Saturday 6 June 2020

10 of the best Cotswold walks

Lace up your walking boots and get ready to take in some country air, exploring some of the best walking spots that the Cotswolds has to offer.

Whether you’re a seasoned walker hoping to tackle longer routes during your daily exercise time, or more of a novice simply looking for a spot of fresh air, there are plenty of beautiful walks in the Cotswolds just waiting for you to lace up your boots and explore.

An Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the Cotswolds covers nearly 800 square miles of stunning countryside, making it a natural playground for walkers in this picturesque part of the UK.

1. Broadway walks

Not only can you expect to soak up the impressive sight of Broadway Tower, which stands at 65 feet tall, but you can also enjoy plenty of walks around the 50 acres of woods and parklands that it stands on.

2. Bibury walks

Described as ‘the most beautiful village in England’ by William Morris, Bibury is a must-visit for walkers who want to soak up chocolate-box charm while exploring this delightful corner of the Cotswolds.

Stroll along the banks of the River Coln and take in the much-photographed honey-coloured 17th century cottages on the iconic Arlington Row. Don’t miss the adjacent Rack Isle water meadow where you can expect to see water-loving plants and birds who thrive in the habitat.

3. Cleeve Hill walks

Blow away the cobwebs with a walk up Cleeve Hill in Cheltenham, the highest peak of the Cotswold Hills and the highest point in Gloucestershire, where you can take in breathtaking views over 1,000 acres of scenery.

There are a number of circular walks that take in parts of the Cotswold Way, with routes suitable for all ages and abilities, including a family circular trail that’s perfect for primary school aged children and above.

4. Stow-on-the-Wold walks

The picture-perfect Cotswold market town of Stow-on-the-Wold is perfect for discovering on foot, with short routes that take in both the town and the surrounding countryside.

5. Minchinhampton Common walks

National Trust sites, Minchinhampton and Rodborough Common are ideal for walks that take in the rolling hills and vast open spaces and views of the Stroud Valleys and Severn Estuary.

Plan your walk during the summer months to see the incredible varieties of butterfly, including many rare species, who come to breed on the wildflowers on Rodborough Common.

6. Winchcombe walks

Winchcombe has a rich Saxon history and is the perfect base for walkers as the Cotswold Way, Gloucestershire Way and Wychavon Way all pass through the market town.

A short walk from the charming town is the impressive Sudeley Castle and Gardens, which boasts royal connections, while there are longer walks and others that offer elevated views.

7. Burford walks

Featuring chocolate box cottages, quintessential tea rooms and plenty of Cotswold charm, it’s no wonder Burford is one of the gems of the Cotswolds. A beautiful place for a town walk, Burford is a great place to stroll around.

8. Chedworth walks

Wildlife lovers will be in their element when going for walks at Chedworth Nature Reserve, located on a disused section of the Cheltenham to Cirencester railway line.

The six-acre woods feature beech, oak and hazel trees, while there’s also the chance to see fossil-filled limestone that’s widespread across the Cotswolds.

9. Painswick walks

Whether you want to soak up the town’s famous 99 yew trees or pretty golden stone buildings that date back to the 15th century, Painswick has plenty to offer walkers.

If you want to enjoy views from higher ground there’s a circular walk that takes in Painswick Beacon and passes through Sheepscombe.

10. Bourton-on-the-Water walks

Known as the Venice of the Cotswolds, Bourton-on-the-Water is a must-visit for walkers who want to discover the village’s charming riverside setting and the picturesque nearby walks.

There’s a circular route that follows the Windrush and Gloucestershire Way and takes in the beautiful villages of Lower and Upper Slaughter, along with longer routes that encompass the village of Naunton.

As part of SoGlos’s #InThisTogetherGlos campaign, we are sharing positive news stories from across Gloucestershire, as well as joyful photos taken by readers in our Gloucestershire Coronavirus lockdown diary. Get involved, share your stories and pictures by using the #InThisTogetherGlos hashtag.

© SoGlos
Monday 11 May 2020

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