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Back in 2004, I spent a good three weeks traveling through England. I was single, jobless, in debt (I had a deferred student loan back then due to a lack of cash) and still figuring out what I wanted to do with my life. The first week of my trip I spent in London with a cousin, but the rest of the trip I traveled solo, which looking back wasn’t as scary as I though it would be. While on this trip to self discovery and independence, I also stumbled upon quite a few of England’s unexpected, romantic and charming spots.
On this three week journey, I spent a few days in and around Halesowen, which is a town in the Borough of Dudley in the West Midlands of England. It is about 7 miles from Birmingham.
This small village had a good bit of charm and romance. It was idealistic in it’s purely British nature, with it’s town center clock and the quintessential English pub on the corner.
I loved the small parish church. I believed it was just as beautiful as Westminster Abbey and I not only had it all to myself, but they let me take pictures too (which they won’t let you do at Westminster by the way)!
The small churchyard (cemetery) was so eerily romantic and looked like it was straight from a period film. I was sure I’d run into Jane Austen any moment!
You can reach Halesowen by way of the Birmingham New Street Station and taking the #9 bus.
I also spent time in and around the small village of Macclesfield just outside of Manchester, England. Macclesfield is located in the county of Cheshire. This small village has much to offer with more than one church and it’s small town feel.
But, it also is a nice hub to venturing farther afield as it is located in the Peak District and considers itself the gateway.
You can take a short or extended hike through the countryside.
Check out the Visit Peak District website for info on the different routes!
You can also visit one of the most famous of the great houses used for Pemberley. Lyme Park was used as Pemberley in the Colin Firth version of Pride and Prejudice.
Macclesfield is just south of Manchester and has it’s own train station.
Have you had a chance to stumble upon your own hidden English Villages?
Do you have have a favorite? Share in the comments section below!
Craving more British travel? Check out my other World Travels posts!