Autumn walks in the Cotswolds: 12 of the best

PUBLISHED: 12:17 22 September 2020

Lower Slaughter in autumn (c) Peter Llewellyn / Getty Images


On a crisp, autumnal day, there is nothing better than gathering the family for a stroll amongst some of the most colourful woodland and countryside the Cotswolds has to offer. We’ve accumulated a list of our favourite places to catch the majority of this season’s golden hues

Westonbirt Arboretum

Residing just a short distance from the market town of Tetbury, Westonbirt is home to 2,500 different species of trees from around the world. During the autumn you'll find the arboretum is awash with the burnt oranges and profound coppers associated with this spectacular season. Wrap up warm and pack a camera, and wander off the beaten track to find the best beauty spots amongst the trees.

Minster Lovell Hall and Dovecote

Soak in the fresh autumn air with a leisurely walk around the ruins of Minster Lovell Hall and Dovecote. The 15th century, former Oxfordshire manor house lies in a picturesque rural setting with the peaceful River Windrush nearby. The location is made even more special, and spookier, with the backdrop of the bare trees and crunch of fallen leaves on the ground below.

Bredon Hill

Bredon Hill boasts a diverse landscape; with ancient woodland, rolling greenery and arable farmland. Once at the top, stunning panoramic views over the Cotswold escarpment, Malvern Hills and the Severn Valley can be enjoyed. The ramble up to the top, amongst the autumnal golden hues of the fallen leaves, makes the trip even more magical.

Batsford Arboretum

Batsford Arboretum is a nature lover's fantasy. Even on the dullest of autumnal days, the woodland is inundated with bright seasonal colours and the smell of crisp, fallen leaves. The park and café are completely dog-friendly too, so you can warm up after your stroll with a hot chocolate and man's best friend at your feet. 


Countryside pub walks in the Cotswolds

Beautiful woodland walks to try in and around the Cotswolds


Sezincote Gardens

Near Moreton-in-Marsh, Sezincote House is an Indian extravaganza of romantic landscape including temples, grottoes, waterfalls and canals covering 4,500 acres of Cotswold greenery. Lose yourself in the gorgeous scenery of this stately home this autumn with gold and red leaves dotting the trees.

Cleeve Common

Whether you're after a leisurely stroll or a more vigorous hike, Cleeve Common offers a number of routes to get yourself walking in the crisp autumn air. Wrap up warm, put on some comfortable shoes and enjoy mesmerising views from the top of Cleeve Hill among the red, orange and golden leaved trees that dot the walk up.

Blenheim Palace

The birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill, and situated in Woodstock, Blenheim Palace has plenty of different levelled walks available, so the whole family can enjoy the spectacular autumnal scenery to be found across the 2,000 acres of parkland.

The Royal Gardens at Highgrove

As the colder months draw in, the private gardens of The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall are an extraordinary sight to see. The immaculately manicured gardens, full of rich reds and burnt oranges, are a pleasure to stroll around, from The Stumpery, the wild meadow bursting with colour and the magnificent Thyme Walk.

Pittville Park

This picturesque town-centre park is home to the magnificent Pittville Pump Room. The Regency building overlooks the bustling parkland, popular with Cheltenham's residents for its family-friendly facilities. The park's ornamental lake is teaming with wildlife and in the autumn the surrounding trees turn a wonderful hue of crimson and gold.

Upper and Lower Slaughter

When thinking of pretty Cotswold villages, they don't get much more picturesque than the villages of Upper and Lower Slaughter with charming riverside cottages, stone bridges crossing the River Eye and 19th century watermills. When autumn rolls in, the trees boast colours of gold and red with crunchy leaves littering the banks of the river.

Dumbleton Hill

Dumbleton Hill is one of the Cotswold's best kept secrets and during the autumn, the dense woodland is full of deciduous trees that shed thousands of vibrant and brightly coloured leaves. Once you've worked your way to the top, the panoramic views of the Cotswolds are simply spectacular. Keep an eye out for the deer that are often seen grazing around the woods.

Just outside the region…Symonds Yat

Located in the Forest of Dean, Symonds Yat is an area of outstanding natural beauty that straddles the peaceful River Wye. The deeply wooded gorge turns sensationally colourful during the autumn and if you manage to work your way to the top of Symonds Yat Rock, the view of the vast landscape from the top is enhanced by the autumnal colours.


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