Whilst Harry Potter and his fellow wizards and witches were happily ensconced in the warmth of Gloucester Cathedral during the Cotswolds winter, we’re sure you’d prefer to get out and about and experience the beauty of these rolling green lands, especially when they’re glittering with a crisp frost.
Rather than hiding away in a hotel room on your English holiday, why not try some of these activities while you’re here?
Distillery and brewery tours (with tasting)
From craft beers to spirits distilled in ‘Nautilus’, The Cotswolds boasts numerous gin, whisky, wine, beer and cider tasting tours. Try The Oxford Artisan Distillery (TOAD) where you’ll find the stills, Nautilus and Nemo made from a salvaged ship and designed in the style of Jules Verne’s 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.
We have our favourite tours such as The Cotswolds Distillery and Dunkertons, but we know them all! Tell us your tastes and we’ll find a tour to match.
Cheltenham Festival – Horse racing
The second week in March is usually when the Cotswolds becomes obsessed with the festival of horse racing. The hospitality packages available are of premium quality, including private dining and a dedicated hospitality team. There’s glamping on site and luxury chauffeur-driven transfers to and from the elegant hotels in the town and nearby villages. This is a must-see spectacle for anyone wanting to experience the decadence of the horsey world.
Cheltenham Festival is truly the best way to say cheerio to winter in the Cotswolds and welcome in the spring.
The birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill is simply stunning in winter. With romantically winding walks, you can spend time taking in the ‘Capability Brown’ designed formal gardens and seek refuge in The Stables Café, adorned with art and photographic exhibitions from local artists.
Indoors, the palace itself is open to delight your eyes with state rooms, tours of the ‘upstairs’ and ‘downstairs’ rooms and of course the Churchill Exhibition.
Back outside, why not choose the ‘Lights, Camera Action! Trail’, where you can walk in the footsteps of the many television and film stars as the silver screen took over the palace and grounds?
Oxford City is home to the Oxford University Museum of Natural History, where every column is made from a different stone and you can meet the resident dinosaur. The History of Science Museum is located between Trinity College, The Bodleian Library, Radcliffe Camera and Exeter College. This is where you can immerse yourself in the beauty of the city and Cotswold stone, while discovering scientific collections of instruments and objects.
The Ashmolean Museum is the largest of the Oxford museums, all of which are free to visit, and hosts exhibits of all kinds including world civilisations and fine arts, and temporary exhibits. The restaurant and café is well-known for exquisite afternoon tea, or cross the road and dine at the 5-star Randolph Hotel.
We hope this article has inspired you to visit the Cotswolds in winter. It truly is a beautiful destination at any time of year! If you need help planning your tours and activities whilst staying here, please ask.