The perennial appeal of a self-catering holiday lies in the fact that it offers you all the comforts and facilities of a home base but with the freedom to eat, drink, get up and come back whenever you like. Beyond these basic facts, the range of self-catering accommodation is vast, taking in everything from state of the art contemporary eco-lodges to traditional stone cottages and villas to restored barns, caravans and much, much more - in an equally diverse range of locations from the wild coasts of Scotland, Wales and Ireland to sun-baked Tuscany and untouched rural Sardinia and the lush forests of Bavaria, with our top, eco-friendly selections listed below - all of which you can reach by train or ferry.
Check out some of our expert travel writers recommendations for green self-catered places to stay on our award-winning blog, including Catherine Mack's recommendations for green holidays in Ireland and eco-breaks in England, plus greentraveller founder Richard Hammond's tips on sustainable holidays and places to stay in the Mediterranean.
Find out how to get to self-catered properties across Europe and beyond using our Journey Planner.
from £295 for a winter short break, to £789 for a week in high season
£39.31 to £75.98 per night (plus standing charge of £70.98 to £103.75 per...
From £223 for 2 nights in low season to £814 for 7 nights in high season
Prices per week (Low to Peak Season): 4 en-suite bedroom Cortijo: €1250-€...
Prices start from £480 for a 2 night stay in Low season in a 3 bed...
€60-€150 per night for 2 people, each additional person €5 per night. €35...
B&B £60 per room per night, single occupancy £35, £55 for stays of 3 nights or more; self-catering per night ranges from £45 Nov-Feb, £50 Mar-Oct except July and August £60 (2010 prices)
£98 (village field) £110 (private site) per night. Prices based on 2 people for a 7-night stay in peak season. Short breaks are available.
High Season Prices - 2 Pers barn Short breaks £324-£395/Week £572 | 4 Pers barn Short break £465-£536/Week £776 | 6 Pers barn Short break £660-£759/Week £1083
Yurts, tipi & shepherds hut £158, bell tents £113 in high season per night, min 2 nights week time, min 3 nights weekends.
7 days low season £315 for 2 people, £597 for 8 people. High season £739 for 2 people, £2296 for 8 people
Yurts Low -High Season: 2 Days £200-240, 3 days £240-300, 4 Days £280-360, 7 days £400-520. Tipis Med-High Season: 2 Days £180-240, 3 Days £240-300, 4 Days £240-280, 7 Days £385-455
£270-£570 per week. Out of main holiday season short breaks from £150
From £320 Low Season to £495 high season 7 day duration starting Saturdays. Short breaks available Low season
From £599 for low season short break From £1039 for mid season short break From£1909 for peak season short break Prices for Residence 3 Bed in 2016
Bunk in shared room £12 adult, £8 under 16. Bunk room for 2 £40, for 4 £40, for 6 £60. Entire bunkhouse £140. Summer camping from £5 pp for own tent pitch, to £34 for 3 person yurt incl. bedding.
Prices based on two people sharing , £128 for a two night stay off-season, £256 for a week off-season and £320 Summer and Peak season periods.
Self catering: £200 - £850 per week [small party discounts]. B&B £32.50 pppn [two sharing]
High season - 1 week sleeping up to 13 £1350, but much lower outside of school holidays. Couples have option of renting only one end. Weeks at low season begin at £445.
Lodge s/b from £ 246, wk from £352 • Pod from £40 pn • Pitch from £10pn
Weeks: £420 to £550. Short breaks: £250 to £320 (discounts possible)
The eco barns each sleep a maximum of 4-7 people, and cost between £365 and £1365 per week. Short breaks for up to 4 nights stay are also available, costing from £300.
From £40 per person, per night (based on a minimum of 2 nights in B&B). From £60 per night self-catering
One bedroom cottage in high season for a couple is 350 euro, Two bedroom cottage for a family in high season is 500 euro.
Bryniau Pell wknd £210 extra night £102 wk £420 Nyth y Wennol wknd £230 extra night £115 wk £445
Weekly high season - Pinder £1040, Rainster/Daisybank £867, Hipley £805. Short breaks - P £835, R/DB £695, H £645 Glamping pods £120
Per night for 2 adults sharing doubles £150 - £175, suites £200 - £225. lodges £250 - £275
£4750 per week high season, 2 nights 70%, 3 nights 75%, 4 nights 80% of weekly rate
Week - Coot Cottage sleep 2 + cot £765.00, sleep 6 Avocet £1679.00, Sleep 6 luxury Garden House £1839.00
Depending of Property for 2 persons £85 - £150 per night. 15% discount for guests arriving for short breaks by train.
From £319.00 to: £649.00 (based on two staying)
Weekly rates - High (July and August) 950 euros. Standard (rest of the year) 820 euros
Ty Fferm Hen August based on 2 sharing- 7 days £29ea per night. Peacock Cottage August 7 days / 6 people £14ea per night.
3 nights in peak season £312, low season 4 nights £252
£70 per night based on 2 sharing
Between £335 and £650 per week epending on yurt and season. Contact directly for short stay prices, only available in low/mid season.
B&B: £35 pppn. Self-catering: from £300 per week.
The Granite Barn (sleeps 6) £1170- £450. weekends available out of season. The Old Farm Cottage (sleeps 4) £842- £322. Weekends also available.
Weekly prices Barley Store £235-£370 Corn View £336-£528 Rye Barn £382-£600
£450-£950 per week, depending on season. Short breaks available. Reduced prices for small parties (i.e. a couple using only one bedroom)
B&B Standard £140, Superior £160, Junior Suite £180, Fairway Suite £200, Lynedoch Suite £220, Lodge House (sleeps 6) £250
From £459, based on up to 6 people sharing for a week
From £225, based on 2 people staying for three nights
Cottages £220 per person per week; B&B rooms: £35-55 self catering or with breakfast.
£130-£185 per room
£ 1450 for one week high season in smallest cottage which sleeps 4
92 € guestroom, 119 € guestroom, 125 € guestroom per night incl breakfast, 660 € selfcatering apartment per week
Low season £360 per week, Mid season £520 p week, Peak season £640 p week
from ££367.00 up to:£766.00 (based on two staying)
Self-catering from €500 a week; residential weekends from €295 per person sharing
For 7 nights Stables costs between £281 to £442 and Loft costs between £306 to £480. Short breaks from £242 to £284.
Weekend €239, week €399 all year round
From £34pppn. High season 7 nights both Cottage and Barn (sleeping up to 22) £7500. Barn (sleeping 10) £4950. Cottage (sleeping 12) £5940. No weekends in high season.
Double £65, Twin £65, Single £35. Self Catering Apartment 2 people Low Season £263. per week, High £375. Peak £413.
B&B £80 min 2 nights. Beechenhill Cottage costs £240-£370/short break £290-£420/week. Cottage by Pond costs £300-£600/short break £390-£720/week
Latest reviewed accommodation
"This is the first castle in Ireland to go green, with Charles then going on to convert the whole estate to meet EU Flower Ecolabel standards and gaining the award in 2009... Belle Isle is indeed a ‘beautiful island’, on the northern tip of Upper Lough Erne. The estate, and working farm, is a designated Area of Special Scientific Interest..."
The Grove Cottages
A selection of 28 self-catering cottages, huts and barns, each with their own unique character and set in peaceful country surroundings. There’s the two bedroom Orchard Cottage with its inglenook fireplace and low, beamed ceilings, or Borleymere Shepherd’s Hut located in a gorgeous wildflower meadow - perfect for a romantic break. Larger groups can stay at Oakleys, a 15th- century half hall house located in the bustling medieval village of Long Melford and sleeps up to seven people. Family groups may want to book in for a relaxing break at Woodfarm House, a 15th- century thatched farm house which also sleeps up to seven people and is surrounded by open fields, giving the young ones plenty of space to spread out and run around.
Church Farm Country Cottages
Formerly old cow byres, these 4* cottages have been tastefully converted leaving vaulted ceilings and the beams exposed: there’s also a large, 4* Gold, converted barn with five bedrooms. Ideal for visiting Bath, Wiltshire and the Cotswolds; the cottages are close to the city but surrounded by an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. 8 cootages available from £345 oer week
The Old Club House
The National Trust manages 15 historic holiday cottages on the island, from a 1970s lovenest with dramatic sea views to an old stone farmhouse tucked in a bucolic valley. This one, sleeping five, is a former golf clubhouse. Beyond the unusual exterior what sets this one apart is its accessibility. Unlike so many historic properties, it caters brilliantly for disabled visitors with adapted facilities that include a wheelchair-friendly shower room. From £385 per week.
Fishermen's Retreat is one of four artisan cottages which border the banks of the Midford Brook. Originally built for the Somerset Canal workers in the late 1800s, it is in the secluded location in the tiny hamlet of Tucking Mill in the Midford Valley and makes it the ideal place to relax and unwind, but it is less than 15 minutes' drive from Bath city centre. This high quality self-catering accommodation has been awarded a 4 star rating by Visit England, and has also been recognised with awards for welcoming cyclists and walkers with secure cycle storage and facilities for drying clothes. There are many delightful countryside walks and cycle routes on your doorstep, including Sustrans Route 24 which goes through the newly opened Two Tunnels providing direct access to Bath. If you have a fly fishing rod and a river licence you are welcome to fish in the Midford Brook at the bottom of the garden or go for a Hawk Walk with Jay, the falconer next door. Cottage from £196 per night.
By train Fishermen’s Retreat is located 2.9 miles from Bath Train/BusStation. Taxi fare approx. £12.
West Withy Farm Cottages
These comfortable and well-equipped holiday cottages, situated on a 23-acre farm in the heart of Exmoor, are a great base from which to explore the region. Walking routes abound, with panoramic views across the beautiful countryside. West Withy Lake is found on site, and Wimbleball Lake and Clatworthy Reservoir are only a short walk away. There are plentiful opportunities for birdwatching and fishing, and for viewing exotic local wildlife such as red deer and wild ponies. In addition, amateur astronomers can hire a telescope from the farm, and stargaze from the comfort of the cottage garden.
West Withy Farm is a 30 minute taxi ride away from Taunton Railway Station, which is well-connected to the rest of the UK.
West Leas Farm
The stone barns on West Leas Farm close to Ripon, have been converted into five lovely cottages. Each has its own character, though all offer everything you need for self-catering in comfort (they sleep from two to five people). The villages of Kirkby Malzeard and Galphay are within walking distance and the location’s great for exploring all Nidderdale has to offer.
Great Field Farm
For years Lewana and Malcolm Castle have run a much acclaimed B&B from their 15-hectare biodiverse farm in lovely countryside within easy reach of Canterbury. So they know a thing or two about providing just what guests want. More recently they have developed three eco barns powered by solar panels and heated through ground source heat pumps. Fittings and furnishings have been stylishly devised and there are big windows to enjoy the rural location. Wildlife thrives here – from woodpeckers to badgers. Rooms: three eco barns sleeping six, five and four; plus B&B offered in a separate cottage Prices: weekly rates: smallest barn from £420 (to £799); barn for five from £520 (to £850); and for six from £550 (to £925). B&B from £40 per person
Riverside Caravan Park
Owned and managed by the Marshall family since the 1960s, this unspoilt campsite is perched on the banks of the River Wenning, within walking distance of the traditional market town of High Bentham. Screened by trees and natural hillsides, there are spacious pitches available for holiday home owners, tourers, caravans and motor homes, as well as two holiday cottages available to rent. All pitches also come with electric and TV hook ups. Locally, there are plenty of walking and cycling trails to explore and a local golf course, whilst on site there is an adventure park for kids and extensive fishing opportunities both by the river and in the well-stocked lake.
Burcott Mill Guest House
Burcott Mill is one of only two working watermills in Somerset; it’s Victorian cogs still churn away to produce organic wholemeal flour. Friendly owners, Louise and Steve French, have sensitively converted some of the mill buildings into delightful B&B rooms and a cosy self-catering bolthole for two. Visitors are free to wander around the mill museum. Country pubs, beautiful walks, and historic market towns are all on your doorstep. Doubles from £65 for two.
Take the train to Castle Cary - from here, take the 67 bus from to Wells on the bus route from Wells to Wookey. Route 3 (West Country Way) on the National Cycle Network also passes nearby.
CLOSED: Kendal Hideaways
This collection of stylish, family friendly boltholes is just a short stroll away from the centre of Kendal, which itself is a fantastic base for anything from an active adventure holiday or a relaxed weekend. The five contemporary apartments sleep between two anad eight people, and have been awarded Bronze by the GTBS for their green credentials. Many of the apartments boast traditional Victorian features, and are interconnected to accommodate larger families.
Cleveley Mere Boutique Lodges
These five state-of-the-art retreats are all set on the edge of a vast lake within a glorious 34 acre nature reserve. You could choose to stay in the UK’s first ‘Huf House’ holiday let, as featured on Channel 4’s Grand Designs, which sleeps up to six people and comes with its own private boat. Or perhaps the Lakeside Tree House might tempt you, with its sunset deck, rope bridge and private harbour. Whichever lodge you choose, you’ll be supplied with everything you need to enjoy the great outdoors, like free bikes, binoculars, wellies, and that all important picnic stuffed with delicious local produce.
It's hard to believe that Hen Glyn was once considered derelict. Having been restored using largely sustainable materials, this Grade II listed cottage now effortlessly combines the modern and the traditional, with original 18th century wooden beams and panelling decorating the otherwise contemporary interiors. Sleeping up to 4, this is also easily one of the best accommodations in the region for walkers; the farm has some 230 acres to explore, while countless way-marked routes start right on the doorstep. In the evenings, rest your weary legs in Hen Glyn's heated outdoor hot tub and gaze out over the surrounding hillside.
Pollaughan Farm, Cornwall
Pollaughan Cottages, a home from home, has been lovingly restored with both children and the environment in mind. The relaxing little farmstead, near sandy beaches, provides guests with round the clock interaction with nature and wildlife. Price:£ 1450 for one week high season in smallest cottage which sleeps 4
The nearest railway station is Truro. From there, take the 550 bus to Trewithian, then turn left. Follow the road and take the first right down a short road where you will find the cottages. Truro also lies on Route 3 and the Cornish Way on the National Cycle Network.
Deep in the Dorset countryside, on a small island formed by the river Allen lies this working water mill. There’s a range of comfortable accommodations sleeping parties of 2-7, and the large garden offers the chance to relax to the sound of trickling water features and chirping birds. Private fishing trips for Grayling and Trout on site, with an early breakfast included before setting out. Successfully restored in 1987, the mill is open to the public during the summer season weekends only, selling cream teas and other goodies made using flour produced on site.
Owned by the same family since 1880, The Gables is a three storey, Victorian family house, tastefully refurbished to offer self-catering accommodation for up to 14 people. There are seven double or twin bedrooms, dining room with an open fire and large kitchen/living room area equipped with games, music system and large TV/DVD, making it ideal for families or groups of friends. Set in its own large, fenced-in garden with a BBQ and lovely views across the marshes to the river and sea, it’s also only a few minutes' walk from the beach, shops and restaurants of Aldeburgh and close to the pretty villages of Southwold, Thorpeness and Saxmundham.
Larch & Spruce Cottages
These two Scandinavian-style cottages are situated in a field next to the 16th-century White Horse Inn pub in the Box Valley. Plenty of footpaths leave straight from the doorstep and the South Suffolk cycle route running close by. The cottages, Larch and Spruce, each sleep up to four people and come with a fully-equipped kitchen, lounge area with TV and DVD player and ‘wet room’ style bathroom. If there are more of you to squeeze in, you can set up some tents in the camping field next door, and don’t forget to try the home cooked food and home brewed beer at the pub before you leave.
The nearest railway station is Ipswich. A short taxi ride will take you to the cottages; see TrainTaxi. Route 1 on the National Cycle Network and the South Suffolk Cycle Route provide access for cyclists.
Ninham Country Holidays
This family-run holiday park may have an outdoor pool, games room and laundry but it’s definitely no Butlins. Surrounded by 120 acres of woodland, fields and farmland, and only a mile and a half from Shanklin, the site has two nicely spaced camping areas, two self-catering properties and a clutch of mobile homes to rent. Quieter than some campsites, with an appreciation of local wildlife, it’s also going progressively greener; it recently switched its electricity to a green energy supplier and they offer a fabulous discount for cyclists & walkers - If you arrive on foot or by byke, you pay no pitch fee for the duration of your stay (paying only per person).
Get there by bus: Bus route 2 and 3. Nearest stop: Shanklin Bus Station.
These 4* self-catering cottages sleep 2-8 and are newly converted from traditional Lancashire stone farm buildings and surrounded by 200 acres of beautiful farmland. The cottages sleep from four to eight people, with large open plan kitchen and dining areas, a private patio area and all are centrally heated by an eco-friendly wood pellet boiler. They also have access to a large communal games room with lots of indoor games to keep the kids entertained on a rainy day. The Gardner family who run this farm have won awards for their conservation efforts, and it’s a wonderful area for bird watching and wildlife spotting with its wide open skies and far-reaching views.
Long Chimney Farm
Long Chimney Farm has three spacious cottages, converted from a flint barn and stables. There are wooden floors, flat screen TVs and wood-burning stoves. It’s not a working farm, but the owners keep busy with their measures to encourage local wildlife and are members of the Devon Wildlife Trust. There are far-reaching sea views - the farm is just a two-mile walk from the Jurassic Coast. If fossils and coastal walks can’t tempt you away from the peaceful 20-acres, there’s a small gym, sauna, outdoor heated pool, games room and wi-fi throughout. From £201 for 6 people for two nights; £335 per week.
Yew Tree Cottage
This Grade II listed 18th century building in the small village of Westow near Malton is the project of London couple Natasha and Paul. Furnishings are earthy and natural – wood, leather and wool. There are unique artworks and curiosities, such as an old wooden malt shovel hanging on a wall. Wooden floors, leather settees, wood-burning stoves and paintwork in mineral shades are lightened with a very occasional hint of floral fabric; the look lending the house an elemental, no-nonsense, intelligence. Upstairs, the three bedrooms continue the quality and comfort and the monochrome bathroom has a roll-top bath. From £593 per week.
Keld Head Farm Cottages
With a range of different cottages for different budgets, tastes and numbers of people, Keld Head advertises itself as a gateway to the North York Moors and Coast – and they are indeed perfectly placed for exploring both, just outside the pretty market town of Pickering. Constructed and restored by local craftsmen, these former stables have been transformed around a central courtyard, offering a traditional North Country feel with made to measure modern amenities and fine woodwork. From £253 per week
Up a lovely tree-lined drive in a secluded spot in the middle of the Mendips are these four stone cottages. Built of natural materials, the cottages have comfortable, cosy interiors and sunny views. There’s a pool, bike hire and bbq area, too. Cheddar Gorge is 5 miles away.
Take the train to Wells Railway Station, and from there take the 126 bus to Sandford Batch. Turn right down Shipham Lane and you will find the cottage. Nearby is Route 26 on the National Cycle Network.
The Park, Mawgan Porth, Cornwall
On a sunny, south-facing hillside behind Mawgan Porth beach on the north Cornwall coast, The Park is a collection of eco-friendly self-catering places to stay. This is technically a holiday park but conceptually something else altogether. Price: From £335-£2935 per week.
Whether you’re looking for a country cottage in Southwold, a seaside retreat in Aldeburgh or a traditional beach hut, Suffolk Secrets has some absolute gems in its collection. Winners of the 2011 Green Small Business of the Year Award, this independent and family owned holiday lettings agency believes that helping to preserve the ‘raw material’ of their beautiful natural surroundings is the secret to their success and have a wide range of beautiful historic buildings in their portfolio. You’ll discover wonderful properties like the architect designed ‘Sun Deck’ nestled on Aldeburgh’s famous high street and a wonderful barn conversion in the grounds of a Grade II listed Old Rectory near Lavenham with its own swimming pool and tennis court.
The Old Station
Why stay in a cottage when you can stay in a carriage? This novel self-catering accommodation seeps in the atmosphere of railway’s golden age. Lovingly fitted out to keep all their original character whilst providing everything the 21st-Century holidaymaker might need, they sit in the spacious grounds of a genuine old railway station. Perfectly located for pretty Pickering and the Dalby Forest, all that the North York Moors has to offer is on the doorstep – just be sure to mind the gap! From £348 per carriage per week
Whitehouse Barn Holiday Cottages
The perfect place to come back to after a day's exploration…These eco-chic cottages - Hen Cottage and Cloud Loft -were furnished and are maintained according to strict eco principles - hot water and heating comes from a wood-fired boiler, the paints are eco, and the welcome pack has free range eggs (from their own hens) and homemade bread. Major attractions such as Chatsworth House are within easy reach, and walking starts from your back door.
Recorded in the Domesday Book, this flourmill is one of the few remaining working watermills in the UK. The River Axe still powers the old Victorian cogs which drive the millstones, producing flour sold throughout Somerset, and supplying various restaurants and bakeries in the region. The mill is open daily for tours (advance bookings only) or for a quiet wander around the museum. Louise and Steve also run B&B in some of the neighbouring buildings.
The nearest railway station is Wells, and the museum is just a half hour walk away from there. Also nearby is Route 3 on the National Cycle Network.
Gospenheale Farm has been in the same family since 1925 – guests can join in a free guided tour of the farm and learn about the farm’s history. Enter into a big open plan living area with exposed oak A-frames, a big family kitchen and French doors onto a large garden. Upstairs, bedrooms have Cornish slate floors and big oak beds, and stylish bathrooms. Care and thought have been poured into every aspect of this restoration, and the emphasis is on local, from the local materials used throughout to the artwork by local artists on the walls. Lose yourself in the myriad country lanes, wander the patchwork of fields and hedgerows surrounding the property or curl up in front of the wood-burner. From £450 per week.
Take the 510 bus from Exeter St Davids to Launceston, the village in which the cottage is located. Launceston is also on Route 327 on the National Cycle Network.
Upper Kingston Farm Cottages
A working farm right on the New Forest border is the setting for these five carefully restored and converted cottages. Each cottage is as energy efficient as possible - air source heat pumps heat the floors and provide hot water, and while it may be self-catered, you’ll find the ingredients for your first ‘New Forest Breakfast’ waiting for you in the fridge. From wandering the sands of the nearby beaches and horse riding through the forest to deep-sea fishing and countryside rambling, activities in the area are excitingly varied.
King John's Barn
King John's Barn is made up of two individual cottages, sleeping from 2-10 people extending an equally warm welcome to families and pets. It is a haven of peace and tranquility with outstanding views, set on the edge of Langley Farm, a former Royal Hunting Lodge for the Wychwood Forest, now a working stock farm. Prices from £395 per week
Fowl Green Farm
Even been accused of living like a pig or in a barn? It’s all too apt at these delightfully converted farm outbuildings: two of the cottages have been created from pigsties – one even retains the original stone troughs – while the other pair were originally a cow byre and, yes, a barn. Now, of course, they’re much more comfortable, with excellent cooking facilities and slate flags warmed by underfloor heating; accessibility for wheelchair users is maximised throughout. The hillfarm, which has been owned by the Muir family for over a century, raises Wensleydale sheep, among other livestock – stock up on meat and wool, plus other local produce. Cottages sleeping two/four/six from £180/£270/£420 per week.
Tom's & Douglas' Barns
Owners John and Marion are embedded in the local community; Orchard Farm supports local business by using local produce and tradespeople. They care passionately about protecting the environment and have woven it into the fabric of everything they do. The two cottages have been sensitively restored - they are quirky but gorgeous and full of character and touches of luxury. Great walking from the door.
This homely two-bedroom self-catering cottage in the village of Slingsby shares a large garden to the rear, with a lawn that is perfect for kicking a ball around. Slingsby is easy to reach by public transport, being served by regular buses from Malton, where there is a train station. The bus stop is just 200 metres away from the house. The village pub is only two doors away.
Ashfield Cottages & Caravan Park
Everything about these charming stone cottages says ‘country’, from pine dressers and Rayburn cookers to the subtly floral style and the light flooding in from the lush gardens. Three units offer accommodation for between three and eight people, with well-equipped kitchens and DVD players for damp days and cosy evenings in. Best, though, is what’s on the doorstep: the steam-powered North Yorkshire Moor Railway chuffing from nearby Pickering, diverse cycling trails spidering through Dalby Forest, and the array of walks from the front gate into the southern moors. The nearby caravan site is simple but sunny and peaceful. Cottages sleeping 3-4/7-8 from £300/£560 per week. Caravan site from £10 per night.
Parkfoot Holiday Homes
Sat on the banks of the beautiful River Greta, this family owned 23-acre park in North Yorkshire is a peaceful spot for holiday home owners to come and relax. The landscaped grounds allow plenty of room with less than 10 caravans per acre, and kids will love the playground, games room and well stocked library of recycled books, videos, DVDs and jigsaws. The site owners have long been committed to sustainable tourism and recycle extensively on the site as well as encouraging guests to do the same, and this year they are introducing a brand new wildlife garden to encourage pollinating insects.
Elmfield Farm Cottages
What a haven. Rent a cottage on this small, charming farm about seven miles from Canterbury and you’ll be among sheep, alpacas, ducks, pigs and hens. Owners Andrew and Harriet Wishart welcome guests with a homemade cake and are more than happy to have children in the properties - kids have their own garden to play in and may help feed the animals. One of the four cottages here has wheelchair access, another two have been made from bales of locally grown straw. Rooms: two cottages sleeping four; two cottages sleeping six Prices: two-bedroom cottages from £183 (to £667 high season) for a short break; three-bedroom cottage from £253 (to £972 high season) for a short break
Home Farm Cottages
In the attractive village of Slingsby in the Howardian Hills these two pretty stone cottages with red pantiles have been sensitively converted from old farm buildings. They are both on the ground floor and are accessible for wheelchairs. One, The Stables, sleeping five to six, has a new conservatory and both have some outdoor space. It is easy to reach here by public transport: there are trains to Malton from where there are hourly buses for the 25-minute journey (last one 1800).
Egyptian cotton sheets, down duvets, brass beds, oak floorboards, wood-burning stoves, squidgy sofas and details fit for interiors’ photo-shoots, make these two 18th century cottages a cut above the rest. Rosedene cottage, with its country kitchen and Aga, sleeps four, while neighbouring Strawberry cottage, a converted stables with vaulted ceilings and beams, sleeps two. They are connected by a large garden with tables and chairs. The peaceful hamlet of Nunnington is surrounded by many good walks in the Howardian Hills but you may find it hard to drag yourselves away from the luxurious comfort of your holiday cottage. From £395 per week.
Malkin Tower Farm Holiday Cottages
These two luxury self catering holiday cottages and ‘Piggery’ have been converted from the former Malkin Tower Farm, set in stunning countryside within the Forest of Bowland AONB. Owners Andrew and Rachel Turner have tried to retain as much of its character as possible, preserving the original doorways and windows, along with the original oak beams and window seats. Demdyke Cottage sleeps up to four, and Device Cottage sleeps two plus a cot if required, whilst the one bed ‘Piggery’ is ideal as an extra bedroom for those who want to get away for a few days on their own. The couple’s eco efforts have won them a Gold GTBS Award, and they actively encourage guests to lighten their carbon footprint by recycling and enjoying non-car based activities like walking and cycling during their visit.
Culls Cottage, sits in the unspoilt, quintessential Cotswold village of Southrop, an ideal base to explore all the highlights of The Cotswolds, Oxford, Stratford or Bath. A traditional stone cottage dating from 1670, it has been lovingly restored to preserve the traditional and lavished with contemporary luxuries to bring it bang up to date. Enjoy the stunning ¼ of an acre, private garden with numerous places to sit and relax, is a haven in summer. Three double bedrooms means that Culls can comfortably sleep six and there is a double sofa bed in the lounge, should you need that too. Families are welcome; cots and high chairs are available free of charge, as well as free wifi. The house holds Four Stars and a Gold for excellence in service and quality with Visit England, and is the current holder of the Cotswold Tourism Awards ‘ Self Catering Holiday Provider of 2015’ (together with its sister cottage – The Chestnuts in nearby Shilton). Awarded a Gold with the Green Tourism Business scheme and the Silver Award with the Cotswold Tourism awards 2015. Cottages sleep 8-10 and from £999 per week
Wood House Farm
Feeling strong? You can have a go at shearing a sheep on this working farm at the end of a lane on the southern edge of the Howardian Hills. If shearing seems too energetic, just take the sheepdogs for a walk through nearby woods, carpeted with primroses and bluebells in spring, or collect eggs from the hens. B&B accommodation is in the 200-year old listed farmhouse with fine breakfasts of local produce and an open-fire in the living room or there is a self-catering option, sleeping six, in a converted barn: all quarry tiles, beams and open brickwork. From £70 per night.
The father-and-daughter team of Kent Berndtsson and Camilla Hofsten have transformed their property on a small archipelago in the north-west of Bohuslan into a renowned oyster bar and retreat. The site now offers accommodations ranging from a 16th century fisherman's cottage to a newly-built wooden villa, each with spectacular views over the harbour. Between September and June, guests can indulge in champagne and oysters in true style from the wood-fired seawater hot tub at the end of the jetty - the most luxurious option also includes fresh lobster and a liqueur to finish, although be sure to book as part of a group. There's also the chance to learn a little more about the history of oyster farming once you're done shucking.
Close to the fishing village of Beer, a wonderfully luxurious self-catering house with sea views of Lyme Bay. Beautiful & peaceful setting on a quiet coastal road with no light pollution, perfect for star-gazing! Five-star luxury & green credentials. Upcott House (sleeps 12+2): £995 -£4295
Ty Gwydr is an innovative, ultra modern take on the traditional countryside bolt-hole. You'll be impressed by the open plan kitchen with its ceiling to floor windows that look out over the surrounding mountains, as well as the comfortable, cosy bedrooms (one of which even houses a four poster bed). It's also very green, with ground source heating and efficient wool insulation. It was also painted using Ecological lime wash paints. Outside, there's a beautiful landscaped garden and decking, plus a private 8 person hot tub! There's also plenty of outdoor activities nearby, including Llangorse indoor climbing and rope centre, a couple of pony trekking centres and boating and water skiing on the lake.
Little Shuttlesfield Farm
Tucked away down narrow lanes in the southern Elham Valley, Little Shuttlesfield is a well-converted farm barn on a charming smallholding where Jacob sheep and chickens are raised. With numerous footpaths nearby and with the Sustrans 17 cycle route running past the door, it’s a haven for walkers and cyclists. In summer outdoor facilities are wonderful: there’s a south-facing patio with dining table, a heated swimming pool and you can even lodge a horse in the stables here. Dogs and other animals are also welcome, after prior discussion. Rooms: two bedrooms sleeping four in total Prices: from £380 (to £595 high season) per week
Blakelow Farm Cottages
A collection of 4 and 5 star self-catering holiday cottages set on the 200-year old Blakelow farm with spectacular views out to Chatsworth House. Sleeping between 1 and 4 people, the cottages are luxurious but comely, genteel yet chic, offering log burning stoves, large stone fireplaces, private terraces and wonderfully appointed bedrooms. Both cyclist and walker friendly, there's a great range of walks available right from the doorstep, plus the likes of Carsington Water reservoir and the historic market town of Bakewell only a short distance away.
Matlock railway station is 2.6 miles away. From there, you can take the 172 bus to Winster. A small footpath will take you to Bonsall Lane, where you will find the cottages on the right.
Merlin Farm Holiday Cottages
A collection of cool, contemporary cottages near the away-from-it-all beach at Mawgan Porth, Merlin Farm is the last word in luxurious, eco-sensitive holiday accommodation. The compact but cosy studio sleeps two whilst the terraced eco houses each sleep up to four and have stunning glass-fronted living rooms that reach up to the apex; all are gorgeously green with bespoke, design-led interiors throughout. Private courtyards are separated by wicker fencing – the views are of rolling hills but you can hear the crashing of the waves on the nearby beach. The cottages are baby, child and dog-friendly, too. Plenty of wildlife-friendly measures in place, including bat and owl boxes to encourage winged locals. From £250 per week.
From Newquay Railway Station, take the 556 bus to Mawgan Porth. Keeping right the whole way, a short walk will bring you to the cottages.
Living Room Treehouse
You are carried – from the woodland floor to the tree canopy – via a sweeping spiral staircase: an architectural wonder in wood. Stripped branches are knotted together to create wonderfully wonky fences, their knobbly imperfections contrasting beautifully against the sleek, modern pods. Inside, the Hobbit-esque tree houses are neatly divided into living and sleeping quarters with portholes and glass doors, wood-burners for cosy evenings, and Scandinavian-inspired beds and chairs. From £339 for two nights.
The Green Cornwall, Cornwall, England
Luxury self catering cottages and house where history meets the finest contemporary style slap bang in the middle of Cornwall. A first class year-round holiday destination with its Cornish heart and soul still intact. Price: One Bedroom low £384 high £778. The House low £1246 high £2333.
The nearest railway station is Liskeard, from where you can take the 236 bus to Upton Cross. A short walk will then bring you to the cottage. Alternatively, the owners can arrange to pick you up from the station.