The best UK winter staycation ideas for 2021

The UK is a treasure trove of perfect staycation destinations – whether you’re looking for a coastal break, a city escape or a rural retreat, there really is something for everyone. With the nights drawing in and the weather getting that bit colder, it’s the season for long walks in the crisp winter air, cosy nights by the firepit and festive fun. Yes, summer may be over, but that doesn’t mean it’s too late for a getaway.

So, if you’re dreaming of a last-minute break, we’ve got you covered. Our handy guide has ideas for all the family – from active, outdoor activities to cosy nights away to festive frolics.

Christmas market city break

‘Tis the season for fairy lights, tinsel, mulled wine and spiced apple cider. You’ll get all of these things and more at the different Christmas markets dotted all over the UK. An annual tradition for many families, some popular destinations include Edinburgh, Manchester, York, Bath, Bristol and of course, Hyde Park Winter Wonderland in London.

Curl up in a log cabin

There’s something about a log cabin that feels just right at this time of year. It might be the beautiful furnishings, the thick rugs or warm fireplaces, or even just the relaxing surroundings and the feeling of being cut off from the world. If you’re looking for a cosy break, there’s many cabins available to rent around Loch Lomond, Loch Tay, Aviemore and in the Highlands, or if you’re looking for a peaceful retreat down south, you may want to look at the Cornwall, the Lake District or Yorkshire.

Go skiing

If you don’t fancy travelling further afield this year, Scotland has a host of fantastic ski resorts if you’re a keen skier. With a fair amount of snowfall every year, places like Cairngorms and Glencoe are great places to visit. Generally, the conditions are said to be best from January onwards, but it’s worth checking the weather and specific resorts before you book. It’s also good to know that Scotland is far less busy than many ski resorts in Europe.

Witness winter solstice

The winter solstice marks the shortest day and longest night of the year, and is celebrated by pagans, druids, and more. There are various solstice-themed events held across the country, but the most iconic is at Stonehenge, one of the UK’s most famous historical landmarks. Huge crowds gather at the site early on the morning to see the sun rise over the ancient stones, with the atmosphere said to be particularly special. The winter solstice falls on Tuesday 21st December this year.

Stay in a country pub

We may have watched too many Christmas films, but there’s nothing like a good old-fashioned pub in winter. Thankfully, the UK excels in this area: think crackling log fires, piping hot hearty food and big, squashy sofas. There’s also the convenience of just popping downstairs from your room for a drink and a meal. While the options are endless in this department, Yorkshire comes highly recommended with its mix of contemporary pubs and Michelin-quality food.

Go surfing

This one is not for the faint-hearted, but if you enjoy the outdoors and being active, this time of year can be ideal for surfers due to the superior waves and quieter beaches. Pease Bay and Belhaven Bay in the Scottish Borders are great locations, while there’s also Saltburn in North Yorkshire, Perranporth in Cornwall and Woolacombe in Devon. Just don’t forget your wetsuit.

Luxurious spa break

It’s been a turbulent couple of years, so why not treat yourself to a spa break. At this time of year, the weather doesn’t always permit us to be outside so it’s the perfect opportunity to stay indoors and enjoy all the treatments you need. For country getaways, the Lake District is always a good shout, while if you want to combine a city and spa trip, the likes of Bath, Manchester, Glasgow and Edinburgh should be on your list.

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