If you’re thinking about visiting the amazing county of Gloucestershire, which is famous for many reasons – and rightly so, then check out these 30+ great things to do in Gloucestershire to suit almost everyone’s tastes!
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Why Visit Gloucestershire?
Why visit Gloucestershire? Gloucestershire is a beautiful area in the South West of England with a wealth of attractions to explore. It boasts the stunning Cotswolds area, a designated AONB (Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty), and is home to many historical sites and attractions. From the iconic Gloucester Cathedral to the Roman ruins of Chedworth, there is plenty to explore.
There are also many picturesque villages, rolling hills and historic market towns to discover. Outdoor activities such as walking and cycling are popular, and there are plenty of parks to explore. The rivers Severn, Wye, and Avon are all great for fishing, boating, and kayaking.
For those looking for adventure, the Forest of Dean is a great place to explore and offers many activities such as mountain biking, Go Ape and kayaking. Gloucestershire is also home to some of the UK’s best festivals and events and is often referred to as the ‘Gateway to the West’.
What is Gloucestershire Famous For?
What is Gloucestershire famous for? Gloucestershire is most famous for its beautiful Cotswolds countryside, which is a designated AONB (Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty).
It is home to many historical sites, such as Gloucester Cathedral, Berkeley Castle and the Roman ruins of Chedworth. The city of Gloucester is also home to the National Waterways Museum, while Cheltenham is a popular spa town with notable Regency architecture.
Additionally, the area is also popular for its outdoor activities, such as walking, cycling, fishing, boating and kayaking. The Forest of Dean is a great place for adventure, with mountain biking, Go Ape and kayaking available.
Finally, Gloucestershire is home to some of the UK’s best festivals and events, such as the Cheltenham Festival, the Gloucester Folk Festival and the Cotswold Olimpicks.
30+ Things To Do in Gloucestershire
Things To Do in Gloucestershire for Adults
There are many things to do in Gloucestershire for adults, have a look at some of the best things:
1. Gloucestershire Cathedral
Gloucester Cathedral is one of the most iconic landmarks in Gloucestershire and is a must-visit for anyone looking to explore the region. The building itself dates back to the 11th century and is a masterpiece of Gothic architecture.
Inside, visitors can explore the beautiful stained glass, the historic tombs and the grand nave. There are also regular events and concerts held in the cathedral, as well as guided tours and talks, which can provide visitors with a great opportunity to learn about the history of the building.
Those looking for a more spiritual experience can attend one of the regular services held in the cathedral or take part in a meditation session. The cathedral also has a cafe and gift shop, so visitors can enjoy a morning coffee or pick up a souvenir.
2. WWT Slimbridge
The WWT Slimbridge Wetland Centre (which stands for Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust) is a great place for adults to visit to learn about the fascinating wildlife of Gloucestershire. The WWT site is home to over 40,000 waterbirds, including swans, geese and ducks, which visitors can observe from the many viewing hides and platforms. Adults can also take a guided tour of the grounds, or hire a canoe or kayak to explore the wetlands.
As well as the birds, WWT Slimbridge also has a range of other animals, including otters, beavers and bats. There are also several events and activities held throughout the year, such as birdwatching sessions, photography workshops and nature walks. WWT Slimbridge is the perfect place for adults to explore and appreciate the local wildlife and landscape.
3. Cheltenham Racecourse
Cheltenham Racecourse is a popular destination for adults looking for a day of thrilling entertainment. The racecourse is home to Britain’s most prestigious horse racing events, such as the Cheltenham Festival and the Gold Cup, which attracts thousands of visitors every year.
In addition to the racing, the racecourse also offers a range of other activities, such as after-race concerts, food and drink stalls and a shopping village. Adults can also take a guided tour of the racecourse, or take part in a Trackside Experience, which includes a behind-the-scenes look at the racecourse and access to the Royal Box. Whether you’re a fan of horse racing or just looking for a fun day out, Cheltenham Racecourse is one of the best things to do in Gloucestershire for adults.
4. National Trust – Chedworth Roman Villa
Chedworth Roman Villa is a must-visit for any adult looking to explore the history of Gloucestershire. The villa was built in the 2nd century AD and is one of the best-preserved Roman villas in Britain.
Here, adults can explore the ruins and discover the history of Roman life in Gloucestershire. The villa is set in beautiful woodland and includes a museum, which houses many artefacts found during excavations, as well as interactive displays.
Visitors can also take part in guided tours and talks or join one of the themed activities, such as a mosaic workshop or a Roman cookery class. Chedworth Roman Villa is the perfect place for any adult looking to explore the region’s rich history.
5. Sudeley Castle
Sudeley Castle is a great place to go and explore the history and culture of Gloucestershire. The castle dates back to the 15th century and is set in beautifully landscaped gardens. Adults can explore the castle’s many rooms, which are filled with historical artefacts and artwork, as well as take a tour of the chapel and the beautiful grounds.
There are also a number of events held throughout the year, such as music and theatre performances, as well as guided tours and talks. Visitors can also take advantage of the on-site cafe and gift shop and pick up a souvenir to remember their visit. Sudeley Castle is the perfect place for adults to explore the region’s rich history and culture.
6. Batsford Arbotorium and Garden Centre
Batsford Arboretum and Garden Centre is a great place for visitors to explore the flora and fauna of Gloucestershire. The arboretum is home to over 3000 different species of trees and plants, and adults can take a guided tour of the grounds or explore at their own pace.
Additionally, there are also a number of events held throughout the year, such as wildflower walks and photography workshops. Adults can also take part in one of the many workshops available, such as bee keeping, willow weaving or floristry.
The Garden Centre is also a great place to pick up plants and gardening supplies, as well as gifts and souvenirs. Batsford Arboretum and Garden Centre is the perfect place for adults to explore the natural beauty of Gloucestershire.
7. Painswick Rococo Garden
Painswick Rococo Garden is a great place for adults to explore the history and culture of Gloucestershire. The garden was designed in the 18th century and is one of the most complete examples of a Rococo garden in England.
Here, visitors can explore the historic grounds, which are filled with exotic plants, beautiful follies and sculptures. Adults can also take part in guided tours and talks, or join one of the many workshops and activities held throughout the year.
The Garden also has an on-site cafe, so visitors can enjoy a cup of tea or coffee while taking in the beautiful views. Painswick Rococo Garden is the perfect place for anyone looking to explore the region’s rich history and culture.
8. National Trust – Newark Park
Newark Park is a National Trust site located in Gloucestershire, England. The park is home to a beautiful Tudor house, as well as a large estate and gardens. Adults visiting the park will have the chance to explore the grounds and discover the many wonders of this historic site.
The Park is a great place to visit, especially in the summer months, when a picnic is always a great idea. Additionally, the park also houses a range of shops, cafes and restaurants, as well as an outdoor play area for children.
Anyone visiting Newark Park is sure to have a wonderful time exploring the many wonders of the site. With its beautiful gardens, historic house, and range of activities, the park is a great place for adults to explore and learn more about the area’s history and culture.
9. Dunkertons Organic Cider
Dunkertons Organic Cider is a family-run cider business located in Gloucestershire, England. Visitors to the cidery will have the unique opportunity to take part in a guided tour of the facility, where they can learn all about the process of making cider and sample some of the delicious products.
There are also a large number of events usually happening at Dunkertons Organic Cider, such as exploring the orchards, learning how to press apples, and sampling the ciders. The tour also includes a visit to the cidery, where visitors can learn all about the cider-making process and taste some of the delicious products.
Visitors visiting Dunkertons Organic Cider are sure to have a great time exploring the many wonders of the cidery. With its interactive activities and delicious cider, the tour is a great way for visitors to learn more about the cider-making process and enjoy some delicious products in the process.
Things To Do in Gloucestershire for Families
If you’re looking for some fun things to do in Gloucestershire for families, then check out these great ideas:
10. Clearwell Caves
Clearwell Caves is a fascinating natural wonder, located in the Forest of Dean in Gloucestershire, England. It is a series of underground caverns and passageways filled with stalactites and stalagmites and has been open for public exploration since 1968. Families visiting Clearwell Caves will have the unique opportunity to explore the depths of this underground world and discover its many wonders.
Families will be able to take a guided tour of the Clearwell Caves, where they can learn all about the history of the site, its geology, and the wide variety of wildlife that inhabits it. Visitors can also take part in an underground mining experience and explore the vast network of mines and tunnels that make up the caves.
Families visiting Clearwell Caves are sure to have a wonderful time exploring the many wonders of this underground world. With its fascinating history and its stunning natural features, Clearwell Caves is a must-visit destination for families looking for a unique and exciting experience.
11. Dean Herritage Centre
The Dean Heritage Centre is a unique and fascinating heritage centre located in the Forest of Dean in Gloucestershire, England. The centre is home to a wide range of historical artefacts and exhibits, from ancient tools and weapons to ancient pottery and clothing.
Families visiting the Dean Heritage Centre will have the chance to explore the history of the area and discover the ways in which people used to live and work in the area. Families will be able to take a guided tour of the centre, where they can learn all about the history of the area, as well as its culture and traditions.
Visitors can also take part in a range of interactive activities, such as trying their hand at traditional crafts and activities. With its interesting exhibits and interactive activities, the centre is a great place for families to learn about the history of the area and gain a better understanding of its culture and traditions.
12. Cotswolds Farm Park – Home of Adam Henderson
The Cotswolds Farm Park is a popular family attraction located in Gloucestershire, England. The park is the home of Adam Henderson, a farmer and conservationist who has worked to preserve the traditional farming methods of the area.
Families visiting the park will have the chance to explore the farm and discover the many animals that call it home. For instance, at the farm park, visitors can take part in a variety of activities, such as taking a tractor ride around the farm, meeting the animals, and taking part in educational talks and interactive activities.
The park also houses a range of attractions and shops, as well as a café and picnic area. Families visiting Cotswolds Farm Park are sure to have a great time exploring the many wonders of the farm. Due to its fascinating animals, interactive activities, and beautiful scenery, the Cotswolds Farm Park is an excellent place for families to spend some quality time together and learn more about the area’s traditional farming methods.
13. Birdland Park & Gardens
Birdland Park and Gardens is a fantastic destination for families looking for an exciting day out. This award-winning park is home to so many birds from around the world, as well as other animals and reptiles.
Visitors can get up close to the birds and watch them flying around the aviary or take a leisurely stroll through the gardens. The park also features several play areas and educational exhibits and activities to keep the children entertained.
Families can enjoy a range of activities during their visit to Birdland Park and Gardens. A few of the experiences available include bird shows, bird walks, and educational talks. Additionally, there are plenty of picnic spots, play areas, and animal-themed rides to enjoy.
Related Post: Birdland, Boughton-on-Water – Review
14. Cotswolds Country Park & Beach
Cotswold Country Park and Beach is the perfect destination for families looking for a fun-filled day out. This award-winning park is situated on the banks of the River Windrush and boasts a stunning natural landscape. Families can enjoy a range of activities during their visit to the park.
For a fun-filled day out, families can take a dip in the outdoor pool or make a splash in the paddling pool. Visitors can also explore the extensive nature trails, which are perfect for discovering the wildlife and flora of the park. There are plenty of play areas, picnic spots, and BBQ facilities to make the most of the day.
Cotswold Country Park and Beach also boasts a beautiful beach, which is perfect for splashing in the waves and building sandcastles. Families can take part in a range of watersports, including kayaking, canoeing, and sailing.
Visitors can also visit the nearby towns of Chipping Campden, Stow-on-the-Wold, and Broadway, which offer plenty of shops, restaurants, and attractions to explore.
15. Bourton-on-the-Water Model Village
Bourton-on-the-Water Model Village is a great destination for families! This award-winning model village offers visitors a unique glimpse into the past and is home to miniature replicas of some of the area’s most iconic buildings and landmarks.
The village is filled with plenty of interactive elements, such as talking models, moving figures, and interactive displays. Visitors can also take a leisurely stroll through the village and explore the various models on display.
The model village also features several play areas, which are perfect for keeping the children entertained. There are plenty of picnic spots and BBQ facilities to make the most of the day. Additionally, families can take a boat ride on the model river and explore the village from a different perspective.
Bourton-on-the-Water Model Village is also home to several other attractions, such as the Model Railway Exhibition and the Toy Museum. The village is also home to several cafés and restaurants, which offer a range of refreshments and snacks.
Unusual Things To Do in Gloucestershire
If you’re in the mood to do some unusual things to do in Gloucestershire, check out these:
Puzzlewood is a great destination for tourists looking for an unforgettable day out. This award-winning wood is situated in the heart of the Forest of Dean and is home to a magical maze of pathways and enchanting forests.
There have been plenty of infamous films and TV shows that have been shot in these interesting woods, so it’s definitely worth a visit if you’re a film fanatic. Some films and TV Shows that have been shot in Puzzlewood include Starwars, Dr Who, Merlin, and Jack the Giant Slayer.
Puzzlewood also has its own café, which offers a range of refreshments and snacks. Visitors can also visit the nearby towns of Coleford and Monmouth, which offer plenty of shops, restaurants, and attractions to explore.
17. Little Dean Jail
Little Dean Jail is a great destination for tourists looking for a very unique day out. This very unusual attraction is situated in the heart of the Forest of Dean and is home to a fascinating collection of artefacts, documents, and photographs that tell the story of the prison’s past inhabitants.
Visitors to Little Dean Jail can explore the various cells and discover the dark and interesting stories of its former inmates – it’s definitely one of the most unusual things to do in Gloucestershire.
Afterwards, it’s a good idea for visitors to also visit the nearby towns of Coleford and Monmouth, which offer plenty of shops, restaurants, and attractions to explore.
18. Lavender Feilds – Cotswolds Lavender
Cotswolds Lavender Fields is the perfect destination for everyone looking for a unique day out. This beautiful attraction is home to acres of fragrant lavender, as well as a range of other flowers and herbs. A visit here is a perfect place for a picnic!
It is one of the best things to do in Gloucestershire during summer – and make sure to bring your phone fully charged, as you’ll be wanting to take millions of pretty photos.
In addition to the gorgeous lavender fields, there is also the option to buy some of the great products that are also produced from the fields. The products are an amazing way to bring home the beautiful lavender scent with you, and to always remember your day out.
Frightmare is the perfect way to spend Halloween in Gloucester! It is a seasonal attraction that is open every October.
Frightmare Gloucester is known for its intense scares and detailed sets. There are different areas within the location, each with its own unique theme and storyline. The attractions range from dark passageways and mazes to a haunted carnival and a cemetery. Each year, the attractions are changed and updated to keep visitors on their toes.
The experience at Frightmare Gloucester is designed to be intense and thrilling. Visitors are warned that they should expect to experience intense scares, strobe lights, loud noises, and other surprises…do it if you dare!
20. Gloucester Ski Centre
Test your inner Eddie the Eagle out at Gloucester Ski Centre! The centre has ski and snowboard runs, as well as lessons, equipment rentals, and a ski shop. The slopes at Gloucester Ski Centre are divided into four areas, each with its own terrain and difficulty level.
It doesn’t matter if you’re a complete beginner, as there are a variety of lessons and camps for those looking to improve their skiing or snowboarding skills on offer.
Gloucester Ski Centre is a great place for both experienced and novice skiers to enjoy the slopes, whether you’re looking for a thrill or just a bit of fun!
Free Things To Do in Gloucestershire
Looking for the best free things to do in Gloucestershire? Have a look at these suggestions:
21. Forest of Dean Sculpture Trail
The Forest of Dean Sculpture Trail is a self-guided walking trail located in the Forest of Dean in Gloucestershire, England, which is over 4 miles long. The trail consists of over 30 sculptures located in various locations throughout the forest, as well as several other attractions.
The sculptures on the trail range from small pieces to large abstract works, and are made from a variety of materials. The first sculptures were added in 1986 as a way to bring together art and nature. Furthermore, they are set in various locations throughout the forest, with the intention of creating a connection between art and the environment.
The trail is open to the public year-round, and visitors can explore the sculptures at their own pace. Along the way, visitors can learn about the history of the forest, as well as the artists behind the sculptures. The Forest of Dean Sculpture Trail is a unique way to experience the beauty of the forest in a new and exciting way.
Visitors can explore the sculptures and take in the stunning scenery, all while exploring the history of the forest. Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a frequent traveller, the Forest of Dean Sculpture Trail is a great way to experience the beauty of the Forest of Dean.
22. Jet Age Museum
The Jet Age Museum is certainly one of the best free things to do in Gloucestershire! It is a museum dedicated to the history of aviation and includes a variety of aircraft and artefacts from the Jet Age.
Visitors can explore the station, and view displays about the history of aviation, as well as a variety of aircraft, as the museum houses a variety of aircraft from the Jet Age, including the English Electric Lightning and the Avro Vulcan.
The museum is open to the public year-round and offers a variety of activities and exhibits, as well as a shop and a cafe for visitors to explore and make use of. Whether you’re a history buff or just looking for a fun day out, the Jet Age Museum is a great place to explore the history of aviation and the Jet Age.
23. Symonds Yat
Symonds Yat is one of the most beautiful spots in the Forest of Dean in Gloucestershire, England. The area is filled with stunning views, wildlife, and activities that are sure to keep everyone who visits entertained.
The most popular activity at Symonds Yat is the River Wye. Visitors can take a boat ride along the river and take in the stunning scenery. There are also a variety of walking trails, where visitors can explore the area and take in the gorgeous views.
For those looking for a more active adventure, Symonds Yat also offers rock climbing and kayaking. The area is also home to a variety of wildlife, including red kites, peregrine falcons, deer, badgers, and more.
Symonds Yat is a beautiful area that is sure to delight visitors of all ages. With stunning views, activities, and wildlife, visitors are sure to have a wonderful time.
24. Gloucester Docks
Gloucester Docks is a historic port located in Gloucester, England. It is a popular tourist attraction thanks to its rich maritime history, stunning views, and abundance of activities.
The most popular activity at Gloucester Docks is the Gloucester Waterways Museum. Visitors can explore the museum and learn about the history of the city and its ports. There are also a variety of interactive exhibits, such as a model of the port and a working model of a steam engine.
The docks are also home to a variety of shops and restaurants, as well as a number of events throughout the year. Visitors can take a boat tour along the canal, or take a stroll around the harbour. After exploring the docks, visitors can take a break in one of the many cafes or pubs in the area.
25. Nagshead Nature Reserve
Nagshead Nature Reserve is a beautiful nature reserve located in the Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire, England. The reserve is home to a variety of wildlife, including red kites, deer, badgers, and other species.
Visitors can explore the reserve on foot, with a variety of walking trails, or take a guided tour. The reserve is also home to a variety of flora and fauna, including wildflowers, rare plants, and a variety of trees. Visitors can also explore the area’s history, with several archaeological sites located within the reserve.
The reserve is open to the public all year round, and visitors can explore the area on their own or take a guided tour. Visitors can also take part in several educational activities, such as a scavenger hunt and bird watching.
Days Out in Gloucestershire for Couples
If you’re looking for some of the best days out in Gloucestershire for couples, here are the ones I’d recommend the most:
26. Full-Day Tour of the Cotswolds
This full-day tour of the Cotswolds is an ideal way of understanding the beautiful area and getting to know it better.
Start the day in the old market town of Burford, where you can do some shopping and purchase some unique items from independent businesses. After Burford, you will then be driven through some of the quaint little villages, until the next stop – Bourton-on-the-Water. After some time in Bourton, you will then be transported to Chipping Campden and finally Stratford-upon-Avon, which is best known for being Shakespeare’s birthplace.
27. Shakespeare Stratford-upon-Avon Tour with Lunch
Stratford-upon-Avon is a breathtakingly beautiful town that is renowned for being the birthplace of one of the most celebrated playwrights in history, William Shakespeare. A visit to this charming town is a perfect way to immerse oneself in the life and works of the great bard. One of the best ways to experience Stratford-upon-Avon is on this Shakespeare tour with lunch.
This tour of Stratford-upon-Avon with lunch is an ideal way to experience the town in all its glory. The tour will take you through Stratford-upon-Avon’s picturesque streets, past its historic buildings and monuments, and introduce you to the rich history of this charming town.
During the tour, you will also have the opportunity to visit some of the most popular Shakespeare-related sites, such as the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, the Birthplace, and the beautiful gardens of Anne Hathaway’s Cottage.
Cheap Things To Do in Gloucestershire
If you’re just after some cheap things to do in Gloucestershire, then these are the activities I’d recommend the most:
29. Go Ape Tree Top Adventure
Go Ape Tree Top Adventure Gloucestershire is an unforgettable experience for thrill seekers of all ages. Located in the heart of the beautiful Forest of Dean, this high-ropes course is set amongst the treetops and offers breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside.
Open all year round, Go Ape Tree Top Adventure Gloucestershire boasts a range of activities from zip wires, Tarzan swings and rope bridges, to tree-to-tree trapezes and wobbly crossings. With a range of courses designed to suit everyone from the beginner to the experienced adventurer, it’s the perfect place for a fun and adrenaline-filled day out.
30. Cattle Country Adventure Park
Cattle Country Adventure Park is an exciting family attraction located in the heart of Gloucestershire. The park offers a wide range of activities, including a thrilling roller coaster, an animal petting farm, an adventure playground and a mini golf course.
Visitors can also explore the park’s picturesque nature trails and take part in a range of exciting animal encounters. With so much to do, Cattle Country Adventure Park is the perfect place for a memorable day out – and is one of the best cheap things to do in Gloucestershire.
31. Cotswolds Wildlife Park and Gardens
Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens is a beautiful wildlife park located in the heart of the Cotswolds. It is home to a wide variety of animals, from endangered species like rhinos and red pandas, to more familiar animals like meerkats and lemurs.
Visitors can also explore the park’s stunning gardens, which feature an array of exotic plants and flowers, as well as a charming lake. With its unique combination of wildlife, gardens and stunning scenery, Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens is the perfect place for a fun and educational day out.
32. Over Farm Market
Over Farm Market, is a unique and vibrant market located on the outskirts of Gloucester. Here, visitors can find a wide selection of locally grown produce, from fresh fruit and vegetables to handmade preserves and chutneys.
The market also features a range of artisan goods, such as jewellery, pottery and artwork, as well as a range of clothing, homeware and gifts. With its friendly atmosphere and delicious food, Over Farm Market Gloucestershire is the perfect place for a relaxing day out.
The main city in Gloucestershire is Gloucester. There are many things to do in Gloucester, and it is especially well-known for its docks and shopping.
Gloucestershire is located in the South West of England and borders Wales.
Many celebrities in Gloucestershire live in the Cotswolds and near to Stroud.
30+ Great Things To Do in Gloucestershire – Conclusion
Hopefully, after reading this post, you’ve learnt about some of the many great things to do in Gloucestershire! Which things to do in Gloucestershire do you want to try the most? Are there any things to do in Gloucestershire that I’ve missed off the list, but you believe that they should be on here? Feel free to contact me if you would like any more information! If you liked this post, I’d also recommend that you check out these: