Headed to the UK next Spring. Maiden voyage. Primary focus of the trip is London (7 nights at London County Hall), but I am hoping to be able to do about 5 days of sightseeing in the countryside outside of London prior to the London stay. Thinking it would be good to keep the sightseeing within fairly close proximity, so as to not waste precious time and expense in transit. I am considering visiting Chepstow (Tinturn Abbey, Caldecot Castle, walking trails of the Wye Valley), Gloucester Cathedral, Bristol sights (Cathedral, Harbour, Park St., Corn St., Clifton, etc.), Bath (Palladian Bridge, Royal Crescent, Bath Houses, etc.), Cotswolds, and Salisbury (Stonehenge). It is my hope to return to Great Britain after I am retired, so there is no worry about missing other perhaps arguably more worthy attractions outside of London (I know there are many).
I am also thinking about hiring a car at LHR for this countryside portion, then returning to LHR and public transporting in from there.
1) Is this too much to squeeze into 5 days?
2) I haven't driven on the left (wrong ) side of the road in over twenty-five years. It shouldn't be that hard to do on country roads or open highway, should it? Those of you in the UK who have driven abroad on the right side of the road, how did you find the adjustment to be?
Any and all additional suggestions for this area (attractions, dining, transportation, etc.) would be appreciated (I have no idea what I'm doing really, just stumbling around in the dark, focusing on where the spinner landed). Hoping to hear from some of our UK friends sg1974, arkwright, chrisf, proelite, absolutelegend1, though recommendations from all Insiders are sought, and many thanks in advance.