After a fantastic summer, many people are booking early for next year with coastal locations proving to be extremely popular. When the sun is out the UK coast is very hard to beat and people are looking to make sure they secure their favourite spots. With encouraging recent news from the British economy and hopefully more of that long hot sultry weather, 2014 is looking to be a great year for holidaying in the UK. Add to that the prospect of some great events, not least the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, and it’s clear that this is a great time to be looking at availability for your next UK cottage holiday. To help you we are going to take a look at the 5 most popular booking locations for 2014.
5. Windermere, Lake District
Windermere, situated close to England’s iconic largest lake, features at number 5 on our list. Apart from its majestic elevated position close to the shore of Lake Windermere, the town is well positioned to explore the exquisite natural beauty of the National Park in southern Lakeland. With the bustling resort of Bowness close by as well as attractions such as ‘The World of Beatrix Potter’ and ‘Brockhole’ there is plenty to do in what is one of the most popular holiday destinations in Britain. The lake itself now has a 10mph speed limit adding to the tranquillity of a body of water forged by glaciers thousands of years ago. A great way to enjoy the beautiful surroundings is to take one of the regular boat trips from Bowness to the delightful Ambleside. For those of you intent on enjoying a more energetic holiday, Windemere is a great base for fell walking or mountain biking in and amongst some of the most stunning scenery in Britain.
4. Totnes, Devon
The idyllic rolling Devonshire countryside on the edge of Dartmoor provides the back drop to the market town of Totnes. This area of outstanding natural beauty is blessed by some of the most delightful rivers in the South West. Totnes itself sits on the estuary of the River Dart, and is eminently accessible to some of the best known beaches in South Devon with Paignton and Torquay both within easy reach. To the north lies the rugged beauty of Dartmoor National Park, famous for its rocky ‘tors’ and of course its ponies. This expansive protected English ‘wilderness’ is fantastic for walking and is dotted with quaint Devon villages and pubs. Totnes itself has a thriving local economy buoyed in large part by an influx of artists offering an eclectic range of arts and crafts. Indeed, Totnes was at the forefront of promoting local business and introduced the ‘Totnes pound’ in 2007. With a Norman Castle, even a local vinery and a great mix of exciting eateries, it is not hard to see why Totnes features at number 4 on our list of popular 2014 locations.
3. Whitby, North Yorkshire
One of the most iconic seaside ports in Britain, Whitby has retained its popularity as a holiday destination for centuries. Facing the North Sea and located by the River Esk, this charming harbour town enjoys mild winters and relatively warm summers. The historic ruined abbey enjoys fantastic views across a scene which has change little over the years. The cobbled streets of the ‘old town’ serve to convey the living history of a port which for years has been supported by the fishing industry. These days tourism alongside fishing is the life blood of town reputed to be the home of the best fish and chips in Britain, according to Rick Stein and let’s face it, he should know! This stretch of gorgeous Yorkshire coastline is blessed with a huge beach at Whitby, children will love the miles of golden sand. With Staithes to the north and Robin Hood’s Bay a short distance to the south, Whitby is one of the most popular seaside destinations on the East Coast.
2. Newquay, Cornwall
When considering a beach holiday many will instinctively think about Newquay on the stunning North Cornish coast. Newquay is probably the busiest resort in Cornwall and really has various ‘guises’ with plenty to offer whatever type of holiday you are looking for. Centrally located it provides a great base for exploring one of the most scenic counties in Britain. With a lively nightlife, there are plenty of bars and restaurants to enjoy well into the early hours. Newquay has several gorgeous beaches enjoying the benefit of great surf with Fistral probably the most famous. The River Gannel separates Newquay from the exquisite Crantock Beach to the south, and a short drive to the north lies the expansive Watergate Bay, another favourite amongst surfers. The area is benefiting from the burgeoning culinary scene in the county and there are some great options for fine dining against the backdrop of the stunning Atlantic coastline. This is one of the quintessential seaside towns in Britain, and it is difficult to envisage that Newquay will be anything other than one of the most popular holiday destinations in the UK for some time to come.
1. Happisburgh, Norfolk
At the top of our list of ‘hot’ locations for 2014 is Happisburgh on the Norfolk coast. As well as one of the most popular, Happisburgh is one of the oldest places in Britain with the discovery of ancient flints providing the earliest signs of habitation in the country. Consequently Happisburgh is designated as a site of special archaeological importance, but for today’s holidaymaker Happisburgh has all of the accoutrements for that perfect seaside break. With miles of sandy beach to the north and south, this is one of the most delightful coastal villages in East Anglia. An imposing red and white ‘candy’ stripped lighthouse is perhaps Happisburgh’s most famous landmark which looks out across the village and the sand dunes beyond towards the unforgiving North Sea. The ravages of the sea have carved a dramatic coastline, which extends north towards the resorts of Bacton and Mundesley. Why not come and find out why many will be spending their holiday in and around Happisburgh next year!