"The best part was hiking in the beautiful English countryside, seeing the wildflowers, trees, lambs and sheep. It was really fun to see the small villages, the churches, and to eat the delicious food at the restaurants. We also really enjoyed the other people on the trip. Rogan really made the trip unique because he showed us the places that were special to him growing up. He really knew the English history, and we learned a lot as we toured. Eating ice cream amidst the hail storm was fun! I really liked England at the end of the trip, and I want to go back!"- Susan Gandy
"Rogan did a great job introducing us to people and places that we normally would never be able to see or experience. The food was very good and I ate way too much!"- Katie Jewett
"We did this trek (Rob Roy Way) two years ago and it was amazing. Rogan is a wonderful guide and we had such a good time with him we scheduled his Cotswolds tour. We did that in May and it was another fantastic time. Both are highly recommended."- Jim P.
Take in the amazing views of a bucolic landscape replete with historic sights.
Visit Stonehenge, one of the world's most well-known prehistoric monuments.
Wander through honey-colored villages en route to the region's coziest pubs and B&Bs.
Welcome to the Cotswolds, an area of southwestern England which is famous for its gently sloping green hills and ancient, picturesque towns and villages. The term originates from Cod, meaning thirteenth century Anglo Saxon landowner and Wold, meaning area of high land – hence Cod-Wold, or Cotswolds. It is the largest Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) in the country, and its quintessentially English charm spans six counties: primarily Gloucestershire and Oxfordshire, while also reaching into parts of Wiltshire, Somerset, Worcestershire and Warwickshire.
The Cotswolds is famous for its honey-colored limestone, which was used to construct the villages and lively market towns. The warm, serene color of the aforementioned limestone blends wonderfully with the surrounding greenery of the English countryside – a significant contributing factor to the distinctive beauty of the Cotswolds.
The Cotswolds was initially built as a center for the wool trade industry in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries – it has transcended time beautifully and exists today as one of the most treasured destinations in the UK and indeed the world. Nowhere else can one find such unique and heart-warming preservation on such an extensive scale.
This tour starts us off in the elegant northern Cotswold town of Broadway, a wonderful first viewing of what to expect on our tour– charming, honey-colored buildings seemingly unchanged in centuries while quaint boutiques & cafes serving cream teas exist aplenty in this delightful little town.
Over the course of the tour we visit old castles, quaint English gardens, country estates, beautiful historic cities and spa towns bursting with culture. Visit Bath Spa, with its Roman baths and beautiful Royal Crescent being the highlight. Hike through gorgeous, rolling green English countryside, enjoy cream teas in charming hidden cafes, visit Neolithic burial mounds and old hilltop fortifications, eat in many a lovely English pub (a staple of British culture), wander quiet cobbled streets of villages straight out of a Laurie Lee novel or Wordsworth poem and of course, explore areas off the tourist trail that only an experienced guide could reveal to you.
Travel independently to Broadway. Check into our lovely, classic English hotel. Meet your guides and group at 7:00 pm for an orientation, cocktails and dinner.
We begin the day by touring the beautiful town of Chipping Campden and its surroundings. After lunch we enjoy a quick hike to Broadway Tower, a famous eighteenth century folly with wonderful views west towards Wales. Return to our Broadway hotel.
Distance: 3 miles.
Enjoy the first of our lovely ‘Cotswold Circular Walks’, the Stanton, Snowshill and the Edge loop walk. This six-mile loop walk leads us between two of the most picturesque villages in the Cotswolds. We hike over hilltops, down valleys and through shaded woodlands. Our efforts are rewarded by some of the most splendid views in the country. Next we visit Snowshill Manor, a lovely National Trust manor house with gardens. Return to our Broadway hotel.
Distance: 6 miles.
Today begins with a 4-mile scenic walk that takes us from the delightfully unspoiled town of Winchcombe, along Cotswolds Way routes old and new, up to one of the area’s most intriguing ancient monuments – Belas Knap. This walk is a combination of history and scenery that will leave you eager to discover more of the National Trail and the inspirational landscape through which it runs. The hike continues down the valley to Sudeley Castle, the site of the burial chamber of Henry VIII’s final wife, Catherine Parr, and its famous romantic gardens. After Sudeley, we will leave the Cotswolds and drive northwest to the Malvern Hills, an 8-mile long set of hills across the Vale of Evesham. Overnight in a beautiful hotel in Great Malvern.
Distance: 4 miles.
We enjoy the longest and most difficult hike of the trip today – the Malvern Hills End-to-End hike with lunch along route at the Malvern Hills Hotel. Commanding splendid rural views, this is a lovely ridge walk. A line drawn due east from Worcestershire Beacon (the highest point at 1395 ft. above sea level) will hit no higher point until the Ural Mountains of Russia. The town of Great Malvern itself is lovely, home to the grave of Charles Darwin’s young daughter (located outside the Great Malvern Priory, founded in 1085); an untimely death that pushed him to ultimately decide to forego his Christianity & question life’s deeper meaning. Return to our Great Malvern.
Distance: 7 miles. Elevation gain: 1500 ft.
We start the day with a quick stop at the Morgan Motor Company Ltd and then onto Blenheim Palace, one of only two UNESCO sites in The Cotswolds (the other is the city of Bath) and the home and birthplace of the enigmatic Winston Churchill. Overnight in gorgeous boutique manor house hotel in Painswick.
Distance: 2 miles.
We kick things off with a trip to what is undeniably one of the top farmer’s markets in the country: the Stroud Farmer’s Market. Next on our agenda is the second of our circular walks – the Cranham Coopers & the Beechwoods loop walk. This picturesque 4-mile stroll guides us through the cathedral-like calm of Buckholt Wood, richly carpeted by bluebells in May and onto Cooper’s Hill, the site of the infamous Gloucestershire Cheese Rolling competition each May Bank Holiday Monday, where for over two hundred years the foolhardy have risked their necks for cheese and glory. We will also incorporate a visit to the magical Great Witcombe Roman Villa en route. Return to our Painswick Hotel.
Distance: 4 miles.
Today’s exploration of the rural retreats of British royalty includes both driving and walking. We begin with a visit to the exquisitely scenic Westonbirt Arboretum. For lunch, we’ll dine at the Ragged Cot, located near Minchinhampton Common and renowned as one of England’s most haunted structures. Along the way, keep an eye out for donkeys, cows, and various other animals freely roaming and grazing. It’s not uncommon to experience a herd of cattle leisurely crossing the road. We conclude the day on a sweet note with a tempting post-lunch treat: ice cream from Winstone’s Cotswolds Ice Cream. Return to our Painswick hotel.
Distance: 3 miles.
Today’s itinerary kicks off with a visit to Highgrove, the residence of King Charles III, renowned for its impeccably manicured gardens. Following our time at Highgrove, we’ll journey to the southernmost fringes of the Cotswolds to enjoy a breathtaking panorama from Beechen Cliff overlooking the UNESCO city of Bath. After an evening drive, we’ll stroll to the world famous Stonehenge, where we’ll have the unique opportunity to wander among the ancient stones during the Stonehenge Stone Access tour. Today promises to be quite the double delight! Overnight in lovely, centrally-located hotel in Bath.
Distance: 2 miles.
Our day begins with an exploration of Bath’s eponymous attraction, the Roman Baths. These historic thermal spa ruins stand as one of the most comprehensive and extensive examples of Roman spa architecture in the world. Next we enjoy a free walking tour of the city of Bath, paid for by the city council and guided by professional guides. After lunch, we spend the afternoon walking our final Cotswold walk, Journey’s End: The Walk into Bath. This 5-mile linear walk offers a true sense of pilgrimage as the trail slides from open hilltop and around farmland into the heart of Bath with its crescendo at the majestic splendor of Bath Abbey (where Edgar, the first ‘King of the English’ was crowned in 973AD) and the southern end of the Cotswolds Way. Return to our Bath hotel.
Distance: 5 miles.