The Best You’s pick of perfect UK rural hideaways to relax and unwind in this Autumn
Elmley Nature reserve, Isle of sheppey
If you’re after a wildlife-packed escape, Elmley is the place to stay. This cattle farm and national nature reserve on Kent’s Isle of Sheppey boasts wading birds, hare, watervoles, an array of lizards and even seals, who fish of the mudbanks. Get back to nature by staying in one of three shepherd’s huts, soaking up the big skies and leaving your phone behind.
Blakeney Hotel, Blakeney, Norfolk
If unforgettable views are what you’re after, this hotel looking out over the estuary and salt marshes to Blakeney Point, a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, is hard to beat. Panoramic views from the restaurant, bar and terrace are shared by many of the 60 stylish bedrooms – splash out on one with a balcony.
Llancayo Windmill, Monmouthshire
Balancing luxury and child-friendly is no mean feat, but it’s something the quirky Llancayo Mill offers a masterclass in. Located two miles north of the former market town of Usk in Monmouthshire, it sleeps 12 people, and every bedroom has a flatscreen TV, games aplenty and polished wood floors.
Hanmers, Lundy, Bristol Channel
There are 23 self-catering cottages on Lundy, but Hanmers is particularly special. Built by a savvy fisherman in 1902, it’s on a spot that is sheltered but has a wonderful view out to sea towards Devon. The wooden interior makes you feel like you’re stepping back in time.
The Shingle House, Dungeness
Bleak yet beautiful, Dungeness is the world’s largest stretch of shingle, with a roaring soundtrack provided by the sea and the wind. This fantastic house was built by Scottish architecture group NORD as part of a project to allow more people to experience contemporary building design in some of Britain’s most astonishing landscapes.
Blue reef cottages, Isle of Harris
Set in the beautiful remote village of Scarista on the Isle of Harris in the Outer Hebrides, this turf-roofed luxury self catering cottage has its own sauna and Jacuzzi and looks out over mountains in the north and an archipelago of islands, Totally isolated and secluded yet only 10 minutes walk from an award winning restaurant, it’s like a dream come true.
Kylesku Hotel, Kylesku, Highlands
This 17th-century former coaching inn stands by the old ferry slipway, still used by creel fishermen, on Loch Glendhu, against a backdrop of mountains. There are waterfront views to delight your inner bird-watcher, plus you might even spot a seal if you’re lucky.
Swinside Lodge, Newlands, Cumbria
There are spectacular views from every one of the seven bedrooms at Mike and Kath Bilton’s idyllic Georgian country house hotel. This is pure Lake Poets countryside: close by is Derwentwater and the market town of Keswick, surrounded by fells and water to help stress melt away.
‘Sleeping in a new place changes your perception’ writer and philosopher Alain de Botton