Bourton-on-the-Water Culture & history

Our most recommended Bourton-on-the-Water Culture & history

From London: The Cotswolds, Blenheim Palace & Downtown Abbey

1. From London: The Cotswolds, Blenheim Palace & Downtown Abbey

Tick off some of southern England’s top attractions on a guided day trip by bus from London to Blenheim Palace and Cotswolds villages, including the Bampton filming location of the TV show Downtown Abbey. If you prefer exploring historic towns over attractions, enjoy the flexible tour option. Board your coach in London and head out of the city and towards your first stop at Blenheim Palace. Witness this masterpiece of English Baroque architecture which was also the birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill. Visit the stunning State Rooms, brimming with priceless works of art and magnificent tapestries (if option selected), and admire the 754-hectare gardens, including an exquisite water garden. Next, head into the charming Cotswolds region for a stop at the authentic village of Bourton-on-the-Water. Explore this picturesque location, complete with many attractive bridges crossing the gently-flowing river at its center. Complete your experience with a trip to Bampton; the film setting for many of the famous landmarks featured in the popular Downton Abbey TV series. See the buildings that played the part of the home of Isobel Crawley, the Downton Cottage Hospital, the church, and also the location for two fictional local pubs, The Grantham Arms and The Dog & Duck.

Shakespeare’s Stratford & Cotswolds

2. Shakespeare’s Stratford & Cotswolds

An expert guide leads the way, regaling you with stories and interesting facts about the rich history of these beautiful places. Stratford-upon-Avon, the hometown of legendary playwright William Shakespeare, is the first stop on this day trip.  Filled with history, pay a visit to the place the famous Bard was born - a quaint, unassuming half-timbered house. Learn amazing stories and quirks of Elizabethan living from your expert guide. The next stop is a visit to Shakespeare’s bride Anne Hathaway’s cottage and gardens. This beautiful little thatched farmhouse is the place where the Bard courted his bride. To this day, the property holds items of original furniture, including the Hathaway bed. It is nestled within stunning grounds and gardens, overflowing with fragrant blooms and traditional shrubs. Then continue to the Cotswolds. Visit what is often agreed to be one of the most beautiful areas in the whole of the UK. With quaint villages and breathtaking scenery, the Cotswolds looks like it jumped off the pages of a storybook. The tour makes photo stops at 3 stunning Cotswolds villages: Bourton-on-the-Water, also known as ‘Little Venice’ due to its low bridges and stone banks, Burford which features an ornate medieval bridge and Bibury, a town once described by William Morris as ‘the most beautiful village in England’. After a wonderful day of sightseeing, arrive back to London at the approximate time of 7:15 PM.

From London: Blenheim Palace & the Cotswolds with Lunch

3. From London: Blenheim Palace & the Cotswolds with Lunch

Discover the captivating Cotswolds! Enjoy views of breathtaking countryside, sleepy villages, and bustling market towns on this panoramic tour of one of England’s most beautiful regions. Bask in the beauty of Blenheim Palace! Early arrival at the Palace ensures an almost private visit of this fairy-tale country mansion. See the sumptuous State Rooms with their priceless treasures, stroll through sweeping landscaped gardens designed by Capability Brown, and grab a photo opportunity at the shimmering lake. Known as the ‘Venice of the Cotswolds’, the picturesque village of Bourton–on–the–Water boasts of many traditional features of the Cotswolds. Take time to marvel at its elegant low bridges and stroll along the magnificent Main Street. Estimated arrival time back to London is around 6.30 pm.

From London: Downton Abbey & the Cotswolds Private Day Trip

4. From London: Downton Abbey & the Cotswolds Private Day Trip

Visit the village of Bampton; the film setting for many of the famous landmarks featured within the popular Downton Abbey TV series. See the buildings that played the part of the home of Isobel Crawley, the Downton Cottage Hospital. The local church is where Lady Mary marries both Matthew and Henry Talbot, and where Edith is both jilted at the altar and marries the man of her dreams – Bertie Pelham. The location of fictional local pub The Grantham Arms. Blenheim Palace Blenheim Palace is a masterpiece of English Baroque architecture and the birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill. The stunning State Rooms are brimming with priceless works of art and magnificent tapestries. The Palace is still inhabited today by the Duke of Marlborough. The Gardens are set in over 754 hectares of land with an exquisite water garden. The Cotswolds In the Cotswolds you'll visit one the areas most beautiful villages, Bourton-on-the-Water. This is a must-see village, referred to as the 'Venice of the Cotswolds' due to the number of attractive bridges that cross the gently-flowing river at its center.

From Oxford: Cotswolds and Shakespeare Full-Day Tour

5. From Oxford: Cotswolds and Shakespeare Full-Day Tour

See the natural beauty of the North Cotswolds and historic Stratford-upon-Avon on a full-day tour from Oxford. Make several stops in quaint Cotswolds villages and learn about the birthplace of Shakespeare. Head west from medieval Oxford and your first stop will be the old market town of Burford. Explore the ‘Gateway to the Cotswolds’ and stop for a refreshment. From there you’ll be taken on a scenic drive through some of the old quarrying villages of the Cotswolds until you arrive at Bourton-on-the-Water. Wander along the pretty riverside with its historic stone bridges and browse some of the country shops and cafes. Next, after crossing some rolling hills you’ll reach the charming old market town of Chipping Campden. Visit the old market hall and perhaps stop for lunch in a local pub or restaurant. Finally, follow a route that takes you past more breathtaking views until you reach Stratford-upon-Avon. Here you’ll receive a tour of Shakespeare’s hometown, where you’ll see picturesque timber-framed houses, the famous Shakespeare theaters, the River Avon, and Shakespeare’s birthplace.   After Stratford, head back to the Cotswolds via Shottery, where you’ll see the enchanting Anne Hathaway’s Cottage. Return to Oxford via the market town of Shipston, the idyllic village of Great Tew, and Blenheim Palace (birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill).

Frequently asked questions about Bourton-on-the-Water

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Other Sightseeing Options in Bourton-on-the-Water

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What people are saying about Bourton-on-the-Water

It was a smooth, seamless tour. David and Richard were kind and excellent guide and driver. David was a wealth of information on history and expert on the Ins and outs of our tour. Richard was a safe and professional driver. One bit of advice, review your meeting point directions and get there early! Also know that rules regarding late arrivals and late arrival to meeting times on the bus between tour routes are strictly enforced as per travel company protocols. The guide and driver cannot veer from them!

David our tour was very knowledgeable and personable. He has some good fun facts throughout the trip. Romaine our bus driver was also excellent which his driving skills! I felt there was appropriate time at each destination however I personally would have liked a little more time at Bourton on the water. All in all, I highly recommend as was a good day.

It was amazing. The lady Crisi i think, was so polite and nice and she knows a lot about London. I would definitely recommended the trip to every one who goes to England. The driver was also amazing and the driving was very good.

The trip was excelente! One that I had liked the most so far. The places are beautiful and it never felt rushed. Would 100% recommend it. The guide and driver were super nice and friendly.

Was great having a private tour guide and driver was very relaxing and easy. Our guide Simone was great and entertaining and our driver Iman was fast to our locations