Things to do in The Cotswolds

Culture and heritage

One of England’s most beautiful areas, the Cotswolds boasts pretty villages of honey-coloured stone, manor houses, charming churches, dry-stone walls and country pubs. History is all around you, from the Regency houses of Cheltenham to the black and white medieval buildings of Tewkesbury.


The stunning Gloucester Cathedral was used as a Harry Potter filming location. Head to Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens and get up close and personal with a huge range of primates, reptiles and more. Alternatively, you could join some of the world’s best writers at the Cheltenham Literature Festival. Keep a look out for live music events at the spectacular Westonbirt Arboretum. Dating back to 1950, petrolheads will love Castle Combe Circuit.

Food and drink

Gloucestershire offers plenty of fantastic food and drink, from smart gastropubs to traditional inns and quirky cafes. If you enjoy a tipple, don’t miss the local wines and ales. You’ll also find farmers’ markets, delis, farm shops and prize-winning cheese producers all selling the freshest local produce.

Sports and outdoors

The Cotswolds is horseriding heaven, with the Cheltenham Festival – including the Gold Cup – taking over for a week in March, plus more horse-related events at Gatcombe and Badminton. There’s top-class rugby in Gloucester. Cheese rolling at Cooper’s Hill near Gloucester. Plus there’s over 3,000 miles of footpaths and bridleways to explore.

Music and nightlife

From folk, classical or jazz festivals, to summer opera and concerts in the open air, the Cotswolds has plenty to offer music lovers. There’s also the prestigious classical music celebration, the Three Choirs Festival every 3 years.


From traditional antique shops at Stow-on-the-Wold and Tetbury to contemporary crafts in Cirencester, you’ll find a great choice of local shops in the Cotswolds. Head to Cheltenham for a wider-range of well-known stores – and for delicious local produce try Daylesford Organic Farmshop.

Discover more about the Cotswolds AONB and

Where do GWR trains to the Cotswolds arrive and depart?

GWR trains run through many stations in the Cotswolds on two separate railway lines, from Oxford to Moreton-in-Marsh in the north of the region as well as Swindon to Ashchurch for Tewkesbury (via Stroud, Gloucester and Cheltenham Spa) in the south, with direct connections from London Paddington and Reading, or from Bristol and Bath Spa to the South.

What’s the best way to get around the Cotswolds?

The Cotswolds Discoverer One Day Pass is the perfect and hassle-free way to travel around and explore some of the most scenic parts of the Cotswolds by train and bus on just the one ticket.

Travel on GWR services between:

  • Oxford and Moreton-in-Marsh
  • Swindon and Cheltenham Spa/Ashchurch for Tewkesbury
  • Gloucester and Yate
Plus, travel on Johnson’s Excelbus, Stagecoach or Swanbrook buses to connect between train stations and the wider Cotswolds.

Find out more at

Buy your Cotswolds Discoverer One Day Pass online and collect your pass from a ticket machine at your preferred station.

Train tickets to the Cotswolds

By using Railcards or booking tickets in advance, you’ll be able to make big savings on your train tickets to The Cotswolds. Check out our range of money saving ticket options below and find the best fares for your journey.