Enjoy Surrey from a luxury holiday cottage

Surrey is a lovely county located south of London. It’s an affluent country, but also one full of history, lovely countryside and lots of things to see and do. Tourism is a major component of non-commuter life in Surrey and holidaycottages.net has a number of holiday lets in the region.

If you’re staying in one of our holiday cottages and are looking for some inspiration for a great day out, you might like to try these venues. Each is popular for a very good reason and well worth a few hours of your time.

Hampton Court Palace

Hampton Court Palace was originally a base for The Knights Hospitallers of St John Jerusalem. It was later inhabited by its most famous resident Thomas Wolsey, cardinal to Henry VIII. The palace is an amazing building with an equally amazing history and should be at the top of any to-do list while in Surrey.

Brooklands Museum

The Brooklands Museum in Weybridge is a must for anyone interested in cars or motorsport. The Brooklands circuit was built in 1907 and has had a presence there ever since. The area also saw aviation development during and after World War 2 until 1987. That year, the Brooklands Museum was opened and has been going from strength to strength ever since.

Leith Hill

Leith Hill is a National Trust property and is set in acres of Surrey Hills. The tower and the house is open every day and the woods and countryside around them lend themselves very well to casual walks and picnics. It’s a nice, relaxed day out that all the family can enjoy.

Orange Tree Theatre

The Orange Tree Theatre in Richmond is a unique, intimate theatre that offers much more than just performances. Originally opened above a pub, the audience is very close to the actors, offering an up close and personal perspective to the performance. Staging is good, the ambience is excellent and an evening here is something to remember.

Air Force Memorial

The Air Force Memorial in Englefield Green near Windsor is a quiet, contemplative space that makes for a very peaceful visit. It’s a memorial honouring those who served in the Royal Air Force during the Second World War. Even if you don’t know anyone who made that ultimate sacrifice, it’s a lovely place to visit.

Box Hill

Box Hill in Dorking is another National Trust property that is excellent for walkers and cyclists. Acres of forest and countryside is shared by a couple of challenging roads that cyclists just love cycling up, then down. The forests are lush and well maintained and will look amazing in the autumn.

Each of these attractions offer something a little different to visitors staying in one of our lovely holiday cottages. If you’re looking for a great deal on your next break, check out our special offers. There are plenty to choose from!

Explore the historic buildings of Kent

Dover CastleEnjoying some autumn sunshine in Kent is a great way to spend October or November as far as we’re concerned. The garden of England has a lot to offer and plenty of historic buildings to see. It’s also easy to get to, not too busy at this time of year and has something for just about everyone.

If you’re planning to stay in one of our lovely Kent holiday cottages and are looking for inspiration, this is the post for you. We have a range of historic buildings suitable for the entire family. All designed to offer a great day out in Kent!

Dover Castle

Dover Castle is a fantastic place to visit if you’re staying anywhere in the area. It’s a 12th century fortification that has seen action from the day it was first built until a mere 70 years ago. It’s an amazing example of castle building in great condition. Regular events are held to bring history to life spanning the entire history of the location. It’s a must see!

Ightham Mote

Staying on the subject of history, another Kent highlight is Ightham Mote. It’s a 14th century moated manor house that has been restored, retained and renovated to offer a glimpse into Tudor life. Outside are landscaped gardens, an orchard, woods, lakes and more.

Hever Castle

Hever Castle is just another example of a fine Kent historic building. The castle was home to Anne Boleyn and was built in the 13th century. The modern castle is moated and kept in fantastic condition throughout.

It’s hard not to recommend these buildings to anyone staying in our holiday cottages throughout Kent.

Canterbury Cathedral

Canterbury Cathedral has to be one of the most recognised buildings in the county. Originally built in 597 A.D. it is the seat of the Archbishop of Canterbury and a thriving, interesting church. As well as the historic building, there is a lot of cultural interest, organised events and displays and plenty to see and do.


Chartwell was the home of Sir Winston Churchill from 1924 until his death. The house is now run by the National Trust and much of it looks the same as it did when the great man lived there. As well as the house, there are landscaped gardens, a lake, woodland, a playhouse and more. It’s a great day out for all the family!

We have holiday cottages throughout Kent, so if you’re staying with us, why not combine it with a visit to one of these buildings?

Watch the Ryder Cup from one of our fantastic holiday cottages

Ryder CupIf you love your golf but don’t have the budget to stay at the amazing Gleneagles Hotel, we might have the answer. Stay in one of our lovely holiday cottages that are within a short drive of the course and have the best of both worlds. Enjoy Scotland and the golf at the same time!

Gleneagles is located in Auchterarder in Perthshire. It’s near the A9, 40 miles or so north of Edinburgh. Even when the Ryder Cup isn’t on, it’s a busy and expensive place to stay. That’s great if you can afford it, but not so much if you can’t.

However, staying at the hotel isn’t the only way you can enjoy the golf. Sure you can watch from home on TV, but there’s nothing like being there and watching the pros in action. Why not try staying nearby in a luxury holiday cottage? Despite the popularity of the Ryder Cup, we still have a few vacancies, so it’s not too late yet!

If you have the time to get to Scotland in time to watch some of the golf, we have the cottages to suit. We have a range of high quality holiday accommodation spread across the entire country of Scotland with many in Stirlingshire, Perthshire and Fife. Many within a convenient drive of the Gleneagles Hotel where the Ryder Cup is being held.

Despite the popularity of the event, there are still some cottages with space, so you could easily make a booking and get combine a relaxing weekend in Scotland with a great view of the golf. What more could you want?

Currently, we are also running a special offer on last minute holiday cottages. Find a suitable location, find a great holiday cottage and you could save up to 30% off the usual price. That’s an offer too good to miss!

If you have a family to entertain too, there is a lot to do in that part of Scotland. You have Edinburgh in one direction, Glasgow in the other, Stirling is only a few miles away and then hundreds of square miles of amazing countryside in-between.

Even without the Ryder Cup to take up your time, you’re never short of things to do in this part of the United Kingdom.

Move fast though. The Ryder Cup started Sunday, (21st September) so you don’t have long to make a reservation and get in on the action. Find yourself a great little getaway today by using the interactive map or the search function on the left. The Ryder Cup awaits!

Follow in the footsteps of the Tour of Britain Stages 5-8

2014 Tour of BritainContinuing on from our previous post, we’re following the route of the Tour of Britain as it takes in the very best of the UK. This post continues the Tour from stage 5 to the finale at stage 8 in London.

If you’re a keen cyclist or just felt inspired by what you saw, holidaycottages.net can help. We have a huge selection of high quality holiday accommodation across the UK. It’s easy to build your very own Tour, or follow the real one. It’s entirely up to you!

Stage 5 Exmouth to Exeter

The Exmouth to Exeter stage of the Friends Life Tour of Britain lasted for 177.3km and took in the best of Devon and Dartmoor. If you like your cycling, walking or just being outside, this is the stage for you.

The riders began in Exmouth centre, rode out to Dartmoor, over Haytor, around Tavistock and back round to Exeter city centre. The stage included some of the best scenery in the West country too.

Stage 6 Bath to Hemel Hempstead

Stage 6 brought us back into the heart of England from Bath city centre to Hemel Hempstead over 205.7km. The route passed Trowbridge, Hungerford, went around High Wycombe and ended in Hemel Hempstead, north of London.

This was another scenic route that showed a completely different aspect of our country. Rolling hills, forests, across the M4 and into the outskirts of the capital. All places ideal for a weekend break in a holiday cottage as well as several hours on the bike!

Stage 7 Camberley to Brighton

The penultimate stage of the Tour of Britain saw us shift to Hampshire for the start that took us from Camberley, 226km across the south of England to Brighton to finish in the town centre.

This was another fantastic route that took in the South Downs, West Sussex, looped around Eastbourne, went through Lewes before heading into Brighton. Any of these locations offer fantastic cycling, walking and sightseeing and is well worth a visit!

Stage 8 London

The final stage of the Tour of Britain was split into two parts. The first was an individual time trial through the city streets while the second part was a circuit race. The TT part lasted for 8.8km while the circuit 88.8km.

Our capital should need no introduction. It’s full of culture, interest, attractions and things to see and do. We even have holiday cottages within the city too!

The Tour of Britain was a great way to see parts of our country we wouldn’t normally get to see. If you were inspired by any of it, use the search function on our site to find a holiday cottage near your point of interest. We have thousands of them to choose from!

Follow in the footsteps of the Tour of Britain

2014 Tour of BritainThe Friends Life Tour of Britain is over, the trophies won and the crowds have gone home. If you were inspired by the scenery and places you may have seen while watching, this is the post for you!

The next two blog posts will highlight the eight areas of Britain visited by the tour. From Liverpool to London in eight stages. We’ll discuss the places visited, the ride and the fact that holidaycottages.net has quite a range of quality holiday accommodation near all the places you’ll visit.

If you want to see exactly where the professionals rode, or want to download the .gpx file of the route to your satnav, you’ll find them here.

So without further ado, let’s get started!

Stage 1 Liverpool

The first stage of the Tour of Britain was made up of laps of Liverpool city centre. It stretched for 104.8km and showcased the city well. The weather was good, the crowds large and good humoured and the stage was an enjoyable one. Marcel Kittel won this round after a fantastic sprint finish that saw tired legs pushed to their limit until the very end.

Liverpool is a lovely city with a lot of history, culture and appeal. Renting a holiday cottage within easy reach of the city can give you the best of both worlds. While you might not get the closed-road racing when you visit, the rest of the city is yours for the taking.

Stage 2 Knowsley to Llandudno

Stage 2 was a 201km ride from Knowsley in Liverpool to Llandudno in Wales that took in some stunning scenery. The race passed round Chester, through Wrexham, through Mold, round Conwy and into Llandudno town centre to finish.

This is a lovely area that mixes urban sprawl south of Liverpool with some lovely north Welsh coastline. It’s ideal ground for cycling or just enjoying time away from home.

Stage 3 Newtown to The Tumble

Newtown to The Tumble was a 179.7km from mid-Wales to southern Wales near Ebbw Vale. This was a challenging stage that takes in the best of Wales including the hills! This stage isn’t for the faint hearted but repays your efforts in kind with some fantastic scenery.

Mid-Wales has some fantastic surroundings, plenty of National Parks, forests and Welsh towns to take in. Whether you visit to follow the stage or take in the region, we have plenty of holiday cottages within easy reach.

Stage 4 Worcester to Bristol

Stage 4 of the Tour of Britain was from Worcester to Bristol, across 184.6km of undulating countryside. The route took in some of the best of the city of Worcester, the county of Gloucestershire and Bristol and showcased the region exceptionally well.

This is another region of the UK that is blessed with some amazing scenery, lovely countryside, National Parks and forests. It’s perfect for a weekend break whether you’re following in the footsteps of the Tour of Britain or not.

Use the search area of the site to find some excellent holiday cottages along these routes or build your very own Tour using local accommodation featured here. Join us next time for the final four stages of the of Britain!

The best of East Sussex for all the family

Royal PavilionEast Sussex includes towns such as Hastings, Brighton, Eastbourne, Worthing and many more. It’s a lovely part of the country that has beautiful countryside, dramatic coastline and a huge variety of culture, attractions and things to do.

If you’re staying in one of our East Sussex holiday cottages, these attractions are only ever a short drive away.


Glyndebourne is one of the most established outdoor opera venues anywhere in the world. It’s also one of the best. Even if you’re not a big fan of opera, it’s a great day out. Picnic in the park, watch a performance, toast a glass of champagne during the interval and enjoy a lovely day of quality performance and class. What more could you need?

Seven Sisters Country Park

The Seven Sisters are elements of the white chalk cliffs that make up some of the park. The country park itself is spread over 280 hectares of land that offers the opportunity to walk, cycle, fish, watch wildlife and take in the fantastic scenery. Located near Seaford, it’s a great way to spend a day.

Royal Pavilion

The Royal Pavilion in Brighton was built for King George IV during the 18th and 19th century. It’s modelled using oriental architecture that seems out of place in Brighton, but acts as a beacon for an earlier time. You can wander the gardens and look around inside, seeing the Royal Pavilion as it was when it was first opened. It’s a great way to while away an afternoon!

Drusillas Park

Drusillas Park in Alfriston East Sussex is a zoo and activity centre ideal for children of all ages. The animals are well cared for, the enclosures well maintained and everything has a quality feel about it. There are rides, play areas, educational themes, feeding opportunities and more. If you have little ones, this is an excellent place to visit.

Beachy Head

No visit to East Sussex would be complete without viewing Beachy Head. Located near to the Seven Sisters, Beachy Head is an area of outstanding natural beauty and you only have to see it to see why. Walk, cycle, watch and marvel. It’s a simple place full of simple beauty but you’ll never forget it!

East Sussex is a lovely part of the country to visit and holidaycottages.net knows it. That’s why we have dozens of the highest quality holiday cottages dotted around the county. It’s lush, green and vibrant and has all the characteristics we look for in a holiday. Try it yourself and let us know how you enjoy it!

Explore West Sussex from your holiday cottage

Arundel CastleHolidaycottages.net has a wide variety of lovely holiday cottages spread across West Sussex. We have properties near towns, villages, by the sea, in the countryside and just about everywhere else you could think of.

But when you’re there and you feel like a day out, what can you do? This quick list of the top attractions in West Sussex should help.

Arundel Castle and Gardens

Arundel Castle and Gardens is the official home of the Duke of Norfolk and is over a thousand years old. Located in Arundel, near Littlehampton, the castle, gardens and chapel are full of history as well as beautiful flowers, statues and architecture. A great day out for all the family.

Chichester Cathedral

Chichester Cathedral is over 900 years old but doesn’t look a day over 500. It’s an excellent example of how places of worship should be, open, welcoming and involving of everyone regardless of faith. The cathedral has many works of art, fantastic architecture, lots of history and always has an event or two going on.

Wings Museum

The Wings Museum is a step into more recent past with a range of aircraft from the Second World War. Exhibits include aircraft seen in many recent TV and film productions, as well as firm favourites from the Battle of Britain, the Blitz and more. Despite the subject matter, it’s a cheerful, interesting place to visit with lots going on.

Picturedrome Cinema

The Picturedrome Cinema in Bognor Regis is cinema as it used to be. It’s a classic, Grade II listed building that echoes the type of place enjoyed by thousands during the heyday of cinema. Despite being dedicated to retaining that original character, it’s all digital with surround sound, so the movie watching experience is still top notch!

Huxleys Birds of Prey Centre

Huxleys Birds of Prey Centre near Horsham is a fantastic opportunity to see some of the world’s most beautiful birds of prey up close and personal. Meet and greet the birds, watch them in action and even have one on one time with them for a little extra. If you’re at all interested by birds, this is a must-see.

Goodwood Motor Circuit

No trip to West Sussex would be complete without visiting glorious Goodwood! This one is for the petrol heads. Drive cars around the track, watch the Festival of Speed and so much more from within the circuit. It’s full of history, things to see and do and offers the kinds of opportunities that don’t come around very often!

If you’re staying in one of our holiday cottages in West Sussex, there are plenty of things going on. These six examples are just a few of many and all are well worth your time. Let us know how you get on by leaving a comment below!

Enjoy the last of the summer sun in Berkshire

Windsor CastleWith summer now officially over, the kids are back to school and the preparations for autumn are beginning, it’s a great time to think about a weekend away in a holiday cottage.

September is a month often filled with some lovely weather, quiet scenery and that calm after the summer break storm. If you prefer a little peace with your holiday, now is a great time to get away.

This time we’re looking at the royal country of Berkshire. A county full of history and things to do. Ideal for a short break in a lovely holiday cottage!

Windsor Castle

No visit to Berkshire would be complete without a trip to Windsor Castle. The sometime home of the royal family, Windsor Castle is the oldest occupied castle anywhere in the world. Built in the 11th century, it’s a place full of history and grandeur and an ideal activity for anyone.

Race Hut

The Race Hut in Slough is something completely different. This venue has a selection of professional race car simulators that you can drive to get a feel for live as a racing driver. Choose from F1, touring cars, rally, Le Mans and more. If you love driving and are in the area, this is well worth a try!

Windsor Great Park

Back to Windsor now and a visit to Windsor Great Park. The part covers 4,800 acres of prime land and much of it is open to the public. It’s an ideal place to enjoy a bit of fresh air and a picnic or a walk along the tree lined avenue up to the castle. A fantastic way to spend an afternoon in the sunshine.

REME Museum of Technology

The REME Museum of Technology near Reading is perfect for those interested in military history, innovation and all things mechanical. This museum celebrates the history of the Corps of Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers and the contribution they have made to the functioning of the army. It’s actually much more interesting than it sounds!

Ascot Racecourse

Berkshire is of course home to Ascot Racecourse and no visit to the county would be complete without a trip and a flutter. The Royal Ascot event runs for five days in June, but for the rest of the year, the racecourse is open to all. Even if you’re not interested in racing, it’s a fantastic place to experience and watch people if not horses.

Those are just five places in Berkshire to enjoy if you visit the county and stay in one of our lovely holiday cottages in the area. Each offers a little something different and each is a great way to spend a day. Try one for yourself and let us know how you get on!

Days out for all the family in Wiltshire

Salisbury CathedralWe have literally hundreds of great holiday cottages in and around the county of Wiltshire. It’s a lovely part of the country full of character, lovely towns, historic places and attractions.

If you’re planning to stay in one of our holiday cottages in this green and pleasant land, here are some great family days out while you’re here.

Salisbury Cathedral

Salisbury Cathedral is one of the best examples of Medieval architecture in Wiltshire. It’s also over 700 years old and home to one of the tallest towers around. The Cathedral runs regular tours that take in all the highlights of the building, including the tower.

There is also a café, visitor’s centre and an opportunity to see a copy of the Magna Carta.

The Wiltshire Heritage Museum

The Wiltshire Heritage Museum near Devizes is a little gem. It looks small from the outside but all that changes once you go in. It has gold from Stonehenge, finds from Avebury, local exhibitions, special events and more.

The museum is as entertaining as it is interesting, so even the kids should like it!

Castle Combe Village

Castle Combe Village in Wiltshire is one of the most picturesque little villages anywhere. If ever there was a quintessential picture of English village life this is it. Located not far from Bath, the village makes for a great afternoon out. We have some holiday cottages nearby too!

Boscombe Down Aviation Collection

Boscombe Down Aviation Collection near Salisbury is a great place to visit if you’re at all interested in aircraft. It is run by volunteers who share their knowledge and enthusiasm gladly with all visitors. There is a good collection of aircraft and plenty to see and do.

This is also one of the few museums where you can get into the cockpit and play with the controls too!

Avebury Stone Circle

Avebury Stone Circle is one of the oldest attractions in Wiltshire. This megalithic monument stands proud in the county and partly surrounds the village of Avebury. There is a pub, museum and pretty village to visit as well as the stones.

You can walk around freely and touch the stones too, which is nice.

Stourhead House and Garden

Stourhead House and Garden in Warminster is one of the better country houses in the country to visit. With 2,650 acres of landscaped grounds, a huge house, several buildings, grottoes and things to see, it’s a great summer’s day out.

The inside of the house is as impressive as the outside too!

Those are just some of the highlights Wiltshire has to offer. Each offers something a little different and an opportunity to learn a little as well as bask in a grand day out. A perfect way to spend time while enjoying one of our Wiltshire holiday cottages!