Gloucestershire is without a doubt one of the most beautiful counties in the UK, and it would be fair to say that it’s even more beautiful from above, which is perhaps why so many people enjoy a leisurely hot air balloon flight in Gloucestershire.
If you’re thinking of seeing the county of from above, take a look at our top five aerial views of of Gloucestershire for a brief rundown of the sights you simply mustn’t miss:
1. Gloucester Cathedral
Gloucestershire is not without its fine architecture, but perhaps the best building to see from the vantage point of a hot air balloon is Gloucester Cathedral., which was built between 678 and 679 AD and is perched to the north of Gloucester not far from the River Severn (which also looks spectacular from above.)
2. The Forest of Dean
Surely one of nature’s finest moments, the Forest of Dean is a triangular area of land situated in the west of the county and is hemmed in by the Rivers Wye and Severn and Gloucester. The forest measures more than 42.5 square miles and is a joy to behold from above with its ancient trees, free-roaming wildlife (which includes roe deer and wild boar) and the wildflowers that litter the landscape.
3. Wildfowl and Wetland Trust
Located in the Slimbridge area, the Wildfowl and Wetland Trust is a wetland reserve on an estuary of the nearby River Severn. The reserve was opened back in 1964 by Sir Peter Scott and is currently made up of 500,000 square metres of land, a tropical house restaurant and an art gallery. As well as being a great place to visit, it also offers spectacular views from above thanks to the variety of wildlife, which includes white-fronted geese and swans viewable from the skies.
4. The Cotswolds
Perhaps the jewel in the crown of Gloucestershire, the Cotswolds are one the most beautiful areas in the country and home to the most wonderful landscapes, which are simply stunning when looked at from hot air balloons or low flying planes.
The whole area is covered in rolling green hills, sumptuous meadows filled with beautiful wildflowers, and sweeping areas of limestone – all of which combine to create the most majesti,c sweeping views. So picturesque is the area that it was designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty back in 1966.
5. Gloucester Docks
Slightly less natural than the Cotswolds, but no less impressive an aerial view are the Gloucester Docks. The docks are a popular attraction in the area with both locals and tourists and are a great place to visit for a drink and an ice cream on a hot summer’s day. They are also a very impressive area to fly over, thanks to the interesting boats, waterways and man-made structures on display in the area.
As you can see, Gloucestershire is a county made for aerial exploration, and these five aerial views are just the tip of the iceberg in terms of sky-based sightseeing.