Five of the most unusual places to stay

Five of the most unusual places to stay

As bidding opens on an overnight stay in Downton Abbey, we identify five of the coolest places to bed down

By Evie Prosser

Downton Abbey fans have been sent into a spin by news that the owners of Highclere Castle, which features as the fictional stately home, are offering an overnight stay through Airbnb.

    The Downton Abbey experience will give successful bidders a taste of aristocratic living.  

The Downton Abbey experience will give successful bidders a taste of aristocratic living. As well as sleeping in one of Highclere’s beautiful suites, guests will enjoy a sumptuous dinner, a tour of the grounds and a breakfast served in the very place where Lord Crawley eats his kippers.

It sounds like a memorable night’s accommodation for anyone with a love of the show. But it is by no means the only unusual place for an overnighter. Here are five more that may just catch your imagination.

1) A shepherd’s hut

One of the most popular trends to emerge among B&B owners over recent years is to offer accommodation in a shepherd’s hut. A brief internet search offers locations in Wiltshire, The Brecon Beacons and Somerset, and there are many more available through online booking platforms.

Staying in a shepherd’s hut is fantastic fun. Most places bring breakfast to your door, and you’ll probably be surrounded by beautiful bucolic scenery that inspires and relaxes in equal measure.

Although rustic from the outside, B&B shepherd’s huts are well appointed internally, with comfortable beds, working loos and showers and modest kitchens. So you have all the comfort of a conventional bed and breakfast, but you’re right in the heart of the countryside. Perfect.

2) A tree house

What could be more exciting than a night in a leafy bough, recapturing youthful memories of hiding in a tree house while the adults attended to grown-up things below?

There are loads of options for tree house adventures. As a prime example, the tree house at Harptree Court in Somerset featured in the Channel 4 series George Clarke’s Amazing Spaces and is a sight to behold.

Wherever you want to stay, you’ll most likely find a tree house B&B in the vicinity. So get searching for a night that will live long in the memory.

3) A lighthouse

Picture the scene: there’s a hurricane blowing outside the window. Waves crash ashore and coat the garden and house in fine salty spray. But you’re snuggled inside, log burner aglow as you hunker down against the storm.

Welcome to life in a lighthouse. You are right up against the sea, so get a profound sense of its elemental force. It is a multi-sensory experience, and the views are so good you won’t ever feel the need to leave.

If you do decide to venture into the great unknown, you’ll have endless coastal walks to choose from. This is the life, and you can have it in a variety of locations up and down the UK’s shoreline. Check out the Trinity House website for more information.

4) A bell tent or yurt

It may have become a cliché among middle-class staycationers, but a few nights of glamping rarely disappoint.

    ...the best glamping experiences offer the fun of campfires, shared canteens and plenty of open countryside to roam around.  

The basic rule of thumb is that your accommodation offers the perfect blend of down-to-earth real-world camping experience and comfort. Proper beds and flushing loos are the norm, as are log burners and relaxing seating areas.

By the same token, the best glamping experiences offer the fun of campfires, shared canteens and plenty of open countryside to roam around. Find your perfect yurt holiday here.

5) A campervan

Rather than travelling to your accommodation, why not take it with you? A campervan is the ideal way to satisfy your wanderlust: you can go wherever the wind blows, following your whims and exploring new places.

Moreover, you’ll have your home comforts right on tap, wherever you happen to visit. Fancy a warming cuppa while parked up in a beach car park? Just fire up the stove and get brewing. Feel sleepy after a mountain walk? Grab a half hour’s kip before hitting the road.

The archetypal campervan experience is of course behind the wheel of a Volkswagen, but there are loads of options from hire companies throughout the country. Find the one that works for you and enjoy the thrill of serendipitous travel, where you call the shots.

Published: 7 October 2019

© 2019 Just Recruitment Group Ltd

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