Weird and wonderful places to stay
Hotels, B&Bs, hostels, apartments; done, done, done and done. Looking for somewhere different to stay on your next break in Britain? It doesn't get more fun and fantastic than this!
Nurture your inner Nomad with a stay in a traditional Mongolian yurt. Barefoot Yurts, nestled in a secluded woodland spot in Sussex, is the perfect place to relax and get back to nature. Barefoot are great believers in recycling and leaving a small barefoot carbon print (hence the name) using solar lighting, recycled wood and a composting loo. 90% of this building has been built using recycled materials offering a truly earthy holiday under canvas, but with all the comforts of a cottage.
Live out your rainbow child fantasies - or relive them if you were there fist time round! - with a stay in an original 1960s American trailer. The retro aluminium exteriors extend to a complete refurbishment within, down to the psychedelic curtains, crocheted blankets, and cupboards full of Frisbees and Fuzzy Felt. Perfectly located on the Isle of Wight, Vintage Vacations have numerous immaculately restored trailers to choose from where you can live like a Beach Boy in every sense.
Get tribal at the Pot-a-Doodle Do wigwam village on the beautiful Northumberland coast. This one-of-a-kind township includes 12 wooden wigwams, 4 canvas tipis and 3 canvas yurts, so you can take your whole tribe with you! On-site facilities include play areas for the kids, quad bike trekking for the adventurous, fishing for the laid-back and even an interactive arts centre for creative geniuses. And off-site it doesn't get better than the Northumberland countryside with spectacular walks, beaches and wildlife.
Yes, by this we do mean university halls of residence, which are usually available to let during the summer months. OK, so student digs are not famous for 5-star concierge service and polished interiors, but campus accommodation has many great benefits; most universities have an excellent range of services including shops, banks, laundries, bars, lounges and sports facilities, and many halls are in stunning buildings in some of Britain’s most picturesque, historic towns. And best of all they're cheap!
Sleeperzzz puts a whole new meaning to falling asleep on the train. Located in the Scottish Highlands, Sleeperzzz provide fully self-catering accommodation inside 3 disused railway carriages. The carriages sleep 4 to 8 people and each have their own kitchen, lounge and bathroom. Located in the small Highland village of Rogart, there's plenty to see and do nearby including walking, cycling, seal spotting, Shill Falls where you can watch wild Salmon leap upstream and best of all Glenmorangie Distillery and Clynelish Distillery where you can sample real Scottish whisky.
Some of us never grow out of playing in the dirt and climbing trees and at this accommodation, that's exactly what you can expect to do. Surrounded by stunning countryside nestled between Exmoor National Park and the Quantock Hills (a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty), The Treehouse is just that, a treehouse. Expect it's a 5-star rated treehouse with all the luxuries of a top hotel including Egyptian cotton linen, fluffy towels, flowers and a complimentary basket of seasonal local produce for you to enjoy. Perfect for both big kids and little ones.
Stare into the crystal ball...what do you see? Something unusual in your holiday future... a traditional gypsy caravan! The latest addition at The Old Forge bed and breakfast is an original 1934 wooden wagon complete with traditional Romany design and decoration. The caravan is technically a showman’s wagon, which was built for fairground workers and circus performers around the turn of the century. Lovingly restored and fitted with exquisite fixtures and features both inside and out, it's an idyllic base from which to discover the glorious Dorset Downs.
Down a narrow lane, near Smithfields Market in London's fashionable Clerkenwell, lies a trendy new hotel where you can literally step back in time. Just a short distance from the Barbican, St Paul’s, Holborn and The Tate Modern, the Rookery Hotel is the only remaining early house in St Peter’s Lane and has been restored and delicately designed inside to feature only 18th- and 19th-century décor. Polished wood panelling, stone flagged floors, open fires and antique furniture give the place an unparalleled period charm - more private club than hotel.
Who said youth hostels have to be "no frills"? The Scottish YHA have a selection of magnificent hostels on offer, not least, Carbisdale Castle. Yes, a real castle (but at hostel prices). Built for the Dowager Duchess of Sutherland in 1906, this majestic building has housed many wealthy and influential people and even served as a royal refuge. In the main gallery a collection of Italian marble statues are on display whilst a large art collection adorns the walls of communal spaces. Situated in the Highlands overlooking the river Kyle, you'll feel like a King without spending a King's ransom.
West USK Lighthouse B&B in Newport, Wales, is unique even for a lighthouse. Designed by Scottish architect James Walker, it’s located overlooking the Bristol channel where the tide is so fast (second fastest in the world) it literally comes racing in around the foot of the building so watch out! The rooms are wedge-shaped with a stone spiral staircase in the centre above a collecting well, now a wishing well – and if that wasn’t atmospheric enough, they also have floatation tanks and complementary therapies to sooth your troubles away.