Beside Lake District, another point of must visit in UK is the beautiful villages under the name of Cotwolds. Cotswolds consist of many beautiful villages and AONB areas.
We couldn’t visit them all and chose which one that suited our preference and of course, budget. Although tourism is currently trying hard to return to bussiness, traveling in summer is as expensive as the pre-covid situation. At least, for me.
For the same hotel, the price for one night in summer is three times than it is in the autumn. But, since there was one full week off schedule from the doctor, summer holiday was only one week to the end, so off we went.
The Map of Cotswolds
Our trip started from Cirencester-Bibury-Bourton on the Water-Stow on the wold and went back home from Moreton in Marsh.
I found a good offer to ride on the bus to Cirencester, which is considered as the capital of Cotswolds. One way ticket for three at £19 was too good to be missed. More, for some place that only took 2 hours from London Victoria coach station. Even better, a local bus from our flat took us directly to the bus station.
Just like last trip to Lake District, we went to many places but this time it was less uncomfortable because we didnt do car hire. We would rely on the bus and taxi. It was actually more expensive, but choice was limited.We stayed at two different hotels, one in Cirencester and another night in middle of Bourton on the Water and Stow on the Wold.
We arrived in Cirencester at noon and it was still another three hours for check in. So we waited and visited Abbey Ground Park in the city centre. There was a playground and a picnic table for us to enjoy our packed lunch. After an hour, pouring rain came and we had to keep going. Fortunately, it didnt take long and we also could do the check in before 3 pm.
It was nice to let go all those bags from the back. My age doesnt fit with backpack kind of travel anymore. Cotswolds was an exception.
We had short rest and prayed in our nice room then continued to explore the town after that. It was slightly bigger than Penrith. More tourists were seen but very far from crowded.
There was nothing much to see there. The church, the beautiful village houses and its lovely garden, and the little shops. We missed to see Cirencester Park, as it was closed at 5 pm. We arrived there five minutes before it was closed.
After that, we had dinner at a Thai restaurant and it was pretty good. The better thing, we chose a perfect time to travel. UK government made a campaign Eat Out to Help Out to help food and beverage bussiness. Dine in for 50% discount every Monday-Wednesday in almost every restautant across UK. So, we truly only paid for half than the usual price for our dinner that night.
We planned to revisit Cirencester Park in the morning, but the weather said no. It was heavy rain from early morning and our plan for that day could fail miserably. But, the show must go on, right? We took taxi to Bibury from the hotel. It took only 20 minutes riding. Bibury has one most photographed street called Arlington Row.
These houses belong to the real people. I couldnt imagine how much the tourists caused them disturbance all year long. Since it was raining that day, there were only one or two groups of tourist while we were there.
I felt less guilty since it was raining so we only spent no less than 15 minutes there. Funny that it had been sunny and burning hot for the last two weeks but it was rain hard right when we visited. We only stayed for an hour in Bibury since it was almost nothing to see other than the famous row. In the planning, we would take bus to Bourton on the Water but we missed it and had to take taxi again instead.
It wasn’t as near as expected and paid pretty expensive taxi fare was unavoidable. But, that day, the weather wasn’t on our side. It was even raining harder in Bourton on the Water. That became my concern since Bourton on the Water was the highlight of this trip.We stopped at one of the small restaurants to have some warm drinks and snacks while waiting the rain stopped.
After an hour, the rain seemed showing no good intention to let us wander without getting soaked. So, we had no other choice but to proceed to the next hotel by catching the next available bus. The next bus would be within 30 minutes since we finished eating.While we waited for the bus, we looked around the small shops near the bus stop.
I always found little shops in the small town charming. If we looked carefully, one or two usually have something unique that you couldn’t find anywhere else. It wasn’t comfortable window shopping with all the heavy bags on the back and shoulder, almost no picture taken since the other hand was busy holding the umbrella. I was quite dissapointed that we just missed Bourton on the Water like that. Because we might never comeback twice here.
The hotel was only 15 minutes bus riding from centre. It seemed near, but we couldn’t do it by walk because there was no space for pedestrian. We had to pass a big road that was impossible to walk there. We spent the rest of the day inside.
Maybe the rain understood the price of the hotel so it made us use it very well by staying there as long as we could.The idea of returning to London without paying proper visit to Bourton on the Water was too unbearable. So, changed plan was made.
We supposed to visit Stow on the Wold city centre in the morning before heading to Moreton in Marsh station for the train to London. We dropped it and decided to return to Bourton on the Water once again.
The weather was on our side too that day. It was sunny and warm.We became the first one who showed up at breakfast lounge and left the hotel right after breakfast by taxi. We arrived at 9.10 am and had asked the driver to pick us back around 12.10.
We had at least three hours in Bourton on the Water. Bourton on the Water is always on the top list in any Cotswolds article. It is considered as the Venice of Cotswolds. It’s a very beautiful village with the water view and little ice cream shops by the river. Lovely is such underrated word to describe it.
So grateful for such weather and a chance to enjoy Bourton on the Water in a sunny day, although with the price of skipping Stow on the Wolds.We couldn’t just get everything, right?
We came and left Bourton on the Water at the right time because when we arrived it was quiet and peaceful and when we left, more crowd and traffic seen around the city centre.
This might be one of the less comfortable trips we had so far. It had the feel of day trip with the weight of stay overnight trip. Traveled without luggage and took our backpacks only. We carried them everywhere just like backpacker. It was uncomfortable, especially when you’re no longer a teenager or in your 20s. But, it could be a good thing for the little girl.
We heard more of her nagging and whining on this trip. Moving places without car hire, bags on the back everywhere, long walks in cold and rainy weather, sunny and sweaty without scooter, and many more. It was even more uncomfortable since she is now having her own opinion, wants, preference, and knowing she has to adjust hers with others too. She has to compromise, wait and understand that sometimes, or many times, she just couldn’t get everything.
Facing many more uncomfortable situations on her own in the future are obviously unavoidable.Thus, no other way than to prepare her for the job. It’s ten times harder on the trainers.
Who is happy watching the child ‘suffer’, listening to the whining and nagging?
We’re not. But, we must.
It was short, a trip with a bit of unpleasant weather, yet I still found it was worth all the hassle and money.It was a good decision to go on the beginning of the week.
I learn that the elder needed equal rest days at home as the days spent on the road.
Go when you’re young. Don’t wait.