You may spend your time at work counting down the days to the weekend, but many of us are so knackered after a week in the office that much of the weekend is wasted lazing around on the sofa. Sometimes not doing anything can make you more tired than getting out of town! Personal time is precious and should be filled with excitement and adventure so we’ve put together a list of tempting suggestions for easy weekend breaks here in the UK that will ensure that by the time Monday comes around you’re feeling relaxed, refreshed and ready to take on the week ahead. So pack a weekend bag, hop on the train and take your pick!
FORAGING AND EATING AT THE PIG
Describing itself as ‘a restaurant with rooms’, you know the food at each of The Pig’s 5 hotels is going to be something pretty special. With an obsessive commitment to home grown and local produce, they use only the best, freshest and most authentic foods and ingredients - what cannot be grown in their kitchen gardens will be sourced within a 25-mile radius. You can even join the hotels’ foraging teams as they take you through the forest or along the coast finding, identifying and collecting wild edible food, from seaweed and shellfish to fruits, nuts and berries. So with rooms from £175pn (min 2 nights) why not pig out and visit them all?
An easy hop from London on the high-speed train link, why not spend a weekend taking romantic walks along the coast in Kent? You can browse the monthly vintage and antique markets at Faversham, take a stroll along the sand at Seasalter and enjoy a romantic shellfish dinner at the UK’s Restaurant of the Year - The Sportsman (the poached oysters are the ultimate aphrodisiac), before spending the night in a fisherman’s hut in Whitstable, just metres from the sea. You’ll find it almost impossible to drag yourself away at the end of the weekend.
SURFING IN WALES
Cornwall might be a bit far for a weekend away (trust me, I’m writing this on a 6 hour train back from Penzance), but there are plenty of adventures to be had much nearer to home. An after-work train takes you to Swansea in just 3 hours - allowing you to spend the whole weekend making the most of the breathtaking beaches of the Gower Peninsula. SurfSistas offer surfing weekends for just £129pp including board, wetsuit rental and 1.5 days of coaching or the Gower Surfing Shop will give you a surf lesson on your first morning and then let you keep the equipment for the rest of the weekend for just £80.
A FARM STAY IN THE PEAK DISTRICT
Why not spend your weekend getting up close and personal with nature by staying on a working farm? Beechenhill Farm is an organic dairy and sheep farm with wonderful views over Manifold Valley in the Peak District National Park. A farm trail winds through meadows and woodland, and you can help out on the farm milking the cows and collecting honey from the three beehives. Accommodation ranges from the ivy-clad, 16th-century farmhouse to a converted milking barn, or even a former stallion pen and you can end your day with a spot of star gazing in the outdoor hot tub. From £34pp B&B.
THE COTSWOLD WAY
Ideal walking country, the green rolling hills of the Cotswolds are crisscrossed by countless footpaths, including The Cotswold Way, one of England’s finest National Trails. Almost the entire trail runs through an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and passes through a succession of enchanting English villages, featuring traditional Cotswold cottages and welcoming country pubs to refresh yourself after all the activity.
LIME WOOD HOTEL & SPA
A mere 90minutes by train from London, this grand stately pile was originally a medieval hunting lodge. Now it is better known for it’s indulgent Herb House Spa - airy, encased in glass and surrounded by greenery. There are private bathrooms with deep copper baths, swimming, hydrotherapy and steam pools, a mud house, relaxation rooms and state-of-the-art gym leading to a beautiful rooftop garden, all with stunning views of the surrounding countryside. Prepare to leave all your stress at the door.
Photo Credit: Rich Lock, Bristol
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