England is known for some of the most beautiful and charming villages in the world. The stone cottages, country walks, quaint pubs, and serene beauty evoke the romance of an era gone by. These beautiful villages in England will provide an ideal backdrop for a relaxing escape.
Here are some of the most charming villages in England to visit, that are known for their colors, pretty harbors, and cobbled stone streets.
Table of Contents
- Most Beautiful Villages in England to visit
- 1. Ombersley, Worcestershire
- 2. Snowshill, Gloucestershire
- 3. Muker, North Yorkshire
- 4. Upper Swell, Gloucestershire
- 5. Broadway, Worcestershire
- 6. Beesands, Devon
- 7. Grasmere, Cumbria
- 8. Broad Campden, Gloucestershire
- 9. Kingham, Oxfordshire
- 10. Mousehole, Cornwall
- 11. Stanton, Gloucestershire
- 12. Hope Cove, Doven
- 13. Polperro, Cornwall
- 14. Castle Combe, Wiltshire
- 15. Hawkshead, Cumbria
- 16. Burford, Oxfordshire
- 17. Whitby, North Yorkshire
- 18. Cerne Abbas, Dorset
- 19. Minster Lovell, Oxfordshire
- 20. Cartmel, Cumbria
- 21. Clovelly, North Devon
- 22. Rye, East Sussex
- 23. Flamborough, Yorkshire
- 24. Robin Hood’s Bay, North York Moors
- 25. Aylesford, Kent
- Looking More Beyond England? Other Beautiful Villages in the UK
- Portree, Isle of Skye
- Portmeirion, Gwynedd
- Final Thoughts
- How many villages are there in England?
- What are the best Cotswolds villages to visit?
- What are the best villages near South Downs to visit?
- What are the best villages in Gloucestershire to visit?
Most Beautiful Villages in England to visit
1. Ombersley, Worcestershire
Ombersley is a historic, charming village and is loaded with beautiful tiered houses and holiday cottages from the Jacobean and Elizabethan periods.
It is known for its beautiful black and white architecture and a mind-blowing country setting between the Shropshire Hills Area and The Malvern Hills.
There are several shops, friendly pubs, and restaurants in the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It is an ideal destination for those who want to enjoy fishing, golf, and serene moments. It tops the list of the prettiest villages to visit in England.
The village is easy to reach and is located at a distance of 2.5 hours from London and 1.5 hours from Oxford.
Ombersley is the perfect weekend getaway destination with your family.
2. Snowshill, Gloucestershire
Located in the Cotswold hills, Snowshill is known for its stone cottages and a charming Victorian church. The unspoiled village is famous for its charm and stunning countryside.
It is a picturesque location with a lavender field and the Snowshill Manor, which is a National Trust property. It has a huge collection of musical instruments, furnishings, and toys of Charles Wade’s. These pieces were collected by architect Charles Paget Wade during the 1900s.
It is one of the most picture-perfect villages in England to visit. The Arts and Crafts style gardens have been arranged in a unique combination of ponds and terraces that form outdoor rooms, with excellent scents and bright colors.
This quaint English village is also home to Snowshill Lavender which is a 35-acre farm of lavender fields where you will also be able to purchase local crafts, plants, and lavender products.
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3. Muker, North Yorkshire
Muker is surrounded by beautiful green fields and has protected wildflower meadows. This gorgeous village in North Yorkshire is extremely cute and is ideal for a romantic getaway.
It is a civil parish that includes the villages and hamlets of Keld, Angram, Birkdale, Thwaite, West Stonesdale, and Tan Hill Inn, which is the highest in England.
It has 18th century stone barns, a village tea shop, drystone walls, pubs, and a lovely atmosphere at all times.
Muker Show is held each year on the first Wednesday of September. This is a must add to your UK bucket list.
4. Upper Swell, Gloucestershire
A classic Cotswolds huddle comprising of golden stone cottages, Upper Swell is a beautiful place. It has a 12th century Norman church and a river that runs through it. The quaint, small hamlet is located near the town of Stow on the Wold and it provides a range of walking and biking routes through the countryside.
It is located in the Cotswold district west of the town of Stow-on-the-Wold.
The village has River Dikler running through it. It is a very peaceful village with less population. You can enjoy long walks here amidst the natural beauty and peaceful surroundings.
5. Broadway, Worcestershire
Broadway in Worcestershire has outstanding architecture and an art scene that lures tourists from across the globe. It is known as the “Jewel of the Cotswold”. The village has limestone buildings that line the picturesque streets and house independent shops.
It is known for cute tea rooms, galleries, and cozy pubs. Broadway has everything you need on a romantic escape.
At Broadway, you can eat, shop and enjoy. This village is a center for antiques and arts and serves as a base from which to explore the Cotswolds.
It has many well-preserved buildings that attract several visitors throughout the year.
There are many local attractions including the Gordon Russell Museum, the Ashmolean Museum Broadway, and the Tudor House.
It remains one of the most popular villages in England to visit.
6. Beesands, Devon
The tiny fishing village of Beesands has a huge shingle beach and exceptional views of Start Bay. It houses some of the best gastropubs, known for mouth-watering crab sandwiches.
Other local highlights include an Anglican church dedicated to St. Andrew, coastal strolls, and a freshwater lake. A huge freshwater lake known as Widdecombe Ley lurks behind the beach. It attracts animals and birds.
Popular activities here are sailing, windsurfing, and surfing.
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7. Grasmere, Cumbria
Grasmere is popular across the world. It is the home of the famous poet William Wordsworth. This picturesque village is one of the most popular villages in Cumbria and is a treasure-filled place.
Grasmere has a unique handmade chocolate boutique, a very famous gingerbread shop, and a range of scenic places to visit. Grasmere is a village for individuals of all ages.
You will never get bored here. Each year on Saturday around St Oswald’s Day, there is a celebration known as Rushbearing Festival.
From the end of July to the start of September, there is a Lake Artists Society Summer Exhibition which is an opportunity for local artists to display their work. There are about 300 exhibits on display.
8. Broad Campden, Gloucestershire
One of the lesser-known villages in England, Broad Campden is located in the rolling hills and serene country walks.
It is known for its enchanting holiday cottages and mind-blowing countryside views.
Broad Campden has a small parish church with an unusual round bell-cote. This picturesque village is unspoiled and tranquil.
It is home to the oldest meeting house in use in the country and is popular for its beauty and walking trails.
9. Kingham, Oxfordshire
Kingham was named “England’s Favorite Village” in 2004 because of the storybook looks and the wide-open greens.
It has a vibrant community spirit and this beautiful village is filled with limestone holiday cottages.
It is an ideal mix of bucolic charm and comfort.
10. Mousehole, Cornwall
Mousehole is undoubtedly the prettiest village in Cornwall. It has a maze of narrow lanes that are framed by idyllic stone houses.
You will notice various local eateries around here and during December, the harbor is illuminated with beautiful Christmas lights. It lies in the Cornwall Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and is a must-see village.
The good news is that if you’re heading in from London, you can make for a pretty routine road trip to Cornwall.
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11. Stanton, Gloucestershire
Stanton is carved from the honey-colored Jurassic limestone. It is a sleepy, idyllic village that has kept its timeless charm intact.
When in Stanton, head to At The Mount, is a 17th-century pub where English meals are accompanied by locally brewed ale and mesmerizing views of the Vale of Evesham.
You will see many cottages with thatched roofs.
The village was known as “arguably the most beautiful Cotswold village of them all” by The Daily Telegraph in 2017. Huffington Post called it “one of the prettiest and idyllic unspoiled villages of the Cotswolds.”
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12. Hope Cove, Doven
Hope Cove located in South Hams is a seaside retreat and is one of the best coastal villages in England to visit.
It attracts tourists for the clean sandy beaches, the thatched cottages, and the laidback vibe. This historic village offers stunning coastline views.
This beautiful village is sheltered by the Bolt Tail and consists of two different communities – Inner Hope and Outer Hope.
Mouthwell Sands on the north is the nearest beach to the parking. There is a longer Harbour beach that sits to its south and they are conveniently accessible. Hence, both can be explored easily.
The beaches are ideal for families and great for sunbathing and sandcastles on the south coast of England. There are several other picture-perfect villages along the south coast, so consider taking a boat trip in summer to explore the breathtaking landscapes.
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13. Polperro, Cornwall
Undoubtedly one of the prettiest villages in Cornwall, Polperro is a picturesque location. It is a maze of ancient fishermen’s houses that cling to the steep hillside around the picture-perfect harbor.
There are seafood restaurants, shops, and traffic-free streets. You can enjoy spectacular views of the beaches from the coastal footpaths. It is an ideal destination to travel with kids.
The unspoiled fishing village has River Pol running through it and is a known destination for the summer months.
It has an idyllic appearance with packed and ancient fishermen’s houses that are untouched just like the attractive coastline. It is indeed one of the most beautiful villages in England to visit.
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14. Castle Combe, Wiltshire
Castle Combe is known as one of the most picturesque villages in England all for a reason. The Cotswold hamlet will make you feel like you are stepping back in time.
There are old cottages built from pale local stone and it is easy to explore on foot. It is one of the most beautiful villages in England. This quaint village will give you all the peace and serenity you are searching for.
There are two parts of the village. The first one is a narrow valley of the By Brook and the other is the Upper Castle Combe, on the higher ground to the east.
You can also find a motor racing circuit in the south of the upper village.
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15. Hawkshead, Cumbria
Hawkshead is located in the heart of the Lake District of England. It is a mix of whitewashed houses and courtyards. This village attracts tourists to the Lake District area. It is known for the archways that are huddled around the central square.
Hawkshead village centre has tearooms, winding streets, old pubs, and unique shops that make it one of the most beautiful of Lake District area villages.
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16. Burford, Oxfordshire
At one time, Burford was a wealthy wool trade center. It now attracts visitors from across the world due to its pubs, antique shops, surrounding countryside, boutique country inns and charming cottages.
It is one of the best villages in England and has picture-perfect architecture from the 15th century. There are half-timbered buildings and limestone houses.
There are several things to see and do in Burford including the Tolsey Museum, Burford walking tour, Church, Kilkenny Lane Country Park, and Church of St Oswald.
17. Whitby, North Yorkshire
Located on the North Yorkshire coast, this village is one of the favorite towns by the sea in Britain. It has an interesting mix of Goth culture and a seaside charm.
Some of its most famous attractions include the ruins of Whitby Abbey that once served as inspiration for Dracula.
This village is also home to beaches, shops, cobbled streets, and some of the best fish and chips in Yorkshire. This seaside town is known for its media, culture, and sport. It also has a very strong literary tradition.
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18. Cerne Abbas, Dorset
Cerne Abbas is popular for the 180 ft naked giant carved in the chalk landscape. However, there is more to the village.
It revolves around the ruins of the 10th-century abbey and is packed with interesting architecture and country pubs.
19. Minster Lovell, Oxfordshire
Located on the River Windrush, this village looks like it is straight out of a fairytale. There are ivy-covered cottages surrounded by thatched roofs and a long, single street.
You will see the stunning riverside ruins of the manor house and a traditional pub called Old Swan that serves good ale beer by the log fire.
20. Cartmel, Cumbria
Cartmel is steeped in tradition and known for its 12th-century priory. This is one of the most beautiful villages near Lake District National Park.
Most tourists visit the village of Cartmel, which is now home to sticky toffee pudding, straight from there. Thanks to coffee and sheep cheese, the settlements become a culinary destination fast.
21. Clovelly, North Devon
Clovelly is a well-known village in North Devon along the coast on the west end of England. This charming village is located on a clifftop beneath an abruptly plunging rock face.
Built-in the 14th century, the harbor is still used today. The best part?
In this charming seaside village in North Devon, visitors will not have to worry about being hit by cars when they explore this heartwarming town, instead, they’ll have to give way for donkeys and sleds – no motorized vehicles are permitted.
It’s encircled by thickly wooded acres that lead to the water while cottages with vibrant glass windows are nestled in among colorful glass-roofed homes.
The picturesque village of Clovelly has been protected and preserved for years and remains a popular tourist destination. It was once a fishing village and still has many links to its past.
22. Rye, East Sussex
Rye in East Sussex had a busy past full of smuggling and maritime conflicts. Today, obviously this beautiful village is a peaceful place to visit and explore.
A visit can be made to a vast expanse of winding streets and tunnels, quirky shops, walking trails, and medieval pubs. It should be very entertaining for anyone looking to get away from city life.
Check booking options for hotels, self-catered holiday homes, or idyllic cottages in Rye by checking prices on Booking.com.
23. Flamborough, Yorkshire
Flamborough Village is on Flamborough Head, a rocky outcrop in the North Sea. These white cliffs are among England’s highest, attracting puffins. However, sea birds aren’t the only creatures that live on this side of the Atlantic.
Aside from animal viewing, you may take extended coastal walks, or history fans will appreciate the Flamborough lighthouses offering stunning scenery that cannot be missed.
This is a must-stop on your way to the North York Moors if you are coming from southern England.
Find a place to stay in Yorkshire and go deeper into this lovely part of England.
24. Robin Hood’s Bay, North York Moors
The atmospheric coastal village of Robin Hood’s Bay on the windswept North York Moors is one of England’s most beautiful villages.
The tranquil, pretty village clings on a sharp hill that sweeps down to a wide sandy shore littered with fossils.
Visitors can spend an entire day leisurely meandering throughout the gorgeous little village, which is encircled by colorful house windows and architectural elements.
This delightful English village has a couple of friendly pubs and restaurants and for a room with incredible views, choose to stay at the Bay Hotel located perched on the end of the beach.
Hike along portions of North York’s Coast Path that run through the town and look for fossils on the beach, or go to Coastguard stations to learn more about the area’s history.
25. Aylesford, Kent
The picturesque village of Aylesford is situated on the River Medway in Kent. An ancient medieval 5-arch bridge provides access to the settlement. This medieval village is characterized by several historic buildings, including thatched barns and a 1242-year-old monastery.
The city also has some of the greatest undamaged courtyard houses in this nation’s history, as well as the finest preserved medieval courts. The city is known as England’s garden, but it is also recognized for its picturesque and lovely buildings.
There are a few hotels and stone cottages available for rent, so check prices on Booking.com to plan your tranquil haven of a holiday.
Looking More Beyond England? Other Beautiful Villages in the UK
Portree, Isle of Skye
Portress is located around a scenic bay on the Isle of Skye. It is one of the charming villages of Scotland.
Portress is a growing cultural center but a tiny fishing village at heart. It is one of the most mesmerizing villages in the UK.
There are green hills and rainbow-colored houses that surround this harbor. It is the largest town and the main village in Scotland.
It has a harbor with a pier and other attractions that celebrate the Gaelic heritage of the island.
Portmeirion is an Italian-style village that was designed by British architect Sir Clough Williams-Ellis in the 20th century. It is one of the oldest villages in North Wales. Some pastel-colored buildings and cobbles are clustered around the little plaza.
There is a resort that sits on a private peninsula on the coast of North Wales. It has a Mediterranean atmosphere and is surrounded by lush gardens. It gives a unique feel of the various countryside villages in the UK that make each region so unique in this legendary country.
This pretty village has served as a location for various television shows and movies over the years.
In addition, the small village of Portmeirion has an impressive romantic architecture that can be seen in the beautiful buildings as well as the surrounding rolling hills.
One can correctly say that England is not only about big cities and high-rise buildings. There is so much more to England that can only be discovered in its charming villages.
If you want to soak in the natural beauty and get a feel of old English towns, head to one of the charming, beautiful villages in England on your next trip.
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How many villages are there in England?
In England, there are approximately 6,116 small villages and communities with a population of less than 7,500.
What are the best Cotswolds villages to visit?
Some of the most picturesque villages you might like to visit in Cotswolds include Broadway, Stanton, Minster Lovell, Bibury and Chipping Campden.
What are the best villages near South Downs to visit?
The prettiest villages in England that are nearest the South Downs National Park would be Chichester, Midhurst, Petworth and Bognor.
What are the best villages in Gloucestershire to visit?
These are the prettiest villages in Gloucestershire to visit: Cam, Chedworth and Clyffe Pypard.
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