Cirencester – Places to visit
Exploring Roman Cirencester or Ciren, as the locals refer to it, is what we do frequently these days as its our home town. Our lodges are just a few miles away in the Water Park but we also have the apartment at the Baptist Church on Coxwell Street on our portfolio in the centre of Cirencester. You can base yourself there and be just 100 metres from the Market Square and St John the Baptist Church or otherwise known as the cathedral of The Cotswolds.
It’s hard to miss the fact that Cirencester has had a glorious Roman past with place names and landmarks around the town including the highly regarded Corinium Museum at the top of Black Jack Street. Rumour has it that Black Jack Street got its name from one of the figures on church, visible from the street itself. Whilst the church these days reflect the honey coloured buildings typical of The Cotswolds, in medieval times it was all a bit blacker from the smoke as industrialisation caught up in the town.
Explore Roman Cirencester
Cirencester’s story begins in the Roman era, where it flourished as Corinium Dobunnorum, second only to London in size and importance. The town was a nexus of culture and commerce, with its amphitheatre, forum, and intricate mosaics speaking volumes of its past grandeur. Just a few miles away in Chedworth, where a Roman villa was uncovered this can all be seen in some detail.
As the Roman Empire faded, Cirencester didn’t just survive; it thrived, adapting through the centuries. The Middle Ages saw it emerge as a key player in the wool trade, a wealth that funded the magnificent St. John the Baptist Church, a masterpiece of Gothic architecture that dominates the town’s skyline.
Top 5 Things to Do in Cirencester
1. Corinium Museum: Delve into the town’s award winning museum and explore its Roman past with its stunning collection of mosaics, artifacts, and interactive displays.
2. Cirencester Park: Explore the expansive beauty of this historic parkland, perfect for leisurely walks and picnics.
3. St. John the Baptist Church: Marvel at the architectural splendour and rich history of this central landmark.
4. Cirencester Amphitheatre: Step back in time at the site of the ancient Roman amphitheater, imagining the spectacles once enjoyed by thousands. It is said that at its capacity crowds of 8000 and more would have attended events then
5. The Market Place: Discover the heart of Cirencester life, with its vibrant markets and stunning Georgian architecture.
Places to eat and drink
We are spoilt for choice in the town with so many great places to eat and we have picked out a few of our favourites but there are plenty of others that we would recommend.
1. La Bobina: A Spanish tapas bar that’s a favorite among locals and visitors alike. The atmosphere is vibrant, and the dishes are a fusion of classic Spanish flavors and Cotswold freshness.
2. Made By Bob: For those seeking a contemporary dining experience, Made By Bob offers an eclectic menu crafted from the finest local ingredients.
3. Henrys: Henrys is a seafood bar and restaurant just opposite the church and the Abbey Grounds.
4. The Fleece: The Fleece, just down from the Market Square is a popular place for locals and tourists alike – great atmosphere and great food.
5. Keiths: If you love great coffee then Keiths is worth a visit – you can sit down with a tea or coffee and cake or buy your coffee beans from there by the kilo! You’ll find Keiths at the bottom of Black Jack street – the Market Square end.
A Tapestry of Time and Taste
When exploring Roman Cirencester we should remember thats its more than just a destination; it’s a journey through history, a dive into cultural richness, and an adventure in culinary delight. Whether you’re exploring its ancient streets, marvelling at architectural wonders, or savouring the tastes of the Cotswolds, Cirencester promises an experience that’s as enriching as it is enchanting. So, pack your bags and set your sights on this jewel of the Cotswolds, where every visit is a chapter in your own personal storybook.
Don’t forget to take a walk down Coxwell Street – it’s the oldest street in the town and leads you to an outdoor lido (walking from the town end) – reputed to be the oldest working outdoor lido in the country. Also brings you out at the bottom of Cecily Hill which leads up to the barracks and the entrance to the stunning Cirencester Park.