Meet your guides in the charming university town of Oxford. Our journey begins with a brief transfer to the 800-square-mile area in the South of England that comprises the Cotswolds: spanning from Gloucestershire to Oxfordshire counties, the Cotswolds were designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) in 1966. It’s easy to see why, with peaceful stands of beech trees and limestone bedrock that forms a grassland habitat unlike anywhere else in the UK. First things first: we’re off to the Cotswolds Cheese Company, where we’ll sample some of the 100+ types of artisan and English farmhouse cheeses. From the limestone shop in Moreton-in-Marsh, set out for a loop ride through Chipping Campden and on to Ilmington, pedaling through one quaint village after another. Check into our 16th-century boutique accommodations and settle in by the fireplace for cocktails before a cozy dinner at the hotel’s brasserie.
Destinations: Oxford, Moreton-in Marsh, Chipping Campden
Accomplished: 26 miles / 42 km, elevation gain: 1,350 feet / 410 meters
Accommodations: The Manor House
Today’s countryside loop follows quiet roads completely surrounded by the green expanse that’s so unique to the Cotswolds. Our first stop is Sudeley Castle, where we’ll take a deep dive into the engrossing and dramatic 1,000-year history of the estate. Once home to Queen Katherine Parr, the last (and surviving) wife of King Henry VIII now lies in rest on the grounds. Pass a local lavender farm as we pedal on, and stop to pick a few sprigs or some lavender products if you feel inclined. We’ll be back in Moreton-in-Marsh by early afternoon, leaving time for you to relax, explore the village, or join your guides for a visit to Stratford-upon-Avon—best known as the birthplace of William Shakespeare—located just an hour away in the van. Tonight, you’re free to dine on your own at the hotel or at any of the pubs or inns located nearby.
Meals: Breakfast / Lunch
Destinations: Sudeley Castle, Snowshill, Stratford-upon-Avon
Accomplished: 31 miles / 50 km, elevation gain: 2,515 feet / 765 meters
Accommodations: The Manor House
The most iconic trait of the Cotswolds is its beautiful villages and towns built of pale-yellow Cotswold limestone—and today we plan to see as many as we can! Together known as The Slaughters, Upper and Lower Slaughter are heart-achingly picturesque and prime examples of quintessential Cotswold villages. Here, golden stone cottages are reflected in the meandering River Eye and bathed in beautiful light, treating us to some truly idyllic morning scenery. At lunchtime, pop into a traditional pub and sample some of the local lagers. Afterwards we’ll approach Bourton-on-the-Water, often called the Venice of the Cotswolds for the lovely footbridges that span the gentle River Windrush. There will be time to meander this pretty town, admire the gardens, and browse its boutiques before we ride to our next hotel in Burford.
Meals: Breakfast / Lunch / Dinner
Destinations: Stow-on-the-Wold, Upper and Lower Slaughter, Bourton-on-the-Water
Accomplished: 24 miles / 39 km, elevation gain: 1,535 feet / 465 meters
Accommodations: The Bay Tree or The Lamb Inn
Begin riding right from our hotel and bike through an undulating landscape to Bibury, home to Arlington Row. Upheld as one of England’s most attractive country lanes, this little street is lined with 14th-century stone homes. Our route continues to Chedworth Roman Villa, a ruin of unusual grandeur dating back to the second century. Follow a river valley until we arrive in Cirencester, the tidy market town considered the capital of the Cotswolds. Spend the afternoon admiring the adorable residences, stroll Cirencester’s high street, or visit the ancient Abbey that can be seen from everywhere in town. After a lunch of your choosing, a short transfer takes us back to our hotel for the evening.
Our last day also happens to be one of the most memorable: set out from Burford and cycle past breezy fields, herds of cows, and grazing sheep as we once again follow the River Windrush. Heading north, we ride through Wychwood Forest before meandering beside the River Evenlode. Savor the tranquility of rural England and lean into your riding rhythm before we hit a final stretch through the countryside and villages. Our destination is the very special Wild Rabbit restaurant, where the chef uses organic ingredients from the inn’s cottage garden to prepare our lunch. Our meal is a work of art starring locally raised game, edible flowers, and seasonal vegetables harvested that very morning—the perfect high note on which to end our week together. Your guides will transfer you back to Oxford and send you off to your next adventure.
Meals: Breakfast / Lunch
Destinations: Windrush, Oxford
Accomplished: 18 miles / 29 km, elevation gain: 1,165 feet / 355 meters
DuVine itineraries may be subject to slight route changes, hotel substitutions, and other modifications.
Airport City: London, England Pick-Up Location: Oxford Train Station Pick-Up Time: 1:00 pm
Airport City: London, England Drop-Off Location: Oxford Train Station Drop-Off Time: 4:00 pm
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- Thoughtfully selected accommodations that reveal the true character of the region
- Luggage transfers
- Daily breakfasts, all lunches, nutritious snacks, and après velo cocktails
- 3 gourmet dinners at our favorite local restaurants and renowned culinary establishments
- Carefully selected local wine, beer, or spirits with every meal
- Wine tastings and activities as outlined in the tour itinerary
- Entrance fees to historic sites, museums, parks, and all other exclusive events
- Gratuities for baggage, porters, and hotel service
- Top-of-the-line bicycle selection
- Bike helmet
- Complimentary DuVine gear, including a custom cycling jersey, DuVine t-shirt, water bottle, and drawstring bag
- GPS in most destinations
- Expert bilingual guides with extensive local knowledge
- Support vehicle that follows the day’s route, distributes refreshments, and offers lifts
- Pick-up and drop-off before and after your tour from predetermined meeting points
- Daily bike maintenance to ensure optimal performance