Beyond the Spires: Untold Oxford & the Cotswolds
1 day tour

  • oxford
  • oxford
  • houses
  • Burford Parish Church
  • bibury
  • bus

What better way to see the magic of the world, exploring academic Oxford, ivy-woven villages, and time-worn cobbled streets.

Tour map

Tour Highlights

Universities
National Parks
Film Locations

Oxford University - Cradle of knowledge, world-famous film locations, and a camel used to ward off evil.

Traditional Cotswold Villages -Everything you want from an idyllic English destination. These picturesque villages will fill up your camera’s memory in seconds.

Bibury -Like something out of a fantasy movie, this dreamy hamlet is arguably the most charming village view in all of England... what do you think?

Burford - Run, don't walk, to the 'Gateway to the Cotswolds' and experience real beauty. 

 

Your journey
 

When you think of the Cotswolds, cobbled streets probably come to mind. Honey-soaked stone cottages. Pubs with more wrinkles and stories than your grandpa. We're not going to deny it.

But did you know the Cotswolds were the battlegrounds where two English civil wars were fought? Don't let the ivy-covered walls fool you. Sometimes the most beautiful things are the most dangerous...

And then there's Oxford. The city of students, spires, and sumptuous cathedrals needs no introduction. It's as inspirational as it is fascinating. We look up to the spire-studded skyline and find centuries of stories below.

Join this tour and experience two of England’s most deservedly famous locations.

 

Tour Details

Starts
Check-in closes at 08:45 (tour departs at 09:00) - Bristol Pick-Up, DoubleTree by Hilton, Redcliffe Way, Bristol, BS16NJ
Finishes (approx.)
18:00 - Bristol Drop Off, DoubleTree by Hilton, Redcliffe Way, Bristol, BS16NJ
Luggage
You're restricted to 14kg (31lbs) of luggage per person. This should be one piece of luggage similar to an airline carry-on bag (approximately 55cm x 45cm x 25cm / 22in x 17in x 10in) and a small bag for onboard personal items. You can find details about luggage storage options here.
Discounts

Students, seniors over 60, and children between 5 and 15 (unfortunately, we don't carry children under 5 years old).

Important information
  • Pack your waterproof clothing and walking shoes
  • Attraction tickets may need to be purchased in advance. More information is provided in your booking confirmation e-mail
Tour inclusions
  • Transportation by a 16 seat Mercedes mini-coach
  • Air conditioning as standard
  • The stories and services of an English-speaking driver-guide
Tour exclusions
  • Entry fees to visitor attractions

Itinerary

Your journey begins as you head out of Bristol and enter a dream. North Wessex Downs is an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, a treasure to its country. As you drive through a landscape of grasslands and valleys, all you need to do is enjoy and take it all in.

Your first stop is Oxford, where you have time to explore the precincts of the many colleges, climb to the vantage points to admire the skyline, or see the art and antiquities collections in the Ashmolean Museum. Spires rocket towards the sky as you wander elegant halls straight out of Harry Potter.

Next you stop in Burford, the ‘Gateway to the Cotswolds’... some argue it's better than stepping into Narnia through some wardrobe. Trust us. This small market town overflows with character and depth. The main street is lined with all those quaint properties that you’ve dreamt of owning. You have time here to take in the local charm and hospitality; and if you’re hungry, you can try a traditional English ‘Afternoon Tea’.

Then, you make the short journey to Bibury. You might need a moment to take it all in. This place was described by William Morris as the prettiest village in England, and Henry Ford wanted to dismantle it and ship it back to the USA. You have time here to stroll to the famous and fairytale-like Arlington Row. If you wander the length of the Coln River, make sure and wave to the trout swimming alongside you. 

After a full day exploring the city of Oxford and the villages of the Cotswolds, you embark on the comfortable return journey to Bristol.

This route may be reversed on some occasions.

FAQs

Do you offer hotel pickups in the departure cities?

The UK and Ireland's historic city centres are full of narrow streets and winding roads. So, to speed up your departure, we only pick up from our central meeting points. What's more is leaving the city using the most direct route also reduces the carbon footprint of our tours.

Is there parking close to the departure point?

We don't recommend bringing your car into the centre of our departure cities. It can be hard to find parking, and there are excellent public transportation services.

When should I get to the departure point?

Arrive 15 minutes before your departure time. Due to waiting restrictions, we can't wait for you if you're late.

What happens if I'm late or miss the tour?

If you're late for your tour, our cancellation policy applies. 100% charges are applicable, and you will not be entitled to a refund or alternative.

What are your cancellation policies?

Your cancellation terms depend on which tour you've booked.

For one-day tours: You'll receive a full refund if you cancel 24 hours or more before the tour departure

For tours of between two and nine days: You'll receive a 90% refund if you cancel 15 or more days before the tour departure

For tours of 10 or more days: You'll receive a 90% refund if you cancel 21 or more days before the tour departure

For all European packaged tours: You'll receive a 90% refund if you cancel 42 days before the tour departure.

If you cancel inside these notice periods, full charges will apply and no refunds will be issued.

To cancel your booking, email tours@rabbies.com as soon as possible. The effective date of cancellation will be the date we receive written confirmation from you.

Click here to view terms and conditions

Can Itineraries change?

Your tour will always follow the itinerary as closely as possible. Your driver-guide will keep you up to date on the road, and we'll try to get in touch about any large changes prior to your departure.

Can I pre-book a specific seat?

Due to logistical reasons, we're unable to let you pre-book a seat on the bus. But our comfortable 16-seat mini-coaches have huge windows. So, you'll always get a good view.

Are there toilets on the bus?

Unfortunately, we have no on-board toilet facilities, but you'll have regular comfort breaks.

How do you cater for people with accessibility needs?

We aim to accommodate everyone. To read more information on how we do this, click here to go to our accessibility guide.

Do you take children on your tours?

We regret we don't carry children under the age of five on our scheduled tours.

You can ask us about the tours we recommend for younger children. And if your child is less than 1.35m tall, you should let us know, so we can provide them with a suitable booster seat.

How much time do I get off the bus?

We want you to enjoy Britain and Ireland. And we believe the best way to do this is to get you off the mini-coach and out exploring. So, we give you plenty of time to take photos, go walking, and explore ancient ruins.

Why do you exclude visitor attractions?

We exclude visitor attractions in your tour price because it lets you travel your way. It means you can pamper yourself with a luxury lunch or skip an attraction whenever you feel like it.

Do we need to bring our own lunch?

You don't need to. We stop in small towns, villages, and rural eateries where you can choose whatever meal pleases both your taste buds and your budget.

Should I tip the driver-guide?

Let's be honest, our driver-guides would never refuse a cheeky bonus. But it's up to you, and the amount is entirely at your discretion.

What about travel insurance?

We advise you take out travel insurance.

What is ABTOT?

You're protected by ABTOT when you chose to let us reserve your accommodation on a multi-day tour. This means you can claim back anything you've paid us if we become bankrupt. Read our terms and conditions for more information.

I have more questions, who can help me?

If you have any more questions, call us on +44(0)131 226 3133, email tours@rabbies.com , or check out our full FAQs .


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