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Report 269: A Family trip to England, including a 50+ mile walk in the Cotswolds

By Kaydee from Tennessee, Spring 2002

Trip Description: Family trip to England, including a 50+ mile walk in the Cotswolds.

Destinations: Countries - United Kingdom; Regions/Cities - Bath, Cotswolds, London, Wales

Categories: Hotels/B&Bs; Sightseeing; Walking/Hiking; Independent Travel; Package Tour; 3-4 people; Adults and Young Children

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Page 1 of 5: Planning Our Trip

We took our third family trip to England from May 23 to June 9, 2002; our daughter Kelly was almost nine at the time. This special trip included a nine-day walking trip in the Cotswolds. We had visited the Cotswolds for a few days in 1999, and were captivated by this beautiful region of England. We were especially intrigued by the idea of an extended walk in the Cotswolds, and when we returned home I started researching how a trip like this might be organized. I discovered Cotswolds Walking Holidays on the internet and began to work via e-mail with Ann to plan our trip. We decided to do a variation of their "Cotswolds Ring" walk, which would take us in a 50+ mile circle in the northern Cotswolds. Our trip was planned for May 2001.

A few months prior to our trip, we began to read of problems in the English countryside-- Foot and Mouth disease. Thousands of sheep and cows were slaughtered in an effort to halt the spread of the disease, and the English countryside was basically shut down! I monitored some English websites to try and determine what would happen with our trip, since the route took us mostly through the fields of private farms. About six weeks before we were to leave, I contacted Ann to see if our trip could be postponed. I'm sure Foot and Mouth disease had a major impact on her business, but she graciously agreed to hold over my deposit until May 2002. We then hastily planned an alternate vacation to Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island, which turned out to be a wonderful substitute.

Our 2002 trip had an added benefits-- we ended up in England at the time of the Queen's Royal Jubilee celebration. We really enjoyed sharing this special time with the British people. The four-day weekend celebration occurred near the end of our walking tour, and we worked with Ann to modify the normal one-week tour, since one-night reservations were impossible during the long weekend. So, after five days of walking, we paused in Stow-on-the-Wold for three nights, and then concluded with a final day's walk. I worked with Ann to select our accommodations in each village-- we didn't want anything too large or too small and definitely wanted to stay in old properties. Some of the places where we stayed were 400 years old!

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