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Known worldwide as the birthplace of popular playwright William Shakespeare, Stratford-upon-Avon has fast become one of those must visit places when taking a UK coach holiday. You can't fail to notice on your coach tour of Stratford-upon-Avon the connections it has with the Bard as there are five 16th century houses that have been beautifully preserved to enable visitors to understand more about Shakespeare and his family. Go back to where it all began with a visit to Henley Street House where he was born and where he also spent the first five years of married life with Anne Hathaway. Literature enthusiasts will also appreciate hearing about visits to Henley Street House made by other famous writers including Charles Dickens, John Keats and Thomas Hardy.
No visit to Shakespeare's Birthplace would be complete without seeing Anne Hathaway's Cottage and Gardens. This is where William Shakespeare fell in love with Anne Hathaway and with one look at the beautiful thatched cottage, you can almost feel romance in the air! Visit Nash's House because New Place next door is where William Shakespeare lived when he was not visiting London. It was here in 1616, that the famous playwright died. He was buried in the Chancel at Holy Trinity Stratford-upon-Avon, a church where he used to worship and where he was baptised.
If you would really like to get close to Shakespeare and admire the genius of his writing, plan your Stratford-upon-Avon coach tour so you can see one of his famous plays performed on stage at the newly renovated Royal Shakespeare Theatre. The 2013 theatre season includes performances of Hamlet, The Winter's Tale, As You Like It, Titus Andronicus and All's Well That Ends Well.
Although the main focus of visits to Stratford-upon-Avon is Shakespeare, there are many other things to do and places to visit that do not have this connection. Join one of the many award-winning walks around the town and if you're feeling brave you could experience a ghost walk! Enjoy the delights of the River Avon as you board a boat for a relaxing cruise where you can see the sights of Stratford from a different perspective. Visit Europe's largest Butterfly Farm or just admire the wonderful flowers and plants on display with a visit to the Rose Garden, Arboretums and Parklands.
Tours to Stratford-upon-Avon start from £59 per person and typically include; return coach travel, transportation whilst in the resort, accommodation in a good standard hotel, meals and a variety of included or optional excursions so you can explore further should you wish to.
To help you have an enjoyable holiday in Stratford-upon-Avon, take a look at these useful tips and advice provided by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO):
Health and Travel Insurance
Local Laws and Customs
Health and Travel Insurance
British Citizens are advised by some of our tour operators to have travel insurance before going on a tour or holiday, even if it happens to be in your country of residence. As a British citizen you will be entitled to free emergency health care on the NHS.
If you are visiting England from outside the United Kingdom and fall ill or are involved in an accident and are from any member of the European Economic Area or Switzerland, you can obtain free or reduced cost treatment with The European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). Comprehensive travel insurance is advised for all other nationals planning on visiting England.
If you need to contact the emergency services whilst in England simply dial 999 or 112 to ask for an ambulance.
Most destinations are generally trouble-free, however as with all places that you are not familiar with, keep an eye on your belongings and if necessary lock them away somewhere safe back at your hotel if possible. Keep an eye on everyone in your party and do not go off with people you do not know. Buy your own drinks and keep sight of them at all times. Be aware of your surroundings and don't venture off on your own.
Local Laws and Customs
Queuing is a British Institution - jump a queue at your own risk!
Drug offences will carry penalties in the UK, so avoid getting involved with anything whilst in England. Please note the narcotic plant Khat/Qat is legal in the UK, but is not in a majority of other countries so never try to export this when leaving the UK.
If you are visiting from outside of the United Kingdom, it is wise to check customs requirements before you travel. If you are planning to bring alcohol, tobacco or souvenirs into the country, you need to be familiar with the UK's custom laws. For those people coming to the UK from the EU, you are allowed to bring an unlimited amount of most goods for your own use without paying tax or duty.
However, if you are travelling to the UK from outside of the EU, you are given an allowance of how much alcohol, tobacco, perfume, souvenirs and other goods. If you go above this allowance you may have to pay tax or duty. It is worth checking the HM Revenues and Customs website before you travel.
When travelling between the UK, Northern Ireland, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man in most cases an official form of identification such as a Driver's License will be ok. However, some airlines will insist you show a passport so check before you travel.
If you are travelling to England from Australia, Canada or the USA, you must have a valid passport for at least three months beyond the length of your stay. EU nationals need to have either a valid passport or identity card.
Visas for the UK are not required by those travelling from Australia, Canada, USA or EU for stays of up to six months.
Any other nationality looking to visit the UK must contact the local embassy to check visa requirements.
For further information about Stratford-upon-Avon you can go to the Official Tourism Website at shakespeare-country.co.uk
Planning a coach tour to Stratford-upon-Avon? Here are a few places that you can visit during your tour:
Whether you enjoy historic houses, museums, going to the theatre, a spooky ghost tour or ghost hunts - this building has something to offer everyone. It's an unusual tourist attraction thus making it one of the most unique experiences in Stratford-upon-Avon.
If you would like to simply enjoy the delights of the river, let someone else take the responsibility? You can jump aboard a cruise boat or even indulge in an evening cruise or enjoy dinner on a specially adapted boat. There are a variety of walks along the riverbank including an exceptionally peaceful one taking in the weeping willows, over the river and around to the Royal Shakespeare Theatre.
Stratford-upon-Avon Butterfly Farm and Jungle Safari
By visiting Europe's largest butterfly farm you can enjoy the unique pleasure of watching hundreds of the world's most spectacular and colourful butterflies flying overhead. Watch them feeding and fluttering around this wonderful tropical environment. If you are feeling a bit more adventurous you can venture into 'Arachnoland' and 'Insect City' home to the world's largest spider and scorpion colony.
Holy Trinity Church
The church is on the banks of the River Avon and is probably England's most visited Parish Church. In addition to this, it receives thousands of visitors each year due to the fact that William Shakespeare and Anne Hathaway are both buried here. There is even a brass rubbing centre to visit.