Archive for the ‘Holiday Ideas’ Category

Book Now for Summer 2016

Saturday, January 9th, 2016
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It may only be the beginning of January but our properties are booking up fast, especially those for summer! With couples, families and large groups all wanting those choice coastal cottages and tranquil country retreats, you’re better off booking sooner rather than later. To help you find the perfect property for your summer holiday, we’ve listed some of our favourite cottages that are still available for this year below.

The Cow Pen

Snitterfield near Stratford-upon-Avon, Heart of England

The Cow Pen - Reference 914529

The Cow Pen – Reference 914529

A fantastic 300 year old property lovingly restored to provide luxury accommodation for a party of two this summer. The cottage is just 3 miles from Stratford-upon-Avon and as well as offering guests wonderful views of the Warwickshire countryside, this stylish cottage also allows access to a six seater hot tub, indoor heated pool and beautiful gardens.

Price: Prices for a seven night stay at The Cow Pen during August start from £582.00.

Penthouse Flat, Pentire Point

Newquay, Cornwall

Penthouse Flat, Pentire Point - Reference 928902

Penthouse Flat, Pentire Point – Reference 928902

This very special self-catering holiday rental will accommodate a party of six and provides amazing views across Newquay. Located in one of Cornwall’s most popular holiday locations, Penthouse Flat not only boasts modern furnishings but with a surf school, beautiful beach, wonderful shops and plenty of eateries, there’s plenty to keep the whole family entertained this summer.

Price: Prices for a seven night stay at Penthouse Flat, Pentire Point during August start from £2355.00.

Courtyard Cottage

Meeson near Iornbridge, Heart of England

Courtyard Cottage - Reference 11346

Courtyard Cottage – Reference 11346

The picturesque Courtyard Cottage is the dream property for a country getaway this summer, with beautiful gardens, tonnes of character and great walking routes nearby. This property is located in a stunning location and as it sleeps a party of three, it’s ideal for small families or couples looking to explore Ironbridge and Market Drayton.

Price: Prices for a seven night stay at Courtyard Cottage during August start from £537.00.

Sunshine Cottage

Kessingland near Lowestoft, East Anglia

Sunshine Cottage - Reference 23503

Sunshine Cottage – Reference 23503

This stunning mid-terrace cottage is just a two minute walk from the beach, and with two spacious bedrooms, a patio garden and inviting sitting room, it’s ideal for a family of four and their dog this summer. If you are visiting the area with children then make sure to check out Africa Alive, a fantastic park home to over 80 specials of animals from all around Africa.

Price: Prices for a seven night stay at Sunshine Cottage during August start from £549.00.

Ash Lodge

Glasshouse near Gloucester, Heart of England

Ash Lodge - Reference 27870

Ash Lodge – Reference 27870

If you’re looking for a luxury lodge that will accommodate your group of four this year, then Ash Lodge is for you. Located on private landscaped gardens, this lodge provides plenty of peace and tranquillity for a quiet break, however for those wanting a little more action there is canoeing, abseiling, cycling and horseback riding available in the area.

Price: Prices for a seven night stay at Ash Lodge during August start from £.00

3 Belle Cottage

Kingsbridge near Salcombe, Devon

3 Belle Cottage - Reference 28912

3 Belle Cottage – Reference 28912

3 Belle Cottage is wonderfully welcoming property located close to many beautiful beaches. The property benefits from two bedrooms, a lovely kitchen and dining area, a cosy living room and private decked courtyard, perfect for a family of four and their dog.  As well as a number of great beaches, the area also has a fascinating museums, great eateries and charming local pubs to explore.

Price: Prices for a seven night stay at 3 Belle Cottage during August start from £702.00

Cambridge Lodge

Wensley near Marlock, Peak District

Cambridge Lodge - Reference 903901

Cambridge Lodge – Reference 903901

Expertly converted from a 1909 water tank to a stunning holiday cottage, Cambridge Lodge offers a truly unique holiday property for a group of six. The property is located in a rural area with panoramic views and magnificent walks from the door, as well as a selection of fantastic water-based activities available in the nearby Carsington Water.

Price: Prices for a seven night stay at Cambridge Lodge during August start from £923.00

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By Nicole Westley

As a food lover Nicole can often be found in the kitchen, covered in flour and experimenting with new tastes! When not making a mess she loves to explore her Celtic roots by roaming the Scottish countryside or exploring the bays along the Anglesey coast with her fiancé.

Introducing… The Tube Map: Reimagined

Wednesday, January 6th, 2016
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London is big. Really, really big. So big, in fact, that when you’re in the metropolis, it’s all-too-easy to forget that there are fields and quaint villages just a hop, skip and a jump away. This is what we want to remind the city-dwellers of. Great Britain is far more than a series of cities. We’re a country of stunning countryside, so let’s escape and explore it!

To highlight some of the loveliest places that are only two hours away from the heart of London by train, we’ve created a tube map-inspired graphic that illustrates the kinds of rural locations that are, in the grand scheme of things, really quite close to the city.

Sykes_Tube_Map-V2 (1)

Our map takes you from Liverpool St. through Manningtree, Ipswich and Stowmarket to arrive in Norwich, the centre point of Norfolk – home to a beautiful coastline, the Norfolk Broads, and miles of untouched countryside.

In the other direction, two hours could see you depart from Paddington and arrive in Taunton, through Reading and Castle Cary on the Stone and Tor train route. Once you arrive in Taunton, you have the entirety of beautiful Somerset stretching out before you! Visit Glastonbury and climb the Tor, drive through the awe-inspiring Cheddar Gorge, or indulge at a local cheese or cider farm.

Though we’ve featured six routes here, there are an endless number of places you can easily venture to from the capital – we’ve just got to get out there and explore them!

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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.

Experience More In 2016

Sunday, December 27th, 2015
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This New Year, Sykes Cottages are inviting you to experience more on your next holiday. Whether that’s by visiting a part of the country you’ve never been to before, trying a new activity, or indulging in something a little different, we want you to make the most of your getaway.

LIVE MORE on the wild side

Live more on the wild sideIt’s tempting to stick to what you know but by doing so, you can miss out on some really extraordinary experiences. On your next holiday, how about a gravity-defying trip to the world’s first subterranean trampoline in Wales, or an alternative day out like white-water rafting or falconry?


EXPLORE MORE locations

Explore more locationsHave you always fancied visiting the Highlands? Want to go back and re-live your childhood holidays to Cornwall? Or maybe you just want to explore a completely new part of the UK or Ireland? Now is the time to do it! Book early to make sure you have the best choice of cottages.


ENJOY MORE of the little things

Enjoy more of the little thingsEnsure your holiday is really special by treating yourself to something you’ve always wanted. Book a cosy cottage with an open fire to curl up in front of; spoil yourself at a luxury cottage with a hot tub, glass of champagne in hand; or cook up a storm at a cottage with the kitchen of your dreams.

Enter our new competition

To help you experience more in 2016, we’re giving away two Red Letter Days vouchers, worth £200 each. The vouchers will enable you to choose from over 650 fantastic experiences including hot air balloon rides, fine dining, paddle boarding and eagle handling. To enter this new competition, all you need to do is enter your details here. Entries close on Friday 26th February 2016.

Sykes Cottages have over 6,000 holiday cottages to choose from across the UK and Ireland, so wherever you fancy heading on your 2016 holiday, we’re sure to have the perfect cottage to suit you.

Enter our new competition

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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.

Our Favourite Forest Cottages

Saturday, November 28th, 2015
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Today we’re taking a sneak peek at some of our favourite cottages, all of which are within a short distance from a famous forest. From Kielder right up in the north of Northumberland through to the Forest of Dean down in Gloucestershire, they all combine the beauty of the great outdoors with a cosy cottage, so why don’t you take a look and see which you’d like to pay a visit to?

Kielder Forest – Greystead Old Church (ref. 23575)

Situated just a few miles from Kielder Water, right in the heart of the Kielder Forest Park, Greystead Old Church is a stunning Grade II listed former Georgian church. Lovingly restored just a couple of years ago, the property was transformed into beautiful holiday cottage whilst retaining plenty of the original features including the stained glass windows, Georgian panelling and the Gothic archway. With four bedrooms, Greystead Old Church can comfortably sleep up to eight people making it perfect for family get-togethers or breaks with friends alike, and with the Kielder Forest right on the doorstep you’ll never struggle for something to do. With the darkest skies in the whole of the country, Kielder is one of the best places to do a spot of stargazing and you could even pop down to the famous observatory, which is just a little way up the road.

Grizedale Forest – 3 Vale View (ref. 25709)

Or alternatively, we’ve got 3 Vale View which is just on the outskirts of the Grizedale Forest in the Lake District. It’s a traditional whitewashed property in the picturesque hamlet of Hannakin – the perfect place to catch some stunning views. In fact the property is geared towards making the most out of these panoramas with the upside down arrangement meaning you’ll be able to enjoy uninterrupted vistas from the living areas. Just down the road, you’ll be able to find the quaint village of Hawkshead, famously the former home to both William Wordsworth and Beatrix Potter. These literary links mean that Hawkshead is a veritable haven for all of the book lovers out there, offering tours of Wordsworth’s old school and the Beatrix Potter gallery where you’ll be able to find many of her original illustrations. Or if you’d count yourself as more of an adrenaline junkie, then there’s always the Go Ape and mountain bike trails in Grizedale Forest itself.

The Forest of Dean – Ciderpress Cottage (ref. 24803)

And finally we’ve got the Forest of Dean and Ciderpress Cottage. A detached barn conversion situated in an idyllic rural location, the ground floor of the cottage features a cosy living room full to the rafters with charm, and up just a couple of steps you’ll be able to find the magnificent kitchen complete with all of the mod cons that you could ask for. Upstairs there are two comfortable bedrooms which between them can sleep four people, making it a great cottage for a family break. In the Forest of Dean itself, you’ll be able to try out a huge array of activities and things to pass the time, ranging from segway riding to bushcraft and maybe even a trip around the Westons Cider Mill.

So there’s just a small selection of some of our favourite forest cottages, we hope that you liked them but don’t forget you can always have a quick look through to the full collection – we’re sure you’ll find something to 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.

Why London has a lot in common with the rest of the UK

Friday, November 27th, 2015
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Great Britain is home to both remarkable countryside, and invigorating cities – but what happens when you pair the two? We’ve taken some of our treasured cottage locations and paired them with what we think could be their London twin!

Whether they’re twinned because we think they share the same buzz, are keen on the same activities or own similar landmarks, we’ve tried to summarise the quirks of these places to show that, really, the big smoke and the countryside aren’t so far apart after all…

Shoreditch and Hastings


With Hastings having been described as the “Shoreditch of Essex” in the past, we’ve paired these two areas for their love of art and the keen creative scene.

Notting Hill and Hay-on-Wye


Thanks to the movie of the same name, there’s no disassociating Notting Hill from bookshops – and the small town of Hay-on-Wye in Wales is renowned for its high number of them, too. A match made in a book lover’s heaven!

The East End and Whitstable


Seafood is the common denominator in these two places. East London is the perfect spot to try some jellied eel, but head to Whitstable, and you’ll surely find some Whitstable Oysters to sample.

Ham and Kirtlington


Both Ham (located on the outskirts of London) and Kirtlington (just north of Oxford) are home to respected polo clubs. As well as being a centre for the game, both bring a tremendous sense of community to their respective homes!

Westminster and Dulverton


Believe it or not, both Westminster and Dulverton are home to keen stargazing communities. Regent’s Park in Westminster is home to the Baker Street Irregular Astronomers who aim to make the most of the poor darkness levels and in Dulverton, there is Exmoor National Park which was the first International Dark Sky Reserve in Europe.

Sutton and Cheltenham


Perfect for parents and their kids, both Sutton and Cheltenham have been singled out as family-friendly areas! Thanks to the beautiful parks and community facilities of Sutton, it’s known as one of London’s friendliest areas, and Cheltenham has been ranked as the top place in the UK to raise a family.

Putney and Cambridge


The relationship between Putney and Cambridge is a watery one – in the strongest sense of the term! Each year, Putney hosts the Oxbridge boat race but Cambridge is also home to its own water sport activity – the annual Dragon Boat Festival.

Hampstead and Buttermere


Open-water swimming fans in London may have already experienced taking a dip at Hampstead Heath, but how about a trip to the Lake District? Buttermere is one of the best places for those who like swimming al fresco – but be sure to don a wetsuit outside of the summer months!

Clapham and Skipwith


Both Clapham and Skipwith are home to large commons, making them perfect destinations for those with families and furry friends. Skipwith Common is also Natural England’s newest Natural Nature Reserve.

Richmond and Harrogate


In 2009, Richmond was declared as London’s “happiest borough” and recently, it was announced that Harrogate is home to the happiest people in Britain – a happy twinning indeed!

Dulwich and St Ives


Art appreciators, assemble! While Dulwich is known for the Dulwich Picture Gallery, head to the Cornish coast and you’ll find the Tate St Ives, as well as many other boutique galleries.

Tom Lowes at Sykes Cottages, adds: “We’re incredibly lucky here in the UK. We’ve got large cities and vast countryside on our doorsteps – but we want to highlight that you don’t have to head into London to experience something a little different. In short, the essence of city life can be found further afield – you just have to know where to look for it!”

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By Nicole Westley

As a food lover Nicole can often be found in the kitchen, covered in flour and experimenting with new tastes! When not making a mess she loves to explore her Celtic roots by roaming the Scottish countryside or exploring the bays along the Anglesey coast with her fiancé.