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Cotswolds Self-Guided Tour (7 Nights)

Tour code: WOESG7B

Tour Overview

The Cotswolds is a unique region with some of the finest rural landscapes in England. Gently undulating hills and tree-lined valleys rise gradually from the meadowlands of the upper reaches of the River Thames to the dramatic limestone escarpment that is the high point of the Cotswolds.

From here, the hills sweep down westwards to the Vale of Evesham and the Severn Vale. The Cotswolds region is particularly renowned for the beauty of its villages and towns, built of the characteristic Cotswold limestone. The colour of the stone varies, from the honey colouring of the north, through the golden hues of the central region down to the pearly white stone associated with Bath.

The golden age for the Cotswolds came with the growth of the wool trade in medieval times, when trading, processing and weaving brought great prosperity to the region. The wealthy wool merchants invested in fine houses and in the endowment of the imposing "wool churches" that dominate the towns and villages. It is the combination of beautiful landscapes and beautiful villages, together with the abundance of lightly trafficked country roads and lanes of that makes the Cotswolds such an attractive cycling destination.

Starting from Bath you follow the Kennet and Avon canal east to the outskirts of the city and then climb gradually north up to the plateau of the Cotswolds escarpment, continuing to Tetbury. The next leg continues north through beautiful Cotswolds countryside to Stow-on-the-Wold for a two night stopover. The loop ride visits several beautiful and historic villages to the north of Stow. Leaving Stow to the south, you visit Burford and Northleach en route to Cirencester. A circuit from here explores the valley of the River Coln. The final leg back to Bath takes you to Castle Combe and finishes with a marvellous descent down to the Avon Valley.

For information on the en route scenery and attractions see the Regional Details page.
The itinerary follows routes K, L, M, N, O and P
This tour is rated B – click here for tour rating description.

Ten highlights

  • Exploring the beautiful city of Bath – a World Heritage Site
  • Westonbirt Arboretum
  • Chavenage House
  • Bourton-on-the-Water
  • The Slaughters
  • The Rollright Stones
  • Arlington Row in Bibury
  • The World of Mechanical Music in Northleach
  • Chedworth Roman Villa
  • The village of Castle Combe


  • Bibury
  • Broadway Tower
  • Castle Combe
  • Cotswold Idyll
  • Lower Slaughter


  • To lengthen the tour, consider spending an extra night or two in the lovely city of Bath.


Outline Itinerary

Day Itinerary Start Finish Route options
En Route
1 arrive at BATH      
2 route K Bath Tetbury  
Kennet and Avon Canal; Sherston; Westonbirt
3 route L* Tetbury Stow    
Chavenage House; Bourton-on-the-Water; The Slaughters
4 route M Stow Stow  
Chipping Norton; Rollright Stones; Moreton-in-Marsh; Chipping Campden; Broadway; Snowshill
5 route N Stow Cirencester    
Burford; Northleach; Chedworth Roman Villa
6 route O Cirencester Cirencester    
Coln Valley; Bibury; Arlington Row; Cotswold Wildlife Park
7 route P Cirencester Bath    
Malmesbury Abbey; Castle Combe; Kennet and Avon Canal
8 depart from BATH        

Tour Costs

Costs in Sterling Pounds
basic cost per person sharing
single accommodation supplement (if applicable)
Optional Costs
bicycle rental
Trek Hybrid
pannier rental per pair
luggage transfers
shared charge for group
additional charge per rider

Click here for more details on what's included in the costs above.

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