WHY KOOKY COTSWOLD TOURS?
So whats Kooky Tours all about? Well, according to the Oxford English Dictionary, the word ‘kooky’ means eccentric, strange or foolish. To us, the Cotswolds is a beautiful and unique place filled with contradictions and oddments, populated with quirky and playful characters, perfectly encapsulated by the word, ‘kooky’. Also, ‘kooky’ sort of goes with ‘Cotswolds’.
During a tour you’ll find the natural beauty of the region speaks for itself without us wittering in your ear – and there is an endless supply of pretty towns and villages to explore. However, what we can provide you with is a unique insight into the Cotswolds to help you understand and appreciate what’s around you a little better. It’s not all surface y’know..
Based on our own experiences of living here, historical fact and tales told to us by enthusiastic residents; we’ll have enough information to keep you interested – but not so much you’ll want to fall asleep!
We’ve spent a decent amount of time getting lost in the Cotswolds; sometimes intentionally. Those times have provided us with a useful knowledge of backroads and viewpoints that even some locals aren’t aware of. We’ve discovered villages that seem unchanged in hundreds of years and long forgotten paths and trails.
During your tour you will see some of the most famous sights and iconic locations; we will visit these at key times to avoid large crowds. The popular spots are worth visiting so a little insider knowledge helps you get the best out of them. We’ll visit the famous landmarks when the majority of coaches and crowds are elsewhere – giving us the time and space to enjoy and appreciate our surroundings.
The crowd dodging knowledge has come about through trial and error; too many times we’ve taken folks to photograph the pretty street of Arlington Row in Bibury only to end up with nothing but pictures of coach loads of tourists swarming all over the place wearing brightly coloured ponchos and batting each other with selfie sticks. No more!
Tours are relaxed and flexible. We’ll give you insights and information at each stop before giving you time to explore for yourselves. Between the locations listed in the itineraries you’ll see a lot of the countryside; we’ll stay off the main roads and stick to the backroads and lanes.
FAQS & IAQS
For more information about what happens on tours, please see the Frequently Asked Questions below. We have also included Infrequently Asked Questions which are genuine questions that have been put to us on tours. Those that asked shall remain nameless – but they know who they are…
What happens on the tours?
There’s a mix of driving and walking. Scenic routes between locations with a few impromptu stops for photos, berry picking and sheep squeezing. We’ll guide you around towns and villages on foot before giving you time to explore them for yourselves.
What about insurance?
We are fully insured but recommend that you have your own travel/holiday insurance policy too.
How much luggage can I bring?
We use a VW Transporter; built to carry eight passengers with luggage. Generally speaking the rule is that if everyone has one suitcase and one carry on – there’s never a problem. We advise that you don’t bring items such as elephants or grand pianos.
Can I eat the grass?
Yes but we wouldn’t advise it.
What shall I wear and what shall I bring?
Layers. Good walking shoes and a rain coat. It’s possible to get four seasons in one day at any time of year. We’ll advise you beforehand if you’ll need something specific. A camera is a must. No need to bring any food or water as there are many places to purchase snacks, meals, fluids, etc
Is Prince Harry really Prince Charles’ son?
Can I cancel my tour and will I get a refund?
If you cancel more than seven days before the tour you’ll get whatever you’ve paid back less 25% of the total cost. Cancelling less than seven days before means you’ll get everything back less 50%. Less than 24hrs before or if you don’t show is naughty so you’ll get zip back.
Is lunch provided?
Generally speaking; no. Whenever you’re hungry we’ll take you to a pub, restaurant or tea room depending on your preference. We love my food so know some superb places. If you’d rather bring your own or snack during the day that’s fine too. We can include lunch in your tour if you’d prefer – all you have to do is ask.
What can I expect to see on the tour?
Quaint villages and stunning countryside are a certainty. Churches, pubs, shops, markets and houses. Many buildings of interest are residential properties, so while the owners are rightly proud and understand people’s fascination with them, please be considerate if taking pictures. Over 80% of the Cotswolds is farmland so you will undoubtedly see farms and animals. Travelling in smaller groups and smaller vehicles means we can get a little deeper into the countryside – this means narrow lanes, dirt roads and wildlife. We’ll introduce you to some of the people that live here too. You may even see one or two celebrity faces and the Prime Minister makes an appearance every now and then.
Can we take a sheep with us?
What qualifications do you have?
We are licenced and registered with our local authority as a tour guide and travel specialist.
Will we need a translator?
We speak English and some Portuguese. We can order a beer, ask the way to the beach and discuss football matters in Spanish. The Cotswolds speaks for itself; you wont need a translator.
Can we be picked up and dropped off at different places?
Absolutely. If arranged in advance we can pick up and drop off almost anywhere; airports, cruise ships, London hotels, caves in the Lake District, castles in Edinburgh, middle of nowhere…
What is the fastest land mammal on the planet?
What kind of vehicle will we be in?
A Volkswagen Transporter which is built to carry up to eight passengers with luggage. The passenger seats are split six in the back and two up front. There is a step up to get into the vehicle as it’s higher than your average automobile. It has low emissions and is maintained to a high standard. It’s roomy, comfy and a perfect touring vehicle. If there is any change to the vehicle we will notify you in advance.
Do you just cover the Cotswolds?
Nope. The Cotswolds is where we live and our favourite place to tour but we work all over the UK.
If your question or query is not answered here then please contact us.
HIGH SEASON V LOW SEASON
May-September – things to consider during high season:
- prices are higher and crowds are larger. There are more visitors at that time of year and some hotels put their rates up
- generally speaking the weather is better and there are a lot more daylight hours.
- summertime is festival season and there are many events at this time of year including large music festivals and hundreds of local events
- flowers in bloom, lavender fields flowering, vast fields of crops at their most colourful
October-April – things to consider during low season.
- much fewer people and more peaceful – better for photos! reduced rates everywhere
- temperatures are cooler, particularly during December and January when there may be frost and snow. It gets dark around 4pm.
- some public spaces are closed including National Trust properties, gardens, castles and palaces. The places that are open are super-cosy!
- changing seasonal colours; breathtaking autumn hues and spring suprises
A LITTLE BIT ABOUT US
Kooky Cotswold Tours is owned and operated by Lee & Emma – a couple of travel nuts. We see travel as an enjoyable and educational life experience and have spent a large part of our lives visiting as much of the world as we can possibly see. We spent two years backpacking around the world from 2004-2006 and have taken shorter jaunts to other places since then. In 2008 we upped sticks and moved to Brazil where we converted a derelict building into a guesthouse on the beach and ran it ourselves. We moved back to the UK and started Kooky Cotswold Tours in 2011.
Our experiences taught us that immersing oneself in unfamiliar places, accepting differences and understanding weirdness is a rewarding and valuable experience. The Cotswolds is our favourite place on earth and we love living here. We’d like to show everybody why we love it so much!
KOOKY COTSWOLD TOURS. LANGLEY COTTAGE. UPPER LEA FARM. OXFORDSHIRE. OX15 6ET.
TEL: 00 44 (1)295 788 054 OR 00 44 (7)779 400 421.
VAT REGISTRATION NO: 174068206