20 Family-Friendly Cottages To Book For October Half-Term
The Polo Farm, Cirencester
If you’re a large family or are planning a staycation with your ‘support bubble’, The Polo Farm is the ideal choice. With the Cotswolds countryside right on your doorstep, there's plenty to keep the whole family happy. There are 30 acres of private grounds to explore, complete with a badminton net, table tennis and cricket equipment, while inside you’ll find multiple bedrooms, including two loft rooms designed especially for children. There’s a cinema den ready for family movie nights complete with Sky, Apple TV and Netflix – plus, an Xbox. For dinner, fire up the Big Egg BBQ – which comes with its own pizza stone – or tuck into a supper made with local produce before curling up next to the fire. The Polo Farm can sleep ten, but also takes bookings for six guests and under. Dogs are also welcome.
Winterberry Cottage, Bibury
This stone fronted semi-detached cottage takes pride of place in the small village of Barnsley, a short distance from the luxurious Barnsley House Hotel. The property opens up into a large hallway and cloakroom, where you can discard your wellies and walking boots after a day spent exploring the local area. On the ground floor, the décor is simple, but characterful. Upstairs there are two king-sized bedrooms, as well as a twin for little ones. There’s also a large family kitchen overlooking the garden, complete with patio doors leading out onto a sunny terrace. On chilly evenings, light a fire in the log burner and wrap up on the sofa with a book from the cottage’s library.
Owl Cottage, Southrop
Located in the charming village of Southrop, Owl Cottage is a cosy home away from home. With three bedrooms and two bathrooms, and all decorated in soft neutral tones, the property comfortably sleeps up to six guests. A large farmhouse-style kitchen is the hub of the house, with all the modern amenities you could need, as well as added luxuries like underfloor heating. Parents can cook up a tasty supper using the local ingredients provided in a thoughtful welcome basket, while little ones can stay cosy in the sunken-style lounge, where a wood burning fireplace awaits.
Grain Store, Bibury
Perched on the edge of the chocolate box village of Bibury, The Grain Store is one of five beautifully converted barns owned by Bibury Farms. Exposed beams and brickwork feature throughout, alongside stylish decoration and comfy soft furnishings. Families can curl up in either one of the two lounge areas, both of which come with log burners, or sit around the breakfast bar in the airy, high-ceilinged kitchen. Perfect for large families or groups, The Grain Store sleeps up to ten guests, with five bedrooms split across two floors. For those holidaying with babies, a stairgate, highchair and travel cot can be provided on request. Dogs are also welcome, with a luscious lawned garden to make themselves at home in.
Samphire Cottage, Broadstairs
A great choice for fans of ocean swimming and beach picnics, Samphire Cottage can be found in the eastern town of Broadstairs. Modern in design but with traditional nautical touches, it boasts an open plan living area complete with a wood burning fireplace and French doors opening out onto a courtyard garden. Upstairs you’ll find two bedrooms and a good-sized bathroom, all featuring simple décor and colourful accessories. Award-winning beaches are just minutes away, as is the buzzy high street complete with crazy golf, an independent cinema and plenty of fish and chip shops.
Castle View, Whistable
Journey just past Tankerton Beach to reach Castle View. A roomy duplex split over two floors, the property sleeps up to six guests across three bedrooms. Children can bunk in the twin rooms on the first floor, while adults get their own private hideaway at the top of the house, with access to an impressive roof terrace. Back downstairs, lounge around in the open plan sitting/dining room – which is well stocked with board games – or cosy up in the reading corner with your favourite book. Minutes away from Whitstable town centre – home to myriad bakeries, cafés and independent gift shops, as well as the beach and some fantastic restaurants – Castle View is the place for a seaside staycation with the whole family.
The Potting Shed, Cranbrook
A quirky property near the historic market town of Tunbridge Wells, The Potting Shed is a 16th century farmhouse that has been lovingly transformed into a welcoming holiday home. Expect to find plenty of characterful features inside, such as ancient oak beams, a wood burning stove, inglenook fireplaces and roll top baths. Rainy mornings can be spent in the games room or snuggled in the lounge, while sunnier afternoons are best spent splashing around in the outdoor pool. Should the weather allow, wrap up and enjoy an autumnal BBQ on the terrace for dinner. For a family-friendly day out, walk to Sissinghurst Gardens and Castle, a National Trust-owned site which is considered one of the most beautiful gardens in the country.
Lily Cottage, Whitstable
With a prime position on Whitstable high street, the Scandinavian-style Lily Cottage is a great option for those planning a weekend getaway close to London. A comfy two-bedroom cottage that sleeps four, it comes with a bright living room, galley kitchen and a main bedroom, complete with an ensuite and large roll top bath. All of Whitstable’s best shops, cafés and restaurants are just minutes from your door, as is the promenade and the pebble beach. Plus, the harbour is just around the corner – which is where you’ll find market stalls selling fresh fruit and veg, and The Harbour Garden Café. An ideal spot for lunch, it serves everything from sandwiches to oysters.
CORNWALL & DEVON
Landscove Barns, Buckfastleigh, Dartmoor National Park
A collection of barns built over 200 years ago, Landscove Barns is modern and chic, but still retains its original charm. A great option for larger families or those heading on holiday with their ‘support bubble’, the barns have plenty of space for adults and children. Each one comes with its own kitchen and bathroom, as well as high ceilings and authentic exposed stone walls. The perfect country escape, the barns are well located to explore the South Hams, as well as some of Devon’s most beautiful beaches and historic towns. It’s a short walk to the nearest village, where you’ll find a collection of family-friendly restaurants. For a real treat, a chef, maid and babysitting service can be organised by the property’s managers.
The Fisherman’s Cove, Newquay
Beach lovers will want to book this charming Fisherman’s cottage-style apartment in Newquay. A cool and bright colour scheme helps keep things modern, while added touches like a coffee machine, dishwasher, smart TV and collection of toys and books will make you feel right at home. Along with the main bedroom – which is reserved for mum and dad – there’s also a bunk bedroom for little ones. Spend your mornings on the nearby beach before heading into Newquay town centre, where you’ll find a surf school, zoo, aquarium and a cinema, as well as shops, restaurants and supermarkets. Back at home, adults can enjoy a drink or two in the courtyard, while the children snuggle up on the sofa with a book, movie or game.
The Pomegranate Tree, Exmoor
Perched right on the edge of Exmoor National Park in North Devon, this luxurious cottage is a lovely spot for families with older children. The property sits on the Two Moors Way route, with an abundance of hikes, cycle routes and easy walks to embark on in the local area. Expect traditional décor, with pops of colour and mismatched patterns lending a more contemporary feel. Outside, there’s a large garden complete with sun loungers, a fire pit and BBQ. To ensure you enjoy your staycation in style, expect to find a welcome hamper brimming with local produce and family-friendly treats upon arrival, as well as board games and a set of logs to get the fire going. One well behaved dog is also welcome, with treats provided.
Whaley Cottage, Pentire
Just a short drive away from Fristal Beach, Whaley Cottage is an oasis on the Cornish coast. Home to four cosy bedrooms, as well as a warm lounge and impressive kitchen that opens out onto a large deck, it’s the garden that’s the jewel in the crown, with a terrace, lawn, and secret garden including a fire pit and summer house. Even better, the main bedroom boasts a large balcony with sun loungers – perfect for a nightcap once the children are in bed. Fristral beach, Crantock beach and Watergate Bay are all nearby, as is the Gannel estuary. Children can swim, surf, go rock pooling and head out wildlife spotting in the local area, or journey into Newquay for family-friendly attractions like the zoo and aquarium. Pets are also welcome.
Seaside Cottage, Hastings
For those looking to escape the hustle and bustle of Brighton and keen for something more low-key, stay at this fisherman’s cottage in Hastings. Right on the seafront, and with a plethora of trendy restaurants and waterfront pubs available for lunch, it has everything you need for a relaxing break. Inside, there are two well-sized bedrooms sleeping four, peppered with vintage accessories and quirky artwork, and all offset by simple white walls and stylish furniture. Guests will have use of a small and pretty courtyard to the rear of the property, while the beach is only a two-minute walk away. If you do want to journey into Brighton, drive or take the train to get there in under an hour.
Beach Boutique Cottage, Camber Sands
We love this classic seaside bolthole, which is just minutes away from the beautiful Camber Sands beach. With its contemporary Hamptons-style interior and open plan living area, it’s an ideal home away from home. The house sleeps four people, with a main bedroom, as well as smaller, child-friendly singles. Outside, there's an enclosed garden with bistro-style seating ready for a family breakfast in the sunshine. Walk to the beach, stocking up on picnic supplies along the way, or plan a visit to Rye Harbour and the nature reserve. If you’re looking for somewhere to enjoy supper, head to The Globe Inn, which serves up decent pub-grub for both adults and children.
Grapefruit Glaze, Rye
This ultra-modern home can be found in the charming village of Rye. On the ground floor, expect a bright open-plan living area with plenty of skylights, which eventually leads out to a large terrace and into a walled courtyard garden. Upstairs, there are two bedrooms sleeping four in total, as well as two bathrooms, so you can rest assured there’s enough space for everyone. A further balcony lies off the main bedroom. There are plenty of restaurants, shops and delis nearby, including Knoops, a chocolate bar that serves up personalised hot chocolates and milkshakes. Plus, with Camber Sands on your doorstep, there are plenty of opportunities for swimming, playing and exploring.
Grade II Listed Townhouse, Brighton
Just a stone’s throw from the beach and the pier, I-360 and the iconic Lanes, this Grade II listed Georgian townhouse makes for a memorable city break. Recently refurbished, it comes with three bedrooms and three bathrooms, as well as a large open-plan kitchen/diner and cosy lounge. The owners have made sure it has everything you need for a relaxing stay, but haven’t scrimped on style, with plenty of chic, pretty details – think quirky art and antique furniture – dotted throughout. A gorgeous house with a plethora of child-friendly activities nearby, as well as artisan cafés and restaurants to keep parents happy.
SUFFOLK & NORFOLK
Bishops Cottage, Bury St Edmunds
In Bury St Edmunds, Bishops Cottage is ideal for a family getaway. Near to all the shops, cafés and restaurants that take pride of place in the charming market town, there are plenty of spots from which to pick up breakfast or to tuck into Sunday lunch. Sleeping four, there are two bedrooms at the property, as well as a modern galley-style kitchen and open plan living area. In the evenings, challenge each other to a board game or snuggle up on the sofa with a book or movie. With its clean and contemporary design, plus several cosy touches, it’s easy for everyone to feel at home here.
Flora & Fauna, Worlingham
Located in leafy Worlingham – less than a 20-minute drive to the sea – this idyllic cottage can be found perched on the edge of a historic 400-acre estate. Guests are welcome to explore the grounds during their stay, with wild woodlands and meadows right on their doorstep. Children can go wildlife spotting or learn about the ancient trees from the groundskeeper, who will gladly give them a private tour. Inside, the interiors are traditional and homey, with double and single bedrooms, as well as three bathrooms including an en-suite. After a day spent exploring, curl up with one of the movies from the DVD library or choose a family-favourite on Netflix. Flora & Fauna also has a selection of bicycles, which guests are free to use during their stay. Dogs are welcome, too.
Vintage House, Bury St Edmunds
Vintage House was once the utility barn for an old manor house but has recently been transformed into a cool and stylish holiday home. There are three bedrooms in total, each featuring a blend of vintage treasures sourced from all over the world, while simple touches help offset the added pops of colour. A short drive from Bury St Edmunds and minutes away from Knettishall Heath, spend your holiday walking, cycling or wild swimming. For budding historians, there are plenty of medieval towns and villages within driving distance, including Lavenham, which is home to a 15th century church. After a day on your feet, enjoy the peacefulness back at home with a family movie night using the projector screen.
Roof Top View, Wells-Next-The-Sea
Journey to the Norfolk Coast Area of Outstanding Beauty and you’ll find yourself in the charming seaside resort of Wells-Next-The-Sea. This modern three-storey townhouse is close to the beach, and within walking distance of some family-friendly pubs. It sleeps up to six guests over three bedrooms, with a large open plan kitchen, plus a conservatory where parents can enjoy a morning coffee before the kids wake up. On the first floor, there's a main bedroom with an en suite, while little ones get the top floor all to themselves. Spend your days on the wild beach, which is flanked by pine forests and peppered with pastel beach huts, or explore the pretty seaside town on foot, stopping off at the delis and gift shops as you go. Roof Top View also comes with off-street parking and a large garden.
*DISCLAIMER: At the time of writing, all properties featured have availability between the 23rd October and 1st November. Travel restrictions are changing daily, so please check the latest government advice before you book. Please ensure you are aware of the social distancing guidelines in place as well as rules on meeting up with large groups of people, too.
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