The Cotswolds is the biggest of all thirty-eight Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty in England and Wales. Almost eighty percent of the land remains as farmland. There are many long-distance trails throughout the region, including the one-hundred-and-two-mile Cotswolds Way. This unspoilt area of National Trust brings outdoor enthusiasts to the area to enjoy walking, cycling and horse-riding to work up a thirst to quench in one of innumerable wonderful pubs.
These hills are home to some of the most charming and picturesque small towns in England, each one is bursting with unique history and charm. The medieval town of Burford is often referred to as the ‘Gateway to the Cotswolds’ and boasts captivating history spanning across nine decades. It is also home to one of the most beautiful and ancient churches in the region: St John the Baptist Church.
A short drive away you find Bourton-on-the-Water, famously recognised as ‘the Venice of the Cotswolds’. It is a quaint village which straddles the river Windrush, known for its low bridges and traditional honey-stone houses. Other notable ‘classic’ Cotswolds villages include Stow-on-the-Wold, Bibury and Chipping Campden.
This eight hundred square mile utopia is also home to some of England’s most cultured small cities, such as Cheltenham, the Roman towns of Cirencester and Bath, Oxford, and Stratford upon Avon – all of which offer a plethora of possibilities for sightseeing in England. Cheltenham lies in the west of the Cotswolds and plays host to some of the country’s most popular cultural events such as Cheltenham Races, Cheltenham Jazz Festival and Cheltenham Literary Festival.
There is one thing that you can be guaranteed to find in any one of the Cotswolds towns or villages – a charming country pub. The country pub culture in the Cotswolds encourages a high standard of food, local ales and cosy atmospheres in any of these establishments scattered throughout the spectacular countryside. From old fashioned British comfort food to refined gastro-pub style cuisine, the Cotswolds may well be home to some of the best country pubs in the country.