No matter where are in the world, chances are, you know about Shakespeare. After all, he’s one of the most prolific and iconic writers in all-time. Hamlet, Romeo & Juliet, Macbeth, and Othello are just some of his works. You may either love him or hate him, bottomline is at the end of the day, Shakespeare’s a household name.
That’s why, though I have sort of lukewarm feelings for Shakespeare’s works (haha!), I was still glad that Stratford-upon-Avon, his birthplace and the place where he spent most of his life, was included in our itinerary.
This isn’t Anne Hathaway’s cottage yet, but this is the place that you will pass by first before seeing it!
Can you spot the Shakesbeare? 😀 So cool that they also have a Monopoly Startford-upon-Avon Edition!
We were already running really late because of the congestion and unexpected traffic reroutes (which seems to be the case all the time during our time in the UK), and we had limited time to really explore Anne Hathaway’s (Shakespeare’s wife, not the actress haha) cottage before we had to get going and move on to Shakespeare’s birthplace and home.
On the way to Anne Hathaway’s cottage there’s this really pretty seat/scupture thing. Behind it is our first glimpse of Anne Hathaway’s pretty cottage.
Anne Hathaway’s cottage. In front of it is a small garden but during our visit it wasn’t fully spring so most of the flowers there weren’t in bloom yet.
The first ‘attraction’ that you’ll see when you enter Anne Hathaway’s cottage would be their kitchen-dining room set-up. No audio guides here, but there are actual real live guides there if you have any questions.
I think this bed is the original one (quite well-preserved maybe?) used by the family of Anne Hathaway ages ago.
Fun fact: Beds were like, the most expensive furniture that a family could own in that time. Like what’s stated above, our guide told us that if you owned a bed (or a number of them), then it signifies your wealth and social standing.
Anyway, also according to our guide, most beds at the time were positioned near windows so that families who own them can flaunt it to passing townspeople. 😀
The laundry room inside Anne Hathaway’s cottage.
After going around Anne Hathaway’s cottage we then hurried over to Shakespeare’s Birthplace. Snapped this photo before we went inside the Shakespeare Centre, which is adjacent to his Birthplace.
Spot anything odd about this photo? Haha, kudos to this guy for really brightening up my day! He saw me taking a photo and he rang his bike’s bell and waved. At first I was too entertained and almost forgot to take a photo. 😀
We were the last guests for that day to get in Shakespeare’s Birthplace – haha, we made it!
Near the courtyard of Shakespeare’s home, on one of the walls were cartoon strips of his works. Didn’t get to examine it closely though but I did manage to get a photo of it.
The courtyard in Shakespeare’s birthplace. Seems like a really nice place to chill. 😀 There are also actors roaming about here and my parents and I actually had a short photo op with one haha.
Inside Shakespeare’s birthplace we go!
“All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages.”
-Shakespeare, “As You Like It”
The opening to my favourite Shakespeare (and one of the most well-known, I wager!) play.
It was interesting to see the place where such an iconic poet and writer lived.
Located on the ground floor was the workshop of John Shakespeare, the father of the famed playwright himself. He was a dealer in hides and wool, and he was also a leather worker and glover by trade so there was a lot of gloves and other bits of fabric and wool on display.
More beds. There was even an infant’s cot in the other room (and another bed if you must know lol).
In the gift shop located inside Shakespeare’s Birthplace, they have various souvenirs but this one caught my eye. So cute!! Look at this Shakesbear (To bear or not to bear, that is the question!). Too bad it was quite pricey though so instead of buying one, I just settled with taking a photo of it haha.
The facade of Shakespeare’s birthplace located at Henley Street, which is one of the oldest streets in Stratford-upon-Avon.
The streets are so nice and very picturesque – can you spot the Subway though, haha, it sorta ruins the old town vibes that the place exudes!
For me, it was still early, but not for the shops around here! Most of them were closing or were closed by the time we finished going around Shakespeare’s Birthplace.
Walking around Stratford-upon-Avon felt like I was in a movie set most of the time – especially when there’s not much people around like when we stumbled upon this quiet street.
One of the few shops that was still open! A store that specialises in Peter Rabbit. Haha, I actually bought one small Peter Rabbit bunny. 😀
Before leaving, I took this last shot of the bronze statue Jester on Henley Street. It’s of Touchstone, the Jester who appears in the play “As You Like It.”
There’s an inscription below the statue which reads:
“O noble fool, a worthy fool – The fool doth think he is wise but a wise man knows himself to be a fool.”
Did I enjoy myself? Of course! Given the chance to go back to Stratford-upon-Avon (or well, to the UK as a whole haha!), I’ll definitely take that chance haha. ❤