Self Guided Walking Holidays & Cycling Holidays


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Bath, at the end of the Cotswold Way
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Highlights

  • Walking the southern section of the Cotswold Way to Bath
  • Views of England’s most beautiful landscapes
  • Wandering through the quiet lanes of picturesque Cotswold villages
  • Enjoying the warm and friendly atmosphere of a Cotswold country pub
  • Bath, home to some of England’s most amazing Georgian architecture

Walk the southern section of the Cotswold Way from Painswick, through the beauty of the Cotswolds, to Bath.

The part of the Cotswold Way explores the quintessential English countryside of the Cotswolds. A beautiful green landscape of rolling farmland, quiet woodland and picturesque villages. Your walk ends is the city of Bath, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and surely one of England's most beautiful cities.

DAY 1: Arrive Painswick

Take a train service from London to Stroud and from here a 4 mile bus or taxi ride,

Painswick is nestled quietly amongst the Cotswold Hills. An historic wool town, it’s a delight to saunter through, with its 14th and 17th century buildings, tea shops, restaurants and local pubs.


DAY 2: Walk 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.



DAY 3: Walk to Wotton-under-Edge—15 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.


DAY 4: Walk to Old Sodbury—13 miles

Follow a stream out of Wotton-under-Edge before climbing back up onto the escarpment and passing close to the National Trust property of Newark Park. Then head to the village of Alderley and from here pass through a peaceful valley and other small villages, past an ancient drover's pond and farmland before arriving at todays destination, the village of Old Sodbury.


DAY 5: Walk to Cold Ashton—9 miles

This morning you will see the wonderful Capability Brown parkland of Dodington Park before crossing the final few fields into the village of Tormarton. Leave Tormarton to the south and cross arable land to a small path that passes round the perimeter wall of Dyrham Park - a William and Mary mansion nestling in an ancient deer park. From the village of Dyrham, climb up through Dyrham Woods before continuing through farmland and into the village of Cold Ashton.


DAY 6: Walk to Bath—10 miles

Descend into the beautiful secluded valley at Lower Hamswel, then climb up to the site of the bloody civil war battle of Lansdown. Pass the promontory hill fort at Little Down and the famous Bath Racecourse before emerging at Prospect Stile (now a kissing gate), where the first views of Bath can be glimpsed in the valley below.


The trail continues to offer glimpses of fine parks and regency architecture on its way to Bath Abbey, where a stone disc set into the pavement marks the end of the Cotswold Way.


DAY 7: Onward Travel


Accommodation

One of the highlights of this tour is the high standard of the accommodation. You will stay in carefully selected 3 or 4 star B&B’s, guesthouses, country pubs and small hotels. Your room will always have an ensuite or private bathroom. A delicious breakfast is always included.


Single Rooms

If you require single rooms within your party we will always try and accommodate you subject to availability. A single supplement is payable.


Solo Walkers

This walking holiday is available to solo walkers but as we incur additional baggage transfer costs their is a solo walker supplement payable.


Meals

A hearty breakfast is included each morning. Lunch and dinner are not included. Most of your accommodation will be more than happy to provide a packed lunch on request. Dinner is available either at your accommodation or at nearby pubs or restaurants.



 

 

 




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 to a high quality. 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.


 

 

 


 

 

 




Laburnum Cottage - Cold Ashton

This lovely B&B provides a warm welcome to walkers and is a short stroll from the local pub which provides evening meals.


 

 

 


 

 

 



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 South on any day between April and October subject to availability. The Cotswolds are very popular so it is best to book as far in advance as you are able to.


Single Rooms & Solo Walkers

If you require single rooms within your party we will always try and accommodate you subject to availability. A single supplement is payable. The holiday is also available to solo walkers but as we incur additional baggage transfer costs their is a solo walker supplement payable.


Navigation

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


Grade & Terrain

The way is on well maintained footpaths, bridleways, across fields and on some minor roads. It does involve some steep ascent and descent from the escarpment but in general the walking is fairly easy.


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.


Accommodation Location

We will always try and accommodate you at the locations detailed in the tour itinerary. Occasionally, because of limited availability we may have to accommodate you 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.


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 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 Painswick

Painswick is accessible from London with a train service to Stroud. From Stroud there are taxi or bus services are available for the 4 miles from Stroud to Painswick.


Please check the National Rail website for train times and schedules and the also the National Express website for bus times and schedules.


Getting from Bath

Fast and frequent train services connect Bath to London (1h30). Please check the National Rail or the Traveline website for train times and schedules

Included

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

Excluded

  • Travel to Painswick
  • Travel from Bath
  • 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 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 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.

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. 

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 is the best way to get to/from the walk?

We recommend you travel by train. Further travel information is available on our essential information page . If you are driving we recommend leaving your car in Chipping Campden where on street parking is available.

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
 
4.6

(based on 104 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (63)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (36)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (5)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

99%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Well organised (98)
  • Fun (78)
  • Great accommodations (77)
  • Once in a lifetime experience (39)

Cons

  • Exhausting (10)

Best Uses

  • Holiday (82)
  • Trying something new (47)
  • Relaxation (45)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Occasional traveller (49), World traveller (31), Avid adventurer (18)

Reviewed by 104 customers

Displaying reviews 1-10

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(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

We had a fabulous walk

By sharmaine and gerrit

from Cotswolds

About Me World Traveller

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Fun
  • Great Accommodations
  • of our 12 nights only 2 were marginal
  • Once in a Lifetime Experience
  • Well Organised

Cons

  • for 70 year olds 10 miles a day was plenty

Best Uses

  • a beautiful way to experience a culture
  • Holiday
  • Relaxation

Comments about macs adventure Cotswold Way:

An all round lovely vacation! People were welcoming and interested in our walking experience. The walk was a challenge at times but we were able to use the option of public transit on 2 occasions when it was just a "little too much" for us that day. Scenery was stunning. Weather was good. I'm a vegetarian...the food was delicious and nutritious...just what one needs for a days walk. Thanks again Macs for a great adventure.

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

An enjoyable country interlude

By Susan C.

from Minneapolis

About Me Occasional Traveller

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Fun
  • Well Organised

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Holiday
    • Relaxation

    Comments about macs adventure Cotswold Way:

    Hiking in the Cotswolds broke up our longer stay in London. We enjoyed each day on the Cotswold Way and appreciated the friendliness of everyone we encountered. Our B&B's were just right and our luggage was always waiting when we arrived. Thanks to MacsAdventure for doing exactly what you said you would do.

    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Seven days of fun exploration

    By Green Mountain Hiker

    from Vermont, USA

    About Me Frequent traveller to rural and natural areas

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Fun
    • Great Accommodations
    • Well Organised

    Cons

    • Trail condition was poor in several locations

    Best Uses

    • Fun way to catch up with old friends
    • Holiday
    • Relaxation

    Comments about macs adventure Cotswold Way:

    We are an avid walking couple in our mid-sixties. This trip gave us a wonderful way to explore a new area and to catch up with old friends who met up with us at various points. We liked all the accommodations except one and were impressed with the friendliness and helpfulness of hosts along the way. The baggage transport was flawless. If doing the entire Cotswold Way I would recommend including two rest days to break things up and have a chance to linger and poke around the beautiful and interesting villages.

    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

     
    3.0

    its a challenge!

    By THE WARRENS

    from Plymouth

    About Me Occasional Traveller

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Once in a Lifetime Experience

    Cons

    • Poor Accommodations

    Best Uses

    • Trying Something New

    Comments about macs adventure Cotswold Way:

    Our first experience of a walking holiday. Beautiful views ( we were lucky with the weather!) Wonderful Cotswold villages. Well signposted. Some fairly steep hills and slippery muddy paths but if you are well equipped its fine. Some of our booked accommodation left a lot to be desired. The itinerary provided by Macsadventure did not match the local experience in a number of cases, please be aware! I have given them detailed feedback, hopefully they will update their information. I couldn't recommend this holiday done in this way, when you most need good hospitality at the end of the day its often sadly lacking !

     
    4.0

    Beautiful countryside, interesting villages and so much hist

    By Shazgirl

    from North Carolina

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Accommodations were good..don't book groups over
    • Fun

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Relaxation

      Comments about macs adventure Cotswold Way:

      Initially Macs sent the materials in error to all three couples.Baggage courier service was excellent.Our first night in Chipping Campden we were booked directly over the band that was playing. We had several good b&b,two or three excellent,and two not so good.Mileage indicated was short vs our GPS. Thank you to Macs accommodating our group of six and keeping us together almost all the overnights.

       
      4.0

      I would recommend this holiday (Cotswold Way)

      By Nic & Sharon - hiking adventurists

      from Ontario

      About Me Occasional Traveller

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Fun
      • Once in a Lifetime Experience
      • Well Organised

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Holiday

        Comments about macs adventure Cotswold Way:

        I would recommend this hike however it was more challenging than expected. All the accommodations were good however there were a couple of times when the pub was not easy walking distance to the accommodation which was an issue. Also two days were quite short when they could have been a bit longer to balance out the hike a bit more.

        (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Fantastic Trail!

        By The Lazy Walkers

        from Olympia, WA USA

        About Me World Traveller

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Fun
        • Once in a Lifetime Experience
        • Well Organised

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Holiday

          Comments about macs adventure Cotswold Way:

          This was my first time using Mac's Adventures and the second time I have completed a self-guided walking tour. Mac's was great- no hiccups and everything ran smoothly. They had a good reputation on the trail which means a lot. I would and will absolutely use them again for future walks.
          So we are a mildly active couple who took the longest trip possible to accommodate our lackadaisical fitness level. We loved our 7 mile days and we managed our longer days with some ibuprofen for sore feet and the promise of a pint at the end of the trail. The trail itself is truly beautiful and we were constantly impressed even though we come from an area with amazing trails. There was very little road walking and so much variation of scenery- well signed and first class trail. I was occasionally chagrined when it would send us straight up a steep hill without a switchback in sight. This trail never met a hill it didn't decide to climb and any monument you could see high up in the distance you knew for sure you would be ascending shortly to the base. I would recommend adding plenty of elevation hiking to your preparations if you are not used to it.
          As for the accommodations, I loved all of the old inns and small hotels we stayed in.
          I think one of the big differences about hiking in England versus other parts of the world are the laws about public pathways and right to roam which means that a path can go right through privately owned fields and farms without being diverted to streets and forestry roads. This creates a very special walking experience with constantly beautiful scenery, the regular accompaniment of sheep, cows, and horses, and nice soft turf to walk in rather than bruising concrete.
          Special shout-out to Chipping Camden, Broadway, Winchcombe, and Bath. Absolutely gorgeous places not to be missed.

          (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

           
          4.0

          Nature at its best!

          By Steve & Leslee

          from Tumbi Umbi NSW Australia

          About Me Occasional Traveller

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

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

          Cons

          • Exhausting

          Best Uses

          • Holiday
          • Trying Something New

          Comments about macs adventure Cotswold Way:

          I would definately recommend to anyone to book an adventure with Macs, we took on the 5 night 4 day walk on the Cotswald Way, the scenery is stunning, accomodation was great and the towns are so quaint, the best of the best. Just make sure you do get fit before undertaking and have good hiking boots and wet weather gear. Our time in the Cotswalds had people questioning and remarking on where are you, I want to do that, it looks great! The greeness of the countryside blows your mind, give it a go!

           
          5.0

          Challenging Walk

          By Wet walker

          from Melbourne, Australia

          About Me World Traveller

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Fun
          • Great Accommodations
          • Well Organised

          Cons

          • Wet weather

          Best Uses

          • Holiday

          Comments about macs adventure Cotswold Way:

          Even though we had read about how hilly the Cotswolds are we weren't expecting it to be so wet and muddy which made it even more challenging. Even so the area is beautiful and we enjoyed every day. The accommodation was also very good and varied, we were well looked after.

          (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          Two grumpys on the Cotswold Way for seven days

          By Two grumpys

          from Northampton

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Fun
          • Great Accommodations
          • Strenuous
          • Well Organised

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Holiday

            Comments about macs adventure Cotswold Way:

            Firstly, sincere thanks to Macs Adventures for helping us to organise this walk. The organisation was first class and the accommodation (B&Bs, inns and small hotels) was ideal.
            Last year we walked the Cumbria Way and thought, as we're no spring chickens, that we would do the Cotswold Way because it would be easier. How wrong we were! The Cotswold Way is 102 miles long, which, over 7 walking days is not a problem. But when you add on a total of 10,000 feet of climbs onto the hills (in small chunks of 200 or 300 feet) it makes an easy walk quite strenuous.
            Nevertheless, what a week!
            The walk is well sign-posted, and the maps are easy to follow. Two minor mistakes meant that we walked 400 yards further than we should have done; not bad for 102 miles.
            The countryside is some of the best that England has to offer and the views from the top of the wolds are spectacular. And the icing on the cake is that, apart from the final day, there's a pub on the route every lunch time to enable you to quench your thirst. Take a week off from tasteless lagers and try some real cider - brilliant!
            In summary, it really was a beautiful walk and memorable week. Yes, you need to be fit, but, as two old grumpys can testify, you don't need to be Charles Atlas. So go for it!

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