Archive for the ‘Holiday Ideas’ Category

Spotlight On: Quirky Holiday Cottages, Part II

Sunday, August 16th, 2015
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Looking for something a little different on your next holiday? Whether you fancy relaxing in a former water tank or getting away to a converted chapel, here at Sykes Cottages we have a wide collection of unusual holiday lets that are sure to make your holiday stand out! If you want to read Quirky Holiday Cottages Part I, please click here.

Riverside, Lake District

The spectacular views from this quirky holiday cottage are guaranteed to take your breath away. Situated on the shoes of Ullswater, the views from Riverside are some of the best in the Lake District. To make the most of these views, Riverside has huge picture windows and outside, there’s a private hot tub and alfresco cooking & dining facilities. There are beautiful walks on the doorstep and there’s a lovely pub just two minutes’ walk away.

The Old Fire Station, Kent

This fabulous holiday home was the former St Margaret’s at Cliffe fire station. The building was converted in 2012 to create this unique holiday rental which is ideal for a holiday with friends or family. The stand-out feature of the Old Fire Station is its original frontage, which it has retained and which now makes up one wall of the living area- the ceiling of which is high enough to accommodate a fire engine. This property is bright, airy and spacious with four bedrooms, and is close to beaches, pubs and stunning coastal walks.

1 Church House, Isle of Wight

1 Church House is a stunning church conversion on the coast of the Isle of Wight. The property manages to seamlessly combine luxurious and contemporary furnishings with beautiful original features, which include magnificent stained glass windows, timber high ceilings and a galleried balcony. 1 Church House is perfectly located for a relaxing break with a shop, lovely pub and beach all within eight minutes’ walk.

Cambridge Lodge, Peak District

Cambridge Lodge is an extraordinary property that offers a wonderfully unique holiday experience. Expertly converted from a water tank dating back to 1909, it took the owners 10 years of renovation but it’s been more than worth it! The property is now a modern and luxurious holiday home- half of which is underground- with facilities including Smart TVs, Netflix and a lovely outdoor garden with panoramic views across to nearby Chatsworth House.

Southover, Norfolk

This unusual part-thatched cottage on the edge of the River Bure in the Norfolk Broads makes for a holiday that you’ll never forget. With high ceilings, exposed timbers and full-length windows leading on to a decked balcony, making the most of the beautiful river views, Southover exudes luxury. There’s also a hot tub, Sky TV and in addition, the property offers private mooring and use of a 5-seater boat and canoe for guests to use on the water.

To see our full collection of unusual holiday cottages, you can visit our website or take a peek at our previous blog post focusing on other quirky cottages. We’ve everything from yurts to converted chapels so if you’re looking for a holiday let with a difference, you’re in the right place!

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Louise O'Toole

By Louise O'Toole

Louise loves reading, shopping, baking and cosy country pubs with log fires. A nice cup of tea will never be turned down. She has spent many childhood summers on the beach in Cornwall and walking the hills of the Lake District.

Off the Beaten Path: Isolated Cottages

Friday, July 31st, 2015
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Sometimes there’s nothing better than a holiday where you can get away from it all; taking a well-deserved break from the crowds, noises and distractions of everyday life is many people’s idea of heaven. So if you’re tempted, here are a few of our stunning, isolated holiday cottages in the UK for you to take a look through.

Coppa Hill Barn, Yorkshire Dales

This beautiful barn conversion is located next to the owner’s sheep farm, amongst the rolling countryside of the Yorkshire Dales. The setting is picturesque, yet the pretty village of Ingleton is just over a mile away should you want to venture out to a pub or restaurant. The owners of Coppa Hill Barn have put great care into making sure that the property feels and looks luxurious, with bespoke oak beams, a feature woodburner and super king-size bedrooms, making this lovely, tranquil cottage the perfect place to get away from it all.

Pen Y Bont, Snowdonia

Pen Y Bont is a real hidden gem in a serene and peaceful location, nestled between the Welsh hills and mountains of the Snowdonia National Park. Sitting on the banks of the River Dovey, Pen Y Bont offers stunning views, which you can admire from the windows whilst relaxing in a comfy chair with a good book and listening to the sounds of the river outside. The cottage itself is charming, cosy and traditional with features including exposed beams, an Inglenook fireplace and an original bread oven. If you’re looking for a quiet bolthole where you can unwind, then Pen Y Bont is ideal.

Sunset Cottage, Isle of Mull

Perched on a hillside, this stunning Isle of Mull cottage offers dramatic, panoramic views across the Sound of Mull. The cottage has its own garden with uninterrupted views out across the water- the perfect place for dining alfresco or relaxing with a drink as the sun goes down. Sunset Cottage is ideal for family or friends with flexible sleeping accommodation and bright, airy rooms. There’s even a woodburner to curl up in front of when the temperatures dip. The Isle of Mull itself is spectacular and enjoys a slower pace of life; perfect for a get away from everything type of holiday.

Higher Croasdale Farmhouse, Yorkshire Dales

This idyllic farmhouse is situated in a secluded location with sweeping views of the Yorkshire countryside and is only accessible via a mile-long farm track. The views at Higher Croasdale Farmhouse carry for miles across the open moorlands, inducing a feeling of complete tranquillity. Yet if you do want to head out for the day, nearby Bentham is just 3 miles away with some lovely pubs, restaurants and shops to choose from. The Yorkshire Three Peaks and the Forest of Bowland are also close by and are perfect spots for getting active with walking and cycling routes on offer.

To see our full collection of remote holiday cottages then please visit our website! Or alternatively, you can give our specialist holiday advisors a call on 01244 356 695 and they’d be more than happy to help you find the perfect cottage for your holiday.

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Louise O'Toole

By Louise O'Toole

Louise loves reading, shopping, baking and cosy country pubs with log fires. A nice cup of tea will never be turned down. She has spent many childhood summers on the beach in Cornwall and walking the hills of the Lake District.

Some of Britain’s Best Beaches

Monday, July 27th, 2015
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I think that it’s safe to say that pretty much everybody loves a trip to the seaside. Whether it’s a day spent relaxing in the sunshine or a bracing winter walk there’s just something special about being by the sea and so we’ve done our best to track down some of our favourite beaches around the country. Why don’t you take a quick look through and see which one you fancy visiting first?

Bamburgh Beach, Northumberland

Musselwick Sands, Pembrokeshire

Silver Sands of Morar, The Highlands

Barafundle Bay, Pembrokeshire

Pedn Vounder, Cornwall

Seilebost, Isle of Harris

So there you have it, a quick run through of our favourite beaches, hopefully you’ll agree with our choices but do let us know if you have any that you’d like to suggest – you can get in touch over Facebook or Twitter. Or maybe it’s convinced you into taking a break at the seaside? Then you’ll want to have a look through our collection of beach-side cottages where you’re sure to be able to find something that will suit you.

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Jamie Tomkins

By Jamie Tomkins

Jamie is a big fan of long weekend walks with the dog, especially when there is the chance to refuel with lunch in a country pub. Living in Lancaster for three years gave him the perfect opportunity to spend a lot of time in the Lake District.

Alternative Holiday Destinations in the UK

Saturday, July 25th, 2015
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At this time of year, it can be hard to find a holiday in the location you want. The most popular destinations get booked up early on in the year and if you’ve had to leave it until the last minute, it can be frustrating when you can’t find what you’re looking for. Here at Sykes, we know everything there is to know about holidaying in the UK. If there isn’t an available holiday in the area you wanted, we’ll use our expert knowledge to provide you with some alternative options in an area that will match all of your holiday requirements but that you may not have previously considered. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

Instead of Cornwall… try Dorset

Cornwall is one of the most popular holiday destinations in the UK but with popularity comes a shortage of last-minute options. We do still have some fantastic cottages in Cornwall with availability for this summer but if you can’t find what you’re looking for in Cornwall, have you thought about Dorset instead? Like Cornwall, Dorset also offers spectacular coastline (think Durdle Door and Lulworth Cove), sweeping countryside, charming villages and plenty of walking and cycling opportunities. There are family attractions aplenty here and there’s lots of history and heritage to discover. Don’t miss out on a fantastic holiday spot just because you weren’t as familiar with it as other South West destinations!

Instead of the Lake District… try the Eden Valley

We’ve all heard of the Lake District, but have you heard about Cumbria’s best kept secret, the Eden Valley? The Eden Valley is a real hidden gem, situated between the Lakes and the Yorkshire Dales. It has all the sweeping valleys, lush green countryside and characterful villages of the Lakes, as well as being located along Britain’s most scenic railway line, from Carlisle to Settle. Its quieter status means that you’re more likely to find some availability here and what’s more, the Eden Valley offers the best of both worlds as you’re still within driving distance of the Lakes if you had your heart set on venturing there.

Instead of the North Cotswolds… try the South Cotswolds

The Cotswolds are one of the most charming places in the country with picturesque, quintessentially English villages, quaint country pubs and bags of history. Most visitors to this area flock to the North Cotswolds, where you’ll find villages such as Broadway, Stow-on-the-Wold and Bourton-on-the-Water. However, last year, the Lonely Planet listed the South Cotswolds as one of the Top 50 ‘secret’ holiday destinations in Europe. The South Cotswolds are just as beautiful as the North and don’t come with the same level of tourist footfall, offering a slower pace of life and often a more authentic feel. Villages such as Castle Combe, Malmesbury and Lacock are perfect spots for a South Cotswolds holiday.

To see our full range of holiday cottages, please visit our website. We have over 5,500 fantastic self-catering cottages for you to choose from across the UK and Ireland and we’ll do our very best to find you the perfect holiday for your trip.

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Louise O'Toole

By Louise O'Toole

Louise loves reading, shopping, baking and cosy country pubs with log fires. A nice cup of tea will never be turned down. She has spent many childhood summers on the beach in Cornwall and walking the hills of the Lake District.

A Guide to the Sykes Discounts

Monday, July 13th, 2015
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Fancy saving some money on your next UK holiday? Well you’re in the right place. Here at Sykes Cottages, we offer a variety of discounts on our properties, from special offers through to our range of short breaks. So take a look and find out how you can can get a discounted break.

Last Minute Breaks

If you’re just looking for a spur of the moment escape, then there’s always the chance of getting a bargain break here at Sykes by taking advantage of any last minute availability that we might have. Many of our properties offer what we call Last Minute Breaks which means that if you book within one week of when the holiday is due to start ,you’ll be able save up to 35% on the standard price!

Seasonal Short Breaks

Then there’s our short break periods that are dotted throughout the year. First up we’ve got our winter short breaks. These are the cheapest breaks that you’ll be able to find on the Sykes website and are applicable for holidays that take place between the 31st October 2015 and the 22nd December 2015 so they’re perfect for a relaxing weekend away. Or we’ve got our off season breaks; available between the 26th September 2015 and the 24th October 2015, they can only be booked one month before the holiday is due to start but you’ll save 25% on the standard price. We also offer a discount over the festive period so you can celebrate in style with the family. For more information on all of our Short Break plans take a look at this page.

Special Offer Cottages

Or, alternatively, you could take a look through our special offer cottages to see if you can find a discounted property to suit you. At any one time, there are many holiday cottages on the Sykes website that are offering specially discounted prices so you’re sure to get a great deal, from properties on the south coast through to cosy boltholes in the Highlands.

So there you have it, the low-down on Sykes’ various discounts. I’m sure you’ll find something to suit but don’t worry if not, we’re always updating our special offers so something should crop up. Make sure to keep your eye on our Facebook and Twitter profiles where we’ll share any really good deals!

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Jamie Tomkins

By Jamie Tomkins

Jamie is a big fan of long weekend walks with the dog, especially when there is the chance to refuel with lunch in a country pub. Living in Lancaster for three years gave him the perfect opportunity to spend a lot of time in the Lake District.