Cotswold Way (The North)
- Walk the northern section of the Cotswolds Way from Chipping Camden to Painswick
- Enjoy the welcoming atmosphere of a Cotswold country pub
- Discover the outstanding towns of Broadway, Stanton and Chipping Campden
- Marvel at the stunning views from the Broadway Tower
- Wander through the quiet lanes of picturesque Cotswold villages
ItineraryDay 1 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 here 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.
A warm welcome awaits you at Park Road B&B, they are family run and have 2 lovely en-suite guest rooms. Their rooms are centrally heated with tea & coffee making facilities and all the amenities you require for a lovely overnight stay.
The Volunteer Inn is a 17th century pub with a friendly and welcoming atmosphere. They have cobbled courtyard and well maintained gardens which can be enjoyed during the summer months and a warm cosy log fire in the winter. Rooms are comfortably furnished and have all the amenities you require. Please note that the pub is popular on the weekends and therefore you will hear some noise but the owners will try and accommodate you in a room as far away from the bar as possible.
The Bantam Tea Rooms was built in 1693 and directly overlooks the 17th Century Market Hall. There is also a peaceful, private guest lounge and on those cold mornings you can enjoy your delicious breakfast by the roaring log fire. All rooms are tastefully decorated with a comfortable and cosy feel.
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 tea rooms 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.
Ascent: 380m / Descent: 425m
In some cases due to availability, you may need to overnight in Broadway instead of Stanton - you can do this by return transfers, e.g. transferring back to Broadway when you reach Stanton and then the following morning take a return taxi back to Stanton and continue along the Way.
Shenberrow is a country house in 8 acres of North Cotswolds’s little village of Stanton. All rooms for comfortably furnished with en-suite bathrooms and all the usual comforts in the way of TV & tea & coffee making facilities.
New Forge House is a comfortable B&B which has two double en-suite rooms. The rooms have all the amenities you require for a lovely overnight stay.
Bed & Breakfast is offered in Jill's antique and flower-filled Cotswold house. Jill's breakfasts are legendary and will set you up for a day of activity.
Leaving Stanton you soon arrive at the hamlet of Church Stanway and the ornate gatehouse and tithe barn of Stanway House. From here there is a steep climb up to Stumps Cross and onto the Iron Age Hill Fort of Beckbury Camp for commanding views over the surrounding area. A short descent takes you down to the remains of the medieval Hailes Abbey then continuing over the fields and into Winchcombe.
Ascent: 210m / Descent: 235m
The Lion Inn is formerly a coaching inn dating back to the 1500s, following a major renovation the Inn has been given a new lease of life; the rooms now have their own individual style and character, rooms are clutter free which means they do not have TV’s. You can enjoy delicious home-cooked, locally-sourced food and a great selection of beer, wine and spirits in a beautiful, relaxing environment in the restaurant and bar.
Blair House is an attractive late Georgian residence in the ancient Saxon town of Winchcombe. It has three guest bedrooms, all charmingly decorated. Each room has a TV, as well as tea and coffee making facilities. In addition there is a sitting room for guests on the ground floor, with magazines and TV. Located within walking distance of local pubs, restaurants and shops. And also a Tourist Information Centre during the summer months.
The White Hart Inn is a 16th Century coaching inn in the centre of Winchcombe. They have eight en-suite guest rooms; all rooms have tea & coffee facilities, complementary bottled water, flat screen TV and free WI-FI. At the Wine and Sausage they believe that local produce, cooked creatively is the heart of a good restaurant. They also have a range of wines from around the world, the wine shop is next to the bar, showing off this year’s top 100 from over 2,500 wines tasted.
A scenic and historically interesting walk from Winchcombe, passing Sudeley Castle in the distance, and the Neolithic long barrow of Belas Knap. From here you ascend onto Cleeve Common with panoramic views over the Cheltenham countryside. Finally, the route takes you to the summit of Cleeve Hill, the highest point on the Cotswold Way. Leaving Cleeve Hill, enjoy a series of outstanding panoramic views of the rolling green hills of the Cotswold countryside to Cheltenham and beyond. Pass through peaceful woodland and quiet country lanes before descending through Dowdeswell Wood to a reservoir and then on to Seven Springs (believed to be the source of the Thames).
As there are no accommodations in Seven Springs you will likely be overnighting in Cheltenham with an included return transfer.
Ascent: 625m / Descent: 505m
Cotswold Grange is an independent hotel situated in a quiet leafy avenue of similar grand buildings. Rooms are equipped with a TV, radio, tea/coffee-making facilities. Beds have deep mattresses and crisp white linen sheets. Ornately decorated, the high ceilinged dining room has huge windows.
The George is inspired by the origniality and diversity of the local area.The George is approachable, warm and friendly and big on design and living like a local. The George offers 46 deisgn-led rooms which come equipped with blackout curtains, rainfall shower, Wi-Fi and a Smart TV. There is contactless check-in, a 24-hour pantry, and drop-and-go check-out. There are leisure amenities available, which can be booked through front of house team.
No.38 The Park offers a luxurious stay and a sublime selection of sustenance in the restaurant to fuel your adventures. In each one of the beautiful bespoke bedrooms, bold statement prints and mismatched textures are the order of the day. All of the bedrooms at No.38 The Park are dog friendly. No.38 The Park uniquely combines the luxury of a hotel with the independence of a bed and breakfast creating a warm and homely feel.
A transfer from your overnight accommodation will take you back to Seven Springs. Leaving the busy roads, you are soon in open countryside, ascending Hartley Hill and onto Leckhampton Hill with its panoramic views and interesting rock faces. The route then passes through the countryside and a short road section to climb Crickley Hill and finish in Birdlip.
Ascent: 190m / Descent: 135m
An English Country Hotel set in 26 acres of grounds, which has views over the Gloucestershire Countryside. The hotel has 34 comfortable en-suite bedrooms of individual character. The restaurant offers a great selection of traditional British favourites, from hearty main courses to lighter snacks, complemented by a selection of carefully selected wines, cask ales and speciality teas and coffees.
A gentle woodland walk leads out of Birdlip following the foot of the escarpment towards Cooper’s Hill. The woods are a carpet of flowering plants in the spring. The path then climbs steeply up to the top of Cooper’s Hill, the scene of the famous annual Cheese Rolling festival! Continuing on through Buckholt Wood and Painswick Golf Course a short detour to Painswick Beacon is recommended. From here the path leads downhill into the delight that is Painswick itself.
Ascent: 240m / Descent: 355m
Troy House is situated in the queen of the Cotswolds - the village of Painswick. It is set in a grade 2 listed building with original features. Off set in a private courtyard allowing ultimate relaxation and tranquillity. Each room has been decorated in natural colours and have all the amenities you require for your overnight stay.
St Anne’s B&B is a traditional English country home furnished with antiques, a log fire and relaxed family atmosphere. They have three guest rooms which are all comfortably furnished and have all the amenities you require. The dining room has a large sofa and you are welcome to relax in front of the fire or read the newspapers.
Dating back to 1554 the Falcon is a small hotel and restaurant overlooking the historic village church and it's famous 99 clipped yew trees. All 11 rooms are en-suite, tastefully decorated and have comfortable beds with crisp, white linen. Facilities include toiletries, tea and coffee making facilities, free wi-fi, freeview TV, radio alarm clock and hair dryer. An iron, ironing board and fans are available on request. Their restaurant offers the best of fresh, seasonal British food with an interesting twist in the belief that a dish should be savoured to the very last mouthful.
Check out after breakfast and take a train to London for onward travel connections. Alternatively, ask your Macs destination specialist about arranging extra nights in Bath to explore more of this beautiful small city.
Other InformationIs it for me?
The northern section of the Cotswold Way is wonderfully scenic. It acts as a perfect taste of walking in the Cotswolds - with an average of 9 miles / 14 kms walking each day. Please note it is graded moderate for some steep ascents and descents throughout the trail.
Classic Routes | If you’re the active, outdoorsy type, who’s interested in taking on the great routes of the world or looking for a challenge, then our Classic Routes are for you. We’re talking the West Highland Way, Tour Du Mont Blanc and the Passau to Vienna Danube Cycle Path, to name but a few!
Inn to Inn Walking | Walk from place-to-place changing accommodations each night. Generally staying in B&B’s, inns, and guesthouses.
The Cotswold Way tour is rated easy to moderate overall. The trail is on well-maintained footpaths, bridleways, across fields, golf courses and on some minor roads. It does involve some steep ascents and descents from the escarpment.
One of the highlights of this tour is the high standard of accommodation. You will stay in carefully selected B&Bs, guesthouses and small hotels. Your room will always have an ensuite or private bathroom. A delicious breakfast is always included.
During the high season, you might be booked into alternative accommodations which are not listed in the description. Any alternative accommodation will be of the same or better standard as those described.
If you require single rooms within your party we will always try and accommodate you subject to availability. A single supplement is payable.
This walking holiday is available to solo walkers but as we incur additional baggage transfer costs there is a solo walker supplement payable.
If you are walking the full Cotswold Way (or even our "Escape to" and "North" itineraries) we recommend booking at least one extra night in Bath. There is plenty to do in this bustling city known as being the home of well-being. In your information pack, we provide a list of recommended restaurants, cafes and things to do while you are there.
The Cotswold Way is well waymarked and easy to follow. Navigation is straightforward as you can use the Macs Adventure App on your phone which has maps, GPS tracks and daily route information. Simply download the GPS tracks for offline use and follow the route on your phone with the assurance that navigation on this tour will be made simple and you cannot get lost. You will find more information on downloading the app in your Macs Adventure Account. A comprehensive guidebook and map are also supplied.
- 6 Nights accommodation in hand picked B&B's, guesthouses and small hotels
- Daily door to door baggage transfer
- Return taxi transfer from Seven Springs to Cheltenham (Due to lack of Accommodation)
- Fully digital routes on the Macs App, detailed information pack, maps and a guidebook.
- Emergency support
- Travel to the start or from the finish of the walk.
- Lunches, dinners, snacks and drinks.
- Travel Insurance.
- Personal Equipment.
- Extra nights
You can start The Cotswold Way North 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.
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). Please note buses do not run on Sundays.
If you wish to drive to the start of the walk, there is a secure car park on the outskirts of Chipping Campden. This is about a 10 minute walk to the centre of Chipping Campden and costs £5 per night. Unfortunately it is not the easiest to get back to Chipping Campden from Bath. The most straightforward way is to take the train to Cheltenham via Gloucester (approx 1h 30m), and then take a taxi to Chipping Campden.
Taxi or bus services are available for the 4 miles from Painswick to Stroud. From Stroud there are train services to London. Please check the National Rail Enquiries for train times and schedules and the also the National Express website for bus times and schedules
Your bags will be transferred from your accommodation as per your itinerary and moved onto your next overnight accommodation.
At Macs Adventure, we work in partnership with many luggage transfer providers who set a limit on how many bags/suitcases they will transfer per person, and also the weight of the bag/suitcase. Your booking includes transfer of 1 bag per person. It is very important that you read the luggage information specific to your tour before departure. If you do not adhere to these limits, there is a great possibility that you will be charged locally both for extra bags or if they are too heavy. This limitation can be a challenge, especially as airlines generally have limits that are higher. However, our luggage providers have reasons for these limits (usually due to the Health and Safety of their employees), which we must respect.
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 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. This must be booked in advance if you are interested in this option. Please do not show up and ask the driver on your first day of walking.
The distances and ascent/descents are approximations of the direct routes at the time of our pathfinder walking them (this excludes walking to/from your accommodation to the start/end point, or for example coming off the path for lunch). There may be some slight discrepancies/small diversions that make the distances slightly out compared to your own mapping software (Strava/Garmin/Apple Watch).
Please be prepared by packing all necessary items, for example, proper rain gear (jacket and trousers), 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.
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.
Walking in the Cotswolds
The Cotswolds are world-famous for bustling market towns, beautiful villages, and stunning countryside. This short feature follows Mark and Sonia who spent their 30th wedding anniversary walking on a Macs Adventure walking tour in the Cotswolds.
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