When it comes to Cotswolds retreats, we love Thyme, the ultimate place to indulge in traditional countryside living. Choose to stay in one of the country-quirky cottages or in one of the bedrooms at the larger Thyme House—either way, you’ll enjoy a traditional village experience for the length of your holiday in the Cotswolds. Better your culinary skills with a class at the in-house Cookery School—this is your chance to take a respite from the city and experience truly indulgent, carefully-curated country living.
Situated in the heart of the countryside, Thyme is just over an hour and forty-five minute drive from central London. The Cotswolds, an area of hills in the west of England, are world-renowned for their bucolic pastures and traditional stone villages. Explore the quintessentially British village of Southrop and enjoy lunch at the award-winning English country pub The Swan, which is part of Thyme and supplied by the kitchen gardens on the estate. At the end of the day, we suggest relaxing in the ‘The Herbalist & Baa’ drawing room at Thyme, before retiring to your own countryside cottage.
The five cottages are furnished with antiques and artwork, much of it by Cotswolds artists, and the buildings themselves have been renovated in the traditional style by Cotswolds craftsmen. Four of the cottages, including the Ox Houses, the Tallet, and the Dairy, are clustered around the courtyard at the front of the renovated barn, while the Old Walls cottage is a few minutes’ walk away in the centre of the village. Thyme House itself has eight bedrooms decorated in a similar style, as well as a dining room, snuggeries, and drawing room. The aforementioned ‘Herbalist & Baa’ is a sumptuous space to relax, adjacent to the Tithe Barn it is open to Thyme’s guests, its quirky ‘sheep element’ a wonderful surprise.
WHY WE LIKE IT
From the décor to the cookery school, Thyme offers an all-encompassing country experience—we love the refined, simple ambience here. If you choose to take a cooking lesson, you might wander through the kitchen garden to really get to know your ingredients before learning the ins and outs of breads, pickles, preserves, and more. We recommend the Instinctive Cook class for a broad overview, or the Tarts and Pies class for a budding baker. This is an opportunity to unwind, enjoy the traditional life, and maybe even pick up some new cooking skills along the way.