Things to see and do in and around the Central Cotswolds

From the central Cotswolds you are well placed to explore just about every corner of this area of outstanding natural beauty, but you may well want to focus your time on the collection of towns and villages that this central area has to offer.

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Thrill seekers and adventurous families will most definitely want to make the trip to the Cotswold Country Park & Beach. Plan your trip before you go and book on to one of the many available attractions. From the kayaks and paddle boards to the giant inflatable park Aquaventure, there is plenty to do if you don’t mind getting wet. However, if you would like to take a trip on the water and staying dry then we recommend hiring a more sensible boat. On dry land you won’t have the chance to sit still though as you can choose between pedal karting or the high wires of Vertigo Adventures.

In nearby Cirencester the lovely country park, Abbey Grounds, is a peaceful retreat from the bustling town centre. The small lake and children’s play area make it a great little family park, easily accessed from town. Back in Cirencester itself you will find a wonderful mix of independent shops and high street favourites. The market-place is where you will find well-known names such as Joules and Crew Clothing, which sit alongside the Corn Hall which often plays host to regular craft fairs and food markets.

From food markets to foodie restaurants, the infamous Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons is a must – but be prepared to book well in advance. If vibrant country pubs are more your style then the White Hart in Abingdon is an unforgettable find, The Killingworth Castle on the edge of Wooton serves uncomplicated British classics with a gourmet twist, and The Feathers Hotel serves delicious afternoon tea. I’m sure you will agree you will not be short of places to eat, and you may need to loosen your belt after a short-break in foodie heaven.

Many of our guests love to shop and the Central Cotswolds won’t disappoint. From here you are in easy reach of Oxfordshire and the Westgate in Oxford itself is the newest shopping centre which is home to prestigious global brands, an eclectic mix of restaurants and its own cinema and rooftop bars. For less of a high street touch the Covered Market in Oxford, trading since 1774, is a bustling place packed with butchers and toy shops, flower stalls and greengrocers. But if it’s a bargain you’re after then hop in the car and head on over to Bicester village where you will find over 160 shops packed with everything from fashion to homeware at savings of up to 60%.

No stay in the Central Cotswolds would be complete without getting out into the fresh air and taking a walk on a section of the Cotswold Way. In the central Cotswolds the way takes in Crickley Hill – an ancient battle site previously on the English Heritage ‘at risk’ register. It is an absolute haven for wildflowers and animals so be on the lookout for the Belted Galloway cattle and the large mature beech trees in the area known as ‘The Scrubs’.

Another great walk which takes in the expansive views across the Oxfordshire hills is the White Horse to Ashdown trail. On this route look out for the mysterious Uffington White Horse in the chalk filled hillside and the grand Ashdown House.

We’re sure you will agree, the central Cotswolds is an area not to be missed but certainly somewhere you can return to time and again.