From pint-sized bothies beneath Ben Nevis to whitewashed Welsh fisher's homes and thatch-topped English longhouses, the range of holiday cottages currently on the menu is nothing if not eclectic. This guide can help you make sense of what's on offer, the various features and the kaleidoscope of destinations both in the UK and abroad.
Top articles to find your perfect cottage holiday
To enjoy real seclusion and immersion in nature, independent cottages probably can't be beaten. These are the pads that will get you out and about, whether that's amid the fells of the Peak District or just a stone's throw from the Pembroke Coast Path. Many are old farm conversions set in sprawling grounds, while others might be as off-beat as enchanting Apulian trulli on the Italian coast.
With so many holiday cottages on offer all over the UK and beyond, it's hardly a surprise that many go un-booked, especially during less-popular times of the year. When that happens, there's always a chance you'll bag a bargain at the last minute, which could transport you to the Devonshire beaches or the rolling North York Moors for less.
While most all holiday cottages will come with their own kitchen space, there's myriad different types and sizes in the mix. You'll need to decide whether you need a sprawling country cooking space and diner for the whole family or just something small to rustle up breakfast for you and your other half when booking self-catering cottages.
There's a certain subset of holiday cottages that offer something truly extraordinary. That could mean a crooked Welsh hut beneath the mist-gathering summit of Snowdon. It could be an earthy, eco-friendly farm conversion on the cow farms of Aberdeenshire. It could even be a manor in the midst of the Cotswolds, where once dukes and English kings resided. Unique cottages are just that.
Whether it's a romantic getaway with your other half or a weekend in the country with the family, cottage breaks are perfect for all sorts of trips. With simple, self-catering homes and luxurious pads alike on the menu, you shouldn't be short of places to pick from. What's more, these lettings can be both remote and accessible, ranging from the fells of the Lake District to the peripheries of buzzing London.
If you're conscious about the travel budget but still pining for an escape to nature, there are plenty of alluring pads to book all over the UK. From the wild Scottish Highlands to the salt-washed coast of Wales, you can discover a whole kaleidoscope of wallet-friendly homes that won't break the bank, not to mention fun things to do and see that shouldn't cost a penny.
Learn all about the various sorts of holiday cottages you can pick from today. There are cosy boltholes with country kitchens and roaring wood fires mingling with luxurious manor houses that can host larger groups. There's lots to think about on the location front, too – cottages to rent can be by the sea, in the mountains and even near the big city.
One of the real joys of opting for a holiday cottage is the seclusion in nature that comes with it. You could have craggy Scottish Munros looming outside the window, green dales in the Lake District or quaint Welsh fishing towns watched over by ancient castles. Country cottages can also mean plenty of space to bring the pooch for those walkies in the great outdoors.
Fancy something luxurious? Cue holiday cottages with bubbling hot tubs and private swimming pools. Keen on treating your 4-legged friend? There are boltholes that will welcome the barker with their own beds and enclosed gardens. And that's not even mentioning the range of eco-friendly rentals and Grade-listed cottage hires out there, each offering something unique of their own.
A spontaneous escape to a holiday cottage could just be that hit of nature and exploration that you're after. There are loads of casual rentals that suit, offering a bolthole that's truly away from it all but close enough to the big city for arriving straight after your hard graft on a Friday. With oodles of options to choose from, booking the perfect weekend cottage break couldn't be easier.