Take the train to Cheltenham and discover this fashionable spa resort, home to the world-class racecourse and the prestigious Cheltenham Festival. Add to that a buzzing restaurant scene and a location on the edge of the Cotswolds, and you have the recipe for a perfect rail break.
Cheltenham is easily accessible by train from many popular cities around the country – you can travel from London to Cheltenham in about 2h, Manchester to Cheltenham in 2h 22m and Birmingham to Cheltenham in 48m. Use our Journey Planner above to start your search for train times and tickets – we’ll always show you the cheapest tickets to Cheltenham so you can save on your trip.
It’s easy to get to Cheltenham by train from all over the UK, with direct routes from some of the country’s biggest cities, including London, Birmingham and Manchester. Most trains to Cheltenham arrive into Cheltenham Spa station, located approximately 1 mile from the town centre.
Planning your next trip to Cheltenham? Have a look at our table below – we’ve highlighted some of the most popular routes – or start your search in our Journey Planner at the top of the page.
|Route||Fastest journey||Train operator|
|London to Cheltenham||1h 55m||Great Western Railway|
|Manchester to Cheltenham||2h 19m||CrossCountry|
|Bristol to Cheltenham||38m||CrossCountry|
|Birmingham to Cheltenham||38m||CrossCountry|
|Cardiff to Cheltenham||1h 7m||CrossCountry, Transport for Wales|
|Swindon to Cheltenham||54m||Great Western Railway|
|Gloucester to Cheltenham||8m||Great Western Railway, CrossCountry, Transport for Wales|
|Worcester to Cheltenham||23m||Great Western Railway|
There are a number of ways you can find cheap train tickets to Cheltenham to help you save money and explore the city. Our easy-to-use Journey Planner can help you find the cheapest tickets on the days you want to travel.
The first way you can get cheaper train tickets to Cheltenham is by using a National Railcard. If you travel more than a few times a year, buying an eligible Railcard can allow you to save up to 1/3 off the price of your train tickets*, meaning you can spend more on things to see and do. Railcards cater to different age ranges and circumstances so, from the Senior Railcard to the Family & Friends Railcard and the newly-introduced 26-30 Railcard (Millennial Railcard), you'll be sure to find your match. To see the different types of Railcards, eligibility requirements and how to buy one online, check out our Railcards page.
Another way to save money on train tickets to Cheltenham is by purchasing an Advance train ticket. In most cases, the earlier you book Advance tickets, the cheaper these tickets will be. Advance tickets typically go on sale 12 weeks in advance, so look out for the ‘Advance ticket’ type when your search for tickets using our Journey Planner.
You can also save money by ‘splitting’ your tickets – use our SplitSave app feature and we’ll find the cheapest combination of fares for you, where possible. Look out for the blue and white SplitSave icon when you search for tickets to Cheltenham on our app. Curious? Discover how split ticketing works on our SplitSave page.
Want more tips on how to save money on train tickets? Check out our Cheap train tickets page.
*Conditions and peak travel time exclusions may apply on some railcard types.
Three words: come in March. The yearly Cheltenham Festival is the UK's top steeplechase event, attracting about 40,000 people to a race meet that culminates with the legendary Gold Cup. It's the key diary date in the jump racing calendar, offering four days of spills and thrills against the backdrop of the Cotswold Hills.
Horse racing doesn't get much better. If horses aren't your thing, try heading to the beautiful Promenade, a wide, almost Parisian style tree-lined boulevard that is home to some of the best shopping in town. If you're looking for upmarket fashion brands such as Reiss and Jigsaw, you'll find them here, and there are more shops and bars on neighbouring Regent Street. The latter is also home to the Everyman Theatre, whose spectacular period auditorium hosts everything from Shakespeare to panto.
Other nearby cultural attractions include The Wilson, Cheltenham's art gallery and museum. Permanent collections cover local history, the Arts and Crafts movement and much more, while temporary exhibitions range from painting to video art. For more superb shopping and entertainment, head south past the pretty Imperial Gardens to the Montpelier area. It's home to a host of fashionable hangouts, including bars, restaurants and boutiques.