Each week I take a long walk through the Cotswold countryside, in a variety of locations. My tour guests often ask me for walking recommendations in the area where they will be staying, and I like to recommend walks that I know will offer them a perfect view of the Cotswolds.
The landscape varies around the different area of the Cotswolds. This week I went on a circular 11km walk from Bibury to Coln St Aldwyns. Those who have ever toured with me, know I have a problem with going back the way I have come. I like to feel like I'm always moving forwards so that we all see something new along the way. So circular walks are a must for me.
I took my Ordnance Survey map just in case I got lost and two full travel mugs of tea in my rucksack. Can't go anywhere without the tea, right?
I arrived in Bibury early in the morning (there is limited parking in Bibury so you need to time it right) and parked up opposite the Trout Farm. The weather was frosty and misty, and a very chilly -4.5 degrees centigrade. I walked up out of the village, away from the river and headed off towards the fields and open pastures, using my map route to guide me.
These are some of the photos I took along the way. I strongly recommend you take a guide book and or a map with you. If you decide to book a tour with me, I can happily take you on this walk myself, or can send you off with a route map.
As the morning wore on (I started out early at 8.30am), the mists started to burn off and by mid morning the skies were a glorious shade of blue. Cold, but really sunny still.
I walked up to the village of Coln St Aldwyns, where there is an excellent little village shop and cafe. The seating is outdoors and under cover, but the situation is lovely, and you can happily pause a walk to enjoy a sit and a hoc chocolate while you peruse your route. They sell excellent home baked cakes in there, but this time I resisted. (Last week I succumbed to a doughnut, but my resistance to sugary stuff is getting stronger, with all this exercise.)
By the time I arrived back in Bibury, 3 hours later, a few more people were about, taking photos and pausing to admire the swans milling about on the river.
Visiting Bibury is a much better experience when you take the time to move away from the rest of the visitors and explore a little deeper. There are several little back routes and paths to take. You don't need to do a long walk like I did. Do some research before you go, and you will have a much more fulfilling time there. I recommend an hour in Bibury, if you can spare the time.