The call of the countryside is pretty strong – once you feel the need to head out and enjoy the great outdoors, there’s not much you can do to satisfy that besides booking one of our beautiful cottages in the Cotswolds (or a similarly stunning part of the UK). And you’ve probably got a few friends who feel exactly the same, so if you’re heading off for a luxury group holiday, check out our list of activities that’ll make your next break the most memorable one yet. From cycling tours to survival skills and even sipping spirits, there’s bound to be something for you and your friends to do!

1. Take a cycling tour with Cotswolds Adventures

cycling on a forest road in cotswolds

Seeing the Cotswolds on two wheels allows you to go off the beaten track to places you may never otherwise discover. Each expedition is tailored to your interests, so you can spend a morning cycling through fields of lavender or visiting oddly named villages like Upper Slaughter and Guiting Power. Book a private tour as one of your group activities in Cotswolds and embark on an energetic exploration of the woods and rivers of the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, stopping to take photos of the spectacular landscapes. The route is not set, so expect the unexpected as you begin your journey, possibly finding ruined churches, lively festivals or fairytale villages along the way.

Book: Online at Cotswolds Adventures

Location: 23 Old Hospital Lawn Stroud, Gloucestershire The Cotswolds, GL5 4GA


2. Scare yourself silly on one of Bill Spectre’s Ghost Trails

lone lightpost in the dark

Bill Spectre’s name hints at his affinity with the paranormal – something that will become increasingly apparent as he takes you around the haunted sights of Oxford, Stratford-Upon-Avon and the villages of the Cotswolds. Arrange for your group to take one of his guided tours and an atmospheric evening is guaranteed; even the most scoffing sceptics might have a change of heart as they hear Bill’s supernatural tales. Of course, whether the ghost of Fair Rosamund appears or not is almost irrelevant because a fun evening is guaranteed either way – Bill’s storytelling skills are legendary and you’ll get to see some interesting sights after dark.

Have little ones among your group who are more easily spooked? Don’t worry: we’ve got a list of best family activities in Cotswolds

Book: Email / Call 0794 104 1811.

Location: Oxford Castle, Oxford OX1 1AY


3. Learn traditional crafts at New Brewery Arts

In the heart of Cirencester, local artists share their secrets with visitors to New Brewery Arts. The classes here are small enough that the tutors can give time and attention to each participant as they attempt to hone their skills. The centre offers one-off workshops on skills like pinhole photography, fabric origami and lino printing, so that visitors can create something truly unique to take home with them. There are drawing and painting classes, as well as family events, traditional weaving classes and sculpting lessons. If your own creations don’t turn out as planned, never fear; just pick up some souvenirs made by the talented pros in the on-site shop instead.

Book: Call 01285 657181

Location: Brewery Court, Cirencester, Gloucestershire GL7 1JH


4. Test your survival skills with Hands On Bushcraft

One of our more daring group activities in Cotswolds, Hands on Bushcraft shows you how to survive away from the home comforts you know and love. They run courses that cover a variety of skills, from foraging to fire-starting (without the aid of matches or lighters, of course). On one of their experience days, you can learn to build a shelter, scour the undergrowth for food and cook without a kitchen. The experts teaching you will be well-versed in the ways of the woods, and able to carve weapons and whittle cutlery with very little equipment. Ready to leave the modern world behind (at least temporarily)? Then delve deep into the landscape of the Cotswolds on these courses, which are perfect for groups seeking a bit of adventure.

Book: Online at Hands On Bushcraft

Location: 5 Egypt, Nailsworth, Gloucestershire, GL6 0AE


5. Sample spirits at Cotswolds Distillery

Cotswolds Distillery

One of the more indulgent yet still educational Costwold activities, the Costwolds Distillery tour and tasting allows you to learn all about traditional production methods as you make your way through their facility. You’ll see some of their award-winning spirits and liqueurs being made before getting the chance to try them for yourself. Don’t miss the chance to pick up a bottle or two at the end of the tour!

Looking for something a little more hands on? They also offer cocktail, gin- and whisky-blending masterclasses that are sure to get the whole group involved. And prefer dining over drinking? We’ve got a top list of foodie experiences in Cotswolds too.

Book: Online at Cotswolds Distillery or call 01608 238 533

Location: Phillip’s Field, Whichford Road, Stourton, Shipston-on-Stour, CV36 5EX

Don’t forget that our concierge team is on hand to answer any questions, help arrange activities and ensure you get the luxury accommodation that’s right for you and your friends. And how about a bit more inspiration for your Cotswolds holiday? Sit back and enjoy more travel inspiration with more the best family-friendly activities in the Cotswolds and our selection of the top 10 foodie experiences in the region

Photo Credits: Pheasant Shooting via Prescott Shooting, Cycling via Cotswolds Adventures, Cottage via Cotswold Tourism Tours, Electric Cycling via Pedego Europe, Wilderness via Hands On Bushcraft

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