It is however very small, but if you can find a place to stay that meets your requirement, I would stay there

Posted by
4197 posts

Bibury is extremely small and other than Arlington Row that takes about an hour to see, it has little to offer. It is close to Cirencester. Chipping Campden is a little larger (but not much), but also has little to offer. At least Chipping Campden is close to towns like Stow on Wold, Broadway, or Stratford upon Avon. The B&B we stayed at in CC is now closed. If I had to choose, I’d choose CC. If visiting off season, there may not be too many tourists.

Posted by
259 posts

Bibury is quaint but, on the day I visited, it was swarmed with tourist buses. I think Bibury is overly hyped. There is little to see there except Arlington Row. On the other hand, Chipping Campden is larger (but not huge), has shops, restaurants, and buildings of architectural interest with lovely gold stone (including the church). I'd pick Chipping Campden any day.

Posted by
6484 posts

I'm going to say Broadway.

The Brook House seems to check your wish list. I've not stayed there but know someone who did. He's pretty persnickety. He was fine with it. But with all accommodation recommends check TripAdvisor for reviews.

If you are hikers enjoy the trek to the Broadway tower. I hiked to it from my stay in Winchcombe. Long wonderful sojourn

In Broadway there are tasty scones at the Tea Set. If memory serves about a 15 minute walk from the B n B.

Good pub grub at the Crown and Trumpet Inn. You can also stay there.

Posted by
635 posts

I used to live in the area and think you might enjoy either Chipping Campden or Broadway.

One fairly upmarket guide for places to stay in the UK is Alastair Sawday's. Here are his listings for that area.

Alastair Sawday Guide

Posted by
213 posts

Lacock and Castle Combe are both very nice. We visited both in September 2016 and there were only a handful of tourists about.
We drove by Bibury and it was packed with tourists. We were staying with friends in Wiltshire and found plenty of delightful villages in the area that were not jam packed with crowds. Seems that if the village isn't in the Cotswolds it doesn't draw much of a crowd.