A Weekend in Stockbridge, England

Nestled in the lush Hampshire countryside is the peaceful town of Stockbridge, an ideal escape from the hustle and bustle of the city.  Stockbridge has fresh air, scenic walks and some of the UK’s best sparkling wine.  You can shelve any idea of being on a diet, as local, seasonal produce is big on the menu here, so the food is incredible.

Pack your walking boots for a country ramble.  Stroll around Stockbridge Marsh next to the River Test to spot water voles scampering along the riverbanks, or wander vast and hilly Stockbridge Down for sweeping rural views.

The country air will have you ravenous by noon. So head to one of the locals for simple but hearty bistro dishes.  Order homemade soups, gourmet sandwiches or fresh fish dishes at the Thyme & Tides, before stocking up on local, artisan snacks in its deli.

If you are the drinking type then you should try the The Mayfly, a toasty pub sat right on the Test, which offers glorious, moody waterside views all year round.  For some added colour in your cheeks, stop by The Little Whisky Shop on the high street, to discover (and sample) drams from all around the globe.

Stockbridge’s quaint high street is lined with pastel cottages, dinky cafes and indie shops.  Try the homemade cakes at Coffee Lab. Its coffee is made with beans from DT in nearby Winchester. Check out the chic homeware, clothing and jewellery in the many boutique shops.

Use 20 minute drive to visit historic Winchester.  Once there, seek out the Gothic cathedral and the life-size male figure by sculpture Anthony Gormley in its eleventh-century crypt.