Travel|| A day exploring the Cotswolds

Last weekend I got back behind the wheel of a car. After five years. FIVE. To spend a day exploring the Cotswolds with my mum and dad. A little family day trip – in a rental, which I didn’t want to see go back. The rental in question, a Kia Picanto X-Line, in the most gorgeous pea green. I wanted to keep it!

A day out in the cotswolds with Kia Picanto

Anyway, back to my trip…

I’m actually from the outskirts of the Cotswolds. My “home home” is a little town called Evesham, but I haven’t spent much time exploring the cute surrounding villages. When you’re little I don’t think you appreciate it so much either, so although we did lots of outings, walks and bike rides, we never made the most of being so close. Now, I can see how pretty the area really is.

A day out in the cotswolds with Kia Picanto (3)A day out in the cotswolds with Kia Picanto (3)A day out in the cotswolds with Kia Picanto

The Cotswolds covers almost 800 square miles and runs through five counties – Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire, Warwickshire, Wiltshire and Worcestershire. It’s hugely rural, with stunning views, historical attractions, plenty of walks, market towns, local & independent eateries and shops, and cute village pubs. Truly too much to see in one day, but offering plenty of options and locations to explore it was a great choice for our day out.

A day out in the cotswolds with Kia Picanto (3) A day out in the cotswolds with Kia PicantoA day out in the cotswolds with Kia Picanto (3)

The weather on Saturday was actually pretty miserable. There were a few breaks in the drizzle, but we didn’t let it rain on our parade (haha) or spoil the day. In fact, it was nice to have something to do in the dreary weather, rather than be stuck indoors!

We tootled through several villages, including Overbury, Broadway, Ford, Willersey and Littleton, among others. Stopping to see a couple of the sights. Pulling in to take cute pics – yes I did this! And calling out the different things we could spot. There was no eye spy (as not to distract me from my driving haha), but there was lots of excitement as we spotted horses, yellow fields and Broadway tower! Ok, mainly from me.

A day out in the cotswolds with Kia Picanto A day out in the cotswolds with Kia Picanto A day out in the cotswolds with Kia Picanto

Dad and I switched in and out of driving, which I loved. Dad sometimes taking the narrower roads and windy country routes, whilst I stuck to the slightly easier.

Was I nervous to get back in the driving seat? YES. Even more so as my mum, who’s renowned for being a terrible backseat driver, was in the car too. But after a little practice with the clutch and steering I was off. It really is like riding a bike (not peddling, but the knowledge haha), and you won’t be almost sat on the steering wheel for long – Dad was laughing at how close I had the seat.

A day out in the cotswolds with Kia Picanto A day out in the cotswolds with Kia Picanto A day out in the cotswolds with Kia Picanto

We did have a bit of a giggle at the first road the sat nav took me down – you’ll never guess what it was called. Crashmore Lane! Talk about tempting fate.

We did also stop at a fab pub for lunch – one my dad had been to several years ago, and remembered being good. It sure was!

The Plough at Ford was reasonably quiet when we first arrived at 12pm, but soon got busier. Service wasn’t overly speedy, but was friendly enough. The food was great – HUGE portions, seriously tasty, all making great choices (look out for the full review soon!).

A day out in the cotswolds with Kia Picanto

Such a lovely day out. A cute family road trip, filled with laughter and sightseeing.

Talking about the road trip, let’s get back to the car…as I’m still wishing it didn’t have to go back…

The new Kia Picanto X-Line looks smart (Dad said it has real kerb presence), the pea green is a gorgeous colour (one of the main things I look for in a car, of course – who wants an ugly car colour?) and is actually a pretty smooth drive (we went along some pretty bumpy roads on the way to Cheltenham). It’s pretty quiet too and we could easily speak to the person sat in the back – something my parents struggled with in a Peugeot 108 rental last year!

A day out in the cotswolds with Kia Picanto

It was sleek inside, still with that new car smell (I do love that scent), and really spacious for a smaller model.

We thought the tech was cool – I’ve never had a car with a reverse camera as well as sensors before. I liked how simple it was to connect your phone up too, making it easy if you need to answer calls. The only downside being you do have to use your phone for the sat nav (i.e. Google Maps), which wasn’t always glitch free when we were in the middle of nowhere due to having no signal.

A day out in the cotswolds with Kia Picanto

We really liked the electric mirrors too, with the navigation buttons on the drivers side door. It made it super easy to change the mirror on the passenger side, and there was also an option to fold the mirrors in completely. This is perfect for where my parents live as it’s on a main road.

It was great to try the car out with Dad too, as he knew what he was looking for, and what makes a good car. He’s my go-to when it comes to anything like this, and he said it even exceeded his expectations!

A day out in the cotswolds with Kia Picanto A day out in the cotswolds with Kia PicantoA day out in the cotswolds with Kia Picanto

Altogether, it made me miss driving. Something I didn’t think possible, when I live in London, and use public transport all the time, which arrives within a few minutes. But it did. And now I want a car again!

It was one fab day out exploring. No where enough time to discover the Cotswolds, but we did plenty for one day – and enjoyed a delicious lunch too.

A day out in the cotswolds with Kia Picanto A day out in the cotswolds with Kia PicantoA day out in the cotswolds with Kia Picanto

I’m now dying to book road trip weekend away! Have you explored much of the Cotswolds? Do you enjoy road tripping? Where’s your favourite place to road trip to?

Chloe xx

* I was provided with a weekend rental of the new Kia Picanto X-Line. All views my own. 

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