Hotels in Gloucester | Find the Best Budget City Centre Rooms in Gloucester, United Kingdom | IHG
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Gloucester Hotels

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Featured Gloucester Hotels

Visiting Gloucester – A City Guide

Gloucester is a small cathedral city in southwest England, known for its wealth of historic buildings and surrounding countryside. It started out as a Roman garrison and still contains fine architecture from a range of periods, including medieval churches, half-timbered Tudor houses and 19th-century canalside warehouses.

Gloucester: city layout

Gloucester city centre is compact and easy to explore on foot. The four ‘Gate Streets’ – Westgate, Eastgate, Northgate and Southgate, now largely pedestrianised – mark the historic core of the city. This is also the main shopping district, and where you’ll find many museums and attractions, including Gloucester Cathedral, a gothic masterpiece.

Beyond the city, the honey-coloured stone villages and rolling hills of the Cotswolds spread to the east, while the Forest of Dean lies to the west and the Malvern Hills to the north.

Top attractions in Gloucester

The soaring columns, stained glass and fan vaulting of Gloucester Cathedral attract admirers of ecclesiastical architecture, while its use as a film location draws Harry Potter fans from across the world.

A short stroll away are the regenerated Gloucester Docks, a reminder that the city was once England’s farthest inland port. The Victorian storehouses now contain apartments, a museum, some of the city’s liveliest bars and restaurants and an outlet shopping mall.

It’s ten minutes by rail from Gloucester Train Station to Cheltenham Spa, England’s most complete Regency town, where cultural and shopping opportunities abound.

The concierge recommends…

  • Exploring Gloucester Folk Museum, housed in Tudor buildings on Westgate Street and full of quirky collections dating back 500 years.
  • Hearing choral evensong at Gloucester Cathedral, a glorious way to experience the beauty and serenity of this historic building.
  • Watching the city’s Rugby Union team, one of the top clubs in the country, play at home in Kingsholm Stadium.
  • Visiting the bird-packed wetlands of WWT Slimbridge on the River Severn, a half an hour’s drive south of the city.

Hotels in Gloucester

Gloucester accommodations range from old-fashioned inns in the city centre to modern, business-friendly hotels near the motorway. Countryside retreats include historic manor houses with manicured grounds and purpose-built spa hotels.

Business travellers and visitors keen to explore the Cotswolds tend to position themselves on the outskirts of Gloucester, in Barnwood or Quedgeley. They’re handy for both the city and the M5 motorway, and some major companies have offices in the vicinity.

An even wider choice of rooms is available in nearby Cheltenham, ideal for guests attending a wedding at the Pittville Pump Room or horse-racing fans heading to Cheltenham Racecourse. Amid the town’s leafy Regency squares, you’ll find the latest in chic boutique hotels as well as luxury suites, cosy B&Bs and self-catering apartments.

Eating Out in Gloucester

Dining options in Gloucester tend to be traditional rather than trendy. Historic pubs serving fish ‘n’ chips, health-conscious wholefood cafés and child-friendly pizza parlours are the norm, with a smattering of ethnic alternatives for spice-lovers.

You’ll find the greatest number of cafés, restaurants and pubs in the city centre. Globe-trotting favourites include C&W African Experience, Tiger’s Eye and So Thai for pan-African, Asian fusion and Thai cooking, respectively. Lily’s near the cathedral is a cute choice for a very English cream tea.

Gloucester Quays has become a buzzing destination for casual and family dining, with reliable chain restaurants serving pizza, Italian and Mexican food. More bucolic waterside dining is available beside Over Canal Basin, where the Wharf House serves top-notch Modern European fare made from local, seasonal ingredients like self-harvested honey and River Severn smoked salmon.

The chef recommends...

  • Gloucester Old Spot pork: This rare-breed pig is much loved by chefs for its high-quality, full-flavoured meat. Look out for dishes featuring belly, chops or sausages, or go the whole hog with a succulent roast dinner.
  • Stinking Bishop cheese: A dense, pungent cheese made on just one Gloucestershire farm, and washed in a perry made from the juice of the Stinking Bishop pear (hence the name).
  • Gloucester elvers: These baby eels from the River Severn were once a common local delicacy, but are now very rare due declining eel populations. They’re traditionally cooked in bacon fat with eggs, yielding something akin to a fishy omelette.

Shopping in Gloucester

The main shopping area, centred on the pedestrianised Gate Streets in the city centre, incorporates two high-street malls. Nearby are a traditional covered market and an outdoor market, selling everything from curtains to cauliflower. There’s also a weekly farmers’ market.

If you’re looking for a bargain, visit the Gloucester Quays Outlet Centre at Gloucester Docks, where discounts are as high as 70% off brands such as Bench, Nike, Gap and Osprey.

Unsurprisingly, antiques are something of a speciality in this historic city. You can poke through the myriad offerings at the Gloucester Antiques Centre, recently moved to a lovely old building on Westgate Street, or browse for vintage finds at Upstairs Downstairs, a spacious warehouse on Severn Road near the Docks.

Discerning shoppers travel the few miles to Cheltenham for its larger malls and independent retail scene, especially in womenswear, beauty, interiors and books.

Best gift shops in Gloucester

  • The World of Beatrix Potter: The characters from Beatrix Potter’s much-loved tales, including “The Tailor of Gloucester”, come in stuffed toy, china or book form at this small gift shop and museum near the cathedral.
  • Gloucestershire Arts & Crafts Centre: Offering handcrafted items at good prices, including jewellery, textiles, paintings by local county artists, this centre is tucked into an alley opposite the Beatrix Potter shop.
  • Fab & Faded: Bric-a-brac and retro delights, from crockery to clothing, are crammed into two floors in this shop on Southgate Street.

Culture & Nightlife in Gloucester

The city’s main entertainment venue is the multipurpose Gloucester Guildhall, on Eastgate Street. Here you can catch indie, rock and folk bands, enjoy stand-up comedy, view an exhibition or watch art house and mainstream films.

The Docks quarter has some popular late-night bars and a buzzing, studenty vibe, while traditional real ale pubs are the order of the day in the centre of town.

Gloucester’s music scene is nicely varied, from rock and punk bands playing intimate gigs in pubs to chamber and choral concerts at Gloucester Cathedral. There’s no lack of well-established annual music festivals, including the Cajun & Zydeco Festival, the Rhythm & Blues Festival and the Three Choirs Festival, which rotates among the cathedral towns of Gloucester, Hereford and Worcester.

Local theatre lovers head to the Everyman Theatre in Cheltenham, which stages everything from opera to a much-loved annual panto in its ornate Victorian auditorium.

Gloucester’s best pubs

  • Café Rene: A cosy venue off Southgate Street, with a jam-packed terrace and hundreds of old wine bottles on the ceiling. Bands and DJs play three nights a week.
  • New Inn: New in the 15th century, but distinctly venerable these days, this black-and-white galleried coaching inn on Northgate Street is where Lady Jane Grey announced her succession to the English throne in 1553.
  • Tank: Down at the Docks, this craft beer specialist is an offshoot of the award-winning Gloucester Brewery across the water. The bare-brick interior gives off a funky, industrial edge.

Visiting Gloucester with a Family

Gloucester’s museums cater well for children, with exhibitions, trails and workshops specially designed to interest young visitors. Indoor activities range from climbing to go-karting, and in summer you can explore the city’s canals by boat.

The medieval cloisters at Gloucester Cathedral appeal to wannabe wizards: they stood in for the corridors of Hogwarts School in three Harry Potter movies. The occasional Potter-themed guided tours sell out fast.

Also in the city centre, the Gloucester City Museum & Art Gallery has dinosaur skeletons and Roman remains, while the Docks offer boatloads of fun at the revamped Gloucester Waterways Museum.

‘Flying experiences’ with owls, buzzards and hawks are available at the Barn Owl Centre, near Quedgeley. In Cheltenham, expansive Pittville Park is a perennial favourite thanks to its play areas, birds and bunny rabbits, as well as two lakes for boating and fishing.

Gloucester’s best waterside attractions

  • Tall Ships: This swashbuckling festival brings high-masted sailing ships, pirate battles and family entertainments galore to Gloucester Docks. It takes place every odd-numbered year, in May.
  • Sandford Parks Lido: Make a splash at this open-air paradise in Cheltenham, which has a 50-metre main pool, a paddling pool and a kids’ pool. The water is heated and there’s plenty of grass for sunbathing.
  • Prinknash Bird & Deer Park: A half an hour’s drive east of Gloucester, this landscaped lakeside park is home to white peacocks, tame fallow deer and several charming, painted wooden houses.

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Latest Gloucester Hotel Reviews

Awesome Hotel
By Traveller
Very comfortable. Clean room and bathroom. Staff are awesome. [Less]
clean and comfortable
By colind1
Room was modern clean and comfortable....particularly liked the new breakfast menu...items of good quality and all perfectly adequate.....enjoyed my stay as always [Less]
Good stop over hotel for the Cotswolds
By happy2312
We stayed for 2 nights which were both comfortable and pretty quiet inside the hotel. Obviously this hotel is on a busy road and so road noise is an issue if the windows are open. The room was well [More] equipped and clean. The equipment in the room all worked to our knowledge, and the staff at the hotel are pretty friendly and helpful. Our one issue is the quality of service/food at the pub on site. Our table booking was not honoured, and to be told that they didn't have half the items on the menu once we were ready to order, and not at the outset was really annoying. Having said this, the hotel has takeaway menus, and a nice lounge/dining area with tables, plates and cutlery which you are able to use for your takeaway. They will order you pizza, or you can order/bring in any of the other popular options. Parking seems to be plentiful, even with the pub on the same site, and we didn't experience any particular noise at closing time, etc. [Less]
By Peter
I am very hhappy with the stay in the hotel, in fact didn't expact the service level offer for a budget express hotel. Well run well trained, good team. [Less]
Amazing staff
By Rosie88
The staff at this hotel are amazing! I was ill during part of our stay and being from Canada, the staff helped me locate a clinic and even set up an appointment for me. They were all friendly and [More] curtious and very helpful. The food was really good, and our room was kept clean. We have stayed in this hotel numerous times when we travell to England. And have never been disappointed! We would highly recommend this hotel to others. [Less]
Race night
By Rob1412
Good hotel, great location and a fair price. Parking is quite near and fairly priced. Rooms are good and very clean. Staff were very helpful and pleasant. Only a short taxi ride to the racecourse £6 [Less]
Great. Just very expensive
By JustSomeBusinessDude
All great. Just very expensive. Gym was tiny, didn't use the pool. [Less]
By Andrew
Good service, rooms and facilities. Restaurant could be better given the price. [Less]
Short break
By Pen1
This Hotel was very friendly and comfortable.The corridors however are souless and could do with some kind of pictures/colour. Towels in the room were large and fluffy.Wonderful. I have an [More] intolerance to yeast and at breakfast they did not know but found out the sausages contained yeast. The forest fruit compote had a very artificial taste and no prunes!!! Food on buffet breakfast particularly eggs looked as though they had been on display for ages. Swimming pool was delightfully bright.The steam room was great but too bright!!Need lower bulbs. [Less]

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