The Cotswolds are full of English countryside charm. Endless nature walks, chocolate box villages and friendly locals make the region world-renowned. But with the British weather being notoriously unpredictable, what is the best time of year to visit the Cotswolds? Here we explore each season in detail.
The Cotswolds in the Spring
The beautiful countryside, attractions and charming villages of the Cotswolds come alive during the spring months. Visitors will enjoy long daylight hours and mild weather, with temperatures averaging 52 to 59 Fahrenheit (11-15C). The gardens of the Cotswolds are at their most beautiful in the spring, and the wondrous sight of blossom fills the parklands. During the spring months around 40 varieties of lavender line the hills in shades of purple at Cotswold Lavender Farm in Snowshill. This is a true Cotswold spring highlight. May is historically one of the dryer months, and it falls nicely between the Easter rush and the summer crowds of Cotswold tourists.
The Cotswolds in the Summer
The Cotswolds certainly experience their best weather during the summer months. The region’s timeless villages seem even more beautiful bathed in sunshine. Walks and hikes across rolling hills and undulating landscapes come alive during the better weather, and a walk along the Cotswolds Way; a 102-mile-long path from Chipping Campden to Bath, is an incredibly fun summer activity. However, being such a busy time it may be more of a challenge to find accommodation. And some towns and villages may become crowded on warmer days.
The Cotswolds in the Autumn
Autumn is a great time to visit the Cotswolds because of the beauty found in nature. Rust-coloured leaves line walking paths, ochre landscapes fill the horizon and autumnal photo opportunities arise aplenty. On a crisp, autumnal day, you can enjoy a walk around Batsford Arboretum, home to a vast collection of trees that are particularly magical during autumn. If you want a more brisk hike, you can climb Cleeve Common, located just outside of Cheltenham, which is also enhanced by the season’s colours at this time of year.
The Cotswolds in the Winter
Winter in the Cotswolds takes on a magical, ethereal feel. Crisp cold, blue sky days bring a unique atmosphere, and the region is full of great activities to enjoy in the run-up to Christmas.
Christmas markets are found in Bath, Cheltenham, Chipping Campden, and Cirencester. And Sudeley Castle’s ‘Spectacle of Light’ event is another highlight during the winter months. You could choose to stay in one of the region’s historic hotels for the ultimate cozy Cotswold escape. And is there anything finer than a cozy winter evening spent in a pub with friendly locals? But with a 50% chance of rain or snow on any given day, make sure you wrap up warm and prepare for inclement weather.
The truth is the Cotswolds is a beautiful region of the UK to visit at any time of the year. The very best pubs, hotels, restaurants, and shops remain open all year round, and each season has its own unique charm and beauty.