The Cotswolds, The UK’s Definitive Travel Less, See More Destination | Travel Research Online


The Cotswolds, The UK’s Definitive Travel Less, See More Destination

If you’re looking for the ultimate travel-less, see-more UK destination, look no further than the Cotswolds. An area with Stratford upon Avon to the north, Bath to the southwest, and accessed through Oxford with a one-hour drive from London Heathrow; it’s the perfect place to park your jetlag for a few days, putting you in great shape for early starts and late finishes when you get to London.

But first, a traveller’s tip. With a wealth of 4- and 5-star hotels to work with, Fridays and Saturdays are super-popular for weddings. To ensure that we secure the best prices for you, try to plan your transatlantic flights for Saturday so that you can start your customised Cotswolds Experience with the first night in the Cotswolds on a Sunday. Travelling to London via Oxford and Windsor Castle on the Friday, we can then take advantage of the better weekend rates and availability in the capital. How does that sound to you?

Another good reason for talking to me about the Cotswolds is because I lived there for over 5 years and know it well.

With best wishes for a very happy Easter.

Strawberries, Lavender, and Roses

This best loved of all English summer fruit plays a leading role in an imaginative 6-nighter, which works best in June and July when gardens are at their peak for colour and fragrance (see video). With the lavender in full bloom, and visits to some stunning privately owned gardens, I can now add a leisurely day of interactive floristry workshops at Bloomery—where your clients can choose from eight different courses. Based between Broadway and Chipping Campden, they have their own cutting garden and source blooms from local flower farms, from April to October. All materials and equipment are provided.

Three women in front of bags of bright flowers

Tea and scone preparing on countertop

Everything Stops For Tea

Why not talk to your local tearoom owner about a unique, customised tour that blends together interesting places for English Afternoon Tea, with visits to stately homes and privately owned gardens. Based in a captivating private home in the Cotswolds, it also includes a hands-on lesson on how to correctly prepare and serve English Afternoon Tea. Whilst it’s lovely to have the teatime treats prepared for you, learning how to create them yourself is a great new skill! During the class, you’ll learn how to create some quintessentially British cakes, and discover the secrets of producing the perfect scone.

A Cotswolds Foodie Tour

The pick n’ mix menu for this 4-night tour can include a lesson in how to correctly prepare and serve English Afternoon Tea (mentioned above), a tasting visit to an award-winning goat’s cheese maker and other artisan cheese makers, samplings of Cotswolds-made single malt whiskies, gins and liqueurs and the craft breweries on the Gloucestershire Ale Trail. Further additions can include a tour of one of England’s top organic farms, a special tour of the Herb Society Garden, and an evening at The Pudding Club! For 2022, base your choice around the annual Food Festival in Cheltenham (end of June).

Gin bottle and glass


Image credit @ Julian Civiero

Cotswolds Treasures and Pleasures

With interest emerging for next year’s Chelsea (May) and Hampton Court (July) Flower Shows, this new travel-less, see-more Cotswolds-based tour includes Rousham, the under-visited masterpiece of William Kent, one of the founders of the English Landscape Movement, the Arts and Crafts-style Hidcote Manor and Sezincote, and a 200-year-old Indian Palace set in a romantic landscape reminiscent of the Taj Mahal. Also included, the majestic Water Terraces and Churchill Gardens at Blenheim Palace and the Royal Gardens at Highgrove. Heading for London, the grand finale is the outstanding Victorian garden surrounding Baron Ferdinand de Rothschild’s grandiloquent chateau at Waddesdon Manor.

Tewkesbury Abbey Celebrating 900 Years

2021 is an exceptional year for the market town of Tewkesbury, as it marks the 900th anniversary of the consecration of Tewkesbury Abbey and 550 years since the Battle of Tewkesbury, the most decisive in the Wars of the Roses. Celebrations run from May 2nd until October 24th, 2021, with a range of events including Armour at the Abbey, a Procession of Knights on horseback, the world famous “Medieval Festival”, and Son et Lumiere, a spectacular week-long light show leading up to a the 900th anniversary on October 23rd. Add visits to the nearby cathedrals in Gloucester, Hereford, and Worcester.

Oustside of Tewkesbury Abbey

Decorated pavilion at literature festival

The Cheltenham Literature Festival

The large-scale, international Times and Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival returns from October 8th-17th,2021. It’s when some of the world’s greatest writers, thinkers, award-winning authors of fiction and non-fiction, poets, spoken word artists and new voices delve into a range of topics including travel and adventure, food and drink, lifestyle, history, art, and religion. To broaden its appeal, add side trips to nearby Bath and follow in the footsteps of Jane Austen, or head for a close encounter with the Shakespeare Houses in Stratford upon Avon. For book lovers, it really is the only place to be in the autumn.

Paull Tickner, owner of U.K-based Custom GB, is known for his expertise in creating and operating imaginative, value-added tours of Great Britain and Ireland. Visit his website at or email him at

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