The seven most unusual places to stay in the UK

Jenai Laignel / 22 February 2016

On the hunt for some special places to stay this year? Here's our guide to the UK's quirkiest and most unusual hotels...

1. Beatrix Potter's former house


Lindeth Howe

Follow in the footsteps of world-famous author and illustrator, Beatrix Potter, at Lindeth Howe in the Lake District, overlooking Lake Windermee.

From 1902 to 1913, Beatrix Potter wrote her famous children’s stories and for two of these stories, Timmy Tiptoes and Pigling Bland, she illustrated them whilst staying here. She fell in love with Lindeth Howe and later purchased it for her mother after her father's death.

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2. Britain's oldest hotel


Maids head Hotel

Located in the heart of historic Norwich, opposite the famous Norman cathedral, the Maids Head is believed to be the oldest hotel in the UK, dating back over 800 years.

Dating back to the 12th century it is rumoured that Queen Elizabeth I and Catherine of Aragon have been among its guests. Today, it offers both contemporary and period character bedrooms, as well as a characterful Jacobean bar.

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3. An island hotel in the world’s first nature reserve


Waterton Park Hotel

Waterton Park is unique in more ways than one. Firstly, Walton Hall, the original Georgian mansion house, is located on an island in the middle of a lake – not your average hotel location.

Secondly, the countryside estate that surrounds the hotel also happens to be the world’s very first nature reserve, established by Charles Waterton – an eccentric 19th century traveller and naturalist.

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4. Stay in the grounds of Chatsworth House


Chatsworth Estate

If you’re planning to visit Chatsworth House, why not stay within its grounds? Set on the Chatsworth Estate, where the BBC's Pride and Prejudice was filmed, The Cavendish is a 15 minute stroll from Chatsworth House and it enjoys sublime views of the surrounding Peak District.

The hotel is furnished with over 300 artworks – from fine art to graffiti – and it’s award-winning restaurant serves outstanding food.

Check availability at The Cavendish hotel

5. Gretna Green


Gretna Green

Although a new hotel, Smiths at Gretna Green is intertwined with centuries of romantic tradition, for which Gretna Green is famous. Smiths is opposite the World Famous Old Blacksmiths Shop, where eloping couples have tied the knot over an anvil since 1754.

The hotel was established by the same family that have owned the Old Blacksmiths shop since 1886.

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6. A former 18th Century folly


Bodelwyddan Castle

Ever fancied staying in a Grade II-listed Victorian folly? Bodelwyddan Castle, located just 20 minutes from the seaside town of Llandudno and an hour from Snowdonia, will take your breath away.

It's surrounded by spectacular scenery of the Clywdian Mountains and even has a swimming pool and indoor bowls court.

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7. Hooke Court


Hooke Court

A stunning moated manor house which dates back to the 17th century, Hooke Court has been modernised yet manages to retain its warmth and character. Sleeping up to 23 people, it is the perfect venue for a family gathering.

Check availability at Hooke Court