Whether you want to soak up culture at the opera, explore picture-perfect countryside, get up close to wildlife or visit an iconic event, there’s plenty for everyone to enjoy discovering in the Cotswolds in 2020.
We’ve rounded up 12 things to add to your calendar for this year, offering the chance to broaden your horizons and enjoy the best the of the region, in this hot list.
1. Go wine tasting at Woodchester Valley
Enjoy the chance to sample award-winning Cotswold wines at Woodchester Valley, which runs guided tours and tastings at its vineyard and winery near Stroud.
Visitors will learn about the wine-making process followed by a tutored wine tasting, while the on-site shop is ideal for picking up a bottle or two to savour back at home.
2. Explore Sudeley Castle
Learn more about Gloucestershire’s royal connections with a visit to Sudeley Castle and Gardens, a beautiful 16th century stately home situated in the Cotswold village of Winchcombe.
The family attraction, which is set on a 1,200-acre estate and encompasses beautiful gardens, is steeped in history and visitors can see where Henry VIII’s wife Katherine Parr is buried, along with discovering more about its rich royal heritage.
3. Coo over the lambs at Cotswold Farm Park
Adam Henson’s Cotswold Farm Park is a delight for all ages to enjoy getting up close to a variety of animals.
The attraction near Guiting Power, which is open from mid-February till the end of December, has plenty to tempt visitors all year but spring is a particularly lovely time to visit to meet the oh so cute lambs and feed them bottles.
4. Walk the Cotswold Way
The Cotswolds is home to stunning countryside and one of the best ways to soak it up is by lacing up your walking boots and going for a walk, with plenty of trails to discover across the region.
The Cotswold Way, a 102-mile footpath that runs from Chipping Campden down to Bath, offers walkers of all abilities the chance to take in glorious views, with plenty of pub stops to enjoy along the way!
5. Run away to Giffords Circus
An annual event not to be missed, Giffords Circus offers fun for the whole family when it tours the Cotswolds every summer. While the show varies from year to year, visitors can expect a fantastic spectacle that encompasses live music, awe-inspiring acrobatics and comedy from legendary clown, Tweedy.
If you really want to make the experience one to remember, book a table at Circus Sauce and enjoy a three-course meal at its travelling restaurant either before or after the show.
6. See amazing displays at the Royal International Air Tattoo
Every July, the skies over Fairford come to life when the Royal International Air Tattoo place. The event, one of the world’s largest military airshows, attracts thousands who flock to see fantastic choreographed displays.
The jam-packed showcase also offers the chance to get up close to the impressive aircrafts, see vintage models, learn about careers in the aviation industry and enjoy plenty of family-friendly activities.
7. Visit a National Trust property
A visit to a National Trust property is the perfect way to spend a leisurely weekend, whether you’re planning a family outing, a romantic date, or a day out with friends.
The Cotswolds has a variety of National Trust places to enjoy exploring, including Hidcote Manor, famed for its beautiful garden; Chedworth Roman Villa, and Lodge Park and Sherborne Estate an impressive 17th century grandstand.
8. Enjoy a sporting day out at Beaufort Polo Club
Catch a bit of sporting action and enjoy a civilised day out at Beaufort Polo Club, with fixtures taking place from May to September.
The highlight on the calendar is the Gloucestershire Festival of Polo, which takes place during June 2020, and see top-class polo, along with a tented shopping village, attractions and a traditional funfair.
9. Take in the views from Broadway Tower
For an impressive vantage point that takes in stunning views of a 62-mile radius, climb to the top of Broadway Tower, which was designed by iconic landscape designer Capability Brown and completed in 1798.
The Tower houses exhibitions over three floors, offering visitors the chance to learn more about its links to the Arts and Crafts movement and how it was used during World War II.
10. Watch medieval sports at the Cotswold Olimpick Games
Dating back to 1612, Rob Dover’s Cotswold Olimpick Games is a popular event that takes place on Dover’s Hill in Chipping Campden and sees competitors battle it out in weird and wonderful sporting trials, including the iconic shin kicking championship.
The event, taking place on Friday 29 May 2020, is steeped in history and offers the chance for amateurs to flex their competitive streaks, along with a host of entertainment for all ages.
11. Smell the flowers at Cotswold Lavender
Expect a sensory overload when visiting Cotswold Lavender, which you can smell even before you see the rows of beautiful purple flowers at the farm in Broadway. Although varying from year to year depending on the weather, the lavender is typically in bloom from mid-June to the end of July until it is harvested.
Aside from stunning photo opportunities, visitors can enjoy lunch or tea and cake in the café, while you can also pick up a host of lavender-scented delights from the gift shop.
12. Enjoy a performance at Longborough Festival Opera
If you want to soak up world-class opera closer to home, then you should definitely add a visit to Longborough Festival Opera to your list of Cotswold cultural must-dos for 2020.
Taking place during the summer, the annual event sees epic productions come to life in its 500-seat theatre located in a beautiful setting near Moreton-in-Marsh.