Not sure where to start? There’s lots to see and do in the Cotswolds, so to help you narrow down your options, we’ve come up with some ideas for you.
Take a look at our holiday ideas - with suggestions for your stay ranging from one day to two weeks in the Cotswolds. There are also itineraries specially designed by the Cotswolds Attractions Group giving ideas for neighbouring attractions that can easily be visited together in one day.
One of our favourite things to do in the Cotswolds is a Treasure Trail - choose from Murder Mystery, Spy Trail or Treasure Hunt. Whether you are local or visiting for the first time Treasure Trails will take you to the most beautiful and historic locations in Gloucestershire and the Cotswolds and get you outside in the fresh air, having fun. So if you are looking for a new and different outdoor activity, a Treasure Trail is sure to keep everyone entertained on a healthy and fun walk. There are now 20 Trails available across the county for you to enjoy.
We’ve put together some Cotswold food tours in our food & drink section – perfect for those of you wanting to find the best places to buy our fantastic local produce – just choose from a food tour of the North Cotswolds or South Cotswolds.
If you’re not sure how much you can fit into your visit, take a look at our one day and one week itineraries – even if you don’t want to follow them exactly, you’ll get an idea of what you can fit in. For visitors from London, Reading and Swindon, find out about the Stroud Special train.
Even if you don't have concrete plans of how you're going to spend your time in the Cotswolds, you can still have a wonderful time exploring the towns and villages in the area. In the North Cotswolds, you can explore Stow-on-the-Wold, with its Cotswold stone architecture, charming antiques shops and village square. A short drive away is Winchcombe, home to Sudeley Castle and surrounded by beautiful countryside which is great for walks, and was once the capital of its own county, (Winchcombeshire!) or you could visit Bourton-on-the-Water, the 'Venice of the Cotswolds', a pretty village on the river Windrush brimming with tea rooms, museums and great spots for a picnic. Birdland and the Cotswold Motoring Museum are great days out for the family.
In the South Cotswolds, you can visit Tetbury, a town with Royal connections and a genuine sense of countryside luxury. The Highgrove Shop and Gardens are worth a visit for some souvenirs, and there are plenty of antiques shops to browse. Not far away is Cirencester, the 'Capital of the Cotswolds' - an ancient Roman settlement which is popular with history lovers. It has a Roman themed museum, an Arts Centre and a park in the grounds of a former Abbey. Not far away is Lechlade - the source of the River Thames. A beautiful place to walk around. See our Towns & Villages directory for a full list of villages, or download the guide here.
Take a look at our favourite places to picnic, film & TV filming locations to visit, activities to take part in – and much more!