Deluxe downtime

Here at C&C there’s a flutter of excitement in the air. While the incoming winter months offer unpredictable weather, they also guarantee a twinkly dusting of crunchy frost on the sunrise dog walk, country pubs offering handwritten menus of hearty stews and home cooked roasts, families dressed in layer upon layer of cosy knits, puffy coats and matching bobble hats, and many an evening spent lounging next to an open fire with a glass of plummy red in hand.

We’re advocating a spot of deluxe downtime this season. Spend days out in the elements hunting out the very best winter activities in the North of England and South of Scotland before burrowing down to spend slow evenings hibernating in your Crabtree & Crabtree holiday cottage, your cosy winter nest.


Surf's up

The shores of the Scottish Borders offer top-notch surfing, with consistent waves and breaks providing excellent conditions in autumn and early winter. Dotted with brightly coloured beach huts, Coldingham Bay is one of the most picturesque beaches in southern Scotland. Rent a board and book lessons with the friendly faces at St. Vedas before bundling up in head-to-toe wetsuits and heading into the surf for a wave-riding adventure. Stay at one of our six apartments at The Bay where floor-to-ceiling walls of glass offer sweeping views over Coldingham Bay, making this the perfect retreat following a surf session – snuggle up with a warming mug of tea and watch the shifting skies over the beach below as you reflect on your newfound skills.

Stay at: Our six apartments at The Bay, Crosslea, Albero, Merchant's House.


Where words come alive

We’re abuzz with anticipation of the return of the Borders Book Festival at the start of November. This lively literary extravaganza – a local event with a national reputation – has a new 2021 home at Sir Walter Scott’s magnificent Abbotsford House. With a line-up of stars from the worlds of literature, stage, screen, sport, politics and more, the festival is a highlight of our annual calendar. From a cheeky short break to a full week of fun, we have a scattering of availability at our handily located Scottish Borders holiday cottages. With quaint cottages, family farmhouses and modern renovations dotted through the surrounding countryside we’d be delighted to source the perfect accommodation for you and your party.

Stay at: East Lodge at Ashiestiel, The Trouthouse, Cloister House, Boundary Bank, Dryburgh Stirling One.


Blustery walks

On a crisp winter’s morning there’s nothing better than wrapping up warm and setting off to discover vistas new, accompanied by a snack-stuffed rucksack, detailed map of local walking routes and, of course, your four-legged friends.

  • Yomp through enchanted woodlands like Bowmont Forest, Craik Forest and Thrunton Wood.
  • Wander waymarked coastal paths with choices stretching from the northern edge of East Lothian all the way down to the Yorkshire coast.
  • Hike to hilltops in the Northumberland National Park, Pentland Hills or Yorkshire Dales.
  • Meander through handsome market towns and along winding rivers, perhaps picking up some local provisions and Christmas presents en route.

Discover our collections: dog friendly, coastal, rural retreats and villages & market towns.


Outdoor art

Over the 2020/21 periods of lockdown, we – as a nation – rediscovered the joy of the great outdoors, the green spaces that surround us and how a bit of time immersed in nature is good for the soul. A dose of unintentional ecotherapy, if you like. Combining culture with the outdoors, our countryside here in the North of England and South of Scotland benefits from a variety of must-see outdoor art. Unplug, unwind and embrace the healing power of the outdoors. In Northumberland discover the Art & Architecture trail at Kielder Water and Forest Park and, a little further south, Northumberlandia. Try the Himalayan Garden & Sculpture Park in North Yorkshire and head straight to Jupiter Artland and the Borders Sculpture Park in the South of Scotland. (Please check whether attractions are open before visiting.)

Discover our regions: Northumberland, Yorkshire, Scottish Borders, East Lothian & Midlothian


Feeling festive

The weeks over Christmas and New Year are a time for returning to basics: for gathering your loved ones around you, escaping the everyday and enjoying life’s simple pleasures. The North of England and South of Scotland are magical places in which to celebrate the festive season thanks to their unspoilt landscapes, beautiful seascapes and cosy holiday homes. We’ve gathered our properties that still have availability over the upcoming Christmas and New Year period. Some are brand new to us, others are old favourites, and all have that something special to make your stay unforgettable. Abandon yourself to country walks, carol singing and family time while we arrange a chef, wine delivery and extra housekeeping as required.

View our up-to-date festive availability: Christmas and New Year.


What does your deluxe downtime look like?

If you’re looking forward to the joy of a completely empty diary and the opportunity to hole up like a hermit this winter, a staycation with Crabtree & Crabtree is most definitely for you.

View our properties and find your dream destination today!