Less than three hours from Port Talbot by train, the luxurious Cotswolds town of Cheltenham proves eternally popular as a weekend destination, or just for an afternoon visit. Relax in style when you travel with us - we’ve even got your en route entertainment covered with the free onboard Wifi.
Owing much of its spectacular architecture to the Regency era, Cheltenham is nestled in the heart of picturesque Gloucestershire. Alighting at the railway station, you’ll see signage proudly referring to it by its full name, Cheltenham Spa. Following the discovery of mineral springs in 1716, this former market town burst onto the national scene as a fashionable health and holiday resort for the well-to-do. As one of the famed spa towns of England, Cheltenham enjoyed the attention of royalty and the influential, securing it the rich investments that would create the beautiful buildings, parks and promenades still seen today. For a taste of the true elegance that George III would have experienced, visit the exquisite, Grade I listed Pittville Pump Room, with its Ionic colonnades and glorious landscaped grounds.
Nowadays, Cheltenham’s also known for its festivals, with the Cheltenham Music Festival, a celebration of classical works, and the Jazz Festival taking centre stage. However, it’s fair to say that Cheltenham has a festival for all tastes, be it science, literature, or food and drink - and that’s before diving into all the smaller, independent festivals that this vibrant town plays host to.
Of course, no description of Cheltenham is complete without mentioning the world-famous annual horse races, known officially as the Cheltenham Racing Festival. Held to coincide with St Patrick’s Day, this week-long event is second only to the Grand National in the British racing calendar and attracts thousands of eager spectators every year.
When it comes to retail therapy, Cheltenham’s chic district of Montpellier is home to some of the town’s most exciting boutiques and eateries. James of Montpellier’s bespoke men’s tailoring service uses only the finest British and Italian fabrics, while Sandra Dee has been supplying ladies’ lingerie and swimwear for over 30 years. After a smashing day browsing the shops, take a stroll through the glorious Montpellier Gardens, or treat yourself to quality French cuisine and craft gin in Brasserie Blanc, which inhabits a stunning former ballroom.
We know your trip to Cheltenham will be one to remember - so why not get started, and plan your visit with our free downloadable app? With ticket options to suit every budget, we’ve got your journey sorted so you can focus on having the time of your life in this incredible town.