HomeAway travel expert
Opposites don't always cancel each other out: if they did, we might expect Prince William's increasingly shy hairline and the Duchess of Cambridge's massy mane, in coming into close proximity with one another, to result in some sort of – I don't know, explosion, or something. In my mind's eye, I see them hugging – assuming royals hug – and then just blinking out of existence. Maybe with a puff of smoke that spells out 'Science!' before dispersing completely.
It's moot at the moment, though, because my ultimate point is that, despite royal exemptions to the rule, opposites DO often cancel each other out. That's why you run cold water over a burnt finger. It's also why, after an exhausting week in the city, being a busy urbanite with a briefcase and uncomfortable shoes that nevertheless make a delightful cloppity-cloppity sound, few things seem more desirable than a weekend break along the coast. The relaxation of the latter cures – and this is 100% true – the stress elicited by the former.
Luckily for you, HomeAway has cosy beach cottages all over the UK – absolutely perfect for recovering from the weekly grind. Here, then, are some of our favourite weekend beach break destinations: choose your favourite, plug it into our search engine, find yourself a cottage, and BAM! – you know the rest.
Top destinations for cottage breaks on the coast
Weekend cottage beach breaks in Norfolk
Norfolk's beaches are known for their cleanliness and beauty, and make a great weekend escape setting. Waxham and Sea Palling, on the North Norfolk coast, are both small, quaint villages surrounded by endless expanses of soft, uncrowded sands. Hunstanton is famous for its colourfully striped cliffs, mossy rocks – and bivalves for the plucking. And while the focus of this article is beaches, I'd be remiss not to mention that, for those willing to venture beyond them, the Norfolk Broads are a choice holiday destination. Britain's largest protected wetland, the Broads provide the best inland boating in the country.
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Weekend cottage beach breaks in the Isle of Wight
So near, and yet so distinct from mainland England, the Isle of Wight's a perfect place to feel far away without having to go far away. Alum Bay, at the far west of Wight, and watched over by its famous chalk stacks, “The Needles,” has crystal clear waters that are impossible not to love, and excellent for kids. The open sands of Ryde, in the northeast, stretch for miles without interruption – ideal for any number of beach sports, or for serenely doing nothing at all. In the northwest of the isle, Colwell bay, with its view of England, is a wonderful swimming beach – the water is calm and clear, the shore is sandy, and the views practically beg to be photographed.
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Weekend cottage beach breaks in Lancashire
For many holidaymakers, the math goes something like: Lancashire + beach = Blackpool. But in fact, Lancashire boasts a number of smaller, stiller beaches as well. St. Anne's beach is large, sandy and relaxed; a nice break from the bustle of urban life (or Blackpool's major beach, for that matter). Fleetwood beach has a shiny new seafront, and, at low tide, fantastic cockle picking. And wherever you go in Lancashire county, the Lancashire Coastal Walk won't be far away; connecting Merseyside to Cumbria, the 137-mile walking trail traces the coast, passing on the way through some of the best bird watching territory in England (especially in spring and autumn).
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Weekend cottage beach breaks in Gwynedd
Wales is, of course, known for its landscape, but Gwynedd county's beaches are some of its loveliest. On the Lleyn Peninsula's north coast is scenic Trefor Beach, which has both pebbles and sand, and is excellent for beach combing. Llwyngwril is a shingle beach dotted with shapely boulders, and is known in the area as a good surf spot as well (but beware those shapely boulders, or you'll be sorry!). Pontllyfni, surrounded by gorgeous mountains, is another sand and pebble beach, but there's nothing ordinary about it; remote and peaceful as it is, it might as well have slipped out of a storybook. Perfect for a bit of rejuvenating quiet.
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Weekend cottage beach breaks in Devon
When quiet is in order, South Devon especially has excellent smaller beaches. From Mill Bay to Start Point, for instance, one encounters a string of lovely little beaches like Gara Beach and Elender Cove. Bigbury-On-Sea, about 17 miles from Plymouth is a great option for families (although dogs are disallowed between 1 May and 30 September). Active types and water worshippers may wanna head to Bantham Sand nearby, which offers great surfing. There are also more walking trails than you can shake a (walking) stick at – so when/if you tire of the beach, if that's possible, there'll still be plenty of beauty to explore.
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Cottages for Rent Near the Beach
CROYDE BARNCOTT OVERVIEW
Situated in the very heart of Croyde village, BARNCOTT is a wonderfully featured property just a ten minute stroll from the beach. It is presented in a country cottage style, featuring wood-beamed ceilings, flagstone floo...
HEDDON MILL HONEYSUCKLE COTTAGE OVERVIEW
HONEYSUCKLE COTTAGE is a charming 1 bedroom rural retreat situated in the peaceful hamlet of Heddon Mill. The perfect all-year round holiday cottage for couples with a wood burning stove for cooler months a...
WOOLACOMBE PEBBLES COTTAGE OVERVIEW
PEBBLES COTTAGE is a gorgeous home situated within the quiet Willingcott Valley Resort and is a wonderful combination of a family holiday park in a great location, but without the chaos which so often accompanie...
WOOLACOMBE DUCKS COTTAGE OVERVIEW
DUCKS COTTAGE is a gorgeous home situated within the quiet Willingcott Valley Resort and is a wonderful combination of a family holiday park in a great location, but without the chaos, which so often accompanies a...
WESTWARD HO! SURF COTTAGE OVERVIEW
This stylish 3-storey end-of-terrace apartment, sleeping 6 people comfortably, is conveniently positioned in the heart of the seaside village of Westward Ho! and only yards from the renowned blue-flag beach. West...
BERRYNARBOUR LEE COPSE COTTAGE OVERVIEW
LEE COPSE COTTAGE, in Berrynarbor, nestles quietly in the grounds of the owner's home which includes three acres of wonderful natural woodland, carpeted during the changing seasons with primroses, violets a...
INSTOW ROSEMARY COTTAGE OVERVIEW
Get away from it all in the wonderful peace and tranquility of the picture postcard village of Westleigh, near Instow, Bideford. Set in the rolling Devon hills with some views of the Torridge Estuary in the distan...
MONKLEIGH COACHMANS COTTAGE OVERVIEW
COACHMANS is a delightful self catering cottage situated through an archway in a cobbled courtyard in the grounds of Monkleigh village's old rectory, parts of which date back over 400 years. Although called CO...
CROYDE YELLOW COTTAGE OVERVIEW
Located in a quiet part of Croyde, this is the ideal holiday home for families or friends looking for a relaxed break in this beautiful part of North Devon. Croyde beach, famous for its waves, is just a 10 minute le...
GEORGEHAM SUNSHINE COTTAGE OVERVIEW
This lovingly decorated home has 2 bedrooms, sleeping 4 people + cot, and is within short walking distance of Georgeham village, through beautiful country lanes, where you can find a shop, excellent pubs (The Ro...