Don’t let winter get you down – head out to God’s Own Country for a bit of well deserved R&R with these cosy Yorkshire getaways.
Short days, cold weather, dreary rain… winter can be rubbish or it can be an opportunity to replace the hustle and bustle of the city with a cosy retreat. And we have seven places to do just that. They’re cosy, charming and packed full of character, so whether you want to escape to an old Yorkshire cottage, hole up in a converted barn or disappear into a Hobbit house, here’s where to go.
Ponden Hall is a sensational find. It’s an old stone farmhouse that’s been converted into an award-winning bed and breakfast. Gaze out of the mullion windows, huddle up on the period furniture and marvel at the original paintings. The bedrooms come with box beds, rocking horses and raftered ceilings – two even have log stoves. And it’s oozing with history too – it’s said to have been the inspiration for Thruscross Grange in Emily Brontë’s Wuthering Heights.
You’re in the heart of Brontë Country here, just three miles from the town of Haworth where you can visit the Brontë Parsonage Musuem and the Keighley and Worth Valley Steam Railway. Or you can brave the weather to enjoy the stunning natural landscape on the edge of Haworth Moor overlooking Ponden Reservoir and near to the Pennine Way, which is perfect for winter walks. For a bite to eat, head to The Grouse Inn in nearby Oldfield for modern British cuisine, or The Old Silent Inn, a historic pub that has a menu full of local produce.
Ponden Hall, Ponden Lane, Stanbury, Keighley, West Yorkshire, BD22 0HR. Prices from £95 per night.
A getaway to the centre of York might not be quite what you have in mind, but Lendal Tower will soon make you reconsider. This is an Ancient Scheduled Monument that was originally built in 1299 as part of the city’s original walls. Inside, it’s been lovingly restored with a steep spiral staircase taking you up four floors to three remarkably cosy double bedrooms. Expect wood-panelled walls, four poster beds and deep windowsills that look out across the River Ouse.
Since you’re in the heart of York, you’re not short of things to do. It’s a pretty city, even in winter, so be sure to make time local landmarks like York Minster and Clifford’s Tower. Want to stay indoors? Visit The National Railway Museum and York Castle Museum or you can grab a seat on a charming riverboat cruise down the Ouse. Need a bite to eat? You can enjoy Korean-Japanese eats at Oshibi, rustic Italian fare at Il Paradiso del Cibo or modern European cuisine at Melton’s.
Lendal Tower, Lendal Bridge, York, North Yorkshire, YO1 7DP. Prices start from £1,031 for a minimum of three nights for up to 6 people.
Mill Fosse Cottage
Did you know you can stay in Wensleydale Creamery’s old buildings? Mill Fosse Cottage is the epitome of cosy. It’s a picture-perfect stone cottage that’s full of quirky features, from the thick stone walls to the flagged floors and the exposed beams. There’s a snug double bedroom, a rustic kitchen with an Aga cooker and a first floor living room which comes with a wood-burning fire, perfect for those chilly winter days.
The current Wensleydale Creamery is just a short walk away – you can see how the cheese is made and pick up some to take home. There’s also the Dales Countryside Museum, which is home to a cafe, an art gallery and a gift shop. O you could visit the historic Outhwaite Ropeworks, which has been making ropes since 1725. Taking your walking boots? Wander up to Hardraw Falls. You can even hire bikes for the day from Stage 1 Cycles. If you’re heading out for tea, visit The Stone House Hotel, a charming country pub where you can tuck into quality British grub made from local produce, or visit The Chippie for their acclaimed fish and chips.
Mill Fosse Cottage, Chapel Street, Hawes, North Yorkshire, DL8 3QT. Prices start from £93 per night.
Ivy Cottage is a stunning terraced cottage in the beautiful Crayke village. It’s been lovingly restored to maintain its old world charm in a modern age. There are big comfy sofas in front of a roaring open fire or you can sit around the farmhouse table in the open kitchen for tea. You’ll find two stylish bedrooms on the first floor and an incredible wooden-beamed master bedroom in the loft. It’s dog-friendly too, with a petite, secluded garden out back the pooch will love.
The village is as picturesque as they come, something you can discover for yourself on the 1-mile Crayke Estate Walk. It’s an hour-long ramble full of amazing views and you can pop into the Dutch House Cafe and Gallery on the way. It’s just a few miles away from the pretty Georgian market town of Easingwold and the medieval village of Helmsley too. The cottage’s owners, Sacha and Michael Abbotson, also own The Durham Ox, an award-winning gastropub full of traditional Yorkshire charm. But, if you’re pulling out all the stops, Michelin-starred restaurants like The Black Swan at Oldstead and The Star at Harome are only a short drive away.
Ivy Cottage, Westway, Crayke, York, North Yorkshire, YO61 4TE. Prices start from £114 per night.
Head to one of the prettiest parts of the North York Moors National Park for a break at the delightful stone-built Lumley Cottage in Thornton-le-Dale. It has space for up three guests, and once inside, you’ll be met with a wonderfully rustic decor with wooden doors, teal bedroom walls and a spacious farmhouse-style kitchen complete with an Aga cooker. On those dark winter nights, there’s no better way to spend the evening than cosied up under a throw in front of the log burning fire in the living room.
There’s plenty to do while you’re there. Thornton-le-Dale’s Motor Museum is full of vintage cars from as far back as 1818 and you can see work of local artists at The Stables Art Gallery. The pretty market town of Pickering is only three miles away, but since you’re in the North York Moors, how about a winter wander? You can head on a wooded riverside stroll up to the quaint village of Ellerburn and back. If you need refreshments, The New Inn is a few minutes walk, while The Fox and Rabbit in Lockton and The Horseshoe Inn in Levisham are both wonderful country inns just a short drive away.
Lumley Cottage, Brook Lane, Thornton-le-Dale, Pickering, North Yorkshire, YO18 7RZ. Prices start from £409 per week, but they also offer short breaks on request.
The North Shire
The North Shire is a carbon copy of a Hobbit house right in the middle of the North Yorkshire Moors and it’s the perfect winter-time adventure. It’s a grass-roofed cottage straight from a magical picture book with all kinds of farm animals grazing in the fields around you. Inside, it’s just as charming, with wooden beams, stained glass windows, circular wooden doors and a log fire. There’s an open-plan kitchen to do some cooking in, a delightful living room to relax in and even an outdoor fire pit if you fancy a bit of stargazing.
You’ll find an indoor play area for the little ones on site, and you can give them a hand feeding the animals. Since you’re in Liverton, in the North York Moors, there are loads of great walking routes for you to take on – why not head to Great Ayton and up to Roseberry Topping for some incredible views? You can also head out to the coast with the villages of Saltburn-by-the-Sea and Staithes just a few miles away. If you don’t fancy using the kitchen, The Water Wheel Inn is just around the corner – expect a traditional country pub with wooden beams and an open fire, where you can tuck into classic pub grub.
The North Shire, Liverton, Saltburn-by-the-Sea, North Yorkshire, TS13 4TJ. Prices start from £61 per night.
If you want a peaceful getaway for just the two of you, Bramble Cottage is ideal. It’s a converted barn-house with everything you need on one level. You’ll enter into a spacious open plan living area, which is the main hub of the cottage – expect huge wooden beams, exposed brickwork and a farmhouse-style kitchen with a large dining table. The sofas are large and comfy, the bedroom is stylish and cosy, and if you get chilly, the whole place has underfloor heating.
Outside, there’s a hot tub to get the bubbles going and a barbecue hut that comes complete with cosy blankets, so you can use it in the winter months. They also offer use of their Thermal Spa for a small fee. If you do end up leaving the cottage, you’re not short of things to do. Walkers can head straight to the Trans Pennine Trail, which is just a mile away, or you can enjoy retail therapy in Holmfirth, the town where The Last of the Summer Wine was filmed. If you don’t fancy cooking, a trip to Millhouse Green is in order, where you’ll find The Blacksmith’s Arms, a traditional pub known for its traditional eats.
Bramble Cottage, Hollin Lane, Millhouse Green, Sheffield, South Yorkshire, S36 9NH. Prices start from £56 per night.