With Christmas fast approaching, now is the time to make plans about how you’ll be spending the festive season. Who is going to host? Who is going to cook? How are you going to fit in seeing everyone you need to, over those crucial few days? It takes a lot of logistical planning, which can mean a lot of stress and hard work. However, have you ever considered hiring a self-catering cottage for the Christmas period? Whether you hire one large cosy cottage for the whole group of friends or family, or opt for a more intimate choice as a couple; hiring a cottage can make Christmas feel as magical as it did when you were a child.
By hiring one large cottage, or a cluster of cottages for your entire family or group of friends, you take away the stress of trying to fit everyone in your house. It also means you can share the workload, make sure people are on hand to keep the kids occupied while the dinner is being cooked and split the cost of Christmas.
For couples, there is often a lot of pressure put on them about who they should spend Christmas with, teamed with the strain of unexpected guests. An ideal solution is to book a snug and romantic self-catering cottage break, where no-one else can reach you and you can enjoy being self-indulgent together at this magical time of year. There is little more romantic, than cuddling up by a roaring log fire, taking a stroll after Christmas lunch to explore the landscape and preparing a delicious banquet for two using locally sourced produce.
For those who live in the city, then the change of scenery will make Christmas in a cottage a real holiday. City living caters for a more modern approach to Christmas, but if you’d like something a little more traditional, then a cottage break in the country could be just what you need. You can gather firewood, pick holly berries and mistletoe from the hedgerows and enjoy being out in nature. Your Christmas in a cottage will look like it’s come straight off the cover of Country Living Magazine, and you’ll end up having a relaxing break rather than facing the usual stress of this time of year.
The beauty of choosing self-catering, is that you can pick the location that suits you the most. What about Christmas by the coast? You could take a leisurely stroll along the beach after indulging in a delicious festive feast. You may prefer to stay in a log cabin in a pine forest, to really evoke that Christmas feeling. Waking up on Christmas morning and being surrounded by a stunning view can really stir the senses and feed your soul, ready for the new year ahead.
For those who want to have a taste of the finer things in life, then a luxury cottage could provide you with an extravagant treat and what better time to enjoy it, than at Christmas. Whether you want to sip champagne in a slipper bath on Christmas Eve or soothe your muscles in the hot tub while the goose cooks to perfection in the Aga, there are plenty of special little extras available at the luxury end of self-catering to make your Christmas one you will never forget.
For those who enjoy going away at Christmas but have a dog to consider, self-catering in the UK provides the perfect holiday solution over the festive season. Not only do you get to avoid crowds and lengthily travel delays at the airport, but you also get to avoid costly kennel fees and surely your four legged family members also deserves an enjoyable time at Christmas? By going self-catering you can take your dog with you and enjoy spending Christmas and exploring a new natural world with them too.
There are endless good reasons for breaking with tradition and booking yourself the cosy Christmas setting you have always dreamed of, and don’t go thinking you need to miss out on tinsel and twinkle! Many cottages come ready decorated, so Christmas can start as soon as you arrive. Owners are also often happy for you to put your own decorations up (make sure you check first!), so if Christmas is all about decorating the tree the way you like it, there’s no need to deprive yourself of the pleasure. You should be able to arrange for groceries to be delivered to the cottage (some owners will even have them put away ready for your arrival!) so you can have all your favourite festive tipples and treats to hand. Alternatively, why not prepare your Christmas feast with the best of local produce. With a little pre-planning (and maybe the help of the internet and the owner), you can source and pre-order your turkey or goose in advance to ensure there is no last minute dashing around when you arrive at your holiday destination.
So why not plan something a little different this year? Take the stress and strain out of the festive season and avoid the obligatory visits. Show your children how magical a truly traditional Christmas can be and enjoy spending time together in your very own ‘perfect’ setting. Whether the Christmas you have always dreamed of is being by the coast, deep in the forest, among the snow capped mountains or enjoying a taste of a quintessentially English country Christmas, there is a cottage out there that will provide the perfect festive retreat for you and your loved ones.
If we have convinced you to go away at Christmas, take a look at our essential guide to help you plan your Christmas in a cottage.