There’s plenty to fill your time in Cirencester. Choose from days out in countryside parks and lakes, Roman monuments and artefacts, an arts and craft centre and a modern cinema.
Activities in Cirencester
Cirencester was once a Roman city called Corinium. You can explore its fascinating history by witnessing the locally-found Roman remains at the Corinium Museum on Park Street near Home Park. The museum holds the biggest and best collection of Romano-British artefacts in the country and is therefore of international importance. The museum is open between 10am and 5pm from Monday to Saturday, and between 2pm and 5pm on Sunday. It should take between one and two hours to go round the museum, and they recommend visiting after 2 pm on weekdays for a quiet visit.
Continuing the Roman history theme, Cirencester Amphitheatre is an ancient monument on the outskirts of the town on Cotswold Avenue. Built at the beginning of the 2nd century, the amphitheatre is thought to have had a capacity of around 8,000 spectators who would turn up to witness public games. Entry to the monument is free and there’s also free parking available on-site.
At the heart of Cirencester town centre is the stunning Cirencester Park. It belongs to the Bathurst Estate, a Grade II listed mansion and gardens with a giant walled hedge set in over 11,000 acres of pristine land. It’s free to explore on foot or on horseback, thanks to the generosity of the 9th Earl and Countess Bathurst. We recommend taking some time away from exploring the town centre and going for a peaceful walk here on a summer’s day.
Cotswold Country Park and Beach
Situated between Cirencester Town Centre and our Swindon North hotel, Cotswold Country Park Lake and Beach is a great place to go when the sun is out. Choose from chilling out on the beach, taking to the water in a pedalo, paddleboard, or kayak or exploring the walking trails around the two lakes and surrounding woodland. Once you’ve worked up a hunger, there’s a pizzeria and ice cream shop, as well as a gift shop and toilets.
New Brewery Arts
Fans of the arts will enjoy a visit to New Brewery Arts at Brewery Court, just around the corner from Corinium Museum. It is made up of a main gallery of rotating exhibitions by some of the country’s best makers and designers, a craft shop selling homeware and jewellery and maker studios where you can meet local artists and see them at work. You can even choose to buy their crafts or visit the cafe where you can enjoy light snacks and refreshments. The centre also puts on occasional classes, so check their website for upcoming events if you want to get crafty.
Vue Cinema Stroud
The Cotswolds has one of the best climates in the UK, which is why most of the activities we’ve recommended are outdoors. However, we all know that the British weather has a habit of misbehaving. If that’s the case, we recommend a trip to see the latest blockbuster at Vue Cinema Stroud. Stroud is a few miles north of Cirencester, and roughly the same distance from the town centre as our Gloucester (Little Wycombe) hotel. The cinema has six big screens, including 3D and the latest picture and audio technology, and plenty of food and drinks available to buy and take in with you.