Today I want to share my guide to a Burford circular walk in the Cotswolds with you. This country walk near London is a fun way to get out into the Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in England. Along the way there are pretty villages, rolling hills, and riverside scenery to take in. Read on for the route, video, and photos. I’ve included a Burford circular walk map as well.

Burford Circular Walk

Burford Circular Walk

This Burford circular walk is great if you want to go on a country ramble in one of the most famous places in Britain. It starts and ends on the high street in Burford, so you can combine it with a trip to this famous town in Oxfordshire if you want to.

Burford, England

How to Get to Burford

Burford is around an hour and 45 minutes by car from London. There’s a free parking lot in town, so it’s an easy walk to do if you drive.

If you want to take public transport, there are direct trains from London Paddington to Charlbury. The journey takes an hour and 15 minutes.

From Charlbury station, it’s a 15-minute taxi ride to Burford. Make sure to book a taxi in advance, as they’re few and far between in the Cotswolds.

Burford House in the Cotswolds

The Walk

I’ve arrived in Burford by train and taxi. I’m excited to be in the Gateway to the Cotswolds on a bright sunny day, and I can’t wait to get out into the English countryside in the Windrush Valley.

If the ramble is anywhere near as beautiful as the Moreton-in-Marsh circular walk I did in the nearby Evenlode Valley in Gloucestershire, I’m in for a treat.

My Burford circular walk route will cover around 5 miles (8 kilometers). It will take me through Cotswolds villages, across fields, and along the River Windrush.

High Street, Burford, Cotswolds

Burford Circular Walk Directions

Once in town, I start my Burford circular walk on the high street. This place is one of the prettiest towns in the Cotswolds, and the road is lined with stone cottages, country shops, heritage pubs, and historic hotels.

Burford High Street in the Cotswolds


After walking down the hill on the high street, I continue my Burford circular walk by crossing the 4-arched medieval bridge over the River Windrush.

Soon I’m climbing a set of steps at a roundabout, leaving the town and streets behind as I make my way past a World War II pillbox and into a field.

Cottage on a Burford circular walk in the Cotswolds


The field takes me up to a stunning historic coaching inn with a 16th-century Grade II-listed cottage visitors can rent.

Burford Cottage near Fulbrook

I take a right when I reach it, passing beautiful Cotswold stone houses and foraging for sun-kissed blackberries as I make my way down the road to Fulbrook.

Once there, I walk through the village and enjoy views of St James the Great Church as I go. The church is a Norman beauty with traces of earlier Saxon work, and it’s great to see from a distance.

Widley Copse

After walking through the village, my Burford circular walk continues as I turn off on a path leading to Widley Copse. I walk a mile (1.6 kilometers) through golden fields shimmering in the sun. The sounds of tractors and birdsong vie for my attention as I go.

Soon I reach Widley Copse and the scenery changes dramatically. I find myself in a woodland area as green as the fields were gold. It’s cool and shady here, and my skin enjoys the break from the heat as I make my way along the trail.

Trees in Widley Copse in the Cotswolds

Paynes Farm and Handley Plain

Leaving the copse, I continue my Burford circular walk along a sunny path between fields dotted with hay bales. The trail leads me to Paynes Farm, where I walk past a pretty stone cottage with roses climbing up the side.

Turning right up a short hill, I find myself back in the fields on Handley Plain. I walk down a narrow path with views across the countryside. Descending, I cross a stream next to a beautiful house before finding myself back on a road.

Field Near Burford, Cotswolds


My Burford circular walk continues along the road and past some of the prettiest Cotswold stone houses I’ve seen yet. Soon I come to Swinbrook, another of the Windrush Valley villages I’m excited to discover.

St Mary's Church, Swinbrook

This chocolate-box English village is home to the 12th-century St Mary’s Church. I can’t help ducking into it. Inside I find the Fettiplace Effigies, two unusual 17th-century trios of stacked reclining figures sitting side-by-side.

Fettiplace Effigies in the Cotswolds


Back out in Swinbrook, I continue my Burford circular walk by making my way out of the churchyard, past rose-covered cottages, and through a narrow passageway between dry stone walls.

Then I’m back out in the open countryside, walking through green fields to make my way to the site of the medieval village of Widford. All that’s left of this deserted village is the pint-size St Oswald’s Church, which was built over an ancient Roman villa.

St Oswald's Church, Widford

River Windrush

Passing the church, I turn left, cross a bridge over the River Windrush, and walk along the road for a bit. Then I turn right on a path next to the river and spend the next half hour rambling through fields along the water.

I see swans gliding through the reeds, spot cows on the opposite bank, and take in rural scenery as I make my way back to Burford.

Cows on the River Windrush near Burford


Eventually the path brings me to a country road that leads back to the high street in Burford. I pass increasingly dense clusters of houses and cottages before my Burford circular walk ends in the heart of town.

The walk has taken me around 3 hours to complete, including lots of photo stops. It’s been a great experience, and I’m glad I’ve gotten to enjoy another country walk in Britain.

Burford High Street, Cotswolds

Burford Circular Walk Map

If you want to go on this Burford circular walk, you can find a map here. It covers a similar route to the one I did, with an extension to the village of Asthall.

There are lots of maps online that will show you more options for similar Cotswolds walks as well. You can also get the ordnance map for Burford on Amazon here.

You can see more walks in the area in the book 50 Walks in the Cotswolds, too. You can get it on Amazon here.

Burford Cottages

Burford Circular Walk

I hope you’ve enjoyed this guide to a Burford circular walk in the Cotswolds. It makes for a great day out, and I’m sure you’ll have fun if you go. Happy hiking!

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Burford Circular Walk

2 Comments on Lady’s Burford Circular Walk and Map

  1. Loved this walk. It is very familiar to me as we lived in close by Banbury and it was a favorite Sunday outing when the children were young. One of many beautiful villages outside London.

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