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Best Cotswolds Cycle Routes

Posted 05 Mar 2021

Are you looking to find out more about the best Cotswolds cycle routes? The Cotswolds were recognised as an Area of Natural Beauty back in 1966, in recognition of their rich and diverse landscape, which is characterised by attractive small villages built from honey-coloured limestone. Perfect for cyclists who enjoy a varied route, the area is defined by its rippling terrain - the word ‘Wolds’ meaning ‘hills’.

We firmly believe the best way to explore this region is by bicycle. We love the quiet country lanes and scenic cycling routes that link the idyllic villages. Plus, the local pubs that serve up welcome gourmet plates are a delight to the senses. With e-bikes included on our tours, you can glide through this iconic landscape with ease and enjoy the views over this spectacular corner of England. Here we share our pick of the best Cotswolds cycle routes.

Best cycle routes Cotswolds

Barnsley House

Many of the best Cotswolds cycle routes can be experienced by setting off from the gorgeous Barnsley House, Gloucestershire. If you’re looking for fabulous views, riverside cycling and classic Cotswold villages, this area has it all.

Our favourite route sees you saddle up and pedal east along small country roads through the verdant landscape until you reach the banks of the River Coln. Follow the river northwest as it twists through a number of villages, including Coln St Aldwyns and Bibury where you’ll find authentic Cotswolds charm in abundance. The route then takes you south to the Roman market town of Cirencester, home to a host of interesting historical sites and a selection of cafes, restaurants and shops for you to enjoy whilst taking a break. The last leg of the ride takes you back to Barnsley.

This is the sort of route we love to take our time on, so we can make the most of riverside pubs and picturesque picnic spots along the way. Back at Barnsley House, treat yourself to a spa visit – we feel it’s deserved after a long day in the saddle!

View our Barnsley House tour here

Best cycle routes Cotswolds

The Cotswolds in Comfort

Our Cotswolds in Comfort tour is designed to pair the best Cotswolds cycle routes with a dose of pampering. Expect scenic routes through the hills made easy with an e-bike, followed by luxurious spa hotels; comfort is all but guaranteed.

Our favourite ride on this cycling tour starts by heading north from Barnsley to Burford, on the banks of the River Windrush. You will follow the river to begin with, hopping from village to village, before approaching Bourton-on-the-Water - fondly known as ‘The Venice of the Cotswolds’ - and then Lower Slaughter. These two villages are arguably the two finest examples of what makes the Cotswolds just so special and we highly recommend locking up your bikes for a while to explore and enjoy them. When it’s time to head back, you’ll follow a route through yet more scenic villages and countryside all the way to the welcoming sight of Barnsley House.

View our Cotswolds in Comfort tour here

Best cycle routes Cotswolds

The Grand Tour of the Cotswolds

Traversing the Cotswolds from north to south over a week, this route blends the historical charm of the Cotswolds with some of its finest contemporary touches. Starting in the north at Moreton-in-Marsh, you’ll make your way south to your final destination of Bath, stopping to explore new areas each day. This is one of the best Cotswolds cycle routes if you’re looking to see as much of the region as possible.

We love the route from Tetbury to Bath at the end of this tour. Starting in Tetbury, you’ll pedal south, passing by Westonbirt National Arboretum. We highly recommend stopping off here to explore. The Arboretum is home to over 2,500 species of tree from all over the world in a stunningly beautiful setting. Continuing on, the next stop is Castle Combe motor racing circuit followed by the wonderfully named village of Tiddleywink on the way, each worth a visit. Finally, you’ll arrive in Bath. A night in this bustling city is a fantastic way to end the trip. Why not book to visit the world-famous Roman baths for a soak before heading out for dinner.

View our Grand Tour of the Cotswolds here

Best cycle routes Cotswolds

For more recommendations on the best Cotswolds cycle routes, give us a call on 020 7471 7760, or alternatively, view our cycling holidays in the Cotswolds here.

View all our UK cycling holidays here

View our Sussex cycling holidays here

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