United Kingdom

The best UK boltholes for a get-together including one in the Cornish village set to host Joe Biden

Not everyone is rushing to head overseas. Staycations are booking up fast for this summer and autumn — on the assumption that we’ll be sticking to Boris’s road map.

If you’re keen to reunite with loved ones in the UK, here are some fabulous options for multi-generational breaks...


Host a family get-together at the Beachside Lodges in Cornwall's Carbis Bay, pictured. In June, the tiny village will welcome world leaders including U.S President Joe Biden for the G7 summit

In June, the tiny Cornish village of Carbis Bay will welcome world leaders including U.S. President Joe Biden for the G7 Summit. Host your own family get-together at the resort’s luxurious Beachside Lodges, which have hot tubs, private sundecks and the beach close by.

CROWD PLEASERS: Stroll to St Ives in 25 minutes along the Coast Path.

BOOK IT: Three-night summer stay from £4,500 (£562pp), based on eight sharing (01736 795311, beachlodgesstives.co.uk).


Henry VIII’s sister Mary once strolled in the gardens of Grade I listed, 14th-century Butley Priory, which has vaulted rooms, cantilever staircases and bedrooms decorated in whites and creams. For a larger party, Butley Abbey Farmhouse, sleeping 24, is nearby, and has a tennis court. Visit Sutton Hoo and Aldeburgh or cycle along the coast and through ancient woodland.

CROWD PLEASERS: It’s a pebble’s throw from Butley Creek (featured in The Dig). Hidden in the panelling is a door to the vaulted gin bar.

BOOK IT: Three-night summer weekend in Butley Priory from £6,082 (£467pp) based on 13 sharing. Farmhouse from £6,856 (£285pp); (01394 450046, butleypriory.co.uk).


The three-bed Bell Meadow in the South Downs National Park is just a ten-minute drive from Arundel Castle, pictured 

Spend a week enjoying your own private pool at three-bed Bell Meadow in the South Downs National Park. Arundel, with its castle, is a ten-minute drive away.

CROWD PLEASERS: Table tennis and pool, beautiful walks from the doorstep and deer for neighbours.

BOOK IT: A week in late July costs £1,625 (£232pp) based on seven sharing (01798 877336, amberleyhousecottages.co.uk).


Guests at six-bed The Cottage, an early 20th-century plantation-style home overlooking St Margaret’s Bay on Kent’s eastern edge, can lose hours chatting on the terrace, gazing at France on the horizon. Noel Coward, Ian Fleming and Peter Ustinov all had homes on this stretch of coast.

CROWD PLEASERS: Rock pools on the sheltered shingle beach, and art at Margate’s Turner Contemporary museum.

BOOK IT: A week for 12 people in early August from £5,779 (£481pp) from Hoseasons (0345 4986060, hoseasons.co.uk). 


Wardhill Castle, pictured, is a 12th-century Scottish ancestral pile in Aberdeenshire where guests can hire their own piper

Become temporary gatekeeper to a 12th-century Scottish ancestral pile. Sleeping 16 in eight bedrooms, Wardhill Castle, in Aberdeenshire, has an ornate interior, formal dining room and lawns.

CROWD PLEASERS: Guests can hire their own piper. The kitchen has a big oil-fired Aga.

BOOK IT: A week from £6,500 (£406pp); (07734 425282, wardhillcastle.co.uk).


Dreamy kitchen? Check. Terrace? Check. Roll-top bath? Check. Stone-built 18th-century Mill Granary Cottages, set in 330 acres of the Lower Tees valley, are 25 minutes away from Druridge Bay. Hadrian’s Wall and Beamish’s open-air museum are near by, too.

CROWD PLEASERS: The wildflower meadow in the garden.

BOOK IT: A week in peak season at The Mill Byre, sleeping seven, is from £1,250 (£178pp) from Premier Cottages (01325 730339, premiercottages.co.uk).


One of the rooms at Bodney Lodge, a swish 19th-century restored barn and converted stables in Norfolk that sleeps 12

Even if you don’t bag the four-poster at Bodney Lodge, your luck is in. This swish 19th-century restored barn and converted stables sleeps 12 and is tucked away in Norfolk’s purple-hued Brecklands. Visit Holkham beach or row a boat on the River Wissey.

CROWD PLEASERS: The free-standing copper bath and full-sized snooker table in the games room.

BOOK IT: A week in peak season from £6,000 for 12 (£500pp); (07979 751603, bodneylodge.com). 


A striking charcoal silhouette against the hills of mid Wales, Life House is a stylish black-bricked property. Mountain-bike trails and canoeing are close by.

CROWD PLEASERS: A deep bath with valley views.

BOOK IT: A three-night weekend in July or August is £,2190 (£365pp). Living Architecture 0203 4881584; living-architecture.co.uk. 


Guests can enjoy free after-hours tours of Fountains Abbey in Yorkshire, pictured, if they book a stay at the 19th-century Choristers’ House on the abbey's estate

The National Trust’s holiday rental portfolio bulges with characterful lets, including 19th-century Choristers’ House, a former music school on the Fountains Abbey estate in North Yorkshire. This turreted five-bed property sleeps ten.

CROWD PLEASERS: Free after-hours tours of Fountains Abbey.

BOOK IT: A week in mid-July is about £2,799 (£279pp) from National Trust Holidays (0344 8002070, nationaltrust.org.uk/holidays). 


Try a stay in the four Lotus Belle tents, all with comfy futons, at Munday’s Meadow, north of Stow-on-the-Wold. Cook up a feast for up to 16 on the firepit.

CROWD PLEASERS: The wood-fired hot tub.

BOOK IT: Three-night breaks in July are £1,920 (£120pp, based on 16 sharing). Call Canopy & Stars on 0117 2047830 or visit canopyandstars.co.uk.


The Old Rectory, which is ideal for a family meet-up, is near the north Somerset coast in the Quantock Hills, pictured 

The Old Rectory, a handsome nine-bed property near the north Somerset coast in the Quantock Hills, is ideal for a family meet-up. The West Somerset steam railway is just a short drive away.

CROWD PLEASERS: The children’s play area; Sheppy’s cider farm.

BOOK IT: A four-night midweek stay in July is £4,050 (£225pp based on 18 sharing). Call Sleeps 12 on 01823 665500; or sleeps12.com.

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