With summer officially over and darker days upon us, it’s hard to even think of where to journey on your next holiday, especially with Christmas to save for.
Here in Somerset and its surrounding areas, we are fortunate to have a number of places we can seek refuge in the colder months, many with stunning views, quaint little villages, famed attractions and nature aplenty.
Many offer deals in the autumn and winter, and some fear that this will mean no sleep, cold rooms, uncomfortable sleeping arrangements and a major lack in open facilities.
But that’s not the case.
The winter months open up a whole new world of holidays, one where you don’t need to worry bout bikini body, but rather how quickly you can get into that hot tub and out of the blistering cold
The food is wholesome, the spaces are cosy and hot drinks are a lifeline, with campfires, fairy lights, frosty mornings and starry skies making a winter break all the more magical.
We’ve put together a list of just some of the wonderful winter staycations you could be enjoying as the days turn colder…
1. Centre Parcs
Where: Longleat Forest (with more locations across the UK)
Accommodation Type: Lodge
Suitable for: Families, Friends, Partners, Romantic Getaways
In a woodland setting, Centre Parcs offer 3, 4 or 7 night stays between the months of November and February as part of their ‘Winter Breaks and Holidays’ packages.
It makes for a great getaway either with family, friends or that special someone and, whatever the weather, there is something to do for everyone.
You’ll get unlimited entry during your break to Centre Parcs’ Subtropical Swimming Paradise, where the water is heated all year round.
There are on-site restaurants, shops and even a spa, too.
Lodges are super cosy, with log fires and the forest is right on your doorstep, meaning you can get up and head out whenever you feel like it, on foot or by bike.
2. The Gainsborough Bath Spa
Where: Beau Street, Bath
Accommodation Type: Luxury Hotel
Suitable for: Families, Friends, Partners, Romantic Getaways, Spa Breaks
Voted number 60 on Conde Nast Traveller Awards World Top 100, as well as Conde Nast Traveller (USA) Best Hotel in the UK and AA Hotel of the Year, England 2017/18, this stunning hotel on Bath’s Beau Street is a hit with visitors all over the world.
The hotel’s five-star accommodation includes luxurious bedding, generous wardrobes, cordless phones and full black out window coverings. Each room and suite also feature a flat screen HD television, Roberts radio with Bluetooth connectivity, complimentary WiFi and radiant heated bathroom floors.
The hotel Restaurant is open to all guests and non-residents and dishes are created by Dan Moon, who has been awarded three AA Rosettes and features in the prestigious Tatler Restaurant Guide.
The award-winning spa taps into the original thermal springs, with a wide range of facilities and treatments on offer.
If you are looking for a winter break full of luxury, then this is the place for you.
3. Hornsbury Mill
Where: Chard, on the Dorset/Devon border, 25 minutes from Taunton
Accommodation Type: Hotel
Suitable for: Families, Friends, Partners, Newlyweds, Historians
Hornsbury Mill boasts nine guest rooms along with a luxurious Crown Wheel Suite/Bridal Suite, which comprises of a modern sitting room overlooking the workings of the waterwheel, as well as a modern bathroom and large bedroom complete with a mahogany four-poster bed.
Guest rooms are all double rooms each named after a local Somerset village and are individually styled. The top floor rooms feature the original timbers of the old mill drying floor and the names of workers of days gone by can be seen carved out in the beams.
There’s plenty to do to unwind, whether it’s relaxing on a window seat and enjoying the views, grabbing a drink in the bar or taking a stroll by the lake.
Dinner and breakfast is served on-site and room amenities include a hairdryer, flatscreen TV, tea & coffee making facilities, complimentary bottled water and free wifi internet access throughout.
Four acres of beautiful, landscaped gardens with a lake and fountain form the backdrop to this delightful location where peacocks, swans and ducks are long-term residents
4. Bathen House
Where: Newbridge Hill, Bath
Accommodation Type: Luxury Bed & Breakfast
Suitable for: Families, Friends, Partners, Romantic Getaways,
Bathen House offers guests a range of luxurious bedrooms and suites, with bathrooms containing a separate shower and tub.
All rooms are equipped with large 4k flat screen TVs, free high speed WiFi, tea and coffee making facilities, as well as luxurious towels and bathrobes.
A free on-site car parking space is available with every booking.
This Edwardian property has recently undergone extensive redevelopment for the purpose of creating a luxury five-star bed & breakfast venue and is newly opened.
With the wonderful city of Bath on your doorstep, as well as beautiful views and countryside at your fingertips, there’s no end to how you’ll spend your day.
5. White Hart Royal Hotel
Accommodation Type: Hotel/Inn
Suitable for: Friends, Couples, Romantic Getaways, Historians
Situated in the heart of Moreton-in-Marsh, in a prime position to experience all the market town has to offer, you’ll find the White Hart Royal Hotel. an historic 17th Century former Coaching Inn.
It features 28 bedrooms that are individually styled and packed with modern luxuries to help you relax, as well as two delightful period lounges, a Courtyard Restaurant, and a traditional Snug Bar with flagstone floors and an original inglenook fireplace.
The hotel is situated at a historic junction of the Fosse Way, the Roman cross-country road connecting Lincoln to Exeter.
Well-preserved timber-framing, thought to date from the 1400s, can still be admired in parts of the building, which is known to have been an important inn since at least the 1600s.
Brimmed to the rafters with history, you could spend your days exploring the hotels architecture and historic surroundings.
6. Wriggles Brook Gypsy Wagon B&B
Accommodation Type: Gypsy Wagon Bed and Breakfast
Suitable for: Friends, Couples, Romantic Getaways, Small Families
For something different, Wriggles Brook Gypsy Wagon Bed and Breakfast is the ideal quirky location for a winter break, especially if you love rustic settings and the great outdoors.
Three different wagon types are available to choose from, with one allowing some room for a family with children.
There’s electricity inside and outside with power points, a kettle and an electric radiator.
For those colder nights, stoves will keep you toasty and in the cupboards, you will find all the things you need to make hot drinks, including trays with legs and padded bottoms, so you can eat your breakfast in bed if you want to.
There are places outside of the wagons to light campfires to toast marshmallows and keep warm, with al fresco dining tables and even a hammock!
There is as much fresh air, peace, quiet and views as you can soak up and if you are lucky a Kingfisher or two may flash past.
Beside the wagon you will find all the fire lighting materials and coal for the inside stoves and logs for the outside fire. There is also a cooking pot and a flat griddle pan so, if you choose, you can cook over your outside fire too.
Hot showers with fluffy towels and even a heated towel rail, a washbasin, a fridge with organic milk, a kitchen sink and central heating make this accommodation idyllic for winter. Wildlife and local interest books are also provided, as well as biodegradable shampoo, conditioner and shower gel and even a hairdryer!
Who says camping isn’t luxurious?!
7. Warner Cricket St Thomas Hotel
Where: Cricket St Thomas
Accommodation Type: Classic Country House
Suitable for: Families, Friends, Couples, Romantic Getaways
Featured in BBC Comedy, To The Manor Born, this classic country estate is set in splendid parkland, with colourful gardens, lakes, and a unique woodland area.
The hotel provides extensive entertainment, including nightly live performances, and excellent dining venues, including The Granary, which is set in a pretty walled garden.
A full breakfast and three-course dinner is provided and guests get full access to all of the leisure facilities.
Lords and Ladies frequent here, making it ideal for those seeking a getaway with a bit of class.
8. Twin Barns
Where: Upper Weare, near Axbridge, Somerset
Accommodation Type: Converted Barn
Suitable for: Couples, Romantic Getaways
A romantic countryside hideaway, this cottage provides easy access to Glastonbury Tor and Cheddar Gorge.
The cottage includes Freeview, a double bed and sofa bed, modern kitchen appliances, a modern bathroom with shower and bath and decorative beams throughout,
There is underfloor heating to keep you toasty on colder days, with electricity, linen, towels and wi fi all included.
A large garden surrounds the cottage, with a patio, terrace, outdoor furniture and even a barbeque. You can store bikes in the bike shed and you even have your own parking space.
You’re also surrounded by stunning views of the Mendips and Quantock Hills, making it an excellent base for walkers and nature lovers alike.
Situated in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, you are surrounded by beautiful countryside, and on a clear day you can even see Cheddar Gorge.
The market town of Axbridge is only 2 miles away, and the bustling village of Wedmore, with its unique shops, restaurants, and tea rooms is only 4 miles away.
Among the many places of interest to visit are Wells Cathedral in England’s smallest city, Glastonbury Tor, the famous caves of Wookey Hole and the wonders of Cheddar Gorge. A beach is 10 miles and shop, pub and restaurant is one mile away.
9. Little Poro
Accommodation Type: Scandinavian style hut
Suitable for: Couples, Romantic Getaways
Picture this: You stroll through a little orchard, down a woodland walkway overhung with trees scattered with night lights. You pass the Cider House where you can press your own juice in the Autumn, or lounge on the sofa with a book or film during other seasons.
s you near your hut, you find the Pump House which, as well as filtering water from the natural borehole, is storage for wet gear, the outdoor chairs and the BBQ.
Screened by the trees at the end of the orchard are Little Poro itself and the Swedish hot tub, so you can sit in seclusion on the loungers looking over the fields and hills, or soak quietly in the tub and stargaze.
Inside Little Poro, the Scandinavian theme continues in a calmly sophisticated style, with a modern kitchen and en suite bathroom all in neutral tones, highlighted with dashes of strong red.
There’s an antler lamp picked up on owner Val’s trips to Lapland, sheepskin rugs from Iceland, wooden tealight holders sourced from sustainable Arctic forests and even the name Poro, that means Reindeer in Finnish.
Little Poro’s blend of Scandinavia and Devon makes it perfect at any time of year, whether you’re dashing back from the hot tub to get under the blankets on a chilly winter night or exploring Exmoor and pressing cider in long summer afternoons.
10. Alpine Grove Log Cabins
Where: Chard, Somerset
Accommodation Type: Log Cabin
Suitable for: Families, Friends, Groups, Couples, Romantic Getaways, Outdoorsy Types, Well-behaved dogs
Walking trails, a children’s play area, cycle tracks, a park and plenty of woodland, means there’s something for everyone at this self-catering log cabin resort.
Three of the four log cabins are dog friendly, with the fourth kept dog free for guests with allergies and there’s even a seasonal outdoor heated swimming pool.
A couple of the cabins include their own hot tub, meaning you can stay warm while soaking up all that nature has to offer.
A small on-site shop will be able to provide you with essentials and the cabins are located near to famed resorts such as Lyme Regis, Seaton and Sidmouth, as well as major attractions like Forde Abbey, RNAS Yeovilton Museum and plenty of countryside.
11. Yarrow Cottage
Where: Near Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire
Accommodation Type: Cottage
Suitable for: Families, Friends, Couples, Romantic Getaways, Dogs
This idyllic cottage in the Cotswolds is like something straight out of The Holiday.
There’s a nearby spa and sauna, an open fire/woodburner, on-site parking, outside seating, free wi fi and even linen, towels and robes provided.
To warm you up, the cottage is fully central heated, with the added luxury of underfloor heating, firewood, kindling and matches, an outdoor BBQ and firepit.
The bathroom includes a gorgeous free standing bathtub and you have an array of toiletries and kitchen appliances at your diposal.
This quaint little cottage is situated in Churchill, a village with an emerald village green, cricket field, and historic church.
It is a three-minute walk to The Chequer’s Pub and only three miles from Daylesford Organic farm – a nice spot for brunch or some top notch cooking ingredients.
There’s plenty of walking nearby, and the market town of Chipping Norton is close, along with a cluster of picture perfect villages to explore.
Got a favourite winter staycation not on the list? Let us know in the comments below or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
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