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10 Best Cotswolds Villages To Visit

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The Cotswolds villages are an embodiment of picture-perfect English countryside. However there’s hidden selection in these rural charmers. Right here’s our record of the most effective Cotswolds villages to go to, every providing one thing somewhat completely different.

Towards the soundtrack of delicate china clinking in cosy tea rooms, stunning Cotswolds villages fulfil an England that exists within the desires of many.

Honey-coloured stone cottages with steeply pitched roofs backed by rolling inexperienced hills, conjure a scene of English delight. Lace outlets waft with the scent of lavender; artwork galleries beacon the well-heeled and cobbled streets rumble to the sound of vacationer coaches.

However most of the prettiest Cotswolds villages not often see guests. Actual working cities with minimal indicators of commercialisation aside from a cramped previous pub. Superbly set hamlets whose solely goal is to offer the place to begin for an ideal hike.

And, there’s the up and coming hipster scene the place avocado on toast and craft beer is simply beginning to entice the eye of tourists to the Cotswolds.

Regardless of outward appearances, there are attention-grabbing and numerous issues to do within the Cotswolds. Our record of the most effective Cotswolds villages to go to consists of not solely probably the most iconic but additionally ones that provide one thing completely different, a novel expertise, a notable attraction or additional attraction.

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IN THIS GUIDE

MOST INTERESTING VILLAGES IN THE COTSWOLDS


MAP / WHERE ARE THE COTSWOLDS?

The Cotswolds cowl an space of 787 sq. miles throughout the centre of England, conveniently situated inside easy accessibility of London, Bristol and Birmingham it’s a well-liked place for a weekend getaway within the UK.

On the northern finish the realm begins simply south of Stratford-upon-Avon and the southern part ends at Bathtub. The western fringe of the Cotswolds is marked by a steep escarpment on the Severn Valley and the jap edge is the college city of Oxford.

use this map / Click on on the highest left of the map to show the record of places, then click on on the places to show additional data. Click on on the highest proper nook of the map to open a bigger model in a brand new tab or the star to save lots of to your Google Maps.  


1 – CASTLE COMBE

With a definite lack of vacationer outlets and an actual lived-in really feel, Fort Combe is likely one of the most stunning villages within the Cotswolds. Surrounded by wooded hills, rows of honey-coloured cottages lengthen from a 14th-century market sq. up a mild slope, framed by a inexperienced backdrop. The enclosure of the valley offers Fort Comb a protected really feel, like a village from a unique time.

An otherworldly vibe has earned Fort Combe a daily look within the movie business and it’s straightforward to see why. With no vehicles allowed within the village, it takes little creativeness to be transported again to a different time.

Nevertheless it’s the setting that steals the present. With inexperienced forested hills, quaint cottages, a babbling river and a romantic bridge, Fort Combe is a lovely place to go to within the UK. Take a picnic lunch and sit on the bench by the river reverse the previous weaver’s cottages. Framed by the encircling valley partitions, it’s the basic view of Fort Combe and an ideal time out within the Cotswolds.

HOW TO GET TO CASTLE COMBE

Fort Combe is a 35-minute drive from Bristol and simply over 2 hours’ drive from London. To get to Fort Combe by way of public transport, take the prepare to Chippenham Station (1 hour, 15 min from London) which is about 5 miles from Fort Combe. Bus 35 runs each 2 hours from Chippenham. Fort Combe can be a superb day journey from Bathtub.


Learn Subsequent — The very best hikes within the Cotswolds

charming english village with wonky cotswolds stone cottages
10 Best Cotswolds Villages To Visit 44

2 – BIBURY

Typically described as probably the most stunning village within the Cotswolds, Bibury centres itself round a picturesque church surrounded by a village inexperienced.

It’s most well-known for Arlington Row, a set of Seventeenth-century weaver cottages that kind one of the crucial picture-perfect visuals within the Cotswolds. It’s arduous to not be seduced by the enduring English cottages with their steep pitched roofs, elegantly ascending up the gradual rise of the hill. A watery meadow in entrance of Arlington Row is ideal for catching the early morning gentle.

Bibury, and Arlington Row, particularly, is a well-liked spot for bus journeys and it may be teeming with guests all through the day. However, when you make it to Bibury for dawn, you’ll have probably the greatest Cotswolds villages all to your self.

HOW TO GET TO BIBURY

Bibury is a 1-hour drive from Bristol and a 1 hour, 45-minute drive from London. To go to Bibury, an excellent base is the bigger however nonetheless charming village of Bourton-on-the-Water. To get right here by way of public transport take the prepare to both Kingham Station or Moreton-in Marsh Station.

From Bourton-on-the-water, bus 855 runs to Bibury.

A row of slate roof weaver cottages through trees covered with frost
10 Best Cotswolds Villages To Visit 45

3 – BROADWAY

Set on the foot of the western finish of the Cotswolds escarpment, Broadway is likely one of the finest Cotswolds villages for procuring and trendy nation fashion. Outdated fashion tea rooms encourage guests into their lace-lined doorways with the attract of excessive tea and excessive society. Vintage outlets styled in refined Cotswolds gray, are full of well-heeled urbanites eager to choose up a novel piece.

Nevertheless it’s the artwork galleries that really feel most at dwelling in Broadway. Lured by the picturesque excessive road, well-known artists together with Claude Monet, have known as this place dwelling.

Seen from the excessive road on prime of the close by Fish Hill is Broadway Tower – a well-liked endpoint for an ideal hike from the village.

HOW TO GET TO BROADWAY

Broadway is 25 minutes from Cheltenham, and a 2 hour, 15-minute drive from London. To get to Broadway by way of public transport, take the prepare to Evesham Station, then catch the R4 bus which runs each couple of hours (besides on Sunday). You might additionally arrive at Moreton-in-Marsh and get bus 1, nonetheless, that is very rare.

It’s a 15-minute taxi from each Evesham and Moreton-in-Marsh to Broadway. Extra details about attending to Broadway is accessible in our information to the most effective weekends within the Cotswolds.


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Broadway Tower, places to visit in the Cotswolds
10 Best Cotswolds Villages To Visit 46

4 – STANTON

Stanton is a quiet, peaceable village. The one signal of commercialisation is The Mount Inn. Set on the foot of Shenbarrow Hill, the pub is completely positioned above the city with sweeping views. On a transparent day, see all the best way to the Welsh mountains.

From the deck of the pub, the constant structure of Stanton is displayed in typical Cotswolds fashion: steeply pitched roofs and honey-coloured stone. However Stanton manages to create a comfortable really feel by itself deserves, with out showing particularly contrived for vacationers.

Stanton is one among our favorite villages within the Cotswolds. Other than feeling like an actual lived-in city, it’s additionally an ideal base for some wonderful nation walks. The deck on the Mount Inn overlooking the city is a superb place to finish a basic Cotswolds hike.

HOW TO GET TO STANTON

Stanton is 5 kilometres south of Broadway, which makes an ideal base to go to Stanton from. It’s probably the greatest cities within the Cotswolds for beginning some wonderful nation hikes. Learn extra about our favorite Cotswolds walks.

5 – MINSTER LOVELL

Minster Lovell assumes a veiled location by the banks of the Windrush River. It’s a lovely tiny village the place you may take pleasure in afternoon tea whereas watching a sport of cricket on the inexperienced.

However the principle purpose for visiting Minster Lovell is the picturesque ruins of a Fifteenth-century manor home. Resting on the banks of the river, it’s an idyllic location within the English countryside.

If the climate is heat sufficient, the river that meanders previous the ruins is likely one of the finest locations to go wild swimming within the Thames. A bit additional downstream, extra picnic alternatives reveal themselves within the grassy fields both facet of the river and a weir supplies the proper spot to leap in for a reed-fringed swim.

Minster Lovell is likely one of the finest Cotswolds villages for an attention-grabbing and atmospheric expertise in a lovely rural setting.

HOW TO GET TO MINSTER LOVELL

Minster Lovell is a 1 hour, 30-minute drive from London. The close by city of Burford is quarter-hour’ drive away and an ideal base to go to Minster Lovell from. To get to Burford by way of public transport, take the prepare to Shipton-under-Wychwood which is a 10-minute taxi to Burford.


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Minster Lovell, Cotswolds
10 Best Cotswolds Villages To Visit 50

6 – PAINSWICK

The prosperity Painswick loved from the 17th century is clear within the rows of chic gray limestone buildings that make this one of many extra regal Cotswolds villages to go to. A maze of cobbled laneways present loads of areas to discover with the village cascading down the facet of a hill.

The actual drawcard is the central church and its immaculate grounds. Adorned with rows of completely trimmed yew bushes and surrounded by tombs and monuments, it’s one of the crucial photogenic spots within the Cotswolds.

The story goes that there are 99 yew bushes within the church grounds and if a 100th tree is planted, it’s instantly killed by the satan. The final official rely put the variety of bushes at 103.

Take a stroll by means of the fanciful Rococo Gardens on the outskirts of Painswick full with magical follies and shocking views of the encircling countryside. 

HOW TO GET TO PAINSWICK

Painswick is quarter-hour away from Gloucester and a 2 hour, 30-minute drive from London. To go to Painswick by public transport, take the prepare to Stroud Station then take Bus 66 for a 10-minute experience. The city is sufficiently big for a few days particularly when you head over to scenic Slad or Cranham that are each inside strolling distance.


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Best Cotswolds villages
10 Best Cotswolds Villages To Visit 51

7 – BOURTON-ON-THE-WATER

Bourton-on-the-Water is likely one of the finest Cotswold villages with a spread of actions to maintain the entire household entertained. A picturesque canal runs down the excessive road with good-looking stone bridges connecting both facet of the street. Stylish cafes combine with quaint tea rooms and ice cream stands. Like several small village value its salt, there are many bakeries – our choose is Bakery on the Water. 

On the finish of the excessive road, the Cotswolds Motoring Museum homes Brum, the star of the 90’s BBC kids’s TV present a few small radio-controlled automobile. In the event you’re not pleased with seeing the village as soon as, Bourton lovers can try the Mannequin Village which is a precise (however miniature) reproduction.

On the outskirts of city, the Cotswolds Brewing Firm is open to the general public each weekend for tastings of their homegrown lagers.

HOW TO GET TO BOURTON-ON-THE-WATER

Bourton-on-the-Water is a 2-hour drive from London. To go by way of public transport, take the prepare to both Kingham Station or to Moreton-in-Marsh, then the bus to Bourton-on the-Water. The bus providers will be rare so test the timetables and time your prepare to attach with them. Solely the 801 service (between Bourton and Moreton) runs on Sundays, and solely in summer season months (twice every day).

A cab from Kingham or Moreton-in-Marsh to Bourton will take round 20 minutes.

8 – UPPER SLAUGHTER & LOWER SLAUGHTER

Higher Slaughter and Decrease Slaughter are two tiny villages that completely seize the aesthetic of the prettiest Cotswolds villages. With no constructing happening within the Slaughters since 1906, they continue to be quintessential English rural villages.

River Eye – a tributary of the River Windrush – winds its means by means of honey-coloured cottages and cute church buildings with little bridges dotted alongside the brook. There are not any outlets in both village, simply a number of locations alongside the river to take in the surroundings and loads of photograph alternatives.  

There’s no higher approach to recognize the great thing about the realm than on a meander between the 2. The trail follows the river from Decrease Slaughter over a straightforward 20-minute stroll. Grand resorts and method homes, bucolic English countryside and plush inexperienced meadows lower a dreamy scene.

HOW TO GET TO THE SLAUGHTERS

The very best base to go to the Slaughters is Bourton-on-the-Water (see above). From right here, it’s only a 15-minute stroll to Decrease Slaughter, then one other quarter-hour to Higher Slaughter. On an extended hike, you may attain Naunton, one other village that very practically made the record. Extra particulars are in our information to the most effective weekends within the Cotswolds.

9 – KINGHAM

Kingham is a small working neighborhood and the most effective tows within the Cotswolds for foodies.  

The native pub – The Kingham Plough – is operated underneath a Heston Blumenthal prodigy who has reinvented basic dishes on their progressive menu. It’s the proper cosy pub to take pleasure in a pint and a few top-quality cooking after a protracted day mountain climbing within the space. The Wild Rabbit craft culinary masterpieces in a formidable however relaxed setting. Their latest Michelin star has given the costs a whack however for wonderful eating within the Cotswolds, it’s troublesome to go previous. 

The close by Daylesford Natural has a farm store with a superb choice of native produce, a bewildering array of cheeses, and a contemporary café with on-trend lunch choices. Guide a weekend at both the Plough or the Wild Rabbit – two of the most effective locations to remain within the Cotswolds.

HOW TO GET TO KINGHAM

Kingham is a 1 hour, 40-minute drive from London. It has its personal station on the mainline, nonetheless, it’s one mile outdoors the village centre, so that you’ll have to organise a taxi from the station. The villages of Bledington, Decrease Oddington and Churchill all have well-known Cotswolds pubs and are solely half-hour to an hour’s stroll away.


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10 – LACOCK

Lacock is owned and managed by the Nationwide Belief so it lacks the lived-in really feel of different Cotswold’s villages. Nevertheless, the safety of the belief has ensured that Lacock has been superbly preserved; unchanged because it was established within the 13th century as a wool buying and selling centre. 

Half-timber, half stone cottages line wonky laneways that fill the village with attraction and character. Outlets have maintained their unique easy branding and movies akin to Satisfaction and Prejudice and Emma have been lured in by genuine facades.

The principle attraction in Lacock is the Abbey, based in 1229 by Ela, Countess of Salisbury. It’s a unusual nation home with various architectural kinds inherited over the centuries. The medieval rooms include a clock home, a brewery and a bakehouse, all enclosed in naturally wooded grounds.

The abbey grounds have to be booked upfront.

HOW TO GET TO LACOCK

Lacock is 40 minutes’ drive from Bristol and a straightforward day journey from Bathtub. From London, it’s a 2 hour, 10-minute drive. Lacock is 20 minutes’ drive from Fort Combe, so Chippenham is the closest prepare station.

Lacock Abbey, Cotswolds, England
10 Best Cotswolds Villages To Visit 59

WHERE TO STAY IN THE COTSWOLDS

The Cotswolds is an space that’s as numerous as it’s stunning, with a number of fantastic issues to do. From sleepy hamlets to cities with imposing stately properties; bucolic rural countryside to the dramatic panorama of the escarpment. You might spend a number of weekends within the Cotswolds and have a unique expertise every time.

FOR PRETTY COTSWOLDS VILLAGES

For fairly villages, the realm round Bourton-on-the-Water and the central Cotswolds is right. Right here you’ll simply be capable of go to the Slaughters, Kingham and plenty of different native villages close by. For extra data on placing a weekend collectively, learn our information to the most effective Cotswolds weekend breaks.

FOR HIKING

In case you are on the lookout for some nice mountain climbing choices, Broadway is an effective selection with a number of nice walks simply accessible alongside the Cotswolds Means. It’s additionally near a number of nice walks leaving from Stanton. For extra details about nice walks within the space, learn out information to the 6 finest walks within the Cotswolds.

MORE IDEAS

The world round Kingham is nice for meals, and there are at all times loads of issues to do in Oxford – one other nice base for exploring the villages of the Cotswolds. That can assist you resolve, we’ve put collectively a information on all of the completely different areas of the Cotswolds and what they provide.

Chipping Camden, Cotswolds, England
10 Best Cotswolds Villages To Visit 60

BEST TIME TO VISIT THE COTSWOLDS VILLAGES

The flexibility of those stunning Cotswolds villages means they’re an all-year vacation spot.

In summer season, take pleasure in a stroll within the Cotswolds over undulating landscapes dotted with sheep because the solar lights up the fields. Timeless villages equally come alive when bathed in English sunshine. Nevertheless, summer season is the busiest time of yr, so lodging will probably be costlier and among the villages will probably be bursting with vacationers.

Few different areas within the nation show rusty autumn colors fairly just like the Cotswolds when a stroll on a crisp day is meals for the soul. In winter, be captivated by the gorgeous stone villages frosted in snow as you curl up in entrance of an open fireplace with a glass of purple in a rustic pub.

Nevertheless it’s spring when the Cotswolds actually comes alive. The gardens are on the most stunning; the mountain climbing trails are stuffed with blossom and wild garlic; and the villages are nonetheless quiet and relaxed earlier than the summer season rush.

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ITINERARY FOR VISITING THE COTSWOLDS VILLAGES

Most of the finest villages within the Cotswolds are shut to one another making them straightforward to go to in at some point in case you have your personal automobile. Our information to the most effective Cotswolds weekends has 5 itineraries to see a number of of the villages in a single weekend together with pub and restaurant suggestions and issues to do.

If you need to get outdoors the villages, our favorite hikes within the Cotswolds embrace 6 very achievable walks by means of the gorgeous English countryside. All are round and most end at an ideal pub.

Being centrally situated, the Cotswolds villages are additionally nice for a day journey. We now have put collectively 10 concepts for nice day journeys to the Cotswolds which embrace all the data for a full time out.

VISIT THE COTSWOLDS VILLAGES ON AN ORGANISED TOUR

The opposite approach to see the prettiest Cotswolds villages is by way of an organised tour. It is a nice approach to see among the space when you’re pressed for time or simply need to meet another people who find themselves up for a time out within the Cotswolds as nicely.

We use Get Your Information as our reserving associate. They’ve strict COVID-19 security precautions and tickets will probably be despatched to your smartphone with all the data you want together with the place to satisfy and what to carry.

FROM LONDON – OXFORD, BURFORD & BIBURY

FROM LONDON – BLENHEIM PALACE & DOWNTON ABBEY VILLAGES

MORE READING FOR YOUR COTSWOLDS TRIP

The Cotswolds is the one space of England we’ve visited probably the most. There are few mountain climbing trails we haven’t walked or villages we haven’t explored. We’ve spent lengthy afternoons inside cosy pubs, labored our means by means of native ales, in contrast the most effective Sunday roasts and sampled native bakeries. Right here’s some extra Cotswolds studying.

COTSWOLDS TOWNS & CITIES

Oxford day journey – An Itinerary for 1 day in Oxford

Aristocrat to artisan – the most effective issues to do in Bathtub in at some point

Our favorite issues to do in and round Oxford

OUTDOORS IN THE COTSWOLD

Discover the most effective of the Cotswolds on these six round walks

The very best places for wild swimming within the Thames

COTSWOLDS TRIP PLANNING

5 itinerary concepts for the most effective weekend breaks within the Cotswolds

10 nice concepts for days out within the Cotswolds

The place to remain within the Cotswolds – Greatest areas & resorts


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The Cotswolds villages fulfil an idolised English dream. But there’s hidden variety in these rural charmers. Here’s our list of the best Cotswolds villages, each offering something a little different. | Visit England | Visit Cotswolds | Pretty Cotswolds Villages | Castle Comb | Broadway | Bibury | Stanton | Painswick Minster Lovell Burton-on-the-Water | Upper Slaughter Lower Slaughter | Kingham | Lacock
10 Best Cotswolds Villages To Visit 63

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