I've been to The Cotswolds a few times and there are so many ways to map out a charming route no matter how much time you have. You really do need a car to zip around properly - don't be afraid! That terrified pit in your stomach will lessen up....at least it did for me. It's really not that bad - but you should know how to drive stick as the cars are so much cheaper! Watch out for the roundabouts. And you'll feel so smug and skilled after driving in England - it gave me confidence to drive in Tel Aviv, Belgium and other countries.
I'm often in search of the quintessential English pubs around the U.K. and I found it at The Feathered Nest in Nether Westcote (I feel so charming just saying these names!) - the photos speak for themselves. If you're in search of a Nancy Meyers movie set in England, you'll find it here. Mismatched pillows, roaring fires, cozy puddings, and cold beer - along with panoramic Cotswolds views - well, The Feathered Nest is just about the perfect place. You can also stay for the night, which I haven't done yet - but I will!
If you're lucky, you might come across the butts of a man and his horse...which reminds me, in my next life, I want to be on the English riding circuit.