Quirky Cotswolds

Quirky Cotswolds: Discover Enchanting and Hidden Gems (2023)

The Cotswolds is a region in England known for its picturesque villages, rolling hills, and quaint countryside and is a popular holiday destination for those looking for a romantic getaway, a peaceful break or experience a stunning part of England.

Beyond the typical tourist attractions, the Cotswolds is also home to quirky experiences offering you a delightful way to enjoy the region.

In this quirky Cotswolds itinerary, you can learn about the famous Pudding Club at the Three Ways House Hotel in Mickleton, unusual accommodation options like a luxury treehouse in Tetbury, or the animal kingdom represented as lifesize art pieces at Sudeley Castle.

The region is brimming with unique, quirky and unusual things to see and do in the Cotswolds. And eat.

The region opens the door to a culinary journey with farm shops, food festivals, and artisanal producers offering everything from cheese and wine to honey and chocolate.

With its thatched cottages, charming towns, and stunning scenery, it’s no wonder the region is a beloved destination for travelers seeking a taste of old-world England and a quirky Cotswolds holiday.

Quirky Attractions in the Cotswolds

The Cotswolds is a region that is known for its picturesque villages, rolling hills, and stunning countryside. However, there are also plenty of quirky attractions in the area that are worth exploring.

Here are some of the most unusual and interesting places to visit in the Cotswolds:

The Model Village in Bourton-on-the-Water

Bourton-on-the-Water is a charming village that is often referred to as the ‘Venice of the Cotswolds’ due to its series of low bridges that cross the River Windrush. However, one of the most unique attractions in the village is the Model Village, which is a one-ninth scale replica of the village itself.

Visitors can walk around the miniature version of Bourton-on-the-Water and see all of the key landmarks and buildings in incredible detail.

The Mechanical Music Museum in Northleach

Northleach is a small market town in the Cotswolds that is home to the Mechanical Music Museum. This quirky Cotswolds museum is dedicated to the history of mechanical musical instruments and features a fascinating collection of music boxes, player pianos, and other automated musical devices. Visitors can see and hear these instruments in action and learn about their history and development.

The Cotswold Motoring Museum

Museum at Bourton-on-the-water
The Cotswold Motoring Museum at Bourton-on-the-Water (Photo: Travel Cotswolds)

The Cotswold Motoring Museum is another unique attraction in the area, located in the town of Bourton-on-the-Water. This museum is dedicated to vintage cars, motorcycles, and other vehicles, and features a wide range of exhibits that showcase the history of motoring in the Cotswolds.

Visitors can see classic cars and motorcycles, as well as memorabilia and artifacts that tell the story of the region’s motoring heritage.

Sudeley Castle

Sudeley Castle is a historic castle with a rich history dating back to the 15th century and is known for its stunning gardens and unique collection of animal sculptures and art scattered throughout the grounds.

Visitors can spot everything from giant bronze elephants and lions to whimsical wire sculptures of rabbits and birds. The animal sculptures were created by acclaimed artists, including Simon Gudgeon and Tom Hill, and are designed to blend seamlessly into the natural landscape.

Arctic Quest

We’ve saved the best quirky Cotswolds experience until last.

Experience the thrill of dog sledding in the Cotswolds! Hitch a ride with sled dogs at Arctic Quest and enjoy a unique adventure. You’ll glide through stunning landscapes while learning from experienced mushers and their well-trained dogs.

Overall, the Cotswolds is a region that is full of surprises and hidden gems. Whether you are interested in mechanical musical instruments, vintage cars, or miniature villages.

Unusual Accommodations in the Cotswolds

Discover the most distinct and unforgettable stays in the Cotswolds with a selection of quirky accommodations.

The Hobbit House in Chipping Campden

Located in the picturesque town of Chipping Campden, the Hobbit House is a charming and whimsical accommodation that is sure to delight any Tolkien fan. The circular door and windows, thatched roof, and rustic interior all contribute to the feeling of stepping into a hobbit hole.

The Hobbit House is a self-contained cottage with a double bedroom, living area, kitchenette, and bathroom and surrounded by a beautiful garden with a pond and a stream, making it a peaceful and idyllic retreat.

The Converted Railway Carriage in Stow-on-the-Wold

For a unique glamping experience, the Converted Railway Carriage in Stow-on-the-Wold is an excellent choice. The carriage has been beautifully restored and converted into a luxurious and cozy accommodation with a double bedroom, living area, kitchen, and bathroom.

The carriage is situated in a secluded field with stunning views of the surrounding countryside. Guests can enjoy a private outdoor seating area and a wood-fired hot tub, perfect for stargazing on clear nights.

Other unusual accommodations in the Cotswolds include:

1. The Fish Hotel – Nearby Broadway village is another quirky Cotswolds delight with unusual accommodations offerings including treehouses, huts, and cabins.

2. The Roundhouse – This is a circular, eco-friendly cottage near Stroud with stunning views of the surrounding area.

3. The Pigsty – Near Chipping Campden, a former pigsty is now a cozy cottage and perfect for a romantic getaway. There are a few converted farm buildings across the Cotswolds.

4. The Oxford Yurt – If you’re yearning for a sense of adventure, stay in a yurt at this peaceful and relaxing retreat. Or bring more people and make it an unusual weekend away!

5. The Gypsy Caravan – Experience an authentic and unique stay in a traditional gypsy caravan on a working farm, just outside of Cirencester.

6. The Treehouse Retreat – In a secret location near Stow-on-the-Wold is this luxurious treehouse nestled in the trees with all the modern conveniences (including a huge bed, TV and bath) supplemented by stunning views of the surrounding countryside.

7. The Glamping Orchard – Longney provides a truly one-of-a-kind glamping experience, featuring charming and vintage-inspired accommodations. These include a unique vintage caravan, a renovated horsebox, and a luxurious bell tent.

8. The Shepherd’s Hut – Nestled near the charming village of Moreton-in-Marsh, this snug shepherd’s hut is perched amidst a tranquil meadow, presenting a distinctive and idyllic escape for those in search of romance.

With so many unique options, visitors to the Cotswolds are sure to find an accommodation that suits their tastes and budget.

Quirky Dining Experiences in the Cotswolds

When it comes to dining in the Cotswolds, there’s no shortage of options with everything from Michelin-starred restaurants to quaint tea rooms and everything in between suitable for every taste and budget.

But for those looking for something a little out of the ordinary, the Cotswolds has plenty of quirky dining experiences to offer. Here are three of the best:

The Wild Rabbit in Kingham

Located in the charming village of Kingham, The Wild Rabbit is a must-visit for foodies. This Michelin-starred restaurant is known for its creative use of locally sourced ingredients, as well as its cozy, rustic atmosphere. Whether you’re in the mood for a hearty meal or a light bite, you’re sure to find something to love on the menu.

And if you’re looking for a truly unique experience, be sure to book a table in the private dining room, which seats up to 14 people.

The Potting Shed in Crudwell

For a more laid-back dining experience, head to The Potting Shed in the village of Crudwell. This unusual restaurant is housed in a converted greenhouse, complete with a wood-burning stove and plenty of plants.

The menu is focused on seasonal, locally sourced ingredients, with dishes ranging from hearty soups to indulgent desserts and if you’re in the mood for something sweet, be sure to try the cream tea – it’s a Cotswolds classic.

The Old Prison in Northleach

If you’re looking for a truly unique dining experience, look no further than The Old Prison in the market town of Northleach. As the name suggests, this restaurant is housed in a former prison, complete with historic jail cells and an old courtroom. The menu is focused on locally sourced, seasonal ingredients, with dishes ranging from brunch favorites to Sunday roasts.

If you’re feeling brave, you can even book a private dining experience in one of the jail cells – just be on your best behavior!

Whether you’re looking for Michelin-starred cuisine or a quirky cream tea, the Cotswolds has plenty of dining experiences to offer. So why not step outside your comfort zone and try something a little out of the ordinary?

The Pudding Club in Mickleton

This traditional English event where guests get to sample a variety of delicious puddings, including classics like sticky toffee pudding, spotted dick, and treacle tart. Founded in the 1980s, The Pudding Club has become a popular. quirky Cotswolds experience.

Taking place at the Three Ways House Hotel in Mickleton, the puddings are made using traditional recipes and high quality ingredients making sure they are authentic and delicious at the same time.

Quirky Festivals and Events in the Cotswolds

The Cotswolds is a region known for its picturesque villages, rolling hills, and rich history and home to some wonderfully offbeat festivals and events in the UK.

Here are two of the most popular:

The Cheese Rolling Festival in Brockworth

Brockworth, a village located just outside of Gloucester, is home to the annual Cheese Rolling Festival. This event, which takes place every spring bank holiday, involves participants chasing a nine-pound wheel of Double Gloucester cheese down a steep hill. The first person to cross the finish line wins the cheese.

The origins of the Cheese Rolling Festival are unclear, but it is believed to have started in the 1800s. Today, the event attracts thousands of spectators and participants from all over the world.

The Tetbury Woolsack Races

Tetbury, a market town in Gloucestershire, is famous for its wool trade. However, it is also known for its annual Woolsack Races. This event, which takes place every May, involves participants carrying a 60-pound sack of wool up and down a steep hill.

The origins of the Woolsack Races date back to the 17th century when Tetbury was a major wool trading town. Today, the event is a popular attraction for locals and visitors alike.

Other festivals and events include the Marshmallow Festival in Broadway, which celebrates the history of marshmallow production in the area, and the Performance Festival in Cheltenham, which showcases a range of artistic performances from around the world.

The quirky Cotswolds is a region that is full of surprises and delights, offering visitors a unique and unforgettable experience that is unlike anything else in the world.

From the unusual animal art scattered throughout the grounds of Sudeley Castle to the Pudding Club at the Three Ways House Hotel in Mickleton, there is no shortage of unusual and offbeat attractions to discover in the Cotswolds.

Whether you’re interested in exploring the region’s rich history, enjoying its natural beauty, or simply indulging your sweet tooth, the quirky Cotswolds has something to offer everyone.

So why not plan a visit to this enchanting region and discover the offbeat charm of the Cotswolds for yourself?

You won’t be disappointed!

Enchantment Awaits
Enchantment Awaits

The Cotswolds region is home to many charming villages and towns, churches, historic landmarks, outdoor activities, in a beautiful part of England. After visiting the region many times, we created the Travel Cotswolds website dedicated to helping others plan their own trips to the Cotswolds.

Contact: hello@travelcotswolds.com

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