What Kind of Staycationer Are You?
TRIBAL TRIPS OR PARTY PEOPLE
Taking a trip with the whole tribe, either works for you or it doesn’t. Either way, it makes for a highly cost effective holiday (same applies if you’re gathering friends for a celebratory bash). Whether you’re gathering for a special birthday, anniversary or Christmas on neutral territory, it’s an increasingly popular holiday choice and your house options are ever expanding. Think country seat, Georgian townhouse or sprawling farm conversion where there’s space for everyone to gather and space for everyone to retreat too!
Wolborough House, Brixham, South Devon
Like a landmark hotel, Wolborough House has an enviable position on the coastline. Unlike a hotel, it’s all yours for the duration of your stay. Built by wealthy local, Charles Heliier in 1910, this Edwardian haven overlooking Brixham harbour is perfect for celebrations. Traditional charm meets contemporary living and uninterrupted views. Available to book through Discovery Holiday Homes (https://www.discoveryholidayhomes.com/ 01803 213814), sleeping 16 from £3787-£6936/week
Lloyd Hall, Mold, North Wales
Perfect for that Downton themed New Year’s Eve party, from the sweeping driveway to the antique filled, comfy sprawling living space, this manor house ticks all the necessary boxes for living it up like lord and lady what’s-his-name. If you can’t find a driver, you’ll discover this gem about 16 miles from Chester. Available to book through Wales Cottage Holidays (https://www.walescottageholidays.co.uk/ 01686 628200), sleeping 15, price on enquiry
The annual family holiday should be a silver lined cloud of quality time and happy memories. And a family friendly property is the perfect starting point. From two bedrooms to four plus, bunk beds, triple rooms to pre-adult furnishings and decor, there are homes, apartments and quirky retreats to accommodate, fascinate and make memories in.
No8 The Warren, Abersoch
Heavenly family territory right on the beach and with a stunning sunken hot tub. One double and two twin rooms naturally point to having youngsters in tow and they’ll adore the space both inside and out. Available to book through Abersoch Holiday Homes (https://www.abersochholidayhomes.co.uk/ 01758 740992), sleeping 6 from £1600-£3100/week
3 The Lookout, Saundersfoot, Pembrokeshire
Families are at the heart of this home from the bunk beds to the games/gaming room, the kids will be happily enthralled while you sip that G&T on the balcony and soak up the stunning views. Available to book through Powells Cottage Holidays (https://www.powells.co.uk/ 01834 812791) sleeping 7 from £945-£1990
Sloopside Annexe, Bantham, Devon
An uplifting space that is made for relaxing and entertaining, with a sumptuous leather sofa and chair beside the wood burning stove. As well as the 1st floor wrap around balcony, the annexe has a private landscaped garden. And if you do feel the need to bring the rest of the family too, the main house sleeps an additional 10 guests. Available to book through Discovery Holiday Homes (https://www.discoveryholidayhomes.com/ 01803 213814), sleeping 4 from £570-£1255/week
LUXURY KNOWS NO BOUNDS
If money is no object you might be more likely to own your own holiday home, but let’s pretend you just fancy a change of scene. Whether you’re dual income with no kids, or simply loaded, don’t worry about the price tag on these…
The Great House, Orford, Suffolk
Believed to have been built as a shooting lodge for the Sudbourne Estate in the early 1800s, this Grade II home was restored to stunning glory in 2017. Old meets new in the most tasteful ways. Now the view from the rolltop bath in the master en suite is calling… Available to book through Suffolk Cottage Holidays (01394 389189) sleeping 12 from £3036-£4620/week.
The Padstow Cottage, Padstow, Cornwall
As luxurious couples retreats go, this one is hot off the press and smart too. From a handmade kitchen to many bespoke fittings, this has couples at heart. The ‘his and hers’ walk in shower and the French style four poster will work for some, while a night staring at the stars from the bedroom telescope will work for others! Original flagstone floors, exposed brickwork, rich velvet and estuary views. Available to book through Cornish Horizons (https://www.cornishhorizons.co.uk 01841 533331) sleeping 2 (and welcoming 2 pets) from £1120-£1750/week.
Whether you’re after tales of horrible histories, inspiration for your debut novel or scenery to show of your filmography skills, bricks and mortar abounds with tales of renowned and infamous past owners and tenants. Follow in the footsteps of the late and current greats – who knows where it might lead…
River View, Pin Mill near Ipswich
The village of Pin Mill was the setting for Arthur Ransome’s book We Didn’t Mean to go to Sea. Throughout 2017, the Shotley Peninsula Tourist Action Group will present a series of events to mark 50 years since Arthur Ransome died and 80 years since that book was published. Events include walking and cycling trails, geo-caching, photography exhibitions, a drama production, open air cinema, a Swallows and Amazons themed camp, and a sailing event, Flotilla, the opportunity to see Arthur Ransome’s real boat – the Nancy Blackett – plus sea shanties and a literary festival. Available to book through Suffolk Cottage Holidays (01394 389189) sleeping 4 from £642-£825/week.
URBAN ESCAPE ARTISTS
If you can’t get enough country air or want to ditch your device for an unplugged break, it’s increasingly hard to get off-grid. Fear not, the dales of Yorkshire, depths of Wales, nooks of Suffolk and wilds of Cumbria all offer an escape from connectivity. Digital detox here we come…
Old Snowdon Ranger Station
Imagine having your own personal train ride part way up Mount Snowdon. This fabulous find and endearingly digitally unplugged cottage combines amazing views from its position at the foot of Snowdon with heaps of history. Now a listed building, it was formerly a station on the narrow gauge Welsh Highland Railway. Now it’s a request stop for the three steam trains that pass by each day in season. Available to book through Wales Cottage Holidays (https://www.walescottageholidays.co.uk/ 01686 628200), sleeping 2 from £253-£430/week
Knipefold Barn near Hawkeshead, Cumbria
It’s a relief to know that the glory of the Lake District is still, in parts, untarnished by mobile phones. This 5* property in a very quiet hamlet will also make you get some steps in if you fancy a pint – it’s 1 mile to the nearest pub. Stunning views and high spec accommodation for 5 people make switching off even easier. Plus if you take the dogs, you’ll be busy wandering anyway. Available to rent through Good Life Lake District Cottages (https://www.goodlifelakedistrictcottages.co.uk 01539 437417) sleeping 5 from £669-£1164/week
Pinterest-ready kitchens make for the perfect start to a foodie’s holiday. Space to prep, gadgets to use, connected to the dining area for sociable hosting. But they also come in traditional and modern shapes and forms, which will you choose?
Hutchinghayes Farmhouse, Combe Raleigh, Devon
A rural haven with a picture perfect farmhouse kitchen complete with Aga and kitchen island, and fit-for-all-the-family farmhouse table. Cook! Available to book through Discovery Holiday Homes (https://www.discoveryholidayhomes.com/ 01803 213814), sleeping 10 from £1460-£2712/week
Peacehay Barn, near Padstow, Cornwall
A spectacular modern conversion with a kitchen-dining area designed for entertaining. Pour the bubbles and get the gastronomy going! Available to book through Cornish Horizons (https://www.cornishhorizons.co.uk 01841 533331) sleeping 12 £2500-£4300/week.
In need of a rural retreat with a nod to rural life and simpler times? You can head to the country, not too far off the beaten track and still be within walking distance of a pub. You probably won’t find a Quooker and there might not be Netflix, but there might be an honesty box for farm-fresh eggs and there might be a coastal path from your garden. Peace and perspective in one swoop…
The Nutshell, nr Pluckley, Kent
As cabin holidays go, this one is contemporary and cool. Plus, it’s just for two. Squishy sofas add a comfort factor to the minimalist rural kitchen and old farming tools that adorn the walls, and workbench sideboard. Heaped in rustic charm on the outskirts of pretty Pluckley in rural Kent, Darling Buds of May country, the cabin is surrounded by apple orchards. Available to book through Kent & Sussex Holiday Cottages (https://www.kentandsussexcottages.co.uk 01580 720770) sleeping 2 from £395-£595/week
The Pump House, Hatfield rural Sussex
It won’t wow you from the outside, but step through the door and this retreat is a wonder of its own. Set in the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty amidst 6,500 acres of heathland that’s home to rare birds and plentiful wildlife with national and international protection. At the heart of Ashdown Forest, the home of Christopher Robin and Winnie the Pooh, you’ll certainly be at one with nature, if not inspired by it. Available to book through Kent & Sussex Holiday Cottages (https://www.kentandsussexcottages.co.uk 01580 720770) sleeping 2 from £320-£600/week
Have pooch, will travel. And so you should. But don’t cart all the dog paraphernalia around with you. Somewhere between a third and half of all holiday cottages now welcome dogs. Yes, there’s a small fee for Fido too, but there’s usually also a supply of bowls, occasionally towels, beds and welcome treats too. Top tip, if you’re going coastal check the dog restrictions for local beaches before you book, or even better head there out of season and have the whole sandy playground to yourselves…
The Barn, Ruswarp, Yorkshire
With its atrium style, striking kitchen space, The Barn is particularly welcoming for man and his dogs accepting one large dog or two small ones. There’s a private lawned garden and you’re just a two mile walk along the River Esk into historic Whitby. Available to rent from Ingrid Flute Yorkshire Holiday Cottages (https://www.yorkshireholidaycottages.co.uk/ 01947 600700) sleeping 6 from £781-£1242/week
Spinners Hatch, Beaminster, Dorset
Pooch will love this spot with its abundance of beautiful countryside walks within an AONB. Just 15 minutes from West Bay, Dorset’s Jurassic Coast – Spinners Hatch is ideally situated for most holiday pursuits. This 17th century Grade II listed cottage is steeped in history and was once a storehouse for the local mills. Available to book through Wyke Dorset Cottages (https://www.dorsetcottages.com/ 01929 422776) sleeping 4 from £395-£845/week
You may simply enjoy staring at the millpond as the sun rises or sets. Perhaps you crave the adrenalin the water promises, or the serenity of boating along a stretch of water waving cheery hellos to fellow cruisers. Seaside and surf aside, lakeside holidays are a tide-free alternative for windsurfing, paddleboarding, wild swimming and rowing, while the Norfolk and Suffolk Broads promise a tranquil take on a waterside holiday.
Holly Nook, Ambleside, Cumbria
Bring a boat – you have access to a private jetty. This fabulous waterside location brings you Windermere at its best, so all you have to do is dip in and enjoy it. Internally, it’s calm and warm, a place of repose and good times. Available to rent through Good Life Lake District Cottages (https://www.goodlifelakedistrictcottages.co.uk 01539 437417) sleeping 8 from £1599-£2285