Ludlow is a favourite place of ours and one of our first choices for a weekend break or even just an overnight stay. hre are some of my tips for enjoying a weekend in Ludlow.
Where is Ludlow?
Ludlow is situated in Shropshire only a few miles from the Welsh Border. For us its an hour and half drive, around 65 miles. From London its about 155 miles. There is a train station in Ludlow served by trains on the Borders line connecting North Wales to South Wales.
What is there to see and do?
The town of Ludlow is a very pretty town with many beautiful buildings, some dating back 800 years. The warren of narrow streets in the centre of the town make exploring the town on foot very easy. The town is served well in terms of cafes and restaurants, providing plenty of choice for eating. There are some great pubs in the town.
Ludlow Castle – situated near the town centre the castle was built in Norman times. It is open to the public at weekends and it is worth a visit offering lovely view of the Teme river and the town. You can actually stay in the Castle in apartments located in the renovated Castle House which is within the castle walls.
Ludlow Market – Ludlow is definitely a market town with a street market held 4 days a week and a flea market every Sunday. There are over 40 stalls with many selling local produce from in and around Ludlow, you are truly spoilt for choice.
Ludlow Races – if you have chance to, try and coincide your visit with a Ludlow race meeting. The racecourse is situated 2 miles from the town centre and holds National Hunt race meetings from October through to May.
Ludlow Food Centre – situated near the racecourse Ludlow Food Centre is a must for food lovers. The array of local produce such as meat, cheese, bread, fruit and vegetables is impressive. The on-site cafe and restaurant also allows you to sample the produce during your visit.
Eating and Drinking in Ludlow
Ludlow once had more Michelin Stars than anywhere in the UK outside of London. Although this is now not the case with many of the restauranteurs having relocated to London, there are still some great restaurants and pubs to try. Here are just a few of my favourites.
The Fish House as the name suggests serves fresh fish and seafood both to eat in and take away. The choice and quality is amazing considering you are nowhere near the sea! The restaurant is within a fishmongers shop at the top of the main high street. There are only a few tables so you are best to book a table. Its open Wednesday to Saturday for lunch and on a Friday and Saturday for dinner. The menu include fresh oysters, lobster, shrimps, smoked fish and seafood platters for sharing. There are also hot daily specials available.
The Smokehouse Deli and Cicchetti Bar isan authentic Italian Deli with a small restaurant attached serving authentic Italian tapas and more substantial daily specials, normally pasta or risotto. Although rather cramped, the staff are friendly, the food is excellent, and it serves some great Italian wines.
The Clive Bar and Restaurant is situated next to the Ludlow Food centre. As you would expect, The Clive specialises in locally sourced British food. Local game is a speciality. I can also highly recommend their Fish and Chips with the batter made out of Ludlow beer.
The Charlton Arms is a great family owned pub situated on the Ludford Bridge overlooking the River Teme a short walk out of town. The menu is fairly short but offers pub classics plus homemade specials. Although I have not tried it I am told the Sunday Lunch is very good.
Where to stay
There is plenty of choice of accommodation for a weekend in Ludlow, both in and around the town.
My own personal favourite is the Baron at Bucknell an inn with rooms about 20 minutes out of Ludlow in the pretty village of Bucknell. The bedrooms are stunning and very reasonably priced. The food is excellent, particularly the full English breakfast. They have recently built 3 luxury garden rooms situated around a natural swimming pond with opportunities for “Wild Swimming”!!! Each of the rooms also have an outdoor hot tub. I cant wait to return to try one out!
If you prefer to stay nearer to the town centre there are plenty of hotels, inns, B&Bs and self catering cottages available. There are also camping and caravan sites situated just out of the town.
The Guestbooks Comment: “For foodies the highlight of the year is the famous Ludlow Food festival held in September over 3 days. I have not been to the festival but friends tell me it is an amazing celebration of food and drink. There are cookery demonstrations, tasting opportunities and an array of stalls selling food and drink. It is very popular so you need to book early if you are planning to stay in or around Ludlow for the festival.”