Get away from it all this Christmas with our pick of cosy cottages
If you’re looking for a quiet little festive bolthole perfectly suited to solo guests, couples or a family of four, you’re in luck. We have some wonderful smaller properties that still have availability over Christmas and New Year.
From historic coach houses and gate lodges to former schools and residences of estate gardeners, there is something particularly tempting about shunning the Christmas mayhem for a more sedate rural escape this festive season.
Miller’s Cottage | Lesbury, Northumberland
Located close to the lovely market town of Alnwick and within easy distance of the wide golden sands of Alnmouth beach, Miller’s Cottage is a cosy retreat for two.
With roaring fires in sitting room and bedroom as well as thick woollen blankets generously strewn throughout the property, Miller’s Cottage is a great place to snuggle down as a couple this Christmas.
Head out for a walk on the beach, or amble down the River Aln from your doorstep before returning for a warming cup of hot chocolate, to read a book or simply to luxuriate in each other’s company. The small but well-equipped kitchen provides everything you could need to whip up a Christmas feast, while local pubs can also be booked if you’d prefer a washing-up free holiday.
Coachman’s Cottage | St Boswells, Scottish Borders
This former 19th Century coach house (sleeping four) is utterly charming. Set around a private courtyard in the foothills of the Eildon Hills, this cottage offers an idyllic escape from the festive mayhem. With very little to disturb the peace and quiet – other than perhaps the odd passing tractor – you are guaranteed to enjoy Christmas in peace with your nearest and dearest.
Cosy up by the large open fire, with a book pulled from the shelves of the extensive library or simply unwind in the generously-proportioned light-filled drawing room and watch the snow fall while enjoying a Christmas tipple.
If you do want to venture out for some Christmas merriment, Coachman’s Cottage is well positioned near the characterful village of St Boswells and the ancient market town of Melrose, which both offer great Christmas shopping and friendly festive events.
East Lodge at Ashiestiel | Clovenfords, Scottish Borders
Once the home of novelist Sir Walter Scott, Ashiestiel is a wonderful place to hunker down and enjoy the festive season. Set in outstanding scenery, it is little wonder that the local countryside inspired much of his writing. East Lodge is the two-bed gate lodge standing at the entrance to this wonderful historic house.
The picturesque bolthole is perfectly positioned for exploring the best of the Borders. Pull on your wellies and explore the frosty surroundings before putting your feet up by a roaring fire and tucking into to a well-earned slab of Christmas cake.
With fabulous walks and cycle routes on the doorstep, East Lodge is an ideal base for those looking for an active and outdoorsy festive break.
Rowchester West Lodge | Greenlaw, Duns, Scottish Borders
Another perfectly peaceful gate lodge, Rowchester West Lodge is a meticulously restored Victorian property. Drawing on a cosy palette inspired by its rich surroundings, the comfortable interiors are a testament to the creative eye of its artist owner and offer the perfect cosy backdrop for a Christmas to remember.
Sleeping four, the lodge sits in tranquil, rural surroundings: its entirely organic garden is a haven for wildlife and - even in winter months - is a real suntrap. If the weather is clement, wrap up warm and sip a hot toddy while enjoying the far-reaching views across rolling farmland to the Cheviot Hills beyond.
Runglee | Swinton, Scottish Borders
If your idea of a perfect festive break involves long scenic walks, Runglee would be the perfect choice. Set in a peaceful farm hamlet, it is an immaculate two-bed cottage with plenty of great walks available from the doorstep.
Named in full as Runglee Rungliot meaning ‘thus far and no further,’ this journey’s end offers a peaceful spot for those wishing to unwind and get away from it all this Christmas.
The Old School | Edlingham, Northumberland
Set in the heart of the rolling Northumbrian countryside in the ancient medieval village of Edlingham, this beautiful old school house comfortably sleeps four.
A bright and lofty kitchen-diner provides the perfect space for relaxed festive entertaining, while a games room complete with table football will ensure that younger guests are kept out of mischief while Christmas lunch is being prepared. Or, take the festivities outside, and celebrate wrapped in blankets around the fire pit.
A large open-plan living area complete with a wood-burning stove is a convivial place to warm up after a good walk in the hills, while a big stone bathtub offers a luxurious place to unwind in peace.
Gardener’s Cottage at Elliston | St. Boswells, Scottish Borders
Once the residence of the Head Gardener for the surrounding Elliston Estate, Gardener’s Cottage is a picture-perfect house for four. Equally suited to couples or families, this property is – as its name suggests – is surrounded by extensive gardens and woodland and has acres of space to explore.
Although surrounded by pretty countryside dotted with sheep, Gardener’s Cottage is just three miles from the pretty village of St. Boswells, which makes it perfect for those wishing to get stuck into Christmas shopping, the award-winning Mainstreet Trading Company is particularly worth a visit for its fantastic cafes, delis and antiques. A host of great festive events are also on offer in St. Boswells such as the popular December wreath-making workshop.
Lilylaw | Minto, Scottish Borders
If you are looking to get away a cosy Christmas a deux, Lilylaw is the perfect romantic hideaway. As the former gatekeeper’s residence for the Minto Estate, Lilylaw is wonderfully tranquil set in a gloriously secluded position with only the resident sheep for neighbours.
With direct access to the estate’s rolling parkland, your Christmas walks can include an amble across to Fatlips Castle – guests can even request a key and can climb the iconic Pele tower to enjoy panoramic views over to England.
Back in the cottage, candle lit dinners by the wood burner and a soak in the magnificent claw-foot bath are a luxurious way to unwind.