The Cotswolds ooze luxury English living with fancy farmhouses, sprawling countryside and quaint, picturesque villages – think Downtown Abbey without the OTT accents.

A dreamy destination for a slow weekend getaway and scenic holiday, the Cotswolds are located in the south of England, with many charming towns making up the area. There is so much to see and do in the Cotswolds, and there are also plenty of places to stay that offer everything at your fingertips – a 5-star service dream!

If you are a UK explorer looking to see what the draw to the Cotswolds is, or if you are a couple seeking a romantic escape, there are boutique hotels, country house hotels, manor houses and everything in-between.

Keep on reading to find out where to stay in the Cotswolds for the most memorable and enjoyable stay.

 

 

Where to Stay in The Cotswolds

In a rush to find accommodation for your trip? The three accommodations below are our absolute favorite places in the Cotswolds. If you’re looking for a more specific neighbourhood, keep scrolling and you’ll find the perfect home for you!

Cotswolds

Quaint Barn in The Cotswolds – The Barn

The Barn

Ideal for escaping the crowds and having your own private space, The Barn is a private room on a family property. Just a short drive from top attractions in the Cotswolds, it is a great base for an adventure or business trip. Cosy, comfortable and cute, The Barn has everything you need to feel at home.

Private Room Hostel in the Cotswolds – The Barrel Store

The Barrel Store

Hostels aren’t easily found in the Cotswolds. There are a few in the more student-centric areas like Cirencester. The Barrel Store has exclusively private rooms with ensuites and access to the common areas. Right in the centre of town, its walking distance from restaurants and beautiful village amenities.

Boutique Hotel in The Cotswolds – The Old Lodge

The Old Lodge

Nestled in the outskirts of Stroud, this charming four-star hotel gives you gorgeous views of the Five Valleys! There are scenic hiking trails nearby, making this a great option for walkers and adventure travellers. It is an idyllic setting with beautifully landscaped gardens, and a classic manor house style.

The Cotswolds Neighbourhood Guide – Places to Stay in The Cotswolds

FIRST TIME IN THE COTSWOLDS
Cheltenham
FIRST TIME IN THE COTSWOLDS

Cheltenham

Cheltenham is right in the heart of the Cotswolds – and as the largest town, is a major hub for tourists visiting the region. Best known for its many events throughout the year, Cheltenham is full of life.

FOR COUPLES
Stroud
FOR COUPLES

Stroud

Heading deeper into the Cotswolds, Stroud is the place to be if scenery is your main concern. The gorgeous Five Valleys completely encircle the village, giving you mesmerising views for as far as the eyes can see.

FOR FAMILIES
Broadway
FOR FAMILIES

Broadway

Right in the north of the region, Broadway is a sleepy little gateway to the Cotswolds. For families, this quiet town offers some fantastic accommodation options with gorgeous scenery.

FASCINATING TOWN
Cirencester
FASCINATING TOWN

Cirencester

The West Country is packed with Roman Heritage – and nowhere is that more apparent than Cirencester! This ancient town still houses many monuments from the era, giving you a fascinating insight into this turbulent period of English history.

FOR ENGLISH CHARM
Bourton on Water, Cotswolds
FOR ENGLISH CHARM

Bourton-on-the-Water

Bourton-on-the-Water is a really beautiful and quaint English village in the Cotswolds. An incredible place to stay for a family with kids or a romantic getaway, the village is encompassed with the River Windrush.

Top 5 Places to Stay in The Cotswolds

The Cotswolds is quite a small area in the heart of the South of England, and are really popular among those travelling in the UK, and Brits looking for a country getaway. It is easy to get around by car, exploring the charming towns, and picturesque villages. Take a road trip around the Cotswolds to venture the beautiful scenery. Soho Farmhouse is one of the most famous places to stay in the Cotswolds, though it’s just outside of the regions.

Within the Cotswolds there are different areas each offering something special. Check out where to stay in the Cotswolds:

Cheltenham: If it’s your first time visiting the Cotswolds, Cheltenham is a great place to start. It is a lovely market town with great shopping and dining options. Book yourself a luxury country house hotel for a super special, British holiday.

Stroud: Stroud was once a hub of industry, making it a great spot for exploring history and exploring the development of the area. It’s surrounded by the Five Valleys, a well-known selection of valleys ideal for walkers and hikers.

Cirencester: Cirencester dates back to the Roman era (as do most towns that end in -cester). The architecture throughout the town is historical and beautiful with quaint buildings and cobblestone streets.

Broadway: Up in the north of the Cotswolds, Broadway is a charming little village known for its Victorian architecture and lots of Cotswolds history. Families will find some great accommodation in this area – especially if you’re willing to splurge a little.

Bourton-on-the-Water: You can’t get more classic English town than Bourton-on-the-Water. The village, as the name suggests, runs alongside the River Windrush with beautiful, traditional stone buildings and it’s the home to Brum – IYKYK.

Still not sure where to stay in the Cotswolds? Don’t worry, I’ve got more information about each town below – plus our top accommodation and activity picks for each. 

#1 Cheltenham – Where to Stay in the Cotswolds without a Car

Cheltenham is on the outskirts of the Cotswolds and is one of the busiest parts of the region. It’s a great option for those exploring the UK without a car as everything is walkable and easy to get around. The quaint spa town has beautiful architecture with classic English charm. You can spend days wandering the cobblestone streets to find local, independent businesses and restaurants, and learning about the history of the town.

The public transport in Cheltenham is super reliable, it’s so easy to get around and explore the rest of the Cotswolds.

With traditional English offerings of pubs, parks, historic streets and more, Cheltenham is a great base for hitting the best bits of the Cotswolds.

Cheltenham, Cotswolds

Beautiful Apartment in Cheltenham – Self Contained Studio

Self Contained Studio

This laid-back space is the perfect spot to unwind after a long day of exploring Cheltenham! Just a 10 minute walk from the centre of town, or a short bus ride away, you can explore restaurants and the beautiful streets with a cosy private apartment to return to. It is totally self-contained for ultimate privacy and enjoyment. It’s a great place to stay in the Cotswolds.

Renovated Cottage in Cheltenham: Detached Coach House

Detached Coach House

Cheltenham is packed with modern conversions! This detached cottage was once a coach house, and it has been beautifully restored. The exterior pays homage to the building’s history, while the modern interiors create a comfortable and stylish space. It’s on the outskirts of Cheltenham, meaning you’ll have quick access to the more rural attractions in the area. What’s not to love?

Luxurious Country House in Cheltenham: The Greenway Hotel & Spa

The Greenway Hotel & Spa

Country house hotels are a beautiful option for accommodation in the Cotswolds. The Greenway Hotel & Spa is a luxe choice that oozes classic English elegance and features a spa! A short drive out of central Cheltenham, you can get country bliss with the bustling town nearby. If you’re looking for a luxurious place to stay, consider checking out these hotels with hot tubs in the Cotswolds.

Things to See and Do in Cheltenham:

Things to See and Do in Cheltenham
I’m sure there’s a good explanation for this ^
  1. Fragrant Sri Lankan cuisine likely isn’t the first thing you think of when you imagine The Cotswolds, but this cookery experience can show you its impact on the region.
  2. Pittville Pump Room is the historic centre of the town. You can test the spa waters for yourself, or you might be lucky enough to be around for one of their events.
  3. The Promenade and Montpellier Street are the two main shopping streets in the area, with trees lining the way to create a romantic vibe. Get your retail therapy on in a beautiful, historic setting.
  4. Cheltenham is full of cool restaurants! The Daffodil is one of the most unique, contained within a converted art-deco cinema
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#2 Stroud – Where to Stay for Couples in the Cotswolds

Heading deeper into the Cotswolds, Stroud is the place to really immerse in that beautiful, Cotswolds scenery. The gorgeous Five Valleys completely encircle the village, giving you mesmerising views as far as the eye can see. It is an excellent choice for couples looking for a romantic getaway in the countryside.

The town itself is pretty small, but there is a buzzing shopping street with quirky, local boutiques and restaurants. Encompassed by sprawling countryside and filled with iconic, stone homes, it is stunning setting for spending quality time with your loved one.

Wander the quaint streets, test yourself with the Five Valleys walk, or hide out in your beautiful accommodation. Stroud is a magical place for a quiet, couples escape.

Romantic destination in the Cotswolds
Stroud is perfect for a peaceful couples’ getaway.

Super Central Home in Stroud: Town Cottage

Town Cottage

Combining quaint English charm with modern style, Town Cottage has everything you need for a cosy stay. It is right in the centre of Stroud, making it easy to get about and enjoy the town on foot. With 2 bedrooms, a kitchen and living space, save some money by preparing your own meals. Beautifully decorated and ideally located, it’s one of the best places to stay in the Cotswolds for a romantic holiday.

Converted Barn near Stroud: Slad Valley

Slad Valley

If modern living is more your thing, you need to make a beeline for this stunning barn conversion! It’s actually located outside of Stroud in Slad Valley – one of the Five Valleys that make up the most scenic section of the Cotswolds. The Laurie Lee Wildlife Way runs right by the property, connecting you with two Gloucester Wildlife Trust reserves.

Gorgeous Hotel in Stroud: The Old Lodge

The Old Lodge

This hotel is on the outskirts of Stroud, but close enough to the town centre that you can reach most things on foot. The Five Valleys Walk runs right past the lodge, making it a favourite for hikers. The best feature is the massive garden, which has some seating where you can chill out with a beer or two in the evening.

Things to See and Do in Stroud:

Stroud, The Cotswolds
  1. Get back to basics with this incredible woodsman experience with a local expert deep in the woods of the Cotswolds.
  2. The Five Valleys Walk completely circles the town – the route itself is used as a charity walk every year, but tourists can also follow it to enjoy the scenery.
  3. If you’re looking for the quintessential English pub, look no further than the Golden Fleece – a firm favourite with locals thanks to the cosy vibe.
  4. Bask in the beautiful nature on long walks and explore local boutiques along the shopping street.
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#3 Broadway – Where to Stay in the Cotswolds for Families

Broadway
Check out Broadway for some picture-perfect architecture.

Up in the north of the Cotswolds, Broadway is a sleepy little spot with all the trimmings of a classic English village. The ‘Jewel of the Cotswolds’, there aren’t any crazy crowds in Broadway, it is a scenic town with lots of traditional architecture and eccentric villagers. It’s a great option if you are visiting the Cotswolds with family, the slow paced, easy nature of the village allows you to immerse in nature, spend quality time together and get to know England a little more.

Broadway can get a little pricey, so having a full board accommodation or the option to prepare your own meals will help out. The village is totally picturesque and worth seeing even if you don’t plan to stay there.

If you’re wondering where to stay in the Cotswolds for a peaceful, serene stay, Broadway is ideal!

Charming Cottage in Broadway: Old Fox Cottage

Old Fox Cottage

The timber frame and thatched roof of Old Fox Cottage will take you right back to Ye Olde England. It’s right in the heart of the village, with easy access to get out and explore. Inside, you will find a contemporary interior design that perfectly complements the classic architectural features. The open fireplace is perfect for cuddling up in the winter.

Luxury Flat in Broadway: Luxury 1 Bed Flat

Luxury 1 Bed Flat

A stay in a quaint English village doesn’t mean missing out on modern, luxurious living. This luxury flat is ideally located close to the high street of Broadway. It has a stunning, elegant vibe with beautiful decor, lots of luxuries and special amenities to make your stay even more lavish. If you are heading to Broadway for a solo or romantic stay, this spot is perfect!

Unique Hotel in Broadway: The Lygon Arms

The Lygon Arms

The Master Suite at The Lygon Arms is ideal for families. Not only can it accommodate 4 guests, you can even bring along your furry friend! The hotel is beautifully English with grand rooms, luxe furnishings and all the amenities you need for a relaxing stay. There is a pool, on-site restaurant, car charging ports, and just about all the other luxuries you can imagine!

Things to See and Do in Broadway:

Things to See and Do in Broadway
These scenic walks will help the kids burn some energy!
  1. Want to experience the Cotswolds without dealing with the stresses of organising it yourself? Let this experienced tour guide tailor a day-long itinerary for you.
  2. Broadway Tower is a massive Victorian monument that was once the home of famous designer William Morris.
  3. If you’re looking to curb your spending a little, Russell’s is an excellent restaurant that won’t break the bank.
  4. Head out to explore the countryside with the kids and bask in the beauty of the Cotswolds.

#4 Cirencester – Where to Stay in the Cotswolds for Roman History

Cirencester
Cirencester is a popular tourist destination.

The English West Country is packed with Roman Heritage, but its really showcased in the market town of Cirencester! This ancient town still houses many monuments from its history like the huge amphitheatre which is one of the largest Roman amphitheatres in Britain. It gives you a fascinating insight into the turbulent period of English history.

Beyond its Roman history, Cirencester has a laid-back atmosphere with lots of things to see and do. The scenery is beautiful, as is the market town itself with bustling streets, shops and restaurants.

Enjoy strolling around the Roman built streets, exploring the Corinium Museum and venturing out to the countryside.

Rustic Villa in Cirencester: The Potting Shed

The Potting Shed

The Potting Shed is surprisingly affordable for its central location in Cirencester. Although it’s in the town centre, it’s located down a gated pathway, giving it a calm and peaceful atmosphere. You’ll find historical attractions within walking distance, as well as some delightful local pubs.

Affordable Hostel in Cirencester: The Barrel Store

The Barrel Store

If you’re planning a trip to the Cotswolds on a super strict budget, then The Barrel Store will be the ideal place to stay for you. It is run by backpackers, for backpackers. The only difference from a typical hostel is that you will get your own private room, most of which have private en-suites. I love the locally crafted furnishings, adding a touch of class.

Historic Hotel in Cirencester: The Fleece

The Fleece at Cirencester

The Fleece is a five-star hotel perfect for those looking to splurge! The spacious rooms combine modern interior design with classic detailing to create a cosy, heritage vibe. It’s close to the bus station, so you’ll have quick access to the best attractions in the Cotswolds! There is an on-site restaurant, which offers a complimentary breakfast every morning and international cuisine in the evenings.

Things to See and Do in Cirencester:

Things to See and Do in Cirencester
  1. Enjoy a stroll around the town to find quaint local businesses and boutiques
  2. Sample local delicacies in the traditional pubs and bakeries
  3. The Roman Amphitheatre is on the outskirts of the modern town – it is an excellent photo spot, especially in the winter.
  4. New Brewery Arts is the local creative centre offering workshops, galleries and events throughout the year.
  5. Head down to Castle Street to sample the many restaurants on offer – Malt & Anchor in particular.

#5 Bourton-on-the-Water – Where to Stay in the Cotswolds for English Charm

Bourton on Water, Cotswolds

Bourton-on-the-Water is a really beautiful and quaint English village in the Cotswolds. An incredible place to stay for a family with kids or a romantic getaway, the village is encompassed with the River Windrush.

Sometimes referred to as the Venice of the Cotswolds, it is one of the prettiest places to explore in the area.

For a more slow-paced, relaxed stay in the Cotswolds, Bourton-on-the-Water is a perfect spot where you can wander scenic streets, visit museums and immerse in English life.

Beautiful English Cottage in Bourton-on-the-Water: Bourton Croft Cottage

Bourton Croft Cottage

Great for a family travelling with kids, this cottage will be your own home away from home with 3 bedrooms and homey amenities. In the heart of the village you can walk around the streets and enjoy magnificent scenery.

Cosy Guesthouse in Bourton-on-the-Water: Larks Nest

Larks Nest

From Larks Nest you can hit up the Bourton-on-the-Water hotspots, as well as venture to other Cotswolds towns. It has everything you need in the studio style space with cosy furnishings and a kitchenette.

Luxe Hotel in Bourton-on-the-Water: The Wheatsheaf Inn

The Wheatsheaf Inn

The Wheatsheaf Inn is another boutique hotel in the Cotswolds for a luxury, plush stay. Boasting a classic English vibe with stylish amenities and beautiful village surroundings, it is ideal for a romantic getaway.

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FAQs about Finding a Place to Stay in Cotswolds

Here’s what people usually ask us about the areas of Cotswolds and where to stay.

What To Pack For The Cotswolds

Pants, socks, underwear, soap?! Take it from me, packing for a hostel stay is not always quite as straightforward as it seems. Working out what to bring and what to leave at home is an art I have perfected over many years.

Product
Description
Don’t Let Snorers Keep You Awake!
Don’t Let Snorers Keep You Awake!

Ear Plugs

Snoring dorm-mates can ruin your nights rest and seriously damage the hostel experience. This is why I always travel with a pack of decent ear plugs.

Keep your laundry organized and stink free
Keep your laundry organized and stink free

Hanging Laundry Bag

Trust us, this is an absolute game changer. Super compact, a hanging mesh laundry bag stops your dirty clothes from stinking, you don’t know how much you need one of these… so just get it, thank us later.

Stay Dry With a Micro Towel
Stay Dry With a Micro Towel

Sea To Summit Micro Towel

Hostel towels are scummy and take forever to dry. Microfibre towels dry quickly, are compact, lightweight, and can be used as a blanket or yoga mat if need be.

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Make Some New Buddies…

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Reduce Plastic – Bring a Water Bottle!
Reduce Plastic – Bring a Water Bottle!

Grayl Geopress Water Bottle

Always travel with a water bottle! They save you money and reduce your plastic footprint on our planet. The Grayl Geopress acts as a purifier AND temperature regulator. Boom!

Check out my definitive Hotel Packing list for even more top packing tips!

Don’t Forget Travel Insurance for The Cotswolds

When shit hits the fan (and sometimes it does hit the fan) having good travel insurance is a real lifesaver.

ALWAYS sort out your backpacker insurance before your trip. There’s plenty to choose from in that department, but a good place to start is Safety Wing.

They offer month-to-month payments, no lock-in contracts, and require absolutely no itineraries: that’s the exact kind of insurance long-term travellers and digital nomads need.

SafetyWing is cheap, easy, and admin-free: just sign up lickety-split so you can get back to it!

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Final Thoughts on Where To Stay in The Cotswolds

The Cotswolds is packed with the classic English charm for a quiet, relaxed holiday. The rolling hills create a scenic backdrop – perfect for a staycation to get away from the stresses of life. In the Cotswolds towns, you will find endless historical attractions dating all the way back to the Roman era.

If I had to pick a favourite, I would have to go with Stroud! Right in the heart of the Cotswolds, it is well connected to all the other top towns in the region. The Five Valleys scenery creates a romantic backdrop, while the shops and restaurants have a laid-back, local vibe.

That being said, everywhere mentioned is worth visiting. If you don’t have a car, there’s loads of public transport available! Note it can get a little pricey, but even then it only takes just over an hour to get from one end to the other.

I hope this guide has helped you narrow down your options on where to stay in the Cotswolds!

Did we miss anything? Let us know in the comments!

Looking for more info on travelling to Cotswolds and UK?

And for transparency’s sake, please know that some of the links in our content are affiliate links. That means that if you book your accommodation, buy your gear, or sort your insurance through our link, we earn a small commission (at no extra cost to you). That said, we only link to the gear we trust and never recommend services we don’t believe are up to scratch. Again, thank you!