Lemurs, lions, racing and retail

Well, kids, will it be the Cotswold Wildlife Park for lemurs and lions, Birdland for parrots and pelicans, or a hawk walk around Cheltenham? Grown-up kids will enjoy pottering for England around tearooms, antique shops and bookshops, or Cheltenham for racing and retail.

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Lakes by Yoo

The Barnhouse is the flagship property on The Lakes, England’s answer to The Hamptons. Luxuriate in designer, Scandinavian-style properties dotted around ornamental lakes in a 650-acre slice of Cotswold heaven.

On site, you have all the facilities you’d expect of a development with such quality in design. Central to this is the spa. Designed by award-winning architects, it’s made for unwinding, with its 17-metre heated pool with panoramic views of Clearwater Lake, sauna and steam room.

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Cotswold kids

The Cotswolds were made for kids. Meet over 50 flocks and herds of rare breeds at Adam Henson’s Farm Park, or see lions and lemurs at the Cotswold Wildlife Park. Grab some more animal antics at Birdland, by feeding deer at Prinknash or taking a hawk walk around Cheltenham.

Walk the river footpath between Upper and Lower Slaughter, then reward your kids with afternoon tea at Lower Slaughter Manor. At The National Arboretum, kids go free and run wild among 15,000 species of tree and plant, plus play areas and self-guided adventure trails.

Elsewhere, you can monkey around at Head 4 Heights, or make tracks for the miniature village, the Dragonfly Maze or the model railway, with over 500 feet of British and Continental train track to operate.

Enjoy the child-friendly interactive displays at Cirencester’s Corinium Museum, or sample safe summer bathing at the Cotswold Water Park – plus walks, bikes, boats, bites and much more.

For the grown-ups

Love to potter? The Cotswolds is for you. Head to Painswick and Bourton-on-the-Water past lambs gambolling in fields, to bumble aimlessly around a world of antiques and well-thumbed books. Don’t forget the galleries, then wrap it all up with buttered scones and tea as you watch the world amble by.

Cheltenham offers Regency appeal, plus chic retail in Montpellier and the adrenaline rush of the racing. This is England’s first spa town, so stop off for some pampering before strolling the river between Upper and Lower Slaughter, trying caving or canoeing, or ballooning above the hilltops.

Sip traditional artisanal spirits at the Cotswolds Distillery, or get cultural with trips to Tewkesbury Abbey or Gloucester Cathedral, one of the shoot locations for the Harry Potter films.

Take a journey through classic cars, motorcycles and memorabilia at the Cotswold Motoring Museum, find out why flamingos stand on one leg at the Slimbridge Wetlands Centre, or blow away the cobwebs with a walk to Broadway Tower. Wrap up the day watching the barges roll by in the riverside garden at The Trout Inn.

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