Diversity makes the best things to do in Cotswold shine even more. This rural area in south-central England just can’t be denied. For one, it is massive – it covers parts of six counties in over 800 square miles. No wonder there is an enormous amount of surprises for travelers to explore here!
It is home to some of the most beautiful attractions in England, including stately homes, ancient mansions, historic buildings, and medieval villages. The landscape is stunning too, with dramatic backdrops and lush farmlands, making it a haven for organic and local food and shopping.
If you are going around for a tour, better start now because there is a lot to cover! To start, here is a list of the top 10 best things to do in Cotswold just for you.
1. Kelmscott Manor
Exploring the best of The Cotswolds’ countryside begins in experiencing this gorgeous garden-fringed Tudor mansion that belonged to William Morris. Grand in every way, the house displays personal possessions of the 19th-century poet and artist, including fabrics and furniture he personally designed.
Price: £9.50 for adults and £5 for children
Hours: 11 AM to 5 PM every Wednesday and Saturday from April to October
Location: Kelmscott, The Cotswolds, England
2. Sudeley Castle
Set amidst a most dramatic backdrop, the Sudeley Castle is Winchcombe’s main attraction, which is undeniably one of the best things to do in Cotswold. Its thousand-year history is entwined with the monarchy, particularly with Richard III, Henry VIII, Charles I, and Catherine Parr, the widow of Henry VIII. The grand exhibitions captivate, especially the costumes, paintings, and memorabilia. Also, there are ten beautiful gardens surrounding the building, including a knot garden and aviaries.
Price: £14.50 for adults and £5.50 for children
Hours: 10 AM to 5 PM from mid-March to October
Location: Winchcombe GL54 5JD, United Kingdom
3. Arlington Row
Arlington Row epitomises the golden villages of the Cotswolds, with rows of perfect, rustic cottages, which arguably makes it as the most photographed street in Britain. Overlooking the Rack Isle, this place is the most popular attraction in Bibury, which undoubtedly places it on any list of the best things to do in Cotswold.
Hours: Open access
Location: Bibury, England
4. Tolsey House
This 16th-century building used to be a market house where traders pay a toll for the use of market facilities. Inside, there is a museum with historical displays that illustrate Burford’s social and industrial past. Exhibits include a charter from Henry VII, a dollhouse modeled on the Great House in Whitney St., and local artefacts that provide a glimpse of daily life here.
Hours: 2 PM to 5 PM every Tuesday to Sunday from April to October
Location: The Tolsey, High Street, Burford, Oxfordshire, OX18 4QU
5. Corinium Museum
A visit to this modern museum is a treat for kids. The videos and interactive displays allow them to explore Cirencester during the Roman occupation and medieval times. Highlights include mosaic floors, the Jupiter column, and the Anglo-Saxon section.
Price: £5.20 for adults and £2.50 for children
Hours: 10 AM to 5 PM every Monday to Saturday and 2 PM to 5 PM every Sunday from April to October; up to 4 PM from November to March
Location: Park St., Cirencester, England
6. Daylesford Organic
A haven for local, seasonal, and delicious food, Daylesford Organic farm, and farm shop is well at the frontline of Cotswolds’ organic movement. There is no better treat for food lovers – it is one of the best things to do in Cotswold. High-quality produce is abundant in the food hall while there is no shortage of fresh and excellent dishes at the organic restaurant featuring a daily changing menu. The sprawling site also has a luxury spa and an upmarket boutique. What more can you possibly ask for?
Price: Cafe dishes start at £7
Hours: 8 AM to 5 PM every Monday to Wednesday, 8 AM to 8 pm every Thursday to Saturday, and 10 AM to 4 PM every Sunday
Location: Daylesford, 4 miles east of Stow-on-the-Wold, England
7. Jaffé & Neale Bookshop Cafe
Raid the shelves of this vibrant, independent bookshop for great reads but don’t forget to take the time to plunder the irresistible display of cakes and coffee, too. Own your space in the reading lounge with cosy sofas upstairs and get lost inside the pages of your chosen book – definitely a most excellent way to spend your weekend.
Hours: 9.30 AM to 5.30 PM every Monday to Saturday and 11 AM to 5 PM every Sunday
Location: 1 Middle Row, Chipping Norton, England
8. Horse & Groom
Upmarket country cooking shines through at Horse & Groom. This is the place to be when you are craving local lamb, beef, fish, and vegetable dishes. Phenomenal flavors just explode in your mouth, and the laid-back ambience makes you want to stay for hours on end.
Price: Mains start at £12.50
Hours: Open daily at 12 PM to 2 PM, plus 7 PM to 9 PM every Monday to Saturday
Location: Bourton-on-the-Hill 2 miles west of Moreton-in-Marsh, England
Sweets prominently feature in the menu of this popular cafe in Cirencester, right next to the Cirencester’s museum. Try not to overdose on sugar when you walk in, but it indeed takes all of your wills to resist the line of homemade cakes, brownies, scones, and flapjacks. The full English breakfast and light lunches are equally tempting, too.
Price: Food starts at £4
Hours: 9 AM to 5 PM every Monday to Saturday and 11 AM to 5 PM every Sunday
Location: 44 Black Jack St, Cirencester GL7 2AA, United Kingdom
Any pro traveler knows a local crowd is enough clue to the quality of a place. In this sense, Wheatsheaf scores high in the list of the best things to do in Cotswold. Casual and lively, this favorite pub in Northleach serves seasonal British dishes like rich pies and succulent steaks. And when you have had too much to eat and drink, rooms are available upstairs, too.
Price: Mains starts at £14
Hours: 8 AM to 10 AM, 12 PM to 3 PM, and 6 PM to 9 PM every Monday to Thursday and Sunday; up to 10 PM every Friday and Saturday
Location: West End, Northleach, England
Budget – Station Hotel, starts at USD89
Mid-Range – The Hare & Hounds Hotel, starts at USD160
Luxury – The Slaughters Manor House, starts at USD400
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