Towns & Villages of the Cotswolds
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Those wanting to catch their dinner should head for Bibury’s famous trout farm. Bibury is a vibrant village set on the River Coln, 10 minutes drive from Cirencester. Its treasures include the beautiful Saxon church of St Mary and the famous 14th century Arlington Row weavers cottages. Described by William Morris as ‘the most beautiful village in England’, Bibury is well worth a visit.
A gateway to the Cotswolds, Bledington is very close to Kingham station, which has a direct rail route to London. The village is situated on the border between Gloucestershire and Oxfordshire, not far from Stow-on-the-Wold and Daylesford. Bledington has a beautiful village green intersected by the River Coln and is home to the Norman Church of St. Leonard, which dates from 1170. You can explore the surrounding countryside by several walking routes including the Oxfordshire Walk Way, which takes you westwards to Bourton-on-the-Water or southwards towards Shipston-under-Wychwood.
Bourton On The Water
Bourton on the Water, affectionately known as the ‘Venice of the Cotswolds’ is a tourist honeypot. Gift shops and tearooms abound and the small bridges over the River Windrush running through the centre make for some lovely photo opportunities. There are several family attractions in Bourton on the Water, the model village is a real treat and newly redeveloped Birdland is great for an afternoon with the kids. There is a maze and a toy museum, a car museum and plenty of ducks to feed. Bourton on the Water is well connected by public transport and has a wide choice of bed and breakfasts and guesthouses.
The chestnut-lined high street of Broadway is the perfect place to spend an afternoon shopping in the Cotswolds. Exclusive boutiques, antique shops, art galleries and designer clothes stores make this vibrant village centre unmissable. Tearooms, restaurants and a sumptuous deli provide delicious sustenance for hungry shoppers and the Gordon Russell Museum is a must for antiquarians. Nearby attractions include Snowshill Manor with its fascinating collections of art and memorabilia and the imposing Broadway Tower for its unbeatable view. Broadway itself is ideally located for exploring the Northern Cotswolds and has numerous excellent hotels and guesthouses.
This vibrant Oxfordshire town, set in stunning countryside alongside the River Windrush, is a southern gateway to the Cotswolds. Beautiful Cotswold stone buildings line Burfords broad High Street, which slopes northwards towards a handsome medieval bridge. This impressive, picturesque main street is full of excellent antique shops, independent stores, art galleries, cafes, pubs and restaurants. The magnificent 15th century church of St John the Baptist is situated nearby in the oldest part of the town amongst streets of charming stone houses dating back as far as the 14th century. The Cotswold Wildlife Park is located just a few miles from the town’s centre and provides a great day out for all the family.
The charming town of Chipping Campden is centrally located in the north of the region, making it a great place to make a base. Exploring this old wool merchants’ town is an adventure itself, however, and visitors will delight in the beautiful honey-coloured stone houses and delightful streets. Antique shops and art galleries, tea shops and restaurants, Chipping Campden has something for everyone. There is also a busy social calendar in this vibrant town, including the Campden Literature and Music Festivals and the world-famous “Olimpick Games” in June.
Moreton In Marsh
The market town of Moreton-in-Marsh has a wonderful Cotswold high street to explore, with a whole host of restaurants, pubs and hotels. Independent shops, including a great butcher’s and a German pastry shop, and Moreton’s weekly open-air market are at the heart of this traditional town’s vibrant character. Moreton is on the train line direct from London Paddington.
The peaceful village of Naunton is settled within the Windrush Valley, close to Stow on the Wold. A popular footpath, commencing opposite the Black Horse Inn, takes walkers along the bank of the River Windrush and past the beautiful 17th century dovecote towards the ancient church of St. Andrews. Golf lovers will find the impressive 18-hole Naunton Downs golf course just outside the village.
Stow On The Wold
If you are looking for a picture perfect Cotswold village, untouched and tranquil, look no further than Upper Slaughter. Nestled in the Windrush valley, just a mile from its slightly busier sister, Lower Slaughter, this beautiful village is the ideal location for those wanting to get away from it all. A stroll along the peaceful River Windrush or a visit to the beautiful Norman church followed by cream teas on the lawn at Lords of the Manor, what could be more perfect?