Rugby Visitors Guide to Gloucester

Visiting Gloucester for the rugby? If you’ve got time to take a break from the sport, there are a few other things you must to do on your trip…

1. Admire Gloucester Cathedral (and spot the film spots)

Start your day with a stroll around the cathedral, taking in the striking Norman and Gothic architecture both inside and out. The stained glass windows standing tall above the alter are a must-see.

View of Gloucester Cathedral, Gloucestershire

Gloucester Cathedral. Photo © W. Lloyd MacKenzie, via Flickr

If an architectural tour isn’t really your thing, then there’s plenty of movie location-spotting to do around the site. See if you can recognise any of the Harry Potter, Doctor Who or Sherlock locations, among others.

The Cathedral isn’t far from the centre, so it’s a great start for a day spent in the city.

2. Stop at The Docks for a spot of lunch

After a morning’s sightseeing at the historical cathedral, it’s time for a relaxing lunch in a beautiful location. If the weather’s good, make sure you eat al fresco, overlooking the inland waterways and docks.

The Docks at night, Gloucester, UK

Gloucester Docks. Photo © W. Lloyd MacKenzie, via Flickr

With plenty of restaurants and bars to choose from, you’ll find something at The Docks.

They’ve got everything from cafes and restaurants on converted narrowboats to the super-modern Vinings – an Indian and Thai buffet restaurant housed in a converted dock warehouse.

If you’re after more cultural attractions instead of lunch, then check out the Gloucester Waterways Museum and Boat Tours.

3. Pick up a bargain at Gloucester Quays

Just a stroll away from The Docks, Gloucester Quays is an outlet village full of purse-friendly discounts from some favourite-name brands. And, wouldn’t you know, the Gloucester Travelodge is here too.

Stroll around while letting your lunch go down and pick up a bargain or two… we won’t tell.

With factory or outlet shops like Cadbury’s, Nike, Osprey, Le Creuset and more, you’ll find plenty to bring home as gifts.

If modern-day shops don’t appeal, then head to the Gloucester Quays Antiques Centre to browse the collectables and curios.

4. Grab a drink at Cafe Rene

Head back into the city for a drink at Cafe Rene, after all that sightseeing and shopping you’re bound to be thirsty. It’s only about 10 minutes’ walk from The Quays.

Exterior Cafe Rene, Gloucester, UK

Stopover. Photo © Cafe Rene Management, via TripAdvisor

Cafe Rene is a quirky, rustic pub known for its great atmosphere, lined wall-to-wall and even to the ceiling with wine bottles.

Often, if you’re around in the evening, you’ll find a fantastic live band playing at the venue which is a great start to the night. Cafe Rene also serve food, so if you’re hungry stop for a bite to eat.

5. Get to a gig at The Guildhall

Any trip to Gloucester must be topped off with a trip to The Guildhall, an absolute hub of live music, theatre and comedy in the local area.

Located right in the city centre, on Eastgate Street (another place you’ll find great places to drink), it’s the perfect end to a day exploring Gloucester.

The Guildhall live venue, Gloucester

Guildhall. Photo © Gloucester Citizen

The Guildhall has hosted big names such as Muse, Radiohead, The Cribs, Maximo Park, Jimmy Carr, Dara O’Briain and Jo Brand. Over the next few months you’ll find Bad Manners, Wheatus, Donovan and Ed Byrne gracing the stage, as well as regular film screenings and theatre performances – take a look what’s on while you’re in town.

As you can see, Gloucester isn’t all about rugby – make sure you’ve ticked a few of these off your list before you head home. And if you’re still looking for somewhere to book in the Kingsholm Stadium vicinity, try the Travelodge Cheltenham (about 9 miles away) or the Travelodge Stonehouse near Stroud (about 16 miles on the M5).