Best of the Cotswolds Self-Guided Walk Trip Notes

Ways to Travel:
Self-Guided Holidays, Private Group Adventures
Destinations:
United Kingdom, Cotswolds
Programmes:
Walking & Trekking
Trip Code:
W08CC
Activity Level: Leisurely
Leisurely

You are healthy, enjoy the outdoors and want a relaxing trip. No experience is required.

9 Days Land only
Ages: 12+

Trip Overview

This 8-night walking holiday takes you through some of the finest North Cotswold villages with shorter walking days, allowing the maximum time to explore the villages and walk at a relaxed pace. Your route includes visits to some of the best-known towns and villages in the region including Broadway, Chipping Campden and Guiting Power as well as the Saxon capital of Winchcombe and the nearby Sudeley Castle, the last resting place of Henry VIII's sixth wife, Katherine Parr. Enjoy the rolling Cotswolds countryside, riverside walks and some stunning horticultural gems in the gardens of National Trust manor houses, such as Kiftsgate or Hidcote.

Accommodation along your route has been hand-picked in characterful Bed & Breakfasts, inns and townhouses. Offering a warm and friendly Cotswold welcome and hearty cooked breakfasts, they offer comfortable stops along the walk and a charming insight into Cotswold life.

At a Glance

  • 8 nights hotel-to-hotel accommodation
  • Full English Breakfasts
  • Management by your local Headwater-appointed agent
  • Route directions and maps
  • Luggage transfers

Trip Highlights

  • Explore the Cotswolds - England's largest Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
  • Beautiful villages including Guiting Power, Broadway, and Chipping Campden
  • Visit areas of historical interest from Saxon, Jacobean and Medieval eras
  • Visit the ancient Saxon capital of Winchcombe and Sudeley Castle (last resting place of Katherine Parr, Henry VIII's 6th wife)
  • Stunning gardens at historical manor houses
  • Relaxing walks each day to allow extra time for exploring delightful Cotswold villages

Is This Trip for You?

Walking Conditions
Classification: Self-Guided
Activity Level: 1 (Leisurely)
Average daily distance: 12.5km (7.8 miles)
No. of days walking: 7
Terrain and route: Walks on this holiday are on village streets, country lanes, farm tracks and rural paths.
Vehicle Support: This is a self-guided trip for those who prefer to walk independently, but with our assistance to take out the stress of the logistics and planning. We arrange your accommodation, provide you with a map and route notes so that you can walk at your own pace, while your bags are transported from one hotel to the next.

It is important that you are happy reading maps and following route notes, we make these as accurate as possible and they are regularly checked.

As this is a self-guided holiday there is no group and no leader. There maybe others on the same departure date as you, but you will not be organised together. The routes notes contain a 24-hour emergency assistance telephone number should you need it and in emergencies, the hotels are normally able to dispatch a taxi or pick you up themselves. They may wish to charge for this service.

Adult min age:
12

Itinerary

Land Only

Start City:
Moreton-in-Marsh
End City:
Moreton-in-Marsh

Land Only Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Arrive Moreton-in-Marsh

    Standing at the crossroads betwen the Fosse Way Roman Road and what is now the A44, Moreton-in-Marsh, a small market town with a central market square and a set of stocks, is a great place to explore before heading out for dinner.

  • Day 2

    Moreton-in-Marsh to Stow-on-the-Wold

    Cross the high wolds to Stow-on-the-Wold, complete with village stocks and picturesque square, via the fantastic Mogul manor house at Sezincote and a number of pretty hamlets.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 7 km / 4.5 miles
  • Day 3

    Stow-on-the-Wold to Bourton-on-the-Water

    Today's route from Stow-on-the-Wold is a leisurely downhill walk across meadows to picturesque Lower Slaughter with its working mill and on to Bourton-on-the-Water, with its many attractions. A longer alternative walk is available for this day if you wish.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 7 km / 4.5 miles
  • Day 4

    At Bourton-on-the-Water

    Today you have the choice of a longer or shorter circular walk taking in more of the Slaughters.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 16 km / 10 miles
  • Day 5

    Bourton-on-the-Water (Guiting Power) to Winchcombe

    After a short transfer walk through woods and fields before the dramatic descent to the ancient Saxon capital of Winchcombe, close to Sudeley Castle, last resting place of Katherine Parr, Henry VIII's sixth wife. Overnight in Winchcombe, with its fascinating church and local museums.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 13 km / 8 miles
  • Day 6

    Winchcombe to Broadway via Stanton

    Follow the pilgrims' route to Hailes Abbey, then over the hills to Jacobean Stanway House, with its magnificent gatehouse and medieval tithe barn and on to idyllic Stanton. Stay in the coaching village of Broadway, where an array of fine houses and inns flank the 'broad way'.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 14.5 km / 9 miles
  • Day 7

    Broadway to Chipping Campden

    Walk up to Broadway Tower, the 18th century folly from where there are fine views across the vale before descending to Chipping Campden, the loveliest of all Cotswold villages, with its covered market place, beautiful 'wool church', almshouses and silversmiths.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 9.5 km / 6 miles
  • Day 8

    Chipping Campden to Moreton-in-Marsh

    Pass through the charming villages of Broad Campden and Blockley and descend to Batsford, where you may visit the arboretum and falconry centre. On certain days of the week both Bourton House gardens and Sezincote House will be open. Finally, a pleasant stroll across meadows to Moreton-in-Marsh.

    Meals included:
    Breakfast
    Distance covered: 12.5 km / 8 miles
  • Day 9

    Leave Moreton-in-Marsh

    Depart after breakfast

    Meals included:
    Breakfast

Accommodation

Best of the Cotswolds Self-Guided Walk

Cotswolds

You'll be staying in a mix of HHH, 3 star, HHHH and 4 star guesthouses, B&B's, inns and hotels. All of the accommodations offer a warm and friendly Cotswold welcome and hearty cooked breakfasts.

For those wishing to extend their stay in the area, ask us about city break add-ons in Bath or Oxford.

Where a single supplement is available, paying for a single will only guarantee a room for single use. It does not necessarily mean a twin or double room will be provided for sole occupancy.

Please note that a member of the group may be allocated a single room by default if the make-up of the group means there isn’t anyone for them to share with. Paying the supplement in advance is the only way to guarantee a single room.

Single supplements cannot be refunded retrospectively.

Single supplement from £360.00

Food & Transport

Eating & Drinking

Enjoy the local cuisine in quintessentially British pubs, cafes and delicatessens - local delicacies include Cerney Ash or Stinking Bishop cheeses, Crackleberry Farm eggs, Cotswold Cream liqueur and the local ales - try the Yubby beer from the Yubberton Brewery Co. There's also the archetypal English Cream Teas that go down a treat with a nice hot cup of tea!

Weather & Seasonality

When to go

This trip is possible year round, however due to the English weather, it is recommended to go between April and October. The Cotswolds can get very busy in the main summer tourist season of mid-July through to the end of August.

Weather Information

The Cotswolds has a temperate maritime climate with warm, rather than hot, summers and cool to cold winters. The hottest month, on average, is July and the coldest is January with rain falling fairly evenly throughout the year. The weather is unpredictable as with the rest of the UK and it is possible to see elements of all four seasons in one day. It is advisable for visitors to check the weather forecast before they arrive in the Cotswolds to get a better idea of the sort of clothing they will need during their trip. Bringing hooded waterproof coats and hats will ensure visitors are prepared for any spells of wind and rain the region may experience.
Spring: The climate is milder in spring making it a good time to visit the Cotswolds. There can be some great sunny days mixed with cooler and wet weather. From March to May the average daytime temperatures are between 9°C and 17°C.
Summer: Most days in summer range from mild to warm with the possibility of some infrequent hotter days, the days are at their longest in the summer. There may be overcast and humid conditions in the summer. From June to August the average daytime temperatures are between 19°C and 22°C.
Autumn: The climate can vary from some pleasantly mild days particularly at the start of September to cooler and colder days in October and November. Autumn is a good time to visit the Cotswolds as it avoids the peak summer season whilst enjoying milder temperatures and longer hours of daylight particularly at the start of September. Visitors can see some wonderful autumn colours. From September to November the average daytime temperatures are between 9°C and 19°C.

Joining Instructions

This holiday does not include any flights or rail. Please make your way to the first hotel in Moreton-in-Marsh.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers will be sent to you as part of our Final Joining Instructions. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

Transfers Details

No transfers are included in the standard itinerary however if you require transfers to and from local train stations we can arrange these (payable locally).

Location start:
Moreton-in-Marsh
Location end:
Moreton-in-Marsh

What to Take

Essential Equipment

Walking boots
Water bottle
Daypack
Sun hat, sun cream and sunglasses
Warm jumper
Waterproofs

Optional Equipment

Walking poles

Practical Information

Visa

United Kingdom

Visa regulations can change without notice: please check the current regulations in good time to obtain a visa if one is required.

Ticks are known to be present in this region and can carry Lyme disease, Tick-Borne Encephalitis and other diseases. Please take care to protect yourself. You can read more about ticks here.

Vaccination

United Kingdom

No vaccinations are obligatory.

Travel health can often be something people forget about before going away, but a little preparation and knowledge can go a long way to help you stay fit and healthy while abroad.

As we are not qualified to answer all your questions about travel health we strongly recommend you contact your Medical Professional or a Travel Health Clinic at least 8 weeks prior to departure for up-to-date information. Please note: vaccinations that are routinely recommended to residents of the UK, North America or Australasia are not considered to form part of the travel health advice, and you should ensure these are kept up to date where necessary.

For additional information please visit: https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/countries

Insurance - are you adequately covered?

It is a condition of joining any of our holidays that you must be fully insured against medical and personal accident risks (to include repatriation costs and air ambulance or helicopter rescue services where appropriate). On arrival in destination for your trip, you will be asked to present details to your leader or local representative of your policy.

If you are resident in the UK we strongly recommend the Exodus travel insurance policy, this is specifically designed to cover all activities on your trip. If arranging your own policy please ensure that you are covered for all activities that are part of the trip, optional activities that you intend to take part in and/or on high altitude itineraries, that you are covered up to the maximum altitude of the trip.

Local Time

United Kingdom's Timezone:
Europe/London BST (GMT +01:00)

Electricity

United Kingdom's Electricity:

220-240V. 50Hz. You will need a 3 pinned type G plug.

Money

ATM Availability

There are ATM's in most of the main towns along the route, but not all. Most businesses in the area will take payments in cash or by card.

Extra Expenses & Spending Money

All breakfasts are included, so you will need spending money for any picnics, lunches, evening meals and drinks. There is a good choice of cafes, pubs and restaurants on the routes as well as in the overnight towns and villages. Prices range from approximately £5-10 for lunch and you could pay between £15-30 for dinner, depending on where you decide to eat.

Responsible Tourism

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here

Exodus Community

Join the Exodus online community

Don't forget to visit the Community area on our website. You can view the range of Exodus videos and podcasts, read trip write-ups which have featured in the national media and take advantage of some special deals on travel gear and equipment.

In the Community Travel Forum you'll find the Departure Lounge where you can discuss your trip with fellow travellers before you depart. When you get back from your holiday remember to upload your images to the relevant trip page on our website. This helps other people see what our holidays are really like and you'll be entered automatically into our monthly photo competition.

To make full use of the Community you'll need to join My Exodus. It's free, registration is simple and easy, so what are you waiting for?

Important Information

On all guided trips

Although our leaders are well trained to deal with different capabilities, if they have any concerns about someone’s ability to safely partake in an activity, or their impact on other people’s enjoyment, we authorise them to take necessary action which, in some circumstances, may involve asking someone to miss that activity.

Although rarely enforced, by booking this trip you agree to section 14 of our Booking Conditions which clearly states that our leaders have the authority to do this. In these circumstances we will ensure anyone sitting out is safely provided for and offered alternative options where possible. Refunds will not be provided for activities missed and customers may be liable for additional costs incurred.

On all trips

In booking this trip you should be confident in your ability to participate in all activities described in these Trip Notes. If you have any doubt about your suitability you should call the Exodus office and ask to speak to one of the experts on this itinerary.

 

Every time that you travel abroad you should take the time to read the warnings in the essential information in the brochure.

Full joining instructions including local emergency numbers, and details of how to reach the start point, will be sent to you approximately 2 to 3 weeks prior to departure. If you do not receive these at least a week before departure, or require them earlier please contact our office or your travel agent.

The information in these Trip Notes is given in good faith. Where differences exist between the Trip Notes and our current brochure or website, the Trip Notes supersede the brochure and website. All holidays can be subject to unexpected changes; in order to enjoy them you should be prepared to be flexible where necessary. Occasionally, as stated in our brochure, it may not be possible to follow the itinerary as planned. This may be for a variety of reasons - climatic, political, physical or other. In these circumstances we will make the best possible alternative arrangements that maintain the integrity of the original itinerary.

As fuel prices, airport taxes and exchange rates fluctuate, and airlines manage their rates to match demand, it is proving harder than ever to guarantee our Flight Inclusive prices. Although we endeavour to keep our website as accurate as possible, daily fluctuations mean that our Flight Inclusive price may be out of date. For accurate prices we recommend that you contact one of our Travel Experts, or your Travel Agent.

TRAVEL AWARE – STAY SAFE & HEALTHY ABROAD

 

The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office and the NHS have up-to-date advice on staying safe and healthy abroad. For more on security, local laws, plus passport and visa information, see https://travelaware.campaign.gov.uk/

Keep informed of current travel health news by visiting https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/

Advice can change so check regularly for updates.

For all latest travel information about your holiday, please visit our Travel Safety Advice page.

How to Book

1. Check availability

Go online to check availability, or contact us by phone or email.

2. Secure your place

You can provisionally hold a place on this trip, usually for between three and seven days.

3. Complete your booking and payment

When you're ready to book, go to our website for online bookings, book over the phone or you can complete a booking form (available online or on request by calling us). We accept all major credit and debit cards, or you can pay be cheque. Book with confidence: Exodus is fully licensed and bonded as a tour operator. We hold Air Traffic Organisers Licence (ATOL) number 2582 issued and bonded with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). We are also bonded to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and we are members of the Federation of Tour Operators (FTO) and ABTA ‐ The Travel Association. This means you can book your Exodus holiday with confidence, as all monies paid to us for your trip are fully protected.

TRIP NOTE VALIDITY

These Trip Notes are valid from the "Current as" date on page one. They will occasionally be updated post booking and pre-departure; if there are any updates that significantly impact the inclusions or itinerary bookers will be written to separately. All customers will also receive a link to the most up-to-date version of the Trip Notes with their Final Joining Instructions pre-travel.