When winter arrives it can be hard to enjoy it. Dull skies. Breezy. Cold. No sign of a holiday anytime soon. Sound familiar? It’s not all doom and gloom though, yes it might be bloody chilly but doesn’t that add to the quaint English ideal? Luckily for us, the country is full of pretty little bolt holes that provide the perfect cosy surroundings we all need during sub-zero temperatures.
Lord Crewe Arms, Northumberland
There is a reason Northumberland has the word ‘north’ in it. You actually can’t get more north, unless you end up in Scotland. The county of Northumberland is beautiful, with green hills, lots of sheep, a bit of wind and a sprinkling of picturesque stone villages.
The Lord Crewe Arms is a popular pub and hotel located in Blanchland, a honey-coloured village nestled in the rolling hills just 30 minutes from the historic town of Durham. The hotel itself is the beating heart of the village with 21 guestrooms, a snug bar and delicious food. Even better is the incredible history behind the place, the entire village was built upon the foundations of an ancient monastery. If you are interested in learning more, a local historian will take you around the village on a private tour.
Where better to spend the festive season than in a beautiful hotel tied up with the perfect red bow? Dormy House in the Cotswolds is a traditional English farmhouse with a variety of different room types, including your own cottage. Dogs are more than welcome here and there is an entire estate (and beyond) where they can run around freely!
The award-winning spa is the cherry on the cake, but make sure you book early, this place is popular for a reason!
Kilworth House will always have a special place in my heart as this is where I got married, but no hotel will beat their Christmas decorations! In fact, I once spent the period between Christmas and New Year here and it was the most lovely stays I have ever had.
Kilworth House is located between Market Harborough and Lutterworth in Leicestershire. There isn’t too much going on around here but I would recommend just having a relaxing stay in the hotel, however, if you did want to go out and about, there are some great country walks, particularly the area around Foxton Locks.
The hotel is situated in a large country house with a beautiful orangery, small spa, private dining areas and a lovely option for afternoon tea! Did I mention Christmas decorations in abundance?
I swore to myself I wouldn’t let this get too Cotswold orientated but I had to include the Ebrington Arms. Located on the outskirts of the Cotswolds, the Ebrington Arms is the perfect place to stay if you want cosy country surroundings but the opportunity to explore the historic cities of Warwick and Stratford upon Avon.
This genuine pub as a small selection of country chic rooms, and with the opportunity to soak in a roll-top bath before heading downstairs and enjoying dinner by the roaring fire, this is a place you can really relax in.
Low ceilings, ancient beams and an Instagram worthy village right on your doorstep, the Ebrington Arms is worth a visit in all seasons but is particularly special in the winter.
Lord Poulett Arms
Have you ever heard of a pub with such a fancy name? I definitely haven’t. The Lord Poulet Arms dates back to the 1600s so of course it’s oozing in historic charm. Being two and a half hours away from London this hotel guarantees countryside relaxation and is surrounded by some of Somerset’s best.
Due to its relatively small size and the fact this place is indeed ancient, there are just 4 en suite bedrooms and 2 smaller bedrooms with bathrooms across a corridor. With a roaring fire downstairs, delicious food and good drink, you might not want to step outside whilst you’re here!