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The best way to spend a Christmas break in The Cotswolds

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With cottages adorned with twinkling lights and villages coming alive with festive cheer, The Cotswolds are one of the most idyllic areas in England to while away those relaxing Christmas holidays. Whether you’re local or have booked a special spot in The Cotswolds to call home for Christmas, we're sharing our ideas for a perfect festive break in The Cotswolds.

Head to The Bathurst Arms Ski Lodge

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If you’re looking for a wintery experience but want something a little different from the Christmas decor and roast, book a spot in the Bathurst Arms’ tipi in Cirencester! You’ll be transported to a winter’s day on the slopes once you step into their 24 ft tipi, transformed into a cosy Alpine Ski Lodge. Gone are the usual exotic animal models and circus theme, instead expect lots of fur, rugs and heaters to keep you warm as you enjoy a delicious fondue menu.

You’re guaranteed a delicious meal here with the pub awarded five prestigious stars for a 95% organic menu by the Soil Association Certification and it has picked up two AA Rosettes in 2021.

Book your spot in the ski lodge over theThe Bathurst Arms’ website.

Put on your walking boots for a winter walk in the countryside

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There is something a little bit special about winter walks over the Christmas period. After indulging in good food and drink, it’s all too easy to nap away a couple of hours on the sofa. While we are big advocates for naps throughout Christmas, make sure to plan in at least one beautiful winter walk with bracing fresh air. We do a wonderful almost 5 mile loop in the Guiting Power area which ends up at The Hollow Bottom pub http://hollowbottom.com, the perfect treat at the end of a walk for either a warming drink or delicious food. Plan your walking route in Guiting Power over on the Discover Cotswolds website.

Another favourite walk of ours is heading to Broadway Tower, with sweeping views across Broadway and the nearby valleys, it’s the perfect place to take in the gorgeous rolling countryside. Plus Broadway is so pretty during the festive period, adorned with Christmas decorations. On top of enjoying the views and fresh air, there are plenty of lovely shops to peruse too. Check out our Area Guide for Broadway for more tips on the area.

Pick up some delicious treats for Christmas

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Otis and Belle set up shop in Morton-in-Marsh last year and it has quickly become one of our favourite bakeries and cafes! Set up by chef Will Alexander, who was most recently head chef at Blanchette Soho in London, he brings his skills in french patisserie to Otis and Belle’s menu, making it one of the best spots for baked treats in The Cotswolds.

Will has set up a special Christmas Click and Collect, with a menu full of unique, Christmas-inspired treats such as an Eggnog Cruffin, Baileys cheesecake and classic mince pies. Everything looks scrumptious so make sure you get your Click and Collect orders in quickly! Check out the menu and order here.

Do a spot of shopping in Cheltenham and Cirencester

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Everyone loves to indulge in a little shopping over the Christmas period. Whether you’re in need of last-minute Christmas presents or making the most of the post-Christmas sales, make sure you head to Cheltenham or Cirencester. Both beautiful cities thrive with independent shops and restaurants, meaning there’s plenty to discover and explore throughout their winding streets. Plus they have a good collection of high street favourites meaning you won’t miss out on those Boxing Day sales. Check out our areas guides for Cirencester and Cheltenham here to find out more.

Check out a Cotswolds Christmas event

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From light trails at Westonbirt Arboretum and Sudeley Castle to breakfast with Santa at the Slimbridge Wetlands Centre, we’ve created a list of can’t miss events in The Cotswolds this Christmas and would highly recommend picking at least one to enjoy over the festive period. If you’re visiting The Cotswolds just for Christmas, these events are fantastic ways to experience some of the area’s most iconic attractions made extra special with a touch of festive magic.

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