A long walk to visit the Queen of the Cotswolds

10-mile walk from Selsley to Painswick. - WCF-.jpgOne of the primary reasons we came to this region of England was to walk, and we have been rambling about the countryside for many miles every day. Besides the network of public footpaths that lace the area offering the almost unlimited opportunity to wander in any direction, just a stroll away is the Cotswold Way, a 102-mile walking trail.

We have been on segments of the Cotswold Way several times for distances of 4-8 miles at the time. Usually traveling by bus to or from a village or town further away than a circular route would allow. This time we wanted to walk a slightly longer distance to Painswick, about 10 miles away, and then return home by bus.

Route down Selsley hill from home. - WCF-5035.jpgSurrounded by some of Gloucestershire’s most beautiful countryside, the village of Painswick is known as the ‘Queen of the Cotswolds’ and is one of England’s oldest ‘Wool Towns’. Its narrow streets and traditional architecture, built of the local golden Cotswold stone, are the embodiment of an English village.

Naturally though, getting there is much more than half the fun, so we made our way over the meadows and through pastures, into wood and forests, and of course up and down the hills. The views out over the Severn Vale were spectacular, especially at the Haresfield Beacon.A view from the Cotswold Way - WCF-5107.jpg (Beacons were where fires were lit on hills or high places, used for signaling that enemy troops were approaching, in order to alert defenses.) The weather was beautiful, and while at the summit of the Haresfield Beacon we took advantage of the day and view to stop for a picnic.

The Cotswold Way is well-marked and well-traveled, and there were several opportunities to chat with others on theCotswold Way near Haresfield Beacon - WCF-5091.jpg footpath (a nice feature of being in an English-speaking country).

Eventually we made our way into Painswick, and even though we had visited the village before, we wandered its narrow streets toward the Royal Oak pub. There we enjoyed a hearty sandwich and a pint of dark ale (Jeannie had something much lighter) before taking the bus back to Stroud and home.

This Post Has 11 Comments

  1. Love the meandering tale and photos. Such peace.

    1. We wish we could bottle the views and feeling of this beautiful countryside and bring it home with us. An amazing experience this is!

  2. Great Post! The pictures are so beautiful…. I have my eye on a couple, that a print would be great to own. We can talk about that in a month or so when your back stateside.

    1. Everywhere we look, there is beauty; so much to capture with the camera. Chris does make great photos and we are glad to share. Look forward to seeing you after we return.

  3. A couple of questions:
    1. You two have always seemed on the slim side to me. I wonder if all this walking is having other positive effects on your health.
    Also, along with that (and this is my OCD side coming out), are you keeping track of miles,steps, etc.? I sort of think of you as enjoying the journey too much to bother, but thought I would ask.

    1. Thanks for following along cousin. Walking is such an integral part of all of our travels. In the three months we were in Toulouse we had a car for only about a week, and here in the UK we didn’t have a car for the first 6-weeks. Thing is it can’t help but have a positive effect, and not just on physical health. There is an unmistakable positive effect on the spirit by being out in nature that is a major part of the benefit too. The Japanese have a term for this – Shinrin-yoku. Interesting concept.

      Jeannie is a spreadsheet queen, but other than her using a pedometer to make sure we get at least 3-5 miles a day, she doesn’t track any of that. We have apps on the phone that could track it but always seem to forget about turning them on or off. And yes, we are enjoying the journey too much to bother. 8^)

  4. Wow! And to think that you two walk those many miles ! I love the ability to describe all that you two enjoy so vividly. – I am repeating Alice in her salutation with another ‘ Happy Birthday ‘ .

    1. Thanks Missy. We have to keep walking, they make great cakes here and I can’t resist a slice with afternoon tea. And Chris does a great job describing our experience, and sharing it with beautiful images. And for his birthday, we enjoyed a 10 mile walk with the Stroud Rambling Club, and finished with local ice cream, yum!

  5. Happy Birthday!

  6. Just love the pictures.

    1. Almost as good as the real thing!

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