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Best Museums in Stratford-upon-Avon

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The British Motor Museum is a vibrant chronicle of the birth, decline, and rebirth of the British motor industry. A series of exhibitions designed in large part for children and their families takes visitors through the history of motoring, from the changing face of roads, to movements in car design, and finally to the role of Britain in the global motor industry. A section of the museum is dedicated to Jaguar and displays some of the company’s most iconic racing and sports cars. It is a treat to simply walk the halls of museum and browse the collection of hundreds of cars from many different eras.

In the heart of the city, is the house where Shakespeare was born in 1564. The entrance to the house is via the visitors' center. Here you will find the highly acclaimed Shakespeare Exhibition. This comprehensive display superbly illustrates the Bard's life and career in the city. Having walked through the exhibition, you emerge into a garden laid out with flowers, trees and shrubs that were familiar to Shakespeare and that were mentioned in his work. The house itself has been faithfully reconstructed and now offers a fascinating insight into Shakespeare's life as a child. Rooms have been furnished as accurately as possible with replicas of 16th Century everyday objects, furniture and textiles having been commissioned. Take yourself back in time and reflect upon the tales that began here.

Originally the home of Shakespeare's parents-in-law, Anne Hathaway's Cottage is a charming, half-timbered, thatched-roof farmhouse. Inhabited by descendants of the Hathaway family until the 19th Century, the cottage still contains items of furniture that used to belong to them. Outside is a fantastic traditional English cottage garden complete with an orchard. Take a stroll through this idyllic setting, perhaps stopping to buy plants and herbs grown by the property's gardeners en route. The Tea Garden provides light refreshments and is open from March to October. Note too that Guide Friday Tours stop at the cottage.

To relax on the majestic gardens of the golden honey coloured building of Farnborough Hall is quite an experience. Home of the Holbech family since 1684 and standing in the heart of rural Warwickshire, the hall was reconstructed in the early 18th Century. It is surrounded by superb landscape gardens and is the ideal place to stand and enjoy a cool drink. The interiors of the building are equally enchanting, if not more. The main highlight is the Staircase dome, with incredibly ornate plasterwork depicting flowers and fruit. The intricate plasterwork done inside is considered to be some of the finest historic plasterwork in England. The building is full of artwork and artifacts collected during the owner's 18th-century Grand Tour.

Baddesley Clinton is a lovely manor house dating back to the 13th Century. This beautiful house is known to be the home of the Ferrer family for over 500 years. The garden of the manor house and the lake in the vicinity simply add to the beauty of the place. The Baddesley Clinton house is open to visitors throughout the year and is disabled friendly too. The beautiful gardens are also a treat to explore. The place is managed by the National Trust.

This award-winning museum in a Tudor period mansion has interactive exhibits, Shakespeare tours, night-time ghost tours, and organized school visits that bring 16th-century Elizabethan England to life. Visitors can take a seat at a period dining table, rest on a monarch’s bed and throne, and listen for spirits by candlelight.

Hall's Croft was named after Dr. John Hall, husband of Shakespeare's daughter Susanna. It is a fine example of a gabled half-timbered house built in the 16th Century. Notice its three stories—the upper two of which are overhanging—which make it quite typical of its time. While you are here, take a look at Dr. Hall's consulting room together with the exhibition featuring medical treatments used in Shakespeare's time. Also on display are some superb 16th- and 17th-century paintings and furnishings, while the walled garden, with its fragrant herb garden, is a particular delight.

A one stop shop for all the various types of arms and armories, Stratford Armouries is a unique museum located on the Stratford-upon-Avon's outskirts. The museum comprises of various sections and has world class exhibits to leave all the visitors awestruck. There is an Ethnic Gallery which houses Indian and Persian Talwars and Daggers, as well as Indo-Persian armor. The 20th-century gallery displays weapons from both the World Wars and is extremely captivating. A fun for all destination, the museum is a must visit.

A quarter of a mile from the center of Warwick lies an early Jacobean house devoted to the social history of Warwickshire. St John's House Museum is filled with displays that take you back in time, including a costume gallery and a 19th-century kitchen, parlor and schoolroom. Watch out for the Victorian children waiting for their lessons! St. John's House is also home to the Museum of the Royal Warwickshire Regiment, featuring its military uniforms and medals. There are delightful gardens here with enclosed, grassy picnic areas.

The small and picturesque town of Rugby in Warwickshire is home to an intriguing and intellectually stimulating museum, Rugby Art Gallery and Museum. It houses various exhibitions, collections and events and with collections ranging from the Romans and local social history, the museum is a fun day out for the whole family. It also has a separate kid’s zone to involve small kids into understanding world and local history. Various events like fairs and festivals are regularly held here.

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