10 reasons why you should stay in this undiscovered Cotswold gem!(Last Updated On: 22nd October 2019)
If you love the Cotswolds, but not the tourist favourites, let us introduce you to the village of Coln St Aldwyns. It’s a little gem of a place nestled in the beautifully untouched Coln Valley, hidden from the Cotswold tourist trail, but within 30 minutes’ drive of all the Cotswold day-trip favourites. The village has rambling country walks in every direction, a thriving village shop, an inviting pub and a general feeling that invites you to stay a while.
So, here are 10 reasons why we think you should consider Coln St Aldwyns for your next Cotswold escape…
1. Fabulous walking country
Discover miles and miles of untouched countryside, with three circular walks, which all start from the New Inn pub, including an easy 1-mile village walk, a fairly easy 4-mile walk through the Coln Valley to Quenington and an idyllic, moderate 6-mile route to Bibury (famed for its Arlington Row cottages, possibly the most photographed tourist location in the Cotswolds!) where you can have a bite to eat at The Swan, The Catherine Wheel or in the cafe at Bibury Trout Farm before heading back to Coln St Aldwyns.
2. The New Inn pub:
A beautiful, newly refurbished, 17th-century coaching inn with restaurant, bar and lovely gardens with stunning rural views. Inside are ancient nooks and crannies where you can sit and enjoy a drink and an open fire.
Coln St Aldwyns is steeped in history, dating back to Roman times. Most of the cottages that now stand in the village were built in the 17th and 18th Century. There is a stunning 16th Century manor house, once a home of the wealthy Fettiplace family and a gathering place for non-Conformist thinkers, later becoming part of Hatherop School and later still purchased by Sir Michael Beach Hicks, the 1st Earl St Aldwyns.
4. The thriving Coln Community Store
Once the village poorhouse, the Community Store boasts a fantastic choice of local and organic produce, plus a cafe, Post Office, off-license, laundry service and lots of local information. Run by village volunteers, there is a tangible sense of community that adds to its charm. Close to the shop is the old bakery and bathhouse, the baths were heated by the bakery’s ovens!
5. It’s Untouched
One of the reasons why Coln is such a great find for visitors who want to see the real Cotswolds, is that there isn’t, unusually, a modern development in the village; it’s truly quintessential Cotswolds.
6. Another pub!
If you love a short walk to a pint of beer visit The Keepers’ Arms, a 1-mile walk away in the neighbouring village of Quenington – an award-winning pub, locally famed for featuring in the Camra Good Beer Guide since 2011.
7. Children’s adventure playground
If you’re visiting with little ones, head out on foot past the village shop and on down the hill straight ahead on Hatherop Road to a safe, secure and immaculate adventure playground, complete with picnic tables and benches. Then wander downhill to the River Coln for a splash in the stream and say hello to the sheep and cows – a truly idyllic scene. If you’re lucky enough to catch a sunset, it’ll be one of the most beautiful you’re ever likely to see!
8. It’s on the doorstep of Hatherop Castle School
This independent day and boarding school is in walking distance of Coln St Aldwyns, making the village an ideal place for prospective parents and their children to base themselves while attending an Open Day visit.
A half-hour drive away is the stunningly beautiful, family- and dog-friendly national arboretum: Experience the awe-inspiring tree top walkway, the running, walking, and family trails, the Gruffalo sculptures, a café with plenty of food choices and the amazing Enchanted Christmas spectacle – Voted Britain’s Favourite 2019 Christmas Light Display. (Dogs welcome.)
Use Coln as a base for visiting Fairford – just 3 miles away – and the Royal Air Tattoo (17-19 July 2020). In 2019, 245 aircraft from 39 air arms representing 25 nations took part in the event, including two Spanish Navy Harriers, the Ukrainian Su-27, US Air Force F-16 Viper Demo Team, Frecce Tricolori, and the RAF F-35B Lightning. Local accommodation is reserved long in advance for the Air Tattoo weekend; we only have one left, the gorgeous Holly Cottage.
Where can you stay in Coln St Aldwyns?
If we have whet your appetite with our 10 very good reasons to visit Coln, you’ll now need somewhere to stay! We have 4 cottages in Coln St. Aldwyns: Holly Cottage, Cotswold Cottage, Meadow View and its partner Meadow View 2. If those are all booked up for your particular date, try nearby Beehive Cottage (Poulton), Maisey Cottage (Kencot) or College Farm Cottage (nr Lechlade).