A trip to the Cotswolds had been a long time coming for me. I’d always wanted to go since my masters days, but never had the opportunity until 4 years later. This time, we planned it for my birthday. A birthday in the Cotswolds in the fall would be more than enough for me.
The places we visited turned out to be a disappointment, except for the Slaughters. I almost skipped it as I thought I wouldn’t miss much, judging from the experiences with other towns we went to during the trip. H convinced me to go, so I half-heartedly said yes.
If you think of a gory place upon hearing The Slaughters, you couldn’t be more wrong (although, it’s understandable). It is said that the name comes from ‘slohtre’, an Old English word that means slough or muddy place. Although it wasn’t so much of a muddy place today, the name stays.
Lower Slaughter was the highlight of my Cotswolds trip. It’s located just 1 mile away from Bourton-on-the-Water, but the two places couldn’t be more different. While Bourton was full of shops, tea rooms, and tourists with selfie sticks, The Slaughters was idyllic, quaint, and beautiful. There were no shops for tourists to indulge in, and the points of interest were only a church and an old mill, which suited us just fine. This, after all, was what we’d been looking for.
All the houses here were what kids nowadays would say #goals. Made from the Cotswold stones, they added to the quaint vibe of this place. The fall foliage added the perfect amount of colors to the plain yellow walls, and bathed in the afternoon sunshine, this village was nothing short of stunning. Apparently, H shared the same sentiment about the houses, as he said, “We need to get rich so we can buy one of these houses.”
Well, a girl (and a guy) can dream…
There was nothing much to see here, and perhaps that’s why there were no flocks of tourist like there were in the neighboring villages. But this was perfect for H and me, as we were desperate for a downtime to unwind after an incredibly busy week. We spent our time here meandering along the River Eye, serenaded by the birds who were chirping happily that afternoon.
The Old Mill, which was used to produce flour from the time of World War I up until 1958, stood in the corner, upon the River Eye. It was recently restored, but fortunately, they retained the old look. This mill had its own charm, and looking at it, it felt like we were being dragged to the past.
After a while, we retreated to the nearest (and only) pub there, which was no less picturesque than everything else in the village. This place was truly dreamy.
The simplicity and tranquility of Lower Slaughter won our hearts. Humble and unassuming, perhaps it gets the least attention compared to its neighbors, but ironically, this was why it left such a lasting impression.
“So, has this restored your fondness of English villages?” H asked just before we left for Southampton.
I said yes, because thanks to The Slaughters, we left the Cotswolds on such a high note.