Our blessed isles are often overlooked for tranquil turquoise seas and serene sandy beaches. While the great British weather isn’t always on your side, indulgence is. Opting to stay at home allows for maximum relaxation time. So, leave your long-haul longings for another time and schedule in a staycation.
Decorating your overseas jaunts with simple stays in the UK is travel at its best. Boasting classic British castles, quaint country cottages, and stunning hotel suites, our dazzling Kingdom has it all. Simply pack up the car, then hit the road. And the best part? On a staycation, luggage allowances are nowhere in sight.
Like every incredible break, you want to go big. Britain lets you lap up the luxury like no other. From spas to Michelin stars, whatever your requirement, you’ll find it right here in the UK. Just take the heritage-soaked sights in Edinburgh or the seaside delights in Cornwall, staycations offer you R&R right on your doorstep. Holidaying at home never felt so chic.
For picture-perfect British countryside, look no further than The Cotswolds. A romantic rural hotspot in the south of England, The Cotswolds offer charm and opulence in abundance. Sprinkled with stately homes and quintessential lodgings, the collection of villages leave you spoilt for choice. Dubbed an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), a weekend of relaxation is easily achieved in this corner of the country. The stunning local limestone speaks for itself.
If lazy village days don’t do it for you, head to one of the many local haunts. The rolling hills claim spectacular spots such as HRH The Prince of Wales’s Highgrove Estate to notable gems like Cheltenham’s Gold Cup Festival. For an elegant stay in a sweet village location, opt for The Slaughters Manor House. Character-clad guest rooms, a chic cocktail bar, and fresh fine dining, this four-star spot embraces glitz and natural grace.
The Slaughters Manor House, Lower Slaughter, slaughtersmanor.co.uk
As a city steeped in history, Edinburgh gives you copious amounts of character and charisma. Flitting between the medieval Old Town and the tasteful New Town, Scotland’s rugged capital provides the best of both worlds. From the timeless allure of Edinburgh Castle to shopping on Princes Street, a staycation in this city will certainly keep you busy.
But for tamer days ahead of livelier nights, a tour and a taste at The Scotch Whiskey Experience might take your fancy. On brighter mornings, a wander around the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh is a little slice of Scottish heaven. For an unforgettable experience in an unbeatable location, stay at The Balmoral. This first-class accommodation offers striking views, Michelin-starred dining at Number One, and delicately detailed decor.
After a trip with a treat? Dressed with an air of elegance, the iconic signature Scone & Crombie suite (pictured) is perfect.
The Balmoral, Edinburgh, roccofortehotels.com
As beautiful as they come, Bath is the southwest’s spa hotspot. Surrounded by rolling countryside, this handsome UNESCO World Heritage Site is renowned for its natural hot springs. Gorgeous honey-glazed Bath stone can be spotted all over the city. There’s no finer exhibition of 18th-century Georgian architecture in the country. So start your stay with cultural explorations.
After a wander around The Roman Baths and strolling along Royal Crescent, it’s time to take in what you’re really here for – a spa session. While the ever-popular Thermae Bath Spa with its thermal waters and rooftop pool has an appeal, why not spa in style in the comfort of your hotel? Staying across the road at The Gainsborough, that’s exactly what you should do. Exquisitely decorated with classic Georgian characteristics, the impressive spa will make your stay. A spot of traditional high tea in The Canvas Room also offers the ideal afternoon refuge.
The Gainsborough, Bath, thegainsboroughbathspa.co.uk
Who doesn’t love a simple escape to the coast? When London life has taken its toll, nip on down to West Sussex for the weekend. A staycation in this county comes with unspoilt views and a wealth of medieval heritage. If you’re looking to slip back in time as well as switch off, here’s your spot. You’ll find scenery so perfect, your stay could play out like an HG Wells novel.
First on the agenda, Arundel Castle. Glorious gardens, Gothic-style architecture, and a Gainsborough painting make this country house special. Or might you prefer something a little flashier and faster, with a day out at Goodwood instead? After hours of excitement, head back to your magically mock-medieval lodgings at the beach-front Bailiffscourt Hotel & Spa. Period bedrooms and expansive parklands, complete with tennis courts and a rose-clad courtyard, ensure this sumptuous spot is a splendid retreat.
Bailiffscourt Hotel & Spa, Climping, hshotels.co.uk
If you’re yet to visit the Lakes, a trip to the North West should be at the top of your staycation shortlist. Spanning 900 square miles, this stunning Natural Park and UNESCO World Heritage Site is such an impressive sight. It’s the kind of charming calm that takes away any tension as soon as you arrive. So let go of life’s stresses, or sweat them out instead. Swap your Choos for La Sportiva’s and hike your heart out.
For a few days of pure offline bliss, Lakeland is a wonder. Take on England’s highest peak Scafell Pike or give wakeboarding on Lake Windermere ago. When you’ve worked up an appetite, enjoy supper at Gilpin Hotel & Lake House. Glamorous yet still classically Georgian, this boutique hotel is the epitome of rural indulgence. Stay in one of the Spa Lodges for privacy and relaxation, then dine at the hotel’s Michelin starred restaurant HRiSHi for an unforgettable foodie experience.
Gilpin Hotel & Lake House, Windermere, thegilpin.co.uk
For a thoroughly British escape to a classic University city, Oxford should be your location of choice. Each of the 38 colleges sports that kind of quintessential medieval architecture that leaves you in a magical Hogwarts-esque dream state. If exploring the University and surrounding sights sounds like your cup of tea, pack up your Burberry backpack – because explore you shall. Your inner intellectual will certainly geek-out at all Oxford has to offer.
After an it’s-cliche-but-okay tour of the famous colleges (starting with Christ Church, of course), head on a highbrow circuit of the city. Let the bookworm in you bloom at the Bodleian Library and enjoy the natural wonders at the Botanic Garden and Arboretum. When you’re all walked out, follow just a few more steps to the centrally located Old Bank Hotel. Eloquently decorated, find the chic onyx bar and stylish Italian terrace to boost your five-star stay. For an opulent occasion, book The Suite and enjoy an unrivalled view of the iconic Radcliffe camera.
Old Bank Hotel, Oxford, oldbank-hotel.co.uk
No authentic British experience would be complete without a seaside stay. Throw it back to your childhood and opt for a staycation in Cornwall. Dubbed the Cornish Riviera, enchanting beach coves and sea-salt scented villages make this a first-choice for any UK getaway. If the picturesque harbours haven’t hooked you, then the luxury touches will do it. But first, you’ve got an endearing local expedition to embark on.
Start with a stop at the iconic Eden Project, followed by Minack Theatre – the open-air theatre set in the Cornish clifftops. For that typical British beach experience, pass by The Lizard for a peaceful afternoon jaunt. Or if you want real and raw, surfing in Newquay and a fish supper at Rick Stein’s is also on the cards. For a balance of coastal calm with effortless grandeur, stay at the Talland Bay Hotel. Laidback yet luxury, this characterful accommodation offers sweet sea views, phenomenal food, and uninterrupted escapism.
Talland Bay Hotel, Porthallow, tallandbayhotel.co.uk
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