The Cotswolds are a famous part of the English countryside. The area straddles various county boundaries and Bath is on the southern edge of the territory in question.
The area is best known for its attractive undulations, but the interesting stone and special villages are also worth a mention. Taking in all these splendid features from the air is recommended, especially for tourists who do not want to embark on the gruelling 100-mile challenge of the Cotswolds Way. It is possible to obtain a great view of the land on a sunny day from a hot air balloon.
When in flight and in decent visibility, it is feasible enough to identify some of the more prominent hills if a map has been consulted in advance. The Severn Valley is particularly noticeable, as it is bordered by a steep escarpment. However, many of the hills in the Cotswolds are grassy mounds. The inclines of the hills of the Cotswolds tend to be on the gentle side. The stone walls are an interesting feature of the landscape when seen from above. On a fine day, the tallest hill in the region, Cleeve Hill, may be visible – the hill is just over 1,000 feet tall and is located in the vicinity of Cheltenham.
Geologists have pointed out the importance of Jurassic limestone in relation to the Cotswolds. On the ground, it is possible to appreciate the presence of fossils in this rock. However, ordinary people in balloons may be much more interested in the unusual colours of the local stone. It is striking for two reasons; firstly, depending on weathering, it can appear to be the hue of honey; secondly, the shade of the stone varies geographically, with the stone near Bath paler than the golden norm at the centre of the region.
When travelling via balloon, it is fun to try to spot the small urban areas in the Cotswolds. Cirencester is a little nearer Bath than Bristol. It is one of the larger settlements in the region. Cheltenham is more distant from Bath than Cirencester as the crow flies, so it may not be possible to see its Georgian architecture close up.
The Cotswolds contains a plethora of charming villages so there should be an opportunity to pick out some with unusual names or features of interest. Armscote, Shipton-under-Wychwood and Longborough are just three of the numerous interesting villages in the district.