In the heart of England is a rural idyll of peaceful rolling hills where life is unhurried and traditions abound. Historic villages contain stone cottages so perfect they're called "chocolate boxes". Footpaths cross scenic fields and valleys leading to rivers, canals, woods, and civilized pubs. This is the Cotswolds, an area of limestone hills in the English countryside west of London, between Bath and Stratford-on-Avon.
The area has been known as the Cotswolds since at least Shakespeare's time (he mentioned it in Richard II). Its designating name is well-recognized though it is not an official county. Its boundaries are clearly demarked and spill over six counties, though the majority of the Cotswolds lie in Gloucestershire.
This website is your travel guide to the Cotswolds.
Events in the Cotswolds
This is not your typical Circus. Giffords Circus tours the Cotswolds each summer!
Visit one of the many Open Gardens from the National Garden Scheme.
The Stroud Farmers' Market is the best in the area. Every Saturday. Fresh-n-Local
For the best local businesses, see the Cotswold Life Food & Drink Awards.
Pauline and Steve walked the Cotswold Way, 102 miles from Chipping Campden to Bath. Read more about this walk - Walking and hiking in the Cotswolds
Books & Articles
Cicerone Guides - Cycling in the Cotswolds, Half- and full-day routes and a 200km tour of the Cotswolds, by Chiz Dakin (2014).
Cicerone Guides - Walking in the Cotswolds, 30 classic hill and valley routes, by Damian Hall (2014).
The Cotswolds: A Cultural History (Landscapes of the Imagination) by Jane Bingham. A good description of the Cotswolds, how it is now and its history. New edition available April 2015.
Americashire: A Field Guide to a Marriage by Jennifer Richardson. The memoir of an American woman and her British husband living in a cottage in the Cotswolds.
We are Pauline Kenny and Steve Cohen and we are "Cotswolders"! We hope you will come to love this countryside area of England as much as we do. About Cotswolder