While half of us get used to overseas flights again, many others will be hunkering down closer to home for autumn. And with so many jewels tucked away in our own back yard, Emily Phillips asks, why wouldn’t we?
Set in the mountains of Snowdonia National Park and with its painstakingly restored rustic simplicity, remote slate cottage Blaen Y Buarth (which translates to ‘front of yard’) is the perfect choice if you’re looking for a taste of Wales.
With its lovingly styled, pared-back interiors — all original stone flooring, wood cladding, 1950s Powell Pottery tiles and perfectly mismatched furniture — and nestled in the quaint village of Penmachno, it’s the ultimate cosy retreat after a day outdoors. And if you just want to snuggle up, there are mountain views and a fire pit on the house’s seven acres of land. Plus it’s only a stumble from the local pub. Neighbouring town Betws Y Coed is ripe for some shopping, too.
Four nights from £467
With its woodland setting and charred accoya exterior, Blackwood will have you completely at peace. Pale interiors, washy linens and driftwood touches make for a bright, modern space with three bedrooms and an airy, open-plan living area.
On chilly nights, fire up the log burner and relax in style or head to Holt, a 12-minute drive, to check out the independent shops and sample a modern twist on seasonal produce in the Grade II-listed restaurant, Meadowsweet. By day, wander through the National Trust-listed woods to some of north Norfolk’s most beautiful beaches, perfect for fossil hunting. And you’re only a stone’s throw from the pier at Cromer and also the raw sand-dunes Blakeney.
Three nights for up to six guests from £1,200
Amid the pines of County Cavan’s picturebook woodland stands Cabü by the Lakes, a cluster of log cabins and lake houses on the banks of Lough Oughter. With wood-clad boat houses and Scandi-style loft cabins boasting luxuriously sparing finishes, this remote setting is perfect for friends who want to kayak or fish from the private jetty, or enjoy the calming potential for biking, hiking or forest bathing in Killykeen Forest Park.
If you’re not unwound enough, have a plunge in the outdoor hot tub or drift off in a woodland relaxation room. Later, enjoy dinner the Cabü Club with its magical lake views. It’s a forest dream.
One-bedroom cabins from £308 per night