I have a great love of history, afternoon tea, and Britain. I have discovered online several tea shops I really must visit when I go. There are teashops on every corner, but you must do some research and seek out ones that really make you feel you’ve stepped back in time. I don’t want to go to just any old tea room. I can get tea in my B&B. I can get tea at McDonalds. I want to find a tea room that makes me say to myself “Toto, we’re not in Kansas anymore.” I want ambience. I want atmosphere. I want character. I want quirky. I want to feel I’m in England.
There are many gorgeous 4 and 5 star hotels who will serve a beautiful afternoon tea, but I don’t want to be charged an arm and a leg and most look like another fancy hotel restaurant just like I’d find in most big US cities. I love the smaller home grown tearooms or ones attached to a historic spot I might want to visit anyway.
When researching, I found a frustrating number of tearooms that don’t show any photos of the interior of their shop, or only show photos of the food they sell. My motto is, if they are afraid to show photos of their restaurant, then its probably someplace I don’t want to go. There are many more tea rooms I would love to visit, these just happened to catch my eye. I might float my way through Britain!
Some of these require reservations or 24 hour notice. A few are closed in the winter months. Check websites before just stopping by.
I want to take a tour of England and plan a route so I can stop at each of these:
Old Bakery Tea Room, Newark on Trent Now that is atmosphere!
The Swan Hotel, Wells What a view!
The Blitz Tea Room with a focus on WW2
Bishopstrow House, Wiltshire an 18th Century Manor House
Woolley Grange, Wiltshire a Jacobean Manor House
Rydalmount Tea Rooms. Rydal Mount was the home of poet William Wordsworth
Kelmscott Manor The retreat of artist and designer William Morris