Autumn Festivals and Events in the Cotswold

Autumn is a great time of year to explore the Cotswolds, with plenty of picturesque scenery, beautiful walks and welcoming open fires in one of the Cotswold's many traditional pubs. The season is also packed with some great autumn festivals and events in the Cotswolds, suitable for all the family, making it the ideal time of year to book your escape with Jigsaw holidays. Our picks offer plenty of great inspiration to keep you busy until winter.

Autumn festivals and events in the Cotswolds

The Open at Cheltenham Racecourse (11 13 November)If youve never been to Cheltenham Racecourse before, The Open is a great time to do it. Offering three days of special events, including the Countryside Day which raises money for Countryside Alliance and Injured Jockeys Fund. It provides a great opportunity to see some of the UKs top horses and jockeys and enjoy the autumnal atmosphere at the ground. If you and your friends love all things equine, it's a great day out for groups and a fun way to see Cheltenham at this time of year.Where to stay: Wolds End House in Chipping Campden sleeps 8 and is great for groups looking for a Cotswolds break. A beautiful property with plenty of space inside for relaxing and entertaining, it offers easy walking distance to many of Chipping Campdens delightful pubs and shops, as well as being just 45 minutes from Cheltenham. If youd like us to arrange transport to and from the Racecourse as part of your stay, wed be more than happy to do this for you.Gloucester Quays Victorian Christmas Market 2016 (17 - 20 November)What better way to soak up the atmosphere of autumn festivals and events in the Cotswolds than by getting ready for Christmas with a Christmas Market? The perfect blend of food, arts and crafts, gifts and more, the Gloucester Quays Victorian Christmas Market is one of the largest in the south west, offering plenty for residents and visitors to enjoy. Theres music and performances as well as many other attractions to enjoy, featuring all the traditional Victorian elements you'd expect. The market is set along the wonderful Gloucester Quays, offering the perfect backdrop to indulge in some Christmas shopping.Where to stay: Sleeping 4, Nellies Barn is a relaxing and warm cottage offering peace and quiet for families looking for a relaxing escape. Beautifully decorated throughout, you can enjoy a leisurely drive to Gloucester, enjoy nearby Stow-on-the-Wold and many other great Cotswolds locations.WWT Slimbridge Really Wild Weekend (19 20 November)What better way to entertain the kids than with a Really Wild Weekend in Slimbridge? Slimbridges Wetland Centre offers the chance to get up close with some exotic animals from armadillos, baby crocodiles, snakes and more as well as learn about the animals and enjoy a series of exciting animal talks. The event is run by the Exotic Zoo which is often featured on programmes like Blue Peter and offers excellent value for families looking for something special to do during the weekend.Where to stay: Park Cottage in Minchinhampton is less than a 30-minute drive from Slimbridge, and is located at the heart of the village to truly enjoy Cotswold village life. The cottage sleeps 4 and has many welcoming features to provide an excellent place for families or groups looking for an autumn getaway the rooms feature modern dcor and plenty of other details to make your visit a memorable one.Tewkesbury Festival of Lights (20 November)Advent may not be until December, but the Cotswolds is getting into the Christmas spirit early as many towns and villages come to life with one of the most popular types of autumn festivals and events in the Cotswolds - Christmas light switch-ons. Tewkesbury offers one of the most spectacular too, with some great stalls, entertainment and fairground rides to spread the pre-Christmas cheer. As well as seeing the lights switched on, visitors can meet the cast of the local Christmas pantomime, post letters to Father Christmas and pick up some great Christmas gifts too.Where to stay: Oat Hill Coach House in Snowshill sleeps 6 and is perfectly located to enjoy the wonderful views that Snowshill offers, and is around a half hour drive from Tewkesbury. Its a spacious property with plenty of charm that is ideal for larger families or groups looking for the perfect country escape.Spectacle of Light, Winchcombe (1-23 December)New for this year, Sudeley Castle is opening its doors and grounds after dark for a wonderful festival of light and sound, providing a magical experience like no other. A great way to explore the castle, and suitable for all ages, youll follow trails illuminated with sights and sounds for a romantic and dazzling experience. As well as this, there will be mulled wine, hot chocolate and tasty treats to enjoy as well as some great items to browse and buy in the gift shop perfect for Christmas presents and a wonderful way to experience autumn festivals and events in the Cotswolds at their best!Where to stay: The Spectacle of Light is perfect for both families and couples to enjoy the magnificent Sudeley Castle at night. Top Cottage in Broadway is less than a 20-minte drive an offers cosy, homely features for up to 4 people. The property is conveniently located to enjoy the rest of Broadways shops, pubs and restaurants making it the perfect sport for an autumn or winter getaway.Bath Christmas Market (24 November 11 December)The Bath Christmas Market is one of the most popular Christmas markets in the UK, providing residents and visitors with the chance to get into the Christmas spirit early. Beginning on 24th November, the market offers many traditional Christmas stalls as well as modern gifts and food/drink products. The market itself oozes a wonderful Christmas atmosphere, with over 170 chalets of vendors, music and entertainment. If youre looking to experience autumn festivals and events in the Cotswolds, a visit to Bath Christmas Market is a must, and makes a great day out for people of all ages.Where to stay: New Church Cottage in Tetbury is a great Cotswolds cottage to enjoy a mini break or week-long stay. Less than an hours drive from Bath and central to many Cotswolds location, you can be sure of a great time getting to know the areas many great towns and villages. Its a wonderful townhouse with a striking courtyard garden, a toasty fireplace and more its a fabulous property to enjoy after a day of exploring Bath and its markets.

Put in your diary for 2017

The Jane Austen Festival (September)An annual event celebrating one of the UKs greatest authors, Austen farms descend on Bath for a weekend of workshops, readings, dramatisations, tours and more to look at the life of Jane Austen, her many well-loved characters and stories. Its a great weekend to share in with like-minded literature lovers and explore the heart of Bath and its beautiful architecture and scenery.Where to stay: Wishbone Cottage in Fairford is near many great locations including Cirencester and others, and offers a drive to Bath with plenty of stunning Cotswolds views to take in. It sleeps 4 and offers a romantic setting for people to enjoy an Austen-esque break at the heart of the country.Cheltenham Literature Festival (Usually October)Every autumn for 10 days, Cheltenham plays host to one of the UKs largest and longest running literature festivals in the world. It features a whole host of great events, guest lectures, readings and more to suit readers and literature lovers of all ages. The 2016 festival features names such as actor Alan Cummings, Ella Mills (Deliciously Ella), Ian McEwan, Jeremy Paxman, Vivienne Westwood and the Body Coach, Joe Wicks. With a diverse line-up and plenty of activities, walks and more to take part in, its a great time to visit the Cotswolds and indulge in one of its most well-known festivals.Where to stay: Elgin is located in Gretton Fields, a gorgeous area near Winchcombe. It's just a short drive (around 30 minutes) from Cheltenham, and is a great place to stay and enjoy the festival. The property is a spacious barn conversion with plenty of modern features as well as spectacular views of the countryside perfect for groups or families of 4.With so many great autumn festivals and events in the Cotswolds to enjoy, you'll find something for everyone this season. As well as all these events and festivals, autumn sees the Cotswolds come to life with colour, offering the perfect time to see it in all its glory. Book your stay in a cosy Cotswolds cottage and enjoy a true taste of British autumn.

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