Situated in the very heart of England, the Cotswolds displays everything that England has to offer. Making it a long-time favourite destination for those looking for old-world charm, gorgeous countryside and oodles of history.
There's no better way to experience this fabulous area than by campervan. The ability to explore in your own time and pull over whenever the mood takes you means that campervans are perfect for a trip to the Cotswolds.
From the height of summer to the depths of winter it's a popular and easy way to travel, provided you’ve got the appropriate insurance for campervans.
For those looking for holiday inspiration we’ve put together these suggestions to make your next road trip truly unforgettable.
Trips for travel enthusiasts
Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway, Winchcombe, Gloucestershire
If you’re a fan of old-world rail travel, a trip on the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway is a pleasant way to spend an afternoon.
With picture-perfect views across the Malvern Hills and beyond, make sure you’ve got plenty of space on your camera to capture your ride on the rails.
Where to stay: Broadway Caravan Club Site. With little road noise and a warm welcome, this dog-friendly site is perfect if you’re travelling with your four-legged friend.
Cheltenham Racecourse, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire
For thousands of years the fastest means of travel on land was by hoof! Watch these beautiful creatures put through their paces at this spectacular jewel in jump racing's crown.
Throughout the year Cheltenham racecourse plays host to some of the most exhilarating racing action in the world, from 350 spectacular acres in the lee of the beautiful Cotswold hills.
Where to stay: Cheltenham Racecourse Caravan Club Site. You really can’t get closer to the action than here. Listen out for some top racing tips – a good one could pay for your trip!
Castle Combe Circuit, Castle Combe, Wiltshire
If Formula 1 and fast cars get your pulse racing then a visit to the Castle Combe Circuit near Chippenham will be the highlight of any Cotswolds trip.
Whether you want to race, watch or simply experience the atmosphere the West Country’s home of motorsport has it all.
As one of the UK's best-loved circuits, Castle Combe offers spectacular racing, modern facilities and stunning scenery. And if you need a break from the modern age then just pop down to the nearby Castle Combe village for some old-world charm.
Where to stay: Plough Lane Caravan Site. For those travelling without children this adults-only site is perfectly placed for peace and quiet.
SS Great Britain, Bristol
Designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel, the SS Great Britain is one of the most important historic ships in the world.
When she was launched in 1843, she was by far the largest vessel then afloat and was heralded as 'the greatest experiment since the Creation'. With a phenomenal combination of size, power and innovative technology, the SS Great Britain changed the course of maritime history.
Unfortunately, while Brunel’s vision for the ship never quite lived up to reality, her design makes her the grandmother for all modern ships.
Today she stands as a museum ship in Bristol harbour and attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors annually.
City driving can sometimes get hectic so make sure you’ve got campervan insurance in place before heading into Bristol.
Where to stay: Brook Lodge Farm Camping & Caravan Park. This award-winning and unique rural camping experience is within easy reach of Bristol and nestled below the beautiful Mendip Hills.
Trips for outdoorsy types
If you’re a keen walker then you’ll adore the 100-mile-long Cotswold Way that runs along the scenic western edge of the Cotswold escarpment.
From the Roman city of Bath right up to the gorgeous honey-coloured town of Chipping Campden, the trail links two of the most popular tourist destinations in England.
If you want to do the whole thing then set aside between seven and 10 days. If not there’s an endless variety of circular walks you can complete all along the way. Simply stunning.
Where to stay: Hayles Fruit Farm Camping Site. Set right next to the Cotswold Way National Trail the campsite is part of a working fruit farm and has a great farm shop.
If you’re taking any expensive walking or photography kit then make sure it’s included on your campervan insurance before you leave.
Batsford Arboretum & Garden Centre, Moreton in Marsh, Gloucestershire
Truly a wild garden that’s a wonder to behold throughout the seasons. With 56 acres of breath-taking gardens, Batsford is a world of trees and so much more.
With its snowdrops in winter, daffodils in spring, ornamental cherries and a show-stopping handkerchief tree the green-fingered among you will have much to savour.
There’s also an award-winning visitor centre, gifts and plant shop as well as the Garden Terrace Café. Nearby is the Cotswold Falconry Centre that’s a great treat for kids who are able to watch the birds being flown daily.
Where to stay: Moreton-in-Marsh Caravan Club Site. A lovely family site in an area famous for its untouched charm.
Cotswold Farm Park, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire
Established in 1971 by Joe Henson (father of TV farmer Adam Henson) as the home of rare breed conservation for farm animals, Cotswold Farm Park offers a fun-filled family day out.
There’s an Animal Barn where children can spot new-born animals, an Adventure Barn where they can let off steam, and a Discovery Barn where they can learn everything about small animals.
There’s also a wildlife walk, adventure playground and lots more.
Where to stay: Cotswold Farm Park Camping Site. Right next door and run by the same people, campers get a Farm Park ticket with every stay and can re-use it free of charge for the duration. A great deal indeed!
Trips for foodies
Upton Smokery, Burford, Oxfordshire
Situated just outside the small medieval town of Burford in the Cotswold hills is Upton Smokery.
Specialising in smoked meats, smoked fish, and biltong there is a lot to make your mouth water here.
As well as a great deli where you can buy their products and lots of other delicious treats, they also have a highly-regarded restaurant, too.
Where to stay: Burford Caravan Club Site. Located close to the small and sleepy town of Burford it’s also near to the stunning village of Bourton-on-the-Water with its motor museum and fine model village.
Daylesford Organic Farm, Daylesford, Gloucestershire
If you love food then you simply must visit Daylesford Organic Farm in the small village of Daylesford.
With an award-winning farm shop and café, there are so many browsing and scoffing opportunities here you won’t want to leave. But if you love to cook then it’s the cookery school that you need to book yourself into.
Led by expert chefs you’ll be taken through the whole journey of a meal, right from the field to the plate.
You can try your hand at artisan bread-making or cooking with game and wild food. Try not to drool!
Where to stay: Larkfield Caravan and Motorhome Site. Perfectly located for Chipping Norton and many Cotswold sites.
The Cotswolds Distillery, Stourton, Warwickshire
The first full-scale distillery in the Cotswolds, here they use traditional methods to lovingly create a fantastic range of award-winning whiskies, gins and liqueurs.
They offer tours and tastings, gin and whisky blending masterclasses and cocktail masterclasses – just make sure you book a taxi home.
Where to stay: Cotswolds Camping at Holycombe. Chill out at this peaceful campsite. It even has its own stone circle!
The Fleece Inn, Bretforton, Worcestershire
You really can’t move for fantastic pubs in the Cotswolds but if you want a bit of history, then this National Trust owned 15th century pub will fit the bill perfectly.
With its roaring fires, dimly lit rooms and orchard, it’s what every English country pub should be like.
This award-winning pub holds an annual asparagus festival and auction and there are even three Morris-dancing sides based at the pub: Pebworth, Belle d'Vain and Asum Gras! The pub food is good, too.
Where to stay: Weir Meadow Holiday and Touring Park. Beautifully situated on the banks of the River Avon with splendid vistas of the narrow boats.
Trips for history buffs and culture vultures
Kelmscott Manor, Lechlade, Oxfordshire
Isolated among fields just outside of Lechlade, this stunning Tudor manor house has become a site of pilgrimage for many fans of the British textile designer, poet and translator William Morris.
Kelmscott was the summer home of Morris between 1871 and his death in 1896. He described it as ‘Heaven on Earth’, and it’s easy to see why.
The simple beauty of the house perfectly showcases a large collection of furniture, fabrics, wallpapers and tapestries created by Morris and his Pre-Raphaelite friends.
Along with walking the nearby Thames Pathway you can also explore the gardens, a tea room and gift shop.
Where to stay: Rough Grounds Farm. Nestled in the nearby countryside this is a family run campsite offering simple comfort at reasonable prices.
Sudeley Castle & Gardens, Winchcombe, Gloucestershire
With a fascinating history that spans over 1,000 years, Sudeley Castle offers a unique chance to explore some of our nation’s most notable characters.
Lady Jane Grey, Katherine Parr, Anne Boleyn, Richard III, King Charles I and Henry VIII are just some of the who’s who of British history forever associated with the castle.
If you enjoy gardening then there are 10 magnificent gardens to explore. These include The Herb Garden and the Tudor Physic Garden which hosts some of the plants used medicinally by the Tudors.
There’s so much here to keep the whole family entertained.
Where to stay: Winchcombe Camping and Caravanning Club Site. Surrounded by beautiful views, this is the perfect base from which to visit this historic estate.
Blenheim Palace, Woodstock, Oxfordshire
This 300-year-old UNESCO World Heritage Site has been home to the Churchill family since its construction in 1722.
Highlights include the extravagant Palace State Rooms, the elegant Formal Gardens and the family-friendly Pleasure Gardens.
For the young and young at heart, there’s the Marlborough Maze, the Butterfly House and the Miniature Train to enjoy.
If you want to explore the history of Blenheim even further then visit nearby Combe Mill. Built in the 19th century as a workshop for the Blenheim Palace Estate, the sawmill has a rare working steam beam engine and waterwheel.
It also boasts rural artefacts, visiting craftsmen and a working forge.
Where to stay: Bladon Chains Caravan Club Site. Situated on the Blenheim Estate itself you can’t get much closer than this!
Jane Austen Centre, Bath, Somerset
Famed for its Roman-built baths, the beautiful city of Bath is also home to the Jane Austen Centre.
This small but perfectly formed museum explores the influence Bath had on her books and personal life.
Why not dress up in Regency costumes and explore the exhibition or take a refined tea at the Regency Tea Room upstairs? Perfect for a delightful afternoon snack after exploring all the city has to offer.
Where to stay: Longleat Caravan Club Site. Set in beautiful parkland just south of Bath, the site is perfectly located in the midst of the Longleat Estate. A must-see destination in itself, take time to explore its gorgeous Manor house, fine gardens and Safari park.
However, one word of warning before heading into the monkey enclosure. Make sure your campervan insurance is up to date in case of monkey business!
Protect your Cotswolds trip with campervan insurance
Driving the country lanes of the Cotswolds is fun but can be a challenge if you’re not used to it. So make sure you’ve got adequate protection for your trip.
Exploring new places around the UK is a great reason to use your campervan throughout the year. But it also means you’ll sometimes find yourself in unfamiliar places and perhaps more vulnerable to accidents or damage.
Using our trusted panel of insurers, the specialist team at Motorhome Protect searches out the very best campervan insurance just for you.
Cover arranged by our dedicated insurance team includes benefits such as:
- Cover for vehicles valued up to £150,000
- Cover for camping personal effects up to £3,500
- Discounts if you’re a member of a campervan or a motorhome club
Call Motorhome Protect and get a quote for campervan insurance today.
Policy benefits, features and discounts offered may very between insurance schemes or cover selected and are subject to underwriting criteria. Information contained within this article is accurate at the time of publishing but may be subject to change.