By Flora Hackett
The clocks go back, the days get shorter, the air gets colder. As those warm(ish) summer days fade into the rose-tinted distance, many look towards the cold months ahead with gloomy acceptance. However, with the 25th of October looming ahead as the official end of summer, there are still many things to look forward to –all kicking off with an extra hour in bed. Roaring fires, hearty mugs of hot chocolate and snug winter layers are all essential for cosy nights in, yet this article also seeks to encourage you to emerge from your winter cocoon and embrace the great winter countryside. Here are 8 winter getaways that will have you reaching for your coat (and hat, and scarf, and gloves).
Tucked away in Pembrokeshire’s rolling countryside, this traditional stone cottage is only a stone’s throw from glorious country and coastal walks. With a woodburning stove and 2 cosy bedrooms nestled in the eaves, this would make an ideal base to retreat to after an invigorating winters walk.
For those wanting a quirkier winter escape, a luxury treehouse may be just the thing. Made from local cedar, this unique hideout contains all the trimmings of a conventional cottage yet is elevated into the Somerset woodland. Just 30 minutes from rugged coastline walks and only 1 mile from an award winning pub, this treehouse will go above and beyond your expectations.
For another intimate woodland retreat, the Temple is a historic property with stunning architecture. Built in 1783, it was originally built as a viewing platform that overlooked the picturesque landscape of Badger Dingle. For those wanting to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life, only the rustle of leaves will interrupt your peace in this wooded sanctuary.
As the green leaves disappear, this eco-friendly cottage will still make for a very green retreat. With no electricity or Wi-Fi, Hex Cottage is not for the faint-hearted in the cold winter months. Nevertheless, its location in the Wilderness Reserve means you can warm yourselves by plenty of bracing walks. And for those chilly winters evenings, nothing says cosy like the glow of a crackling fire and flickering candles.
If going without electricity is that bit too extreme for you, perhaps Rose Cottage is more for you. This 18th century cottage may look traditional from the outside, yet its interior contains all the luxuries of the 21st century. For a crisp, winters day, its location in North Devon is ideal for both coastal and country days out. However, for a rainy day in, this cottage contains a hot tub, 6ft copper bath, 3D TV and even its own bar.
Tolkien lovers may want to escape here purely for the name, yet this rustic cottage has many other charming qualities. Full of beams, the cosy yet airy interior is great for relaxing. And for anyone feeling full of beans, the surrounding countryside is home to the New Forest and the Bentley Wood Nature Reserve.
For those wanting to escape to the country without staying anywhere too far-flung, this 400-year-old cottage makes for an amazing escape. In the picture-perfect location of the Cotswolds, this small yet stylish cottage is great for a quiet and quaint getaway in the heart of England.
Sitting on the edge of a waterfowl pond, this highland hideaway is perfect for wildlife lovers. With rare-breed ducks, red squirrels and roaming deer living alongside you, this woodsman hut has some special neighbours. Other distinct features include a wood fired hot tub, star gazing window and a king-size Hebridean bed to nestle into after a day of exploring.