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Walking the Cotswold Way
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Highlights

  • Walking the Cotswold Way, one of England's finest long distance trails.
  • Explore Broadway, Stanton and other pretty villages of the Cotswolds.
  • Enjoying the warm and friendly atmosphere of a Cotswold country pub.
  • Fine walking through quintessential English countryside.
  • Bath, a UNESCO World Heritage city, at the end of the Cotswold Way.

The Cotswold Way, one of England's finest National Trails takes you from Chipping Campden, all the way to Bath, through quintessential English countryside. Almost the entire trail runs through the Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and passes through a succession of enchanting English villages, featuring traditional Cotswold cottages and welcoming country pubs.

Cross fields still bounded by hedges and stone walls as the trail twists and turns through undulating and stunning landscapes. You will enjoy expansive views, stumble across Neolithic sites and be surprised by elegant village churches. End your tour in the City of Bath, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and brimming with fine architecture.

As a Cotswold Way specialist we offer a wide range of itineraries on the Cotswold Way, each of which is detailed on the right. Each itinerary is made up of the following sections.


Arrive Chipping Campden

The town of Chipping Campden is arguably the loveliest of the Cotswold towns and many people choose to stay an extra night in Chipping Campden before starting the walk. A two hour train journey from London to Moreton-in-the-Marsh and 6 mile taxi or bus bring you easily to the start of your holiday.


Chipping Campden to Stanton - 10 miles

Leaving the honey coloured architectural beauty of Chipping Campden behind you climb immediately onto the escarpment where Dover’s Hill and then Broadway Tower reward with fine views. The tearooms of Broadway are a welcome diversion before heading back into the hills. The idyllic village of Stanton welcomes you at the end of the section.


Stanton to Winchcombe - 7 miles

Tearing yourself away from the beauty of Stanton you soon reach the hamlet of Church Stanway. The ornate gatehouse of Stanway House distracts from the steep climb to Stumps Cross which follows. The Iron Age hill fort Beckbury Camp and medieval Hailes Abbey are both of interest before you reach the hustle and bustle of Winchcombe. Winchecombe was once an important Saxon settlement and it’s folk museum and the gargoyles of the Church of St Peter are of interest.


Winchcombe to Dowdeswell - 11 miles

The scenic and historically interesting six mile stretch to Cleve Hill. The magnificent Sudeley Castle is soon followed by a Roman Villa and Belas Knap, a huge Neolithic burial chamber. Cleeve Hill offers comfortable accommodation and refreshment but those continuing to Dowdeswell will enjoy a series of outstanding views from the Cotswold escarpment.


Dowdeswell to Birdlip - 10 miles

A short sharp climb from Dowdeswell takes you back up onto the Wolds were the vistas continue to impress. The distinctive Devil’s Chimney and ancient site of Crickley Hill are both fascinating. Birdlip village has a traditional country inn.


Birdlip to Painswick - 9 miles

A predominantly woodland walk which delights at any time of year, but especially the spring when wild flowers abound. You pass Coopers Hill, the site of the famous annual cheese rolling festival, before arriving in the delightful Painswick. An elegant town which grew prosperous from the cloth trade.


Painswick to King’s Stanley - 9 miles

A sublime section of the Cotswold Way. Ancient woodlands, rural tranquillity and vast panoramas combine to deliver walking heaven. Stanley Mill on the edge of King’s Stanley once employed 1000 people and is an early example of fireproof construction.


King’s Stanley to Wotton-Under-Edge - 14.5 miles

A series of short sharp ascents and descents, Neolithic burial chambers and Iron Age hill forts quickly eat up the six and a half miles to Dursley. Climbing steeply back to the scarp edge Tyndale Monument is the main point of interest before reaching Wotton-Under-Edge. A lovely stop which blends old and new.


Wotton-Under-Edge to Tormarton - 15 miles

The first eight miles through valleys to Hawkesbury Upton is filled with mills and streams which serve as reminders of the woollen trade which was once so important. Leaving the escarpment behind at Hawkesbury Upton the rural isolation, small villages and tranquillity of the walk to Tormarton are to be recommended.


Tormarton to Bath - 17 Miles

Numerous pleasures await on the final section of the Cotswold Way. The spectacular Dyrham Park, wonderful vistas and the architectural delights of Bath make for an unforgettable finale to your Cotswold Way walk.


Bath

A UNESCO World Heritage site and one of England’s most popular destinations the City of Bath will surprise and delight you. We recommend adding an extra night in Bath. A fast and frequent train service can return you to London in 1.5 hours.

Accommodation

Your Cotswold Way trip includes accommodation in carefully selected B&B’s, guesthouses, country pubs and small hotels. Your room will always have an en-suite or private bathroom. Below you will find examples of the establishments we use frequently.


Alternate accommodation

During the high season you might be booked into alternative accommodations which are not listed in the description. If those listed are unavailable the alternative accommodation will be of the same or better standard than those described.


Example Accommodation


 

 

 




Cornerways - Chipping Campden

Cornerways is a family run bed and breakfast excellently situated just 2 minutes walk away from the centre of Chipping Campden's famous High Street.


 

 

 


 

 

 




Shenberrow Hill - Stanton

Shenberrow is an attractive country house which offers luxury accommodation in the lovely little village of Stanton.


 

 

 


 

 

 




White Hart Inn - Winchcombe

The White Hart Inn is a 16th Century coaching inn offering comfortable accommodation in the heart of Winchcombe. Delicious evening meals are available at the 'Wine and Sausage' restaurant at the Inn.


 

 

 


 

 

 



Malvern View - Cleevehill



Malvern View - Cleeve Hill

This luxurious boutique hotel and restaurant is a pleasure to stay at with a warm welcome and outstanding service guaranteed.


 

 

 


 

 

 




Detmore House - Leckhampton Hill

Detmore House is a beautifully refurbished boutique guest accommodation it has a blend of traditional elegance and contemporary decor.


 

 

 


 

 

 




Tibbiwell Lodge - Painswick

Tibbiwell Lodge offers comfortable accommodation with fantastic views and a superb location in the centre of Painswick.


 

 

 


 

 

 




Valley Views - Kings Stanley

Having recently received a Silver Enjoy England award our four star guest accommodation Valley Views has recently been renovated and refurbished. You can be assured of a warm welcome from hostess Pam White.


 

 

 


 

 

 




The Swan Hotel - Wotton-under-Edge

The Swan is a former coaching Inn; it has a wealth of charm and character enhanced by original features including beamed ceilings and stone floors.


 

 

 


 

 

 



Sodbury House Hotel - Old Sodbury



Sodbury House Hotel - Old Sodbury

Situated in its own spacious grounds of lawns and fruit trees, this former farmstead dates from the 1700's, its rustic charm complemented by modern restoration.


 

 

 


 

 

 




The Compass Inn - Tormarton

The Compass Inn hotel is a family run hotel under the Best Western chain. It offers modern accommodation in an 18th Century coaching inn and has a wonderful setting in 6 acres of grounds and gardens.


 

 

 


 

 

 




Hill Farm B&B - Cold Ashton

Hill Farm used to be a working farm and the barns were converted in 2012 to high quality accommodation. A warm drying space is provided for clothes and boots.


 

 

 


 

 

 



The Kennard Guest House - Bath



The Kennard Guest House - Bath

The Kennard Hotel is a beautiful Georgian Town house. However, it also offers all the modern features and the rooms have their own individual style and character.


 

 

 

Availability

You can start The Cotswold Way on any day of the week between the start of April and mid October, subject to availability. The Cotswolds are very popular so it is best to book as far in advance as you are able to.


Time of Year

The Cotswold Way is great at any time throughout the season as all the flowers will be in bloom throughout this time. 


Single Rooms & Solo Walkers

Single rooms are available at a supplement. We offer the Cotswold Way to solo walkers. As we incur additional baggage transfer costs there is a solo walker supplement to cover this.  


Grade & Terrain

This tour is rated easy to moderate overall. However if you choose an itinerary which is 9 days or less, then the rating becomes moderate to challenging, as you will be walking more miles per day. The trail is on well maintained footpaths, bridleways, across fields and on some minor roads. It does involve some steep ascents and descents from the escarpment.


Navigation, Route Notes & Maps

The Cotswold Way is a National Trail and is fully way marked. A comprehensive guidebook and map are supplied.


Baggage Transfers

Your bags will be transferred from your accommodation as per your itinerary and moved onto your next overnight accommodation. We ask you to limit your luggage to one bag of up to 20kg per person.  Please ensure that you do not bring more than one bag of 20kg, as if this occurs, the luggage transfer company will ask you to pay an additional fee (approx. £5.00 per day, per bag). This additional payment, should it be necessary, needs to be made locally to the driver and in cash.


It is also very important that your bag is clearly labelled (and any additional bags). If they are not labelled we cannot guarantee that they will reach you at the next accommodation.


If you are travelling from far afield and do have more than one bag it is possible to arrange for the extra luggage to be stored whilst you are on the tour for a fee of £25 per bag. These additional bags would be picked up from your accommodation at the start point of your tour and dropped off wherever you finish depending on the itinerary you are doing. Please contact us if you are interested in this option.


Travel Insurance

It is a requirement of booking this tour with Macs Adventure that you have suitable travel insurance which covers you for the activity and emergency evacuation and hospital care.


General Information

The distances and ascent/descents are approximations of the recommended routes. Please be prepared by packing all necessary items, for example, proper rain gear (jacket and pants), sun hat, sunscreen. Your information pack has a detailed equipment list which includes standard walking/cycling gear such as good walking boots or shoes, warm and waterproof clothes for the cooler months and lightweight clothing for summer, and a day pack.

Getting to Chipping Campden

Train services connect London to Moreton-in-Marsh (2h) and Birmingham to Stratford-upon-Avon(1h). If you wish to take a taxi from Moreton-in-Marsh this will need to be booked ahead of time as there is no taxi rank at the station or in the town. The cost is about £25. Please check the following website for taxi information and to pre-book. Or you can walk from the station to the Corn Exchange (a 5 minute walk) and from here you can take a bus to Chipping Camden. It is the Line 22 bus, it takes approximately 25 minutes and the buses leave hourly (approx £3 cost).


Getting from Bath

Fast and frequent train services connect Bath to London (1h30).


If you have left a car in Chipping Campden getting back from Bath on public transport rail/bus takes about 3.5 hours. We don’t recommend you leave a car in Bath as long term parking is expensive.


Please visit the Traveline Website or National Rail Enquiries for further information on public transport and timetables.

Included

  • Hand picked B&B's, guesthouses and small hotels
  • Door to door baggage transfer
  • A detailed information pack, maps and a guide book
  • Emergency telephone support

Excluded

  • Travel to the start or from the finish of the walk.
  • Lunches, dinners, snacks and drinks.
  • Travel Insurance.
  • Personal Equipment.

Extras

  • Single room supplement
  • Solo walker supplement
  • Extra nights

We are often asked the following questions by walkers planning The Cotswold Way and I hope that you will find the following information useful.

Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any further questions.

How far in advance do I need to book?

We suggest you book as soon as your plans are finalised as the Cotswolds are extremely popular. If booking at short notice we will always try and accommodate your plans.

How fit do I need to be?

We offer a range of itineraries so you can choose your preferred daily distance so hopefully you will find an itinerary that suits your preferred level of activity. If you currently don’t enjoy an active lifestyle we suggest regular walking in hilly terrain supplemented by cardio vascular exercise for at least 6 months prior to your walk. A good gym or personal trainer will be able to draw up a personalised training programme.

How do the baggage transfers work?

Daily door to door baggage transfer is included in the cost of your holiday. We ask you to limit your luggage to one bag of up to 20kg per person.

What personal equipment do I need?

You will need good walking shoes/boots (ideally waterproof), comfortable walking clothes, waterproof jacket and trousers, a daypack and hats/gloves etc.

When is the best time of year?

The Cotswold Way is sublime at any time between the end of March and beginning of October although my personal favourite time of year is the spring.

Am I able to take my dog?

Unfortunately we are unable to accommodate walkers with dogs as many of the accommodation providers we use do not accept pets.

What happens if I can’t walk a stage?

You can use local bus services or local taxis to continue to your next overnight stop.

REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

by PowerReviews
Macs AdventureCotswold Way Walking Holiday
 
4.5

(based on 88 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (52)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (32)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (4)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Well organised (84)
  • Great accommodations (67)
  • Fun (65)
  • Once in a lifetime experience (32)

Cons

  • Exhausting (9)

Best Uses

  • Holiday (68)
  • Trying something new (40)
  • Relaxation (38)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Occasional traveller (43), World traveller (27), Avid adventurer (16)

Reviewed by 88 customers

Displaying reviews 1-10

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4.0

It is an adventure!

By The four-some

from Los Angeles, CA

About Me Occasional Traveller

Verified Reviewer

Pros

  • Fun
  • Once in a Lifetime Experience

Cons

  • Some were good accomodations and some were not
  • the signs are not well marked in some areas

Best Uses

  • Trying Something New

Comments about Macs Adventure Cotswold Way Walking Holiday:

It was an adventure! There was 4 of us and some areas of the walk are very exhausting for some people. The signs coming out of the town are not well explained so the majority gets lost.

(2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Cotswold Way in late Sept.

By Lee

from Ottawa

About Me Occasional Traveller

Pros

  • Fun
  • Great Accommodations
  • Once in a Lifetime Experience
  • Well Organised

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Holiday
    • Trying Something New

    Comments about Macs Adventure Cotswold Way Walking Holiday:

    We did 5 days-6 nights starting in Painswick, ending in Bath. The walk was exciting. After day one I wondered if I had made a mistake. I am 68 year old woman and am quite healthy and fit but do have occasional knee and back problems. Thank goodness for the walking sticks. Some trails were quite steep in the first 2 days...harder going down than up as they were also slippery from rain overnight, especially since we got off track once onto a cow path! The maps/guide are good but you have to look out for signs (we did miss a couple which cost us a mile or two).
    We took a steady and moderate rate approach and managed to finish most days in mid afternoon. The pub breaks at mid day and accommodation at night made all good. We were welcomed at all accommodations. Breakfasts were excellent...quite huge if you chose. Having good hiking boots is important. The sole on my one boot started to come off after one day; we had to tie it on and it worked fine for the entire walk., as did the other sole after the third day. No shops around so having string with us to do repairs saved the day!
    Great feeling to have done the 50+ miles at the end. It is not so much the distance than the topography that you need to be prepared for: lots of ups and downs while admiring the beautiful scenery- sheep, cows, meadows, woods, deer, pheasants galore.
    It is not for everyone. I think the three days closer to Bath might be enough challenge for many as the last part is easier.

    (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Exhilirating

    By ACT (Anne and Chris travelling)

    from Australia

    About Me World Traveller

    Pros

    • Fun
    • Great Accommodations
    • Once in a Lifetime Experience
    • Well Organised

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Holiday
      • Relaxation
      • Trying Something New

      Comments about Macs Adventure Cotswold Way Walking Holiday:

      At Chipping Campden we did begin,
      Following the acorns,
      With the thought of getting slim.
      100 miles plus down the Cotswolds walk
      Solving the problems of the world
      With our constant talk.
      Interpreting maps our biggest hassle
      But we did explore,
      many a long barrow and castle.

      On Cleeve Hill Common we did get lost
      Walked an extra seven miles
      Our poor feet it did cost.
      Being immersed in nature we found bewitching,
      But the stinging nettles kept us itching.
      Through driving rain we made it to Bath.
      Two 60 years young women
      who at the Abbey did nothing but laugh.

      (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

       
      4.0

      Great holiday for active travellers

      By Lydia Kroft

      from Ter Aar, The Netherlands

      About Me Occasional Traveller

      Pros

      • Well Organised

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Holiday
        • Relaxation

        Comments about Macs Adventure Cotswold Way Walking Holiday:

        Everything was well organised. Our hosts were well informed, our luggage always timely arrived in the accomodation of that night, our taxi drivers arrived promptly. Several of our hosts made positive comments on Macs Adventures en told us they liked doing business with you.

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        4.0

        Beautiful Cotswolds

        By Jack, the hiker

        from Florida

        About Me Avid Adventurer, World Traveller

        Verified Reviewer

        Pros

        • Fun
        • Once in a Lifetime Experience
        • Well Organised

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Holiday
          • Trying Something New

          Comments about Macs Adventure Cotswold Way Walking Holiday:

          The description of the trip was accurate. The maps and pre trip information were excellent. The people in the region were a pleasure to meet. Great food!

          (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

           
          4.0

          Cotswold Way conquered

          By Kate

          from Canberra, australia

          About Me World Traveller

          Verified Reviewer

          Pros

          • Fun
          • Great Accommodations
          • Well Organised

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Holiday
            • Relaxation

            Comments about Macs Adventure Cotswold Way Walking Holiday:

            Arrangements went well, except for third day when hostess apparently had not been advised she had to do a pick up, so took a while to get that sorted. Also, at Seven Springs,mobile coverage almost non- existent, but fortunately we found the pub, and they very kindly let us use their landline for the necessary phone calls. Also the mobile diner there has reduced their hours, and now closes at 2 pm

            (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            Excellent holiday, excellent organisation !!

            By MGP

            from Bowdon, Cheshire

            About Me Avid Adventurer

            Pros

            • Fun
            • Great Accommodations
            • Well Organised

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Holiday
              • Relaxation

              Comments about Macs Adventure Cotswold Way Walking Holiday:

              Cannot recommend Macs Adventures enough, thoroughly professional and selected wonderful accommodation.

              (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              As Promised... All Good

              By Nick from Boston

              from Cambridge, MA

              About Me Light recreational hiker, Occasional Traveller

              Verified Reviewer

              Pros

              • Great Accommodations
              • Peaceful
              • Terrific Cotswold scenery
              • Well Organised

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Holiday
                • Relaxation
                • Trying Something New

                Comments about Macs Adventure Cotswold Way Walking Holiday:

                Each overnight on this walk was great. Nice people, great places to stay. The walking is as advertised... easy in some sections, moderately difficult in others (due to the elevation increases). The Trail is (in almost all places) well marked. It varies from gravel roadways to sheep fields to wide paths to narrow paths through active agricultural fields.

                 
                5.0

                Great trip

                By Geezer Two

                from California

                About Me Occasional Traveller

                Verified Reviewer

                Pros

                • Fun
                • Great Accommodations
                • Once in a Lifetime Experience
                • Well Organised

                Cons

                • Exhausting

                Best Uses

                • Holiday
                • Trying Something New

                Comments about Macs Adventure Cotswold Way Walking Holiday:

                The area is very beautiful and green, the scenic views are stunning, and the forests are amazing. Accommodations and baggage movement were handled very well, The places we stayed were all good with helpful owners/staff and nice breakfasts.

                10 miles a day of up and down for 10 days ended up being too much, making us too sore and exhausted at times to enjoy things. In the latter days, we cut off a couple of the scenic loops on the trail and took a taxi for a few miles one day.

                 
                4.0

                An exceptional experience

                By Linda the roamer

                from Colorado

                About Me Travel Fool, World Traveller

                Pros

                • Fun
                • Gorgeous
                • Once in a Lifetime Experience
                • Well Organised

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Tranquility
                  • Trying Something New

                  Comments about Macs Adventure Cotswold Way Walking Holiday:

                  There were far fewer people on the trail that I had expected! This is positive in many ways as the walking was serene and tranquil. However, when I got disoriented or lost, there was frequently not a soul to ask. This led to my completion of more than my planned 102 miles, but it was great fun, in the end, and I am so glad that I accomplished this life goal. MAC did a fine job for me.

                  Displaying reviews 1-10

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