One of the things I have loved after being an expat for four years, has been enjoying all the UK has to offer. It is really a perfect place to travel with families from the beautiful beaches of Cornwall to the hills of the Peak District it really has everything a family could need for a perfect family holiday. Some of my favorite family travel and parenting bloggers have told us their favorite and most family friendly places to stay in the UK to help you plan your perfect 2018 UK holiday! So whether you are looking for the best UK hotels for toddlers, the best family holiday resorts UK or if you are looking for a luxury escape with kids or a cheap getaway in the UK with kids then we have the answer for you.
Bedruthan Steps Hotel by Life Unexpected
Retallak Resort and Spa, a luxury family spa hotel by Wanderlust and Wetwipes
We spent a week in the AMAZING Retallack Resort and Spa a couple of years ago. Retallack has found the perfect balance between an Airbnb or Villa style holiday with a hotel. You have your own self catering accommodation but with a (DELICIOUS) restaurant and cafe on site as well as a spa and several water sports activities, swimming, tennis and golf to choose from. We had the most amazing week – the kids had a blast just hanging out, going for walks and going to nearby attractions like Dairyland. The houses are MASSIVE, really comfortable and so welcoming. It literally felt like home away from home (right down to the Tesco delivery that arrived at the same time we did). I didn’t in my wildest dreams think we would have SUCH an amazing time as we did. I’ve subsequently recommended Retallack to several friends who have all reported similar successes. If we didn’t live out of the UK I think we would go back every year! Retallak Resort and Spa has to be the winner in the category luxury family spa hotels!
Darwin Forest Country Park is without doubt our favorite place to stay in the UK. Alongside a myriad of family attractions in the nearby area such as the beautiful Chatsworth House and outstanding Hardwick Hall, Darwin Forest is in itself a destination. There is a brilliant swimming pool, a soft play area for little ones and jungle gym for older children. Beside these fabulous indoor activities the site has lots of outdoor activities too swell as fabulous walks. The lodges themselves are perfectly equipped for families and for parents there is a beautiful deck with a hot tub perfect for those inevitable nights in with the kids. This has to be the winner in the best family holiday resorts UK category!
Bluebird Cottage, Parwich, Peak District by Travelynn Family
Crabtree Farm Cottages, Hastingleigh, Kent by MammaPrada
We’ve been returning to Crabtree Farm Cottages for a few years now. Our daughter learnt to walk here and so it has a bit of special place in our heart.
The farm is very close to Ashford in Kent which is easy to get to but also completely immersed in the countryside.
The cottages are two converted barns, very pretty, with lots of outdoor space and a beautiful garden. The owners have taken great care to make sure that everything you need is catered for.
They provide high-chairs, there are stair gates everywhere. Plenty of children’s books and DVDs.
Outside there is a swing setup in a gorgeous old tree. Plus an enclosed section of field which is just for children to play any games they wish; football, tennis, just free space to run around. There’s also a plastic ride on tractor/digger that my children thought was amazing. You can literally all go in close the gate and take balls and any games you wish, picnic blankets and you have a lovely area of grass where no one can easily harm themselves!
There are lots of nice walks close to the property. You are a few minutes from the historic village of Wye which has lovely family friendly pubs. Leeds Castle which has the most incredible play area, maze and fort is a short drive.
If you want a taste of the country life with all the comforts of home this really is a wonderful place.
Tattershall Lakes by Kiddie Holidays
Tattershall Lakes is a country park in Lincolnshire, owned by Away Resorts . Set in over 300 acres, this lakeside park is ideal for
families who’ll love the beach, splash park, indoor swimming pool, playground and jam packed activity and entertainment schedule. There is a range of accommodation options at Tattershall Lakes including caravans, lodges, glamping and camping, and the new luxury TriBeCa caravan. This appeals to families who are looking for somewhere stylish and luxurious to stay on holiday, with bags of extra space and trendy touches.
There is loads to do at Tattershall Lakes for families. Children can play in the small sandy beach area with sunbeds and shallow water, and younger children will love playing in the splash park overlooking the lakes with its squirting fountains, cascades, jets and spouts. Kids will adore playing on the pretend Spitfire in the Tattershall Lakes playground overlooking the lake.
You can also hire a pedalo for a boat ride around the lake – the perfect thing to do on a summer’s day and it only costs £5.
There is a cycle trail around the park which is fun way to explore the whole park. Cars are allowed inside the park, so it isn’t traffic
free, but Lincolnshire is very flat so cycling is an easy to way to get around
There is an indoor swimming pool onsite which is open at various times during the day.
One of the best things about Tattershall Lakes though is the range of activities for children. These can be pre booked and include things like Sand and Slies, making Lava Lamps, Nature Rangers, Pottery Painting, Pirate Play and Superhero Academy.
Stephenson House in Calderdale by North East Family Fun
With 5 bedrooms and bathrooms, there is plenty of space for families to spread out or come together in the many family rooms. We recommend this accommodation for families as it’s a real home from home with a pool table, toy box filled with toys and jigsaws, a chest of board games, a reading corner and plenty of technology including decent WiFi and Netflix pre-installed onto the TVs. Families are welcomed with a homemade cake and the large kitchen is packed with family recipe books. There is the added benefit of a utility and boot room and Stephenson House is well located for child-friendly attractions such as Eureka Children’s Museum and lots of family-friendly walks.
Dalhousie Castle and Spa, Edinburgh, Scotland by Boy Eats World
Scotland’s oldest inhabited castle, Dalhousie Castle, around 20 minutes’ drive south of Edinburgh, was once the stronghold of the fierce chieftains of Clan Ramsay. On our visit, the most rambunctious residents are my kids, who are more than happy to lend their names to the 700-year old castle’s list of notable guests, which includes Mary, Queen of Scots, Queen Victoria, Sir Walter Scott and Oliver Cromwell.
They are just a few of the famous names who’ve lent their names to Dalhousie’s 29 bedrooms. Another is Lady Catherine, who is one of the castle’s reputed resident ghosts. Happily, we don’t bump into her or any of her spooky friends in our sumptuous four-poster themed room.
But is an allegedly haunted ancient castle packed with antiques really the spot to stay with kids? Well, when it rocks as much of a Hogwartsian vibe as this one, the answer is a definitive yes.
Over dinner in the castle’s original barrel-vaulted dungeon, my son is as much in awe of the suits of armor and swords displayed on its stone walls as he is by the incredible food, though I keep looking over my shoulder for Lady Catherine and her pals. We explore the rolling green gardens and river and try our hands at archery. We peruse the book-lined library, sneak around the creaky hallways and staircases and play chess in the drawing room.
But by far the biggest hit with the kids is the castle’s incredible falconry. Their 45-minute training lesson in falconry sees them getting up close and personal with Bandit the Boobook and Bob the Barn Owl, and is an absolute highlight of our holiday.
Innerleithen Tweedside Hotel By Meldrums on the Move
Our favourite family friendly hotel in the United Kingdom is actually in Scotland. It has always been extremely welcoming when we have visited and the owner goes out of her way to make you as comfortable as possible. Don’t want something on the menu? Not to worry, they are nice enough to whip up whatever you want if they have the ingredients. The hotel has great, free, wifi so the kids can stay connected (and amused.) The owner will help organise activities nearby and has connections in some of the excursions in the area so can create personalised packages with great prices. There are lots of great activities for the family nearby too.