There are many concealed villages in the Cotswolds and village life is somewhat tranquil, friendly and very much a strong community. Locals often say how living in the Cotswolds is a dream, a relaxed life in stunning countryside, but only 1 hour and 40 minutes by train to London. Villages in the Cotswolds are magical, often discovered through country lanes near to dense woodland or a few miles away from quaint market towns. If you want to experience the beauty of the English countryside, then visit the Cotswolds to be absorbed by wonderful views, pretty stone cottages and bustling towns. The region spreads through several counties boasting 800 square miles of green rolling hills, picturesque villages and towns. The Cotswolds has been named as the second largest area of outstanding natural beauty in England and it comes as no surprise to visitors.
The Village of Bibury
The picture-perfect village of Bibury is located next to the River Coln, famous for a small cluster of cottages called Arlington Row that are believed to date back to the 16th century. Now a famous landmark, the cottages are popular with Cotswolds guided tours who visit daily to see this charming. historical site. The weaver’s cottages were originally a monastic wool store where cloth was prepared, then taken to the nearby Arlington Mill to be hung out on timber frames. The famous row of cottages has been preserved by the Royal College of Arts and is a popular filming location for well-known movies such as Bridget Jones’s Diary. The village of Bibury has a stunning church called St Mary’s that was originally founded in the 8th century. It has Norman carvings and enormous and beautiful Medieval windows. William Morris, a famous artists and designer once said that Bibury was “the most beautiful village in the Cotswolds”.
Bourton-on-the-Water is a quintessential Cotswold village, popular for Cotswold tourism having many tourist attractions, charming cafes, gift shops and restaurants. The village has been named as the ‘Venice of The Cotswolds’ because the River Windrush flows through the centre, next to grass picnic areas, making it extremely popular in the summer. The Model Village is an amazing waist-high exact model replica of Bourton village where you can walk by foot through the village streets, looking down on houses beneath you. The British Motor Museum has an impressive selection of classic cars, caravans and motorcycles. Popular with families, Birdland Park draws visitors to discover a stunning collection of over 500 birds including penguins, peacocks and pelicans.
The charming village of Chastleton is a small village near to Chipping Norton and Moreton-in-Marsh. The Cotswold houses and snug cottages in the village are overlooked by magnificent Chastleton House, a Jacobean 400-year-old stately home. The house was once owned by a rich wool merchant called Walter Jones. Chastleton House still has many of its original stunning features because the family suffered financially during the civil unrest and were not able to repair or upkeep the home. Chastleton House is now owned by The National Trust and is a regularly visited Cotswold attraction that boasts much history. It is said that Robert Catesby who once owned Chastleton House was one of the main people involved in the ill-fated plot to blow up Parliament. Catesby had already sold Chastleton House when the plot was discovered but his mother was still living there. Legend says that some of the plans and plots were thought up in Cateby’s room when he was living in Chastleton House.
Explore the Cotswolds
If you are thinking of booking a daytrip to the Cotswolds, then Secret Cottage Tours offer family-run 6-hour tours of the north Cotswolds area. We are passionate about showing our guests the stunning views of the countryside, taking you through tiny villages, driving past huge stately homes and showing you some of the prettiest market towns in England. If you are visiting London, then you can get a direct train from London Paddington to our local station Moreton-in-Marsh where we will pick you up. There’s no need to bring food with you as we take you to our home The Secret Cottage for a delicious homemade buffet lunch, also serving you a drink and pastry in the morning, and a tasty traditional Cotswold cream tea in the afternoon. Our tours are unique because we bring you to our home where you can enjoy a tour of our 400-year-old cottage, while enjoying some delicious homecooked food. We get booked up quickly, so advise guests to book soon! If you have recently enjoyed a Secret Cottage tour, we welcome your reviews on Trip Advisor.