Holidays are all about getting away from the hustle and bustle of normal life, as we take time to recharge our batteries and catch up with loved ones.
Here to help you find your ideal place to stay is Original Cottages, the largest independent, family-owned holiday cottage provider in the country, with over 5,500 properties to suit every requirement.
Original Cottages is the nationwide holiday lettings company that provides a local touch – with local people on the ground in every region where it operates, so you’ll know they’re never far away if you need them.
You get to enjoy the insider knowledge of local experts who are on hand to share their advice throughout your trip, whether you are looking for unspoilt beaches, the perfect log-fire pub after a long country walk, or a tucked-away harbour for a fresh fish and chip supper.
This unique arrangement connects holidaymakers to the communities where they stay, creating an authentic experience that truly justifies the name ‘original’. With Original Cottages, the clue really is in the name.
Original Cottages has scoured the country to find the most one-of-a-kind properties they can – bringing you the most unique local cottage experiences in Britain.
Old All Saints Church
Old All Saints Church has undergone a stunning conversion from an Anglican chapel-of-ease, built in 1869, to a luxury holiday home sleeping up to 6 guests.
This architectural gem is located in the pretty village of Horsmonden in the Weald of Kent, a countryside idyll overflowing with hop gardens, orchards and woodlands.
Old All Saints Church has been transformed into a beautiful holiday home retaining many original features
The property has been sympathetically converted to retain its original painted decoration and stained glass windows. The spacious, open-plan living area has a magnificent double-height, vaulted ceiling with glass doors leading to a comfy TV room and a subterranean snug.
Nearby is Hush Heath, a family-run vineyard offering expert-led tours. The National Trust has several local properties, including Scotney Castle and Sissinghurst, with its famous gardens. (3 bedrooms sleeping 6 guests from £1,405 per week)
One of the upstairs bedrooms, with a view of the nave towards the chancel – which retains its original colourful Victorian brickwork
The Salt Loft
Fowey, South East Cornwall
Ideal for a romantic break for two, The Salt Loft is a beautiful, nautical-themed apartment tucked away on a quiet road overlooking the Fowey Estuary.
It offers the best of both worlds, being close to local pubs and restaurants but also set away from the crowds.
The Salt Loft – a nautical-themed apartment tucked away on a quiet road overlooking the Fowey Estuary
The intimate interior is fitted with mood lighting to encourage a calming atmosphere, while the well-equipped kitchen is perfect for rustling up a meal for two if you’d prefer a quiet night in.
Daphne du Maurier fans should visit the Literary Centre, which offers exhibits about the author’s life and times. (1 bedroom sleeping 2 guests from £513 per week)
The apartment’s intimate interior is fitted with mood lighting to encourage a calming atmosphere, making it ideal for a romantic break
St Coomb’s Farmhouse
Holy Island, Northumberland
Want to be truly cut off from the rest of the world? This large detached farmhouse meets the description quite literally thanks to its location on the secluded Holy Island of Lindisfarne, which is separated from the mainland twice a day.
There is plenty to do on this ethereal isle when the causeway connecting it to the rest of Northumberland is flooded, from visiting the remains of Lindisfarne Priory – once the target of a notorious Viking raid – to taking part in a tasting at the Lindisfarne Mead distillery.
At St Coomb’s Farmhouse on the Holy Island of Lindisfarne you will be cut off from the world – quite literally
Its isolated location also makes it popular with dark skies enthusiasts, and there is a bounty of wildlife to see.
A local tip – although the priory might get most of the attention, don’t forget to explore Lindisfarne Castle, a 16th-century fort later altered by famous country house architect Sir Edwin Lutyens. (3 bedrooms sleeping 6 guests from £1,001 per week).
A view from the rear of the property, showing Lindisfarne Castle – now operated by the National Trust – in the distance
Two Dales, Peak District
If you have ever dreamed of running your own pub but were put off by the hassle – this is the place for you. Ivy Cottage features its very own snug bar, where you can enjoy a drink at the end of a day walking across the fells.
Ivy Cottage in the Peak District comes with its very own mini pub where you can enjoy a drink at the end of a long walk
Tucked away in the small town of Darley Dale, it is the ideal base for exploring the beautiful Derwent Valley, while the picture-book village of Bakewell is just a few minutes’ drive away.
A tip – be sure to try Barrington’s Restaurant and the Plough Inn in Two Dales, two favourites of the Original Cottages team. (3 bedrooms sleeping 5 from £519 per week)
Tucked away in the small town of Darley Dale, the property is a convenient base from which to explore the beautiful Derwent Valley
1 The Boathouse
Llanbedrog, Llyn Peninsula
Set above the golden shores of Llanbedrog’s National Trust beach with the sand stretching out in front and a bountiful headland rising at the rear, 1 The Boathouse is all about location.
The cottage underwent a renovation in 2019, and features a cosy open plan lounge area with large picture windows so you can gaze out to sea as the sun goes down.
1 The Boathouse has an astonishing view of Llanbedrog’s National Trust beach through large picture windows
There are individual touches throughout, including window seats carved from oak trees harvested from the surrounding woods.
If you can tear yourself away from the views, take a few steps across the sandy beach to the renowned Aqua beach bar and restaurant, or visit the nearby Plas Glyn y Weddw art gallery with its delightful cafe, shop and outdoor amphitheatre. (3 bedrooms sleeping six from £1,190 per week)
The house is a lovely spot to watch the tides rolling in across the bay on a quiet evening
Coastguards Retreat offers unrivalled views of Dorset’s Jurassic Coast and is arguably the finest coastal location in the county.
Set within the World Heritage site and alongside Chesil Bank and the Fleet Nature Reserve, this is a truly enchanting escape.
Coastguards Retreat near Weymouth enjoys some of the finest views of any property in Dorset
Perfectly suited for a family looking for an exclusive retreat, this cottage is a great choice any time of the year. Whether you’re enjoying spectacular sunsets from the terrace in the summer or keeping cosy in front of the fire in the winter, you will have a magical experience whenever you visit!
The nearby village of Langton Herring is known for its picturesque, rural charm with a number of original thatched cottages from the 17th- and 18th-centuries and plenty of pretty gardens.
The local village pub is just a short walk away, and serves a range of traditional favourites and local produce. (3 bedrooms sleeping 6 from £1,596 per week).
The property has been renovated to a high standard throughout, with large windows to take advantage of the stunning views
Brecon, Mid Wales
Get away from it all in this shepherd’s hut set amid acres of farmland in the Brecon Beacons. Themed on a railway carriage, the unit has been handcrafted using Welsh oak and red cedar.
The Mallard is located about one mile from the sleepy village of Cray, in the heart of the Brecon Beacons
Offering stunning views across the valley from an outdoor deck, The Mallard is the perfect location to relax and unwind. The surrounding area is a natural Dark Skies reserve, making it a great spot for stargazing.
This luxury glamping unit is located on a large farm including woodland, walks, trails, open fields and a river with fishing rights included.
One of the footpaths leads to a great country pub. A hot tub is available for an extra charge. (1 bedroom sleeping 2 from £719 per week)
The luxury glamping unit is located on a large farm including woodland, walks, trails, open fields and a river with fishing rights included
Park View Cottage
Kirby Malzeard, Yorkshire Dales
Relax and unwind at this haven of tranquillity located among beautiful rolling countryside between Wensleydale and Nidderdale. The luxury stone-built cottage has been totally modernised and renovated to an exceptionally high standard.
Park View Cottage in the Yorkshire Dales features a tranquil back garden hot tub sunk into decking
This is an ideal place to curl up in and enjoy after a busy day exploring all that this area of outstanding natural beauty has to offer. Outside, there is a peaceful walled garden with a sunken hot tub and an outside kitchen.
Head over to Harrogate for fabulous restaurants, wine bars and the historic Turkish Baths where you can indulge in a range of treatments, from rejuvenating facials to relaxing massages. There’s one pub in the village, The Queens Head, which is loved by locals for its home-cooked food and quiz night held every Wednesday.
The open plan kitchen and lounge area at the property, which is not far from the restaurant, wine bars and historic Turkish baths of Harrogate
White Horse Common, East Norfolk
If you are looking for a holiday home with the wow factor you have just found it. Set over four floors, Cubitts is a superb conversion of Ebridge Mill, which dates back to the 1800s.
Cubitts is a superb conversion of Ebridge Mill, which dates back to the 1800s
The main living and sleeping accommodation are set over the top two floors and you will be bowled over by the fabulous views that overlook the canal, water meadows and fishing pond below, which otters and kingfishers have been known to visit.
Dogs are welcome, and the nearby Bacton Woods are perfect for a quiet stroll or picnic. The spacious nature of this property makes it particularly suited for getaways involving larger groups. (4 bedrooms sleeping 9 from £1,241 per week)
The main living and sleeping accommodation are on the top two floors (pictured)
Frogmore, South Devon
This three-bedroom waterside property oozes coastal style throughout.
Inside you’ll find pale blue sofas and wicker chairs, while outside there is a decked balcony overlooking the creek at Frogmore with open countryside beyond.
You can fire up a wood-burning stove for cooler evenings, while a pool table in the garage is the perfect spot for a little competitive family fun.
Riverside House in Frogmore, South Devon, oozes coastal style both inside and out
Explore nearby Prawle Point, a birdwatchers’ paradise where you can stroll along the low cliffs and dip down onto the beaches which line the rugged coastline. East Portlemouth, a picture-perfect village on the Salcombe estuary, is also nearby.
Salcombe itself is yachting haven and a delightful spot to sit and watch the action on the water with a coffee in hand.
For adventurous guests, there are three kayaks available for a paddle along the Kingsbridge estuary. (3 bedrooms sleeping 6 from £966 a week).
Outside there is a decked balcony overlooking the creek at Frogmore with open countryside beyond
Secrets from the locals
Below members of Original Cottages’ local teams share some of their best-kept local secrets from across Wales.
Best meal: ‘My favourite place to eat is HILLS (Brecon Beacons). It’s an award-winning family restaurant serving gourmet burgers. People from all over Wales travel to Brecon just to try them!’
Best beach: ‘Barafundle Bay (Pembrokeshire) is one of the best beaches and definitely deserves a visit! We go later on in the afternoon or evening to avoid the busy car parks.’
Best shopping: ‘Montgomery (Powys) is a gem of a town. Don’t call it a village, otherwise you risk upsetting the locals!. There is a twice-weekly market, while Bunners is an amazing Aladdin’s Cave of hardware, ironmongery and gifts. It still has its original shop front, counter and fittings.’
Best day out: ‘Try out some of the watersports on offer. You’ll be hard pressed to find a Mumbles or Gower resident who doesn’t at least dabble in surfing, sea kayaking or stand-up paddleboarding. Surfability, which featured on last year’s DIY SOS, is an incredible organisation that provides adapted surfing lessons for people with additional needs due to a disability, illness or injury.’