Bel & The Dragon at The Swan, Kingsclere Review

Bel & The Dragon at The Swan, Kingsclere Review

Our reviewer found the Inn to be complete value for money for those of you wanting to stay somewhere picturesque, peaceful and full of charm

Yours Verdict


Price: £115.00
Rating: ★★★★☆ (4/5)

What they say:  

Nestled between chalk hills and springs, Bel & The Dragon at The Swan, takes its place within the heart of Kingsclere village. This country inn emulates Bel & The Dragon’s distinctly cosy and classic style, and offers nine beautiful en-suite bedrooms in addition to an attractive bar, restaurant and terrace.

What our reviewer says:

The first thing that struck us when we arrived at the Bel & Dragon was its quaint location. A quiet, peaceful village, rich in heritage and set in the beautiful Hampshire countryside. The next thing we were struck by was the Inn itself -  a Grade II listed building, dating back as far as 1449, with original oak beams and fireplaces (from 1540). A warm and inviting building, matched by its staff, who we found very polite and helpful throughout our stay.

We occupied one of the larger rooms that overlooks the high street. It was bright and breezy but managed to find the right mix between the modern and old. Rather then the usual tea and coffee, we were surprised to find a fruity Sipsmith Sloe Gin in their place! But, in case the thought of a room without tea and coffee almost makes you feel a little gobsmacked, have no fear.....

One of the absolute highlight of the stay was the Drawing Room which is exclusive to staying guests and boasts not just tea and coffee on tap but also whiskey, comfy sofas and board games, so guests can truly relax away from the dining and drinking area on the lower floor. I cannot stress how much we liked this room and how much it helped us relax. We appreciated the thoughtfulness of the Inn in making such a room available to its guests – something that really made the Inn stand out.



The Inn also boasts a restaurant with menus full of twists on an array of classic British dishes, with a focus on local, sustainable and, above all, quality ingredients, formulated by head chef Ronnie Kimbugwe. Mains start from £10 and you do get what you pay for – quality produce cooked to a high standard. Special mention has to be given to the roasted Gressingham duck breast and the Bel & The Dragon signature dish, the good old British roast, served with thyme and duck fat roasted potatoes…. delicious.

To conclude, there are few Inns and hotels I beg my husband to let us return to and Bel & The Dragon at The Swan, Kingslere is one of them! For the location (close to Highlere Castle for all you Downton Abbey lovers,  also, London if you want to venture into the capital) peaceful setting, friendly staff, good food and the drawing room I am sure I will be returning.


Find more information on Bel & The Dragon here

Room rates from £115 per night inclusive of VAT and breakfast