Category Archives: country cottages

Romantic rural retreats in Clare, Suffolk

When passion knows no limits, it is good to slip away to a romantic retreat for that private affair and where better than to Suffolk, an English county famous for its beautiful scenery and charming holiday cottages for 2. We suggest staying near the booking a holiday cottage in the village of Clare which is close to most of the popular places to visit on the tourist map, near Constable Country and various notable Suffolk locations.

Clare in Suffolk, the place for a romantic retreat
Clare in Suffolk, the place for a romantic retreat

Mastercraftsmen built many of the cottages and amazing churches of Suffolk. At a time when builders took immense pride in their work, even individual cottages were created with loving care. Visitors often express pleasure and surprise at the heavily beamed, or artistically pargeted reliefs on the outside of cottages in Suffolk. The pargeted designs depict everyday country life in Suffolk: the sowing of grain, harvesting the wheat, horses dragging a plough across a rutted field. Suffolk is a mostly rural county dotted with handsome historic towns and pretty little villages. It dosn’t matter where you wander in Suffolk, the rural scenery is beautiful, the villages charming and towns impressive.

Views during your cottage holiday: golden fields of corn in Suffolk
Views during your cottage holiday: golden fields of corn in Suffolk

The back lanes of Suffolk are ideal for cycling – few cars disturb the general tranquillity. Find an idyllic rural retreat for the two of you, somewhere with its own private garden and luxurious interior and a pleasureable break can be yours. View for stunning rural retreats in Clare, Suffolk.

Family country cottage breaks

How long is it since you felt the dew on early morning grass or watched the metallic gleam of dragon flies hovering beside a pond?

If the answer is ‘never’ or n’ot for a long time’, then we recommend a rural self-catering holiday.

Nature is for everyone and not a just a topic in primary school. One of the most popular BBC television programmes is ‘Countryfile’ which explores various aspects of the British countryside through the seasons and is followed by thousands. Encounter the countryside personally, not just visually through an electronic box. Take the children for a stay in the country and you will view the countryside through new eyes as you introduce them to plants and animals that they may have never seen before.

country cottage
Country cottage for a magical rural break

You will need somewhere to stay in the country and rural holiday cottages and pine lodges are the most comfortable form of accommodation. There is nothing nicer than having your own spacious holiday home with a front door that you can close when you prefer to rest and be alone.

Out and about in the countryside can be most surprising. How often have you driven down a narrow lane only to be met by an enormous flock of sheep coming directly towards you? All you can do is to sit it out until they pass.

You might be amazed to find herds of shaggy Highland cattle grazing peacefully on the Isle of Wight or of fields of bison and llama in Sussex and herds of deer in lots of locations.

I love to see those fierce country ‘guard dogs’, a flock of geese protecting their patch and beware anyone who comes to close because they will follow and hiss at your heels leaving you feeling quite silly as you gingerly retreat.

Stumbling across fungi can be quite fascinating, there are those that are as large as dinner plates and others that should belong in fairyland. Children love to hear tales of fairies and goblins and circles of mushrooms may just prompt your imagination.

Fungi, a rural treasure
Fungi, a rural treasure
An old village pump in Felsham, rural Suffolk
An old village pump in Felsham, rural Suffolk

On holiday in the country, you will encounter stiles, village greens, some with the old village pump as a momento of the past. Here is your chance to discuss the progress of technology throughout history and discuss how life is so much better now that we have hot and cold running water in our houses.

You and your family might just return from the countryside having had a wonderful time, a lot more educated and grateful that we were born in modern times.

Find a good quality family holiday cottage and appreciate Great Britain.

Last minute romantic cottage holidays

When in love, the world sings a vibrant new song. Hands held, bodies close and spirits entwine. There is nothing to beat that feeling of being in love, the extreme highs and lows, the sighs and longing. Love needs a place to be alone, somewhere tranquil and beautiful to share for a while.

We can recommend some absolutely stunning rural hideaways for 2 in the UK – small romantic cottages where you can lay the foundations of your fondness and regard for each other.

romantic breaks under the stars in the uk
Romantic breaks under the stars in the UK

To walk under stars you need to be away from the bright lights of cities, in country areas without street lights that encourage your lover to instinctively draw close. Search the night skies and realise what miniscule but marvellous and individual creations we are in this enormous picture. Look for holiday cottages and charming rustic log cabins for a few nights break in rural counties such as Northumberland, Cumbria or Yorkshire in the north of England, Suffolk and Norfolk in East Anglia, the Isle of Wight and country areas in south Cornwall. Herefordshire is also pleasantly green with intertwining country lanes that lead to remote and secluded cottages hidden from the world.

Romantic cottage holidays for 2 in Cornwall
Romantic cottage holidays for 2 in Cornwall

Much of Wales and Scotland is rural. Escape to the remote places with woodland and coast, perhaps stay in a cottage by the sea so that you can have romantic walks on the beach in the morning, quiet places where the only company might be a lazy seal or squawking gulls.

Romantic cottage breaks for couples in Scotland
Romantic cottage breaks for couples in Scotland

There are some fabulous cottage retreats around some of the Scottish lochs, stay awhile and watch the sun go down bright red over the water. Go walking in the wooded hills during the day, you’re likely to spot shy deer, plenty of rabbits and find pleasantly mossy clearings in amongst the trees. Take a picnic and enjoy a champagne lunch for two.

Self-catering cottage breaks for couples can be wonderful with a little imagination and forethought. The chance to be alone to express love can be more than an idle notion. There are lots of divine places to stay in England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. Start saving for that special trip or if you already have the means, someone you love and the desire, then do take a look at

Self-catering holidays in national parks

Britain’s countryside is amazing. Those of you who think it’s all about sheep, cows and bulls are in for a big surprise. Enormous areas of countryside are set aside as national parks that can be enjoyed by anyone who likes to get out into the fresh air. So far, Britain’s national parks are free to enter, unlike many other countries. Some of the national parks are seriously big, so don’t for a minute believe that you will cover them in a day. The largest of the parks is the Cairngorms in Scotland – a gigantic 1,748 miles and home to Scotland’s six highest mountains ..and you don’t need to be a climber to enjoy it’s many other treasures.

Self-catering holidays Norfolk Broads
Self-catering holidays Norfolk Broads
At the other end of the scale is The Broads in Norfolk and Suffolk and just 117 miles. It’s a wetlands and inland waterway and has long been a very popular holiday boating destination. There are lots of holiday cottages and pine lodges to rent for a short or longer stay in national parks.

Each park has it’s own character so one is bound to appeal to you more than another. Unlike in other countries, the boundaries of our national parks often include towns and villages – surely wonderful news for all of you rookie countryside explorers who feel that you’ll need the occasional whiff of concrete and asphalt to feel at home!

South Downs national park, England
South Downs national park, England
Admittedly, most of the national parks are in the northern half of Great Britain, but by no means all, the west country and south also have their gems.

In the south there’s the South Downs National Park that only came into being in 2010 and is already drawing more people than any of the other longer established parks. I think this is partly because it’s a mere hour’s journey from London. A full 631 square miles of coastline, hills, heath, grasslands and woods awaits you all.

Spend a day visiting the lovely Kingley Vale National Reserve with it’s 500 plus year twisted Yew trees; some an amazing five meters in diameter. Not only will you get a chance to breath good clean air but you’ll go home believing that depression is just a part of the US’s late 20’s to early 40’s history!.

If you’re a fan Barbara Erskine’s book Daughters of Fire, get a better idea of how her heroine, Queen Cartimandua lived by taking a look at one of the many Celtic Iron Age hill forts in the South Downs National Park: Chanctonbury Ring and Devil’s Dyke are but two.

Hadrian's Wall
Holidays near Hadrian's Wall
Find more hill forts in the Northumberland National Park. It’s on the boundaries of England and Scotland and has the additional attraction of Hadrian’s Wall. Take a walk along a section of it’s scenic 73 miles and transport yourself back to AD 120.

Views of Snowdonia Wales
Views of Snowdonia Wales
If you are looking for somewhere really magical look no further than the Snowdonia National Park.

As the name implies it’s the home of Snowdon (3,560 feet) the highest mountain peak in England and Wales. But you don’t need to be an experienced climber to get to stand on the summit. Nowadays, it’s the Snowdon Mountain Railway (only rack and pinion railway in UK) that takes the strain of the 4 mile journey.

Enjoy the park’s many beautiful lakes and waterfalls. Here as everywhere in Wales there are castles and steam railways, the latter much beloved by the Welsh. Do take the scenic ride on the Bala Lake Steam Railways – it’s a lovely 9 mile trip.

Wherever you go in the countryside you just have to sample the local food. The best way to do this is to look out for farmers markets. But be warned you’ll start off just buying for the afternoon’s picnic and finish up filling the car with sumptuous fresh delicacies to take back to your holiday cottage!

New Forest holidays
New Forest holidays
If you walk just one forest let it be old Willie the Conqueror’s old hunting ground, the new forest now the New Forest National Park. It’s just 90 minutes from London and there are 219 square miles to explore.

You can do it on foot or on a bike without any fear of being mowed down by a car. Just look out for the New Forest’s own breed of ponies and the deer, cattle and pigs that still roam the forest. Alternatively hire a horse and cover the ground like William did while hunting deer and wild boar. I can’t guarantee you’ll go home with a wild boar but you’ll definitely not be bored.

It’s also worth having a look at some of the villages that fall within the boundaries of the park. Buckler’s Hard is a good one if you’re interested in marine history. Back in the 18th century this is where the ships for Admiral Lord Nelson’s fleet were constructed, using great oaks from the New Forest. There’s even an interesting museum for you to wander around.

If you’re a night owl, you can still enjoy the attractions of a national park. Exmoor National Park’s dark skies have earned it the official title of Europe’s first International Dark Sky Reserve. So professional stargazers and rookies alike grab your telescope or binoculars and get out into the cool night air and enjoy a totally free starlight display. Stay over in the area for a few days and visit the park’s lovely wooded valleys and moors and earn yourselves a traditional west country cream tea.

See I wasn’t talking a lot of old bull when I said the countryside was more than a few cows, bulls and sheep.

Cottage holidays in the Country

There are times when people love taking cottage holidays in the country to go for long walks, visit country gardens, perhaps do a little fishing or play a round of golf. Britain is the second most densely populated country after the Netherlands and yet we have some incredible rural areas and national parks for outdoor activites and recreation. People visit the national parks for self-catering holidays and days out, for picnics or even just a drive around to see the scenery. Much more can discovered on foot, following way-marked paths and trails. There are often waterfalls and beauty spots to encounter along the way.

Much of the population of Britain is concentrated in cities and towns. People left the rural areas as they did in other countries in search of employment. And yet those rural villages and hamlets remain the ideal locations for many should they be able to have a holiday home for even a weekend retreat. There are plenty of cottages in the country that have been bought up for investment as holiday homes and these are rented out to holidaymakers for a week or two and less frequently, for weekend breaks.
rent a cottage in the country in Britain

Country Cottages in the UK

The UK is made up of the countries of England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland. When it comes to visiting England many visitors from different countries look to book a pretty quintessentially English country cottage.

country cottages UK
Country cottages UK
Country cottages can be thatched and many people think of country cottages as most definately being pretty and cute. England has a wealth of history and this includes many historic country cottages – many of which are Grade II listed.

It is not only in England though where you can find pretty country cottages. There are plenty of attractive country cottages in Scotland, Wales and Ireland. Although you will not find quintessentially English country cottages outside of England, in the countries of Scotland, Wales and Ireland you can still find charming cottages in picturesque countryside.

The different countries of the UK all offer something different for visitors. All offer a real sense of history which delights foreign visitors. Our tradition of Kings and Queens, castles and country houses is fascinating for history lovers the world over.

All the different countries within the UK have their own charms and attractions.

self-catering holidays in Scotland
self-catering holidays in Scotland
Scotland is a land of wild landscapes, castles and whisky trails.
The wildlife in Scotland – particularly if you head for the sparsely populated Highlands is amazing with deer roaming free and eagles soaring in the sky. The Islands of Scotland are particularly attractive for those looking for a peaceful country cottage break and for those who love nature.

Holidays in Wales
Holidays in Wales
Wales is known for amazing mountain scenery and beautiful valleys. The accent of the people in Wales also has a sing song quality and some of the best singers in the UK come from Wales.
Wales has amazing Snowdonia which attracts lots of visitors but also a beautiful coastline which is popular with birdwatchers – in some parts of Wales it is possible to spot Puffins. Wales is an attractive destination for a peaceful country cottage break.

cottage holidays in Ireland
cottage holidays in Ireland
Ireland is across the water requiring a ferry trip or a flight to get there. Like Wales and Scotland, Ireland offers a level of tranquillity not easily found in many parts of England.

Ireland is often called the Emerald Isle for the beautiful green countryside. There is an amazing coastline and many pretty villages to discover in Ireland – making this a great country to visit for a country cottage holiday.

self-catering country cottages England
self-catering country cottages England
England is home to many pretty areas which are wonderful for country cottage holidays.

The South West is popular as a summer holiday destination with Cornwall, Devon, Somerset and Dorset attracting many with a beautiful coastline and lovely beaches. Kent is known as the Garden of England and has a rural charm.

The Cotswolds is a gorgeous area with many pretty historical villages dotted between amazingly beautiful quintessentially English countryside. Further north is East Anglia and the attractive counties of Norfolk, Suffolk and Essex, many of which are home to oldey worldey villages and pretty countryside.

Further north still is the Heart of England and Shakespeare country with amazingly beautiful cities like Stratford upon Avon and Warwick. Up in the north of England there are the beautiful Yorkshire Dales, Lake District and Northumberland where the country has a distinctly Scottish flavour with castles making their mark. There are so many wonderful areas of England which are just great for cottage breaks.