WITH incredible walks through nature, amazing wildlife and indulgent food, a country break can be the perfect getaway.
But with so many areas to choose from, we take a look at some of the highlights of two popular options - Dartmoor and the New Forest.
Bovey Castle, Dartmoor
Deputy Editor Ellie O’Mahoney and friend Diane live the high life in Devon.
THE PAD: Bovey Castle feels like your very own English stately home, but with all mod-cons, including a helipad! You could spend all day roaming the vast grounds, which include an 18-hole golf course with views over the Dartmoor National Park.
There’s even a complimentary falconry display every day, or you can sign up to help collect eggs from the chicken run. Rooms have cloud-like mattresses, gorgeous Espa smellies and fluffy bathrobes.
REFUEL: The hotel’s main eatery, the Great Western, is a 3-AA-rosette restaurant fitted out in silver art-deco decor. It’s so luxuriously retro that Poirot wouldn’t look out of place at one of the candle-lit tables.
After the £85 tasting menu, including dishes such as native Cornish lobster and heirloom tomatoes, you might have to ask one of the waiting staff to roll you to bed – but for a special occasion it’s perfection.
EXPLORE: Stomp your way to the top of Hound Tor, a granite rock with jaw-dropping views over the moor. Or check out the nearby village of Chagford, which has artisan shops selling locally made pottery, leather goods and paintings.
DON’T MISS: The Signature Pedicure at Bovey Castle’s spa, £55 for 45 minutes, is utterly indulgent.
With double treatment chairs, you can properly catch up while you get your nails polished.
BOOK IT: Double rooms cost from £219 per night B&B, including access to the spa (Boveycastle.com).
The Montagu Arms, New Forest
Acting Lifestyle Editor Amy Dawson and boyfriend Paul step back in time in the New Forest.
THE PAD: Nestled in the sleepy village of Beaulieu, where wild ponies roam the cobbled streets, The Montagu Arms is the ideal spot for a New Forest break.
The red brick walls are draped in ivy, and inside it’s old-school luxe with wood panelling and grandfather clocks. Rooms are more modern, with a country twist, and come stocked with posh White Company toiletries.
REFUEL: The Terrace, the hotel’s 3-AA-rosette restaurant, is fantastic. Herbs, veg and other ingredients come straight from the kitchen garden, and there’s a major emphasis on local sourcing and sustainable produce.
The beef with garlic purée, £38, is heavenly. For something less spenny the hotel also boasts Monty’s Inn, which serves hearty grub like fish pie, £15.
EXPLORE: The 45-minute trail to Buckler’s Hard, a lovely shipbuilder’s village from the Nelson era, starts right from the back of the hotel.
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DON’T MISS: The National Motor Museum houses everything from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang to The Williams-Renault FW18 Formula 1 car.
A Beaulieu attraction ticket, £19.50, will get you into the motor museum, Palace House, Beaulieu Abbey and more (Beaulieu.co.uk).
BOOK IT: Double rooms cost from £179 per night B&B (Montaguarmshotel.co.uk).