Things to see and do in the South Cotswolds

The South of the Cotswolds touching both Wiltshire and Gloucestershire, is not short of spectacular scenery and stunning walks. Visitors will delight in meandering around the picturesque villages, stopping off to sample locally brewed ales and homegrown food.

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Foodies looking for a Michelin starred restaurant are well served in this area of the Cotswolds. In Gloucestershire book a table at Le Champignon Sauvage which has served the most incredible food since it opened back in 1987. In the delightful town of Chippenham, The Bybrook is an elegant manor house set in 365 glorious acres of Cotswold countryside. Here, a brigade of excellent chefs serve up seasonal modern British good from local producers and their own kitchen garden.

The town of Fairford is known for its Town Crier who continues the ancient tradition on the first Wednesday of every month in the market place. However, you may know Fairford for its military base from which Concorde had its maiden flight. Visit in July and you will not be disappointed as the Royal International Air Tattoo plays host to hundreds of aircraft from around the world.

Glorious all year round, the National Arboretum at Westonbirt is a fabulous place for all the family. From the Gruffalo spotters and natural play trails to the five national tree collections and breath-taking Tree Top Walkway, there is plenty to see and do. The arboretum makes for a perfect picnic spot, especially in the spring as the blossom comes into bloom and the weather warms up. If you forget the picnic, fear not, as the onsite kitchen, pantry and smokehouse serve a selection of wood-fired pizzas, grab and go food, homemade cakes and excellent, freshly ground coffee.

Another fabulous park is in the nearby town of Cirencester – yes, a park actually in a town! The 15,000 acre country park makes for a peaceful retreat where visitors can wander around the gardens spotting wild deer or taking to the lake in a rowing boat.

Beyond the Arboretum and country parks there are many great walking routes in the South Cotswolds. The 6-mile route from Chipping Campden, at the northern end of the Cotswold Way, to Broadway tower takes you across the Gloucestershire-Worcestershire border. Make sure you spend some time at Broadway Tower, enjoying the incredible views from the top, before spotting deer as you make your way past the war memorial to the Morris & Brown Café, for a bite to eat or to pick up a gift.

If you like to enjoy a spot of shopping, whilst on a short-break, then you will find some wonderful independent shops on almost every high street in and around the area. In the lesser-known town of Dursley you will find a bustling farmers market on the second Saturday of every month, and the town is fast becoming known as a centre for the arts, with exhibitions and workshops taking place at nearby Kingshill house. From delightful gift shops to antiques centres and art galleries, you can pick up a perfect gift or treat yourself to local crafts to take a touch of the Cotswolds back home with you.