The Cotswolds have a reputation for being quiet and quaint. Having grown up in the area, I’d have to agree the Cotswolds can be quiet and they’re certainly very quaint and charming but under the surface there is potential to organise many wild days out that will appeal to the entire family.
Top of the list for me would be an attraction called Crocodiles of the World. This small zoo and crocodile centre boasts 15 different varities of crocodiles and can be found between the historic town of Burford and Brize Norton, which is famous for being home to the largest Royal Air Force base in the UK.
You can listen to talks about the various crocodiles, look on as they are fed and learn about the other animals kept on site, such as meerkats, otters and giant Galapagos tortoises. If you’re travelling with children, they’re bound to be impressed. This is not the kind of attraction you would expect to find in the Cotswolds which probably explains why it is so popular!
A little further to the west, just two miles outside of Burford, you’ll find the Cotswold Wildlife Park. Here you will find giraffes, penguins and monkeys plus a tropical house, reptile house, woodland walk, insect house and so on. The park is geared up for families and I visited many a time as a child myself.
If you want to do something outside and enjoy walking, I’d suggest taking a short drive to Burford itself and going for a walk alongside the River Windrush. It’s a wonderful walk but do take a camera because it is incredibly photogenic.
Bourton on the Water is a very popular tourist town. In among the Cotswold Perfumery, Cotswold Motoring Museum and world-famous Model Village, you’ll find Birdland. Here you will find 500 birds including: Marabou storks, blue cranes and pink backed pelicans not to mention the scops owl and penguins. It’s a bird-lover’s paradise.
The Cotswolds are a very popular destination for anyone wanting to take a short break. Geographically, it sits within a couple of hours driving time from London, Bristol and Birmingham and the train station at Charlbury has regular, direct services from London and Oxford.
If you wanted to explore the area, Holidays in the Cotswolds offers a range of self-catering accommodation in the area. If you take a look at its website you can choose from last minute getaways, dog friendly accommodation, traditional Cotswold cottages, modern buildings and converted barns. You can even filter your search to find thatched cottages and to ensure shops or a pub are nearby. This makes the website very easy to use and ensures you can find the accommodation you need to suit you and your family.
If you are tempted to visit the Cotswolds, there are many other suggestions I could make. You could row down the River Thames in Lechlade or visit the Roman ruins around Cirencester. The area has a lot to offer and as I am from the area, I can say with some confidence you won’t be disappointed!
Disclosure: This commissioned post was produced in association with Holidays in the Cotswolds.