How to Get to Costwolds from London

Do you want to visit the beautiful Cotswolds region on your trip to the British capital? I tell you the different alternatives you have to get there from London.

Keyvis Montilva

Keyvis Montilva

9 min read

How to Get to Costwolds from London

Cotswolds | ©barnyz

The plans that include a visit to the areas near London are also one of the best proposals for your trip to the British capital if you have enough time. And the Cotswolds is an excellent destination.

Learn about the different options to get to the Cotswolds from London and choose the one that most interests you and that best suits your pocket. Different means of transport, but the same destination, choose the one that best suits your interests.

Enjoy an organized tour, the best option

Bus in the Cotswolds| ©Elliott Brown
Bus in the Cotswolds| ©Elliott Brown

The best way to ensure that an excursion to a new destination is a real success is with the help of a guide specialized in the history and geography of that place. And that's what you'll enjoy if you book a Cotswolds tour.

The tour takes place in an air-conditioned vehicle to keep you warm in the winter and cool in the summer and you will be accompanied by a professional guide who will take you through the historic villages of Burford, Bibury and Bourton-on-the-Water.

  • Prices: from 123 euros per person
  • Duration: an excursion like this usually lasts an average of 10 hours.
  • Advantages: An excellent alternative for those interested in getting to know the Cotswolds quickly and without missing out on details.

Book a Cotswolds tour

Take a tour of the Cotswolds, stopping at Blenheim Palace

Blenheim Palace| ©jonathan
Blenheim Palace| ©jonathan

If you want to enjoy one of the best tours from London and you think that a guided bus tour is the best alternative to visit the Cotswolds, take into account that you can opt for one that includes a visit to Blenheim Palace, the birthplace of Winston Churchill and a stop in Bampton, the village where the famous TV series Downton Abbey was filmed. Plus, of course, a tour of the pretty Cotswolds stone villages.

  • Prices: adults usually pay around 94 euros.
  • Duration: Typically around 10 hours.
  • Advantages: You will get to know Downton Abbey Village, Blenheim Palace and the Cotswolds in detail.

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Let yourself be dazzled by the Cotswolds and Oxford

And if you want to experience another of the UK's most stunning locations, you can choose to book a Cotswolds and Oxford tour from London and learn with an expert guide all the secrets and history of the prestigious Oxford University and admire the stone architecture of the beautiful towns of Burford and Bibury.

  • Prices: adults usually pay approximately 101 euros.
  • Duration: Typically about 10 hours.
  • Advantages: you will get to know Oxford and the Cotswolds in detail.

Book a Cotswolds tour

Get to know the Cotswolds with an unguided tour

This type of transfer does not have a private guide as in the previous alternative, but they are similar in that they depart from an accessible point in the center of London, usually from Victoria Station. From here the journey begins and will take you to various villages in the region, including Burford with its medieval aesthetics and Bibury with the historic church of St Mary's.

Other small communities such as Bourton-on-the-Water and Stow-in-the-Wold may be part of the itinerary, but it all depends on the tour you choose. Some of these services include main meals such as breakfast and lunch, while others may offer a typical English snack and tea at some of the end points along the route.

  • Prices: the most common price is around 150 euros per adult.
  • Duration: 10 hours and a half.
  • Advantages: with a tour like this you can get to know in a more complete way the towns that make up the Cotswolds region, but keep in mind that the conditions of the bus are not as luxurious as those of the best tourist buses in London.

Book a Cotswolds tour

Go to the Cotswolds by train, a quick option

Train to the Cotswolds| ©Matt Buck
Train to the Cotswolds| ©Matt Buck

Excellent mobility by public transport is one of the great strengths of the United Kingdom and, specifically, the train is the most suitable means of transport. For this reason, taking a train from the center of this city to visit some of the most picturesque villages in the Cotswolds will be the next alternative in this list.

There are different routes you can take, but the most direct and convenient of all is the Great Western Railway. This route will take you from Paddington station, located in an area full of London's best museums, and then drop you off at the small railway station of Moreton-in-Marsh.

The journey itself is quite a special experience, as it takes about an hour and a half and passes through several natural settings worthy of a movie. If you intend to spend the night in the Cotswolds, you could also take advantage of a stop in Oxford to get to know this university town on your own terms.

  • Prices: train ticket prices vary greatly depending on the time of year and the time of day for which you have planned your trip, ranging from about 20 to about 40 euros.
  • Advantages: the frequency of departures is every hour of the day from before dawn until 22:50 hours. So it is totally feasible to go to the Cotswolds and return the same day and then join some of the best things to do in London at night.

Book a Cotswolds tour

Approach the Cotswolds by private car, a flexible alternative

Cotswolds| ©gee_leonard
Cotswolds| ©gee_leonard

If you don't feel uncomfortable driving the English way, i.e. with the steering wheel in the right-hand seat and driving in the left-hand lane, then you can hire a car for a route along the national freeways that would also take you to Moreton-in-Marsh or the neighboring community of Stow-on-the-Wold.

With a private car you will have a much more intimate experience with your family and you also have the possibility of touring a larger number of towns in a single day. This is provided you know how to locate yourself with digital geolocation tools.

The M4 and M5 freeways will take you to the most important population centers in the Cotswolds. Therefore, I advise you to choose a car rental agency that is close to these roads, as leaving the center of London because of traffic can delay all your tourist planning.

  • Prices: the prices of a daily car rental in London fluctuate between 19 and 45 euros.
  • Advantages: having a car at your disposal can be a good escape from the heat during a too sunny day. For this reason, this transportation alternative to go to the Cotswolds is one of the best things to do in London in summer if you are interested in leaving the city with favorable conditions.

Book a Cotswolds tour

Experience the comforts of a trip to the Cotswolds in a luxury car

Burford High Street in the Cotswolds| ©bongo vongo
Burford High Street in the Cotswolds| ©bongo vongo

Exclusivity is fun and if you can afford it, it is very likely that you will be interested in the benefits offered by private tours of the Cotswolds villages in a luxury car from your hotel in London.

Without giving it too much thought, they are distinguished by being an excursion in which you hire a driver to take you from your hotel to the villages you want to visit. It is almost always a luxury vehicle, such as a Mercedes, as it is expected that the air conditioning of the seats and the comfort of the car cabin are minimum requirements of the experience.

It is a good plan to include in the list of things to do in London with children by the fact that in the privacy of a private car you will not have to limit yourself in their behavior and have Wifi connectivity that allows them to entertain themselves while you enjoy the views of your surroundings.

  • Prices: usually do not go below 600 or 700 euros.
  • Disadvantages: you must take into account that it is common that food consumption is completely forbidden and it is a plan that only 4 people can join.

Book an excursion to the Cotswolds

Get to the Cotswolds by bus, an economical proposal

Bus in the Cotswolds| ©Tony Monblat
Bus in the Cotswolds| ©Tony Monblat

The final alternative available to you is to take advantage of the UK public bus system to reach other parts of the Cotswolds at a low cost. These buses also depart from Victoria Coach Station and depending on the destination can be a much longer or just as short a journey as the other options.

For example, the route to Moreton-in-Marsh remains between an hour and a half, while the one that would take you to Gloucester or Cheltenham can extend to about three and a half hours of driving.

Not to leave aside the issue that this alternative is presented as the most complicated of all if you take into consideration the fact that it is almost an obligation to stay in accommodation in the Cotswolds if you want to visit more than one village on the route.

  • Prices: fares are usually very similar to rail travel and are also adjusted according to the date chosen and the time at which the ticket is purchased. You will end up paying between about €40 to about €60 for a round trip.
  • Advantages: these buses are also air-conditioned and in general are just as comfortable as the other alternatives if we leave out the luxurious bus of the first excursion.

Book a Cotswolds tour

Tips for visiting the Cotswolds

Cotswolds| ©Elliott Brown
Cotswolds| ©Elliott Brown

Here are some tips for your visit to the Cotswolds:

  • Assess your own needs: traveling alone or as a couple is not the same as participating in a family trip with more than 10 people.
  • Stay: The Cotswolds is a fairly large geographical area that can offer you much more economical entertainment than other countryside areas outside London. There are hundreds of small hotels that will allow you to extend your visit if you feel like it, something interesting if your trip to London is long enough and if you have opted for one of the public transport alternatives.
  • Rainfall: As in the rest of the country, there is a relatively high rainfall rate, so I advise you to bring waterproof coats, even if you find yourself visiting the area on a summer day.
  • Sunscreen is a must: The Cotswolds itinerary runs through rural and nature areas, always outdoors, and it is advisable on both sunnier and cloudy days that you need to protect yourself.

Book a Cotswolds tour

How busy is the Cotswolds?

Cotswolds| ©gee_leonard
Cotswolds| ©gee_leonard

As you have read, once you have enjoyed all the things to see and do in London, the Cotswolds is a good suggestion for your trip. In general it is a very visited part of the country, but at the same time it is so vast that it is not perceived that way.

So chances are that no matter what time of the year you visit, you will never encounter a scenario where it is impossible to enter a church or historical establishment because it is too crowded.

Book a Cotswolds tour

Compare the different options

  • Tours
  • From £94 per person
  • Advantages: an excellent alternative for those who want to see the Cotswolds in detail.
  • Disadvantages: the most expensive option
  • Train
  • Between £20 to £40 depending on the time of day you travel
  • Advantages: it has a high frequency of departures and is very comfortable.
  • Disadvantages: it is necessary to use another means of transport to travel around the area.
  • Private car
  • 10 or 20 € depending on the time of the year and the time chosen
  • Advantages: you will enjoy a much more intimate experience and also have the possibility to visit a larger number of villages.
  • Disadvantages: driving on the left side, the experience for the driver can be somewhat uncomfortable.
  • Luxury car
  • Rental between £600 and £700 includes a driver who is a specialist in the history of the Cotswolds.
  • Advantages: Quite an exclusive and comfortable experience, where you will learn more about the history of the Cotswolds.
  • Disadvantages: only 4 people can join and food consumption is prohibited.
  • Buses
  • 40 or 60 € depending on the time of the year and time chosen
  • Advantages: it is the most economical alternative and offers great comfort
  • Disadvantages: you will only be able to visit one or two villages, unless you wish to spend a few nights in the area.