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Best outdoor dining spots in the Cotswolds

Posted: Wed, 16th Aug 2023
The Riverside, Lechlade on Thames

When you think of the Cotswolds, you picture lush green fields, gentle hills and countryside stretching for miles around dotted with sheep and locally grown produce. You can hear the wildlife in the river nearby, breathe in that fresh air deeply. Now imagine this idyllic setting being enjoyed from a pub garden, Sunday roast on the table in front of you, cold glass of locally brewed ale in your hand. This is what life was made for! Read on for some of our favourite places to find the best outdoor dining in the Cotswolds.

The Mount Inn, Stanton

Overlooking the village of Stanton, The Mount Inn has a terrace where you can dine outside and bathe in the lush greenery of the Cotswolds which fills the world before you. Beyond the village you see the rolling hills which have built the Cotswolds’ reputation as being one of the most popular countryside getaways.

The Maytime Inn, Burford

Boasting an unbeatable garden with countryside views, an outdoor bar and converted horse box serving fresh pizza, you are sure of a top-notch dining experience at The Maytime Inn. In the summer the views are spectacular, but these can still be enjoyed in cooler months by one of the fire pits.

The Black Horse, Amberley

Known for its burgers and views, this is an ideal spot to stop off at when you’re exploring the area. Set just outside of Minchinhampton Common, near Stroud, there are wonderful views across this popular area. Serving lunch and dinner, you can also just enjoy an afternoon drink in front of the Common.

Garden at The Black Horse, Amberley

The Feathered Nest, Nether Westcote

For fine dining with a view, The Feathered Nest offers uninterrupted, panoramic scenes across the Evenlode Valley. From the garden the sky stretches for miles all around you, making this an unmissable, luxurious place to stop off at.

The Riverside, Lechlade

As the name would suggest, The Riverside is right on the river’s edge in Lechlade. It can be a busy spot where you can watch the swans, ducks and boats passing by. After your meal, hire a boat and sail under the 18th-century ha-penny bridge!

The Riverside, Lechlade on Thames

The Swan Inn, Bibury

This beautiful country restaurant with bar is just off the River Coln by Bibury Trout Farm in a wonderful part of the Cotswolds. The indoor dining area is stunning, but you can enjoy the country air on their outdoor terrace too. When booking online you can specifically choose an outdoor table, so you’re sure to have the best spot.

The Trout at Tadpole Bridge, Buckland Marsh

The only pub in the Cotswolds that you can arrive to by boat! On the banks of the River Thames this charming location is perfect for a leisurely meal by the water watching the birds and boats pass by. They pride themselves on their Sunday roasts and enjoying it outside is the ‘gravy on the potatoes’!

Merchant House Outdoor Dining
Merchant House

Our cottages with great gardens

If you want to create your own picturesque al fresco dining scene, choose one of our cottages with fantastic views from the garden. Add to the table a vase of fresh flowers, your favourite bottle of wine, locally sourced ingredients for your lunch or supper and your closest friends and family and you’ve got the recipe for a delectable evening together.

Outbak Shepherds Hut, Hailes

With its own private decking, you can take your meals outside and keep your eyes and ears out for a passing steam train. In the distance you can sometimes see the 300m-high gravity fed fountain at Stanway House. This shepherd’s hut comes with a view you don’t see everyday!

Little Owl Barn, Upton Snodsbury

Sitting outside Little Owl Barn at the wooden table set with your home-cooked meal you are surrounded by the owner’s fields and orchard, catching glimpses of the Malvern Hills in the distance. As the cottage name would suggest, little owls often roost in the orchard, keep your fingers crossed that they pay you a visit during your stay!

Fisherman’s Cottage, Cotswold Water Park

Before heading out to enjoy the facilities, enjoy a leisurely breakfast while soaking up the sun on the banks of Somerford Lagoon on your own terrace at Fisherman’s Cottage. You will never tire of the view as you spot ducks, herons and coots and enjoy spectacular sunsets reflecting in the waters.

The Old Pump House, Forest of Dean

A more secluded location, but no less beautiful, is the terrace at The Old Pump House. With two picnic benches, there is space for your group to enjoy a meal surrounded by the forest where your only neighbours are birds and wild boar.

The Old Barn, Crawley

At The Old Barn you will adore the far-reaching and widespread views from the rear garden. Opening the patio doors you can dine inside while feeling like you’re in the garden, take your meals to the table outside or even spread a blanket and have an impromptu picnic. This is the ideal picture-perfect setting for long summer evenings as you linger over dinner and drinks.

Ridgeway Farmhouse, Alcester

This farmhouse is an unexpected gem. Unassuming from the outside, the spectacular views from the rear of the cottage are breathtaking. The dining area out in the garden is begging to be filled with beautiful table arrangements and tempting meals. A large parasol provides shelter on hotter days and there are loungers to put your feet up and enjoy after-dinner drinks!

Court Cottage, Painswick

If you think wishing for a magnificent view across the Painswick Valley, a large outdoor dining set seating eight in a gorgeous cottage garden with a fire pit to keep chilly evenings is too much to ask for, Court Cottage will prove you wrong. This dream come true setting is surrounded by 94 acres of meadows, woodland and a gently flowing stream.

Grindstone Mill, Wotton-under-Edge

An unexpected view, Grindstone Mill’s front garden is a magical space watching over the Little Avon and its wooden walking bridge. Surrounded by a well-maintained knot garden with herbs and wonderfully scented plants you are transported to another world. Dining here will be an experience not to be forgotten.

Merchant House, Charlbury

At Merchant House (pictured above), the garden is the view. The garden has been beautifully landscaped to provide three separate areas, the furthest being a dining area with wooden table and chairs set under an oak pergola. Adding wildflowers in keeping with the garden style and crockery for each setting, this is a stunning place to enjoy a celebratory meal.

Read More: 8 must-try ice cream shops in the Cotswolds

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