In terms of sheer beauty there are few areas of the country that rival The Cotswolds. With its gently rolling hills, sprawling fields and tiny clusters of villages and hamlets the area represents to many people Englishness at its best. However if you’re visiting the area on a holiday with the kids in tow you might find that they tire fairly quickly of sweeping landscapes and quaint tea rooms.
A family holiday has to include elements that keep everyone satisfied, so as well as going to National Trust houses make sure you pencil in visits to attractions that will keep the whole family entertained. Here is our pick of great things to do in the Cotswolds with children.
If you want a guaranteed great day out that will keep all members of the family happy then a trip to Cotswold Wildlife Park And Gardens is a must. Nestled in 160 acres of landscaped parkland, this zoo is home to over 260 species of animal from lions and giraffes to lemurs and scorpions. There are also expansive gardens to enjoy featuring native and tropical plants. The park also allows dogs (as long as they are kept on a lead), so this really is the place for the whole family.
This museum celebrates all things classic car with some incredible examples of timeless designs in its varied collections. It’s also home to TV star Brum, so if your kids love the cheeky chap then they’ll find it great fun to take a ride on him and join in his adventures. The museum also has an incredible collection of toys, from old pedal cars to model planes, some of which will take you back to your own childhood.
Barrelling through the soft green hills of the Cotswolds on this beautifully preserved steam railway is the perfect way to enjoy the beauty of the area. The railway is a 25-mile round trip with several stops along the way, where you can disembark and enjoy the period perfect stations and their tea rooms and shops. There’s also a small museum that will give you a glimpse into the history of steam and the restoration of the railway.
This bird-centric zoo is sure to delight any budding Bill Oddie. You can see a huge variety of species from across the world. The huge cassowaries and hornbills with their fascinating and unusual bodies are fascinating to watch, as are the beautiful collection of parrot species. Alongside the usual flamingos and penguins you’ll also find stunning varieties of the more common birds such as thrush, starlings and finches. Be sure to explore the Marshmouth Nature Reserve and see kingfishers, toads, dragonflies and all manner of wonderful native animals in their natural environment.
If you are interested in a visit to the Cotswolds, you could end your busy day out with a night at our Cotswold Water Park Hotel.