We know there are hundreds of reasons to have your vacation in The Cotswolds, whether as a single traveler, a couple, a group or a family. With the help of our Active England guests we have picked out 5 fantastic reasons why the Cotswolds should be the top of your holiday destination list this summer.
Stunning Cotswold Countryside
A Cotswold holiday makes for the perfect city-break. Designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), it’s rolling green hills, golden dry-stone walls, tucked away woodlands, fields of poppies and stunning views round every corner have made this region hugely popular with walkers and cyclists from all over the world, looking for that perfect getaway. Our walking and cycling tours take guests through the quaint tiny Cotswold villages, nestled in quiet valleys, combining into what Ivor Gurney, the famous Gloucestershire-born poet, has called a ‘gathered loveliness’; difficult to forget and easy to return to.
Vibrant Cotswold Cities
Surrounded by picturesque countryside, the famous Cotswolds golden-stoned towns, villages and cities have become a key attraction for visitors to England. Shakespeare’s birthplace, Stratford-Upon-Avon, sits in the North Cotswolds and the vibrant university city of Oxford lies in the middle, perfect for everything from pub-crawls to punting and visiting Harry Potter filming locations. And not forgetting beautiful Bath in the South, famous for its regency architecture and home to the stunning Roman Baths, a World Heritage Site. With beautiful towns and villages too, for those wanting a mixture of countryside walks and bustling city life, the Cotswolds is the perfect destination.
Cotswold Food and Real Ales
The Cotswolds is known for its traditional pubs, tucked away in small villages, serving real ales from the barrel. There are a number of famous breweries to visit, including Donnington brewery, Hook Norton brewery and Wychwood Brewery LINKS, supplying not only local pubs but pubs worldwide, as well as many gin distilleries and our very own Cotswold Gin. They make the perfect complement to British gastronomy and the high quality of Cotswold resturants and gastro-pubs: game pie, ‘proper’ fish and chips, venison steaks, Scottish salmon and much more.
Quirky Cotswolds Traditions and Events
Every summer, local and tourists take part in the many fun and peculiar Cotswold events, from Cheese Rolling, where competitors chasing cheese at a run down a very very steep hill, to racing rubber ducks down winding rivers, watching Morris men dance with bells on their feet, and the Cotswolds’ very own ‘Olimpicks’ – an event with a history of over 400 years that includes the shin-kicking world championship.
Cotswold History and Heritage
The Cotswolds has a fascinating history that stretches back to the Neolithic age, with ancient burial tombs dotting the escarpment, built over 6000 years ago. Roman Forts stand proudly on the defensive high-grounds that over-look the valleys, and signs of the English Civil War are present in battlefield sites surrounding some key Cotswold towns and villages. The Cotswolds has also been home to many famous authors and poets, from Shakespeare in Stratford to Jane Austen in Bath, Laurie Lee near Stroud, J. R. R. Tolkein and C. S. Lewis who both lived in Oxford, for literary fans of any genre, the Cotswolds has much to offer.