Skip to main content

The Cotswolds region is known for its concentration of idyllic English villages surrounded by rolling green hills and beautiful landscapes. Full of cute stone cottages, cozy old pubs, and narrow cobbled streets – a visit to any Cotswolds village is like taking a step back in time.

If you’re short on time while visiting London and hoping to squeeze in a day trip to some of England’s prettiest villages, then you’ve come to the right place! This guide covers all of the best Cotswolds tours from London.

The best way to tick off multiple villages in one day is to take an organized Cotswolds day trip. Having an experienced guide to show you around will take the stress out of navigating so that you can relax and enjoy a memorable day in the countryside!

Discover the top 20 most beautiful English villages

The fairy-tale villages of the Cotswolds appear to be frozen in time

I’ve taken the stress out of the planning and I’ve done the research for you. I’ve put together this comprehensive guide to selecting the very best Cotswolds tour from London to suit all preferences and requirements.

Below you will find 10 of the most highly rated and popular Cotswolds tours from London. Whether you’re looking to see some of the prettiest villages or a mix between villages and cities (like Bath and Oxford), there is a Cotswolds tour out there for everyone. The beauty of the English countryside awaits you…

The 10 Best Cotswolds Tours from London

The best tours to the Cotswolds from London

The charming Arlington Row of Bibury

Oxford and Cotswolds Villages

Stops: Oxford, Minster Lovell Hall (a stunning 15th century manor house), Burford, Bibury

Duration: 10 hours

Includes: English speaking tour guide, transportation by luxury coach

Visit the historic city of Oxford on your Cotswolds tour from London

Discover the history of Oxford

This tour departs London at 9:15 am and travels by luxury coach stopping firstly at the beautiful, historic city of Oxford. You’ll spend the morning diving into centuries of fascinating history at England’s oldest university. Enjoy a wander through the ancient streets and admire an epic view of the city’s oldest spires from a vantage point.

The tour continues to the Cotswolds with a stop to explore the medieval market town of Burford. This lovely village lined with Tudor architecture is said to be the gateway to the Cotswolds.

Afterwards, you’ll head over to Bibury and finish the day off with a stroll along the famous Arlington Row before returning to London in the evening. This full day Cotswolds tour from London lasts for 10 hours and includes an experienced guide.

➤Find more information about tour prices and availability here. 

Cotswolds Villages Tour from London

Stops: Burford, Bibury, Bourton-on-the-Water, Stow-on-the-Wold

Duration: 11 hours

Includes: English speaking tour guide, 2 course lunch, transportation by luxury coach

The Swan Hotel, Bibury

The pretty Swan Hotel in Bibury

This full day trip from London leaves at 8:15 am and takes you to four of the most iconic and lovely Cotswolds villages. The first stop of the day is the ‘gateway to the Cotswolds’, Burford.

The next stop will take you to the dreamy village of Bibury. The postcard perfect scene of Arlington Row has become world famous and has given Bibury the title of “the prettiest village in the Cotswolds“. Enjoy a 2 course traditional lunch at the gorgeous 17th century Swan Hotel.

The afternoon will take you to two more beautiful villages, Bourton-on-the-Water and the lovely market town of Stow-on-the-Wold. The tour includes a guided walking tour through Stow-on-the-Wold before returning to London in the evening.

➤Find more information about tour prices and availability here. 

Oxford, Stratford, and Cotswolds

Stops: Stratford-upon-Avon, Cotswolds, Oxford

Duration: 11 hours

Includes: English speaking tour guide, transportation by luxury coach

Make sure to visit Stratford Upon Avon on your tour to the Cotswolds from London

Admire the beautiful cottages of Stratford-upon-Avon

Departing London at 7:45 am, the first stop of the day will take you to Shakespeare’s birthplace, the lovely town of Stratford-upon-Avon. Enjoy 2 hours of free time to explore the town and visit Shakespeare’s house.

Admire the beautifully preserved Tudor architecture throughout the town and make sure to stop at the famous Swan Theatre.

The tour will continue with a scenic drive through the prettiest areas of the Cotswolds. Take in the breathtaking beauty of the English countryside as you pass through on the way to your next stop, Oxford.

Take a stroll through the famous university city stopping at all the best attractions recommended by your guide. Finish off the day with a meal and a pint in the city’s most haunted pub. Arrive back in London by 6:30 pm.

➤Find more information about tour prices and availability here. 

Stonehenge, Bath, Lacock & Avebury Small Group Tour

Stops: Stonehenge, Bath, Lacock, Avebury

Duration: 11 hours

Includes: Entrance to Stonehenge and Visitor Centre, Admission to the Roman Baths, Entrance to Avebury Stone Circle, English speaking tour guide, transportation by mini-coach

The bets tours to the Cotswolds from London

Start off your day tour from London with a stop at Stonehenge to marvel at over 5,000 years of fascinating British history. Take a tour of this impressive UNESCO World Heritage Site followed by some time to check out the visitor centre for more information.

The next stop on the itinerary will be a trip to the historic city of Bath for lunch and to see the famous Roman baths. The tour will continue to the pretty town of Lacock where you’ll have a chance admire its cute cottages and beautiful church.

Lacock has been a famous filming location for many films and TV productions over the years. Fans of Harry Potter, Downton Abbey, and Pride and Prejudice may recognize some of the scenery around the village.

This tour will finish up in the town of Avebury where you will take a walk through the countryside to see the largest Neolithic stone circle in the world.

➤Find more information about tour prices and availability here. 

Experience the beauty of Bath on your day trip to the Cotswolds from London

Taking in the beauty of Bath

Downton Abbey Private Cotswolds Tour from London

Stops: Enjoy a private day tour from London to the famous Cotswolds villages of Bampton, Bourton-on-the-Water, Blenheim Palace & more

Duration: 9 hours

Includes: Pickup directly from your hotel in London, drop off at hotel at the end of the tour, private driver for the duration of the day, suitable for groups of up to 5 people

Bourton on the Water - road trip from London

The beautiful town of Bourton-on-the-Water

This private full day Cotswolds tour is an excellent option for those who prefer a customised tour experience. It’s a great choice for couples seeking a romantic day trip or families who would prefer a more intimate tour setting.

This popular tour will take you through the most beautiful sections of the Cotswolds ‘Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty’ stopping at a number of Downtown Abbey filming locations. Explore the quaint villages of Bampton and Bourton-on-the-Water and enjoy a tour of the stunning Blenheim Palace.

Avoid large groups and see the best of the English countryside and the Cotswolds region on this relaxing private day tour.

➤Find more information about tour prices and availability here.

Blenheim Palace, Downton Abbey Village & the Cotswolds

Stops: Blenheim Palace, Bourton-on-the-Water, Bampton

Duration: 1 full day

Includes: Entrance to Blenheim Palace and gardens, audio headset tour, visit to 2x Cotswolds villages, English speaking tour guide, transportation by luxury coach

Blehnheim Palace

The breathtakingly beautiful Blenheim Palace

This full day Cotswolds tour from London departs first thing in the morning and brings you to the impressive 18th century Blenheim Palace. Take a guided tour of the palace’s majestic interiors followed by a stroll through the beautifully kept gardens.

The tour will continue to Bourton-on-the-Water, one the prettiest villages in the area. It’s often referred to as the “Venice of the Cotswolds” because of its many little bridges crossing the river that runs through the village.

The charming Cotswolds village of Bampton will be the final stop of the tour. Downton Abbey fans will recognize many of the famous filming locations around Bampton like the church, two local pubs and the Downton hospital.

➤Find more information about tour prices and availability here.

London to the Cotswolds: Iconic Village Tour

Stops: Burford, Stow-on-the-Wold, Bibury, Henley-on-Thames

Duration: 10 hours

Includes: English speaking tour guide, transportation by mini-bus, tour of 4x Cotswolds villages

The Best Cotswolds tour from London

Soaking up the magic of the Cotswolds in Bibury

See the best highlights of the Cotswolds on this 10 hour tour that departs London in the morning and takes you to the medieval town of Burford. Spend some time exploring the village and make sure to check out the 500 year old church.

The tour will continue to the market town of Stow-on-the-Wold. Enjoy some free time to stroll through the pretty streets and admire the quintessential honey-coloured stone buildings.

The next stop will be a traditional lunch followed by a scenic drive through rolling hills and old country lanes. In the afternoon the tour will stop in Bibury, a place that’s often referred to as one of the prettiest Cotswolds villages.

Last but not least is a visit to the charming riverside town of Henley-on-Thames before making your way back to London to finish the day.

➤Find more information about tour prices and availability here.

Best of the Cotswolds & Blenheim Palace With Lunch

Stops: Stow-on-the-Wold, Burford, Bibury, Bourton-on-the-Water, Upper & Lower Slaughter, Blenheim Palace

Duration: 1 full day (7:15 am departure)

Includes: Entry to Blenheim Palace, 1-course pub lunch, travel by luxury bus, Guided tours of Burford, Bibury, Bourton-on-the-water, Upper & Lower Slaughter and Stow-on-the-Wold, Woodstock

Lower Slaughter - Experience the best cotswolds day tours from London

The gorgeous village of Lower Slaughter

For those looking to squeeze in as many English villages as possible into your day trip from London, then look no further! This fully packed tour leaves quite early in the morning (7:15 am) but it’s worth the early start as you will maximize your day by seeing as much of the English countryside as possible.

Starting off with a beautiful drive through narrow country lanes, passing through the cute villages of Minster Lovell, Asthall and Swinbrook until you reach Stow-on-the-Wold. Take a guided tour through this iconic English village before carrying on to have a delicious 1 course pub lunch at a cosy old pub in Burford.

Not too far away is the small village of Bibury where you’ll have a chance to wander along the famous Arlington Row. Next, you’ll head over to yet another gem of the Cotswolds, Bourton-on-the-Water. Take a tour of this charming village which is also known as the ‘Venice of the Cotswolds.’

Enjoy some time to explore the villages of Upper & Lower Slaughter before finishing up the day at the majestic Blenheim Palace. This 18th century palace is famous for being the largest privately owned home in the country as well as the birthplace of Winston Churchill!

This day trip ends with a chance to explore the impressive interiors and gardens of Blenheim Palace before returning to London in the evening.

➤Find more information about tour prices and availability here.

The Best Cotswolds tour from London

Experience a real life fairy-tale when you visit the Cotswolds

Warwick Castle, Stratford, Oxford & Cotswolds Day Trip

Stops: Oxford, Cotswolds, Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwick Castle

Duration: 12 hours (multiple starting times available)

Includes: Professional English speaking tour guide, transportation by luxury coach, fast-track entry to Warwick Castle, entrance to Shakespeare’s schoolroom and guildhall, entrance to Shakespeare’s birthplace museum

A beautiful view of Warwick Castle at sunset

Warwick Castle

Departing London in the morning, the tour begins with a guided walking tour of Oxford. Admire the impressive architecture of the world famous university and enjoy some free time to explore the town and browse a few shops.

A scenic drive through the Cotswolds will take you to the birth town of William Shakespeare, Stratford-upon-Avon. Take a tour of Shakespeare’s Schoolroom and Guildhall, the place where Shakespeare learned to read and write as a young student in the 1570’s.

Afterwards, make a visit to the house where Shakespeare was born. Enjoy free time to explore this beautifully preserved Tudor village and grab some lunch while you’re there.

Before returning to London, you’ll take a step back in time to discover over 1,000 years of English history at the incredible Warwick Castle. Spend some time exploring the ramparts, gardens, towers and beautifully decorated chambers of one of England’s most famous medieval castle.

➤Find more information about tour prices and availability here.

The Best of England In A Day

Stops: Stonehenge, Bath, Cotswolds Villages, Stratford-upon-Avon

Duration: 12 hours (approx)

Includes: Transportation by mini bus, experienced English speaking guide/driver, visit to Stonehenge, panoramic tour of Bath city, private tour of Shakespeare’s classroom including sparkling wine and fresh scones

Visit the picturesque town of Bath on your day tour to the Cotswolds from London

The beautiful city of Bath

Tick off some England’s most well-known and loved attractions on this fully packed day trip from London to the Cotswolds. This popular and highly-rated tour is ideal for those with limited time in London who are interested in seeing many of England’s highlights in a single day. This is all made possible with pre-booked entries and shorter stops at each attraction.

Departing from London in the morning, the first stop of the day will bring you to one of the world’s most famous prehistoric sites, Stonehenge. Witness the spectacular sight of this ancient wonder on a fully guided tour followed by a wander through the Visitor Centre.

Next up on the itinerary is a visit to the historic city of Bath where you will dive into thousands of years worth of fascinating Roman history. See the UNESCO-listed Roman Baths, admire the beautiful Georgian architecture throughout the town, and enjoy some free time to explore the city at your own pace. Be sure to pop into Sally Lunn’s Eating House for a chance to try the famous “Bath Bun”!

The tour continues with a scenic drive through the rolling green hills and pastures of the stunning Cotswolds region. Pass through some of the most picturesque villages that appear to be frozen in time before arriving at the medieval town of Stratford-upon-Avon. Explore the charming half-timbered houses and learn all about the life of William Shakespeare by taking a tour of his schoolroom.

For a more detailed and comprehensive itinerary of this full day trip from London, please see the link below.

➤Find more information about tour prices and availability here. 

Explore the city of Bath on a Cotswolds tour from London

Visit the famous Roman baths

Where to Stay in London

For easy access to all of London’s main attractions, it’s best to base yourself somewhere central. This will limit the amount of time spent on public transportation and make life easier when you’re out and about sightseeing.

It’s also ideal for travelling to the meeting point of your chosen Cotswolds Tour. Most of these tours depart from the Central London area so I have recommended some accommodation options for every budget nearby.

Budget

The Z-Hotel Victoria – If you’re looking for an affordable place to stay near Central London, you can’t go wrong with the Z-Hotel. This centrally located hotel is only a 10 minute walk from Buckingham Palace and the Victoria Underground Station.

It features comfortable compact rooms, a continental breakfast each morning, and friendly welcoming staff, all for a very reasonable price considering its great location! See prices and availability for the Z-Hotel Victoria on Booking.com.

Exploring the high street of Oxford

Exploring Oxford’s High Street

Mid-Range

The Harrington – These spacious apartments are situated in the heart of Kensington and only a 2 minute walk from the Gloucester Road Underground Station. Set inside a beautiful Victorian building, each room features a fully equipped kitchen, lounge area, and private bathroom.

Many popular London attractions are located within a 15 minute walk from this property. With excellent ratings on Booking.com, the Harrington will have you feeling at home during your stay in London. Check prices and availability for the Harrington.

Luxury

The Londoner – This stunning hotel features tastefully decorated rooms, a rooftop lounge, spa with a pool and gym, 6 different restaurants and bars to choose from. The Londoner is conveniently located in Leicester Square which is a short walk away from some of London’s best neighbourhoods like Soho, Covent Garden, Trafalgar Square etc.

For those seeking some extra comfort and relaxation during your holiday in London, then this is the hotel for you. Find prices and availability for the Londoner.

→Browse more accommodation options in London←

English Heritage Attraction Pass

Are you visiting the UK from overseas? If the answer is yes, you have the option of purchasing the English Heritage Attraction Pass. For a one time fee, this pass gives you access to over 100 ancient sites and castles like Stonehenge, Dover Castle, Hadrian’s Wall and many more.

Note: It’s only available to overseas visitors. It includes a free 300 page guidebook with maps. Start saving money by visiting only a few sites and get reduced tickets to special events.

➤Click here to purchase your English Heritage Attraction Pass

The best Cotswolds tour from London

I hope this guide has been useful to you during your tour planning and booking process. I also hope you fall in love with the gorgeous Cotswolds area as much as I did. This is a place that I could return to over and over again and never tire of it.

The villages and historic cities around this part of the England are truly magical and deserve a place on anyone’s England itinerary! Let me know how your experience in the Cotswolds goes and if you’ve booked one of the tours that I’ve recommended, don’t hesitate to tell me about it in the comments.😊

Visit More of England With Us:


Enjoy This Article? Pin It For Later!

Discover the highlights and beauty of the Cotswolds on one of these epic tours to the Cotswolds from London Discover the highlights and beauty of the Cotswolds on one of these epic tours to the Cotswolds from London

Discover the highlights and beauty of the Cotswolds on one of these epic tours to the Cotswolds from London Discover the highlights and beauty of the Cotswolds on one of these epic tours to the Cotswolds from London

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. At no extra cost to you, we may receive a small commission on purchases made through these links. The Road Is Life is a partner of GetYourGuide and Viator. We recommend booking tours through these companies because based on our experience, we feel that they provide an excellent and reliable service for reasonable prices.

This blog only recommends products and services that we’ve tried/love. Thank you for your support!

14 Comments

  • Greta says:

    These are all so cute! I’ve been to Bath and Oxford but I can’t believe I haven’t been anywhere else, I definitely need to get out of London more!

  • This is a great post I live in London so I’d love to get out to these!

    • Ann Kelly says:

      You definitely should, The Cotswolds are not too far from London yet you couldn’t feel further away from the busy city life!

  • Can I go on all of these tours? Cotswolds seems like the most charming town in Europe! Thanks for such an informative post 🙂

    • Ann Kelly says:

      Thanks for stopping by 🙂 I know right?! I adore the Cotswolds villages, I swear I could return there a thousand times and never tire of their beauty and charm 😍

  • So happy to come across your post, as the Cotswolds have been on my list for awhile! In love with all of your storybook photos and the info was so helpful! I have def pinned this for later 🙂

    • Ann Kelly says:

      Thank you! I’m so glad you found this post to be helpful 🙂 The Cotswolds are absolutely worth a visit if you get a chance, simply a magical place!

  • Wow, so much history and beautiful buildings! I’d love to visit Stonehenge and see Oxford University. Definitely some great places to explore outside of London.

    • Ann Kelly says:

      Yes there is truly so much incredible history to discover around this area, and best of all it’s really not too far from London!

  • Marisa says:

    The Cotswolds looks so adorable and I can’t wait to visit there one day! I’ve been to London quite a few times as well as Bath and Stratford-Upon-Avon and I can’t believe I haven’t been here!

    • Ann Kelly says:

      You totally need to take a trip out there one day! It’s such a beautiful area with so many adorable villages to explore 🙂

  • The Cotswolds is my home and I’m so lucky! looking at these images just remind me how how amazing it island how I couldn’t recommend it enough for people to visit!

    It is such a charming place I really wish for everyone to experience!

    Thank you for sharing these tours and we cant wait to welcome you back in the future!

    • Ann Kelly says:

      Thank you for your feedback! You are so lucky to live in such a stunning location! The Cotswolds is an absolute dream destination for me, I really cannot wait to get back there again hopefully soon ☺️

Leave a Reply