The Cotswolds are a range of hills in west-central England, sometimes called the “Heart of England”, an area 25 miles across and 90 miles long. The area has been designated as the Cotswold Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
Popular with both the English themselves and international visitors from all over the world, the area is well known for gentle hillsides (‘wolds’), outstanding countryside with river valleys, water meadows and beech woods, sleepy ancient limestone villages, historic market towns and for being so ‘typically English’ where time has stood still for over 300 years.
Visitors come from all over the world to take in the stunning views of the Cotswolds and its quaint villages.
Appearing much as they did hundreds of years ago, the stone villages of the Cotswolds provide a unique view of 17th- and 18th-century England. Although it is now chiefly a tourist destination, it was the wool trade and later the cloth weaving industry that originally made the Cotswolds famous.
Most of the stone buildings were built with a honey-colored limestone quarried in the surrounding hills. These limestones are still quarried and are available in many forms.