The Top 10 Things To Do & See in The Cotswolds

Broadway Tower |© Phil Dolby/Flickr
Broadway Tower |© Phil Dolby/Flickr
What’s not to love about The Cotswolds? From breathtaking landscapes to historic monuments, beautiful walk routes to romantic, secluded spots, there’s an attraction for everyone. Here we round up the top 10 must-dos for when you visit the South West’s gem.

Cotswolds Wildlife Park

Portrait of a giraffe in the sun
Portrait of a giraffe in the sun | © Tambako The Jaguar/Flickr
Take a walk on the wild side at this family-friendly attraction that will make the perfect day out. Set amongst 160 acres of parkland, the park is home to an abundance of different species, many of which are endangered. Take a peak at the Asiatic Lions, say hello to the friendly giraffes and watch the penguins have their lunch – this is definitely one for the kids.
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Cheltenham Racecourse

Hundreds of thousands of racing fans come to Cheltenham every year, eager to live out the classic ‘day at the races’ experience. The racing, the setting, the tradition and history, the shared sense of enjoyment all combine to give everyone an incredible experience. With the stunning surrounding scenery, this is a Cotswolds’ attraction not to miss.

Cheltenham Racecourse, Evesham Rd, Prestbury, Cheltenham, UK, (+44) 1242 513014

Berkeley Castle

Historical Landmark
A magnificent medieval castle steeped in history, this is a brilliant day out for families, couples and friends. Wander around the gardens discovering ancient monuments dating back to 12th century, while inside you can find treasures that have been collected by the Berkeley family over many years. Marvel at the impressive décor that adorns the walls – this truly is a step back in time.
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Westonbirt Arboretum

If you’re visiting The Cotswolds, then it’s essential that you take a stroll through this gorgeous arboretum. Filled with over 600 acres of trees originating from all over the globe, you’ll be astonished by just how beautiful the surroundings are – the landscape here was laid out aesthetically rather than in a botanical order, meaning Westonbirt is truly one of the most beautiful tree gardens to be found anywhere in the world.

Westonbirt, Tetbury, UK, (+44) 300 067 4890

Japanese maple leaves|© Delaina Haslam/Flickr

Japanese maple leaves|© Delaina Haslam/Flickr

Shakespeare's Birthplace

The house where England's most famous playwright was born | The house where England's most famous playwright was born
Walk in the footsteps of one of the greatest writers of all time and explore the house where he was born and grew up. The house has been passed from family member to family member throughout the years, and now is in the hands of the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust who have been keeping it in top shape and true to it’s original form. From resident actors and exhibitions to workshops and readings, you simply must make a stop here for a guaranteed day of fun and learning.
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Fairytale Farm

Fun for kids, both small and big, Fairytale Farm, a learning wonderland, is an incredible day out for all the family. Particularly good for children with disabilities, the park is divided into three main zones which have been designed to create an amazing sensory experience that both kids and adults will love.

Fairytale Farm, Southcombe, Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire, UK, (+44) 1608 238014

Chipping Campden

Located in the North Cotswolds, this bustling market town is a must-see. Filled with ancient churches, glorious gardens, stately homes, country pubs and friendly locals, there’s an abundance of things to do and see. Make sure to visit when the monthly market is on at the town hall, where you can find crafts, gifts, cakes, clothes and handmade goods.

Snowshill Manor

Snowshill Manor is a 16th-century country house surrounded by history. The house contains an eclectic collection of thousands of objects from its previous owner, Charles Paget Wade, who gave up the house to the National Trust in 1951. Expect to see everything from old bicycles, toys, instruments and even 26 suits of Japanese samurai armour!

Snowshill Manor, Snowshill, UK, (+44) 1386 852410

Snowshill Manor|© Karen Roe/Flickr

Snowshill Manor|© Karen Roe/Flickr

The Slaughters

The Slaughters is made up of the two villages of Upper and Lower Slaughter, and is a stunning, scenic walk route you have to experience. Don’t be put off by the slightly unsettling name – it comes from the old english ‘slohtre’ which basically means ‘muddy place’. Far from their name, these villages are the most picturesque and idyllic walk routes you may ever come across. Expect to see old mills, country houses, historic brick work and pretty river routes.

The Model Village

The Model Village is a one-ninth scale replica of the heart of the beautiful Cotswold village of Bourton-on-the-Water, containing all the buildings from the Old Water Mill down to the Old New Inn and the ford, all built in Cotswold stone. Become a giant for the day and look down over miniature trees, flowers, shops and more. There’s even music that comes from the miniature church! A truly enchanting visit.

The Model Village at Bourton-on-the-Water © Karen Roe/Flickr