More great riding routes from the Lake District to the Cotswolds
Cheltenham is a lovely town that’s fascinating to explore, but it’s when you leave for the surrounding villages that the Cotswolds come alive. Taking the B4632 out of town, rather than the busier A435 which leads past the famous racecourse, you are soon into glorious countryside. After passing through the picturesque Winchcombe you attack Stanway Hill. It’s fairly steep and twisty, with several tight corners that demand a degree of caution before you get to the top and follow the road through Ford and past the Cotswold Farm Park. For devotees of the BBC’S Countryfile TV show, this is run by presenter Adam Henson.
After popping into Stow-on-the-Wold you head back, looking down on the typical Cotswold village of Naunton (where there’s a gastro pub if you fancy a break) before turning towards Bourton-on-the-water. A bit of a Cotswold tourist trap, Bourton is a unique village that is famous for being the location of the 1990s kids show Brum. The yellow car drives over one of Bourton’s bridges in the opening sequence. A busy Bourton is best avoided and by carrying on through you reach Burford, another pretty but touristy location that’s home to the Cotswold Wildlife Park, and Lechlade-on-thames before heading back to Cheltenham via Cirencester.
The Cotswolds are fantastic to explore on a bike and you can easily spend a weekend or even a week exploring the network of little villages. In summer there are inter-village cricket matches and while the standard of play may not be as good as a test match, the banter certainly is!
This bridge starred in the kids’ TV show Brum. Make the appropriate ‘Parp! Parp!’ noises