If you have a young family, a UK break is a great choice for enjoying a few days away from it all. There are no airports and long flights to contend with and you don’t have to worry about baggage allowance! A UK break also provides the perfect combination of familiarity and relaxation, so you can enjoy a safe, stress-free break which still feels like an escape from everyday life.
Luckily, when it comes to baby-friendly UK destinations, you’re going to find yourself spoiled for choice. Will it be the golden beaches of Cornwall, or the unmatched countryside of the Lake District? To help you pick, we’ve pulled together five of our favourite locations to enjoy with our littlest guests.
For those with young families, Cornwall is a great choice for a holiday destination. From wonderful sandy beaches, perfect for sandcastles and often patrolled by lifeguards, to harbour towns and family days out, there’s plenty to see and do. The great thing about Cornwall is there are a lot of tourist-friendly spots, which although does mean they’re busier, also come with a lot of playgrounds, baby-friendly cafes and restaurants and family attractions.
We’d recommend a visit to Porthcurno beach in West Cornwall – there’s a shallow stream flowing down one side which is great for toddlers to paddle in. The famous Eden Project is also a fantastic day out. Toddlers will love exploring the biospheres, which are full of waterfalls, shortcuts and hiding places and there’s great baby facilities.
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2. The Cotswolds
The Cotswolds are another fantastic choice for those travelling with babies and young children, simply because you’re welcome to do as much, or as little, as you like! From the Cotswold Water Park to cream teas and cake in pretty little cafes, you can be as active as you and your children want to be. Whatever you decide to do, you can be sure of enjoying some of the prettiest scenery and countryside in the UK!
Adam Henson’s Cotswold Farm Park is a great place for a day out with your littlest animal-lover. You can feed the animals, explore the play areas and join in with some of the fun events they hold throughout the year!
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Devon is the perfect choice if you have a water baby in the family! With some of the best beaches in the UK, many of which are extremely toddler and baby-friendly, you’ll be able to spend many a happy hour enjoying the sand and waves. Even if the weather doesn’t behave itself during your stay, you won’t find yourself stuck for things to do. Devon also has plenty of indoor attractions which the whole family can enjoy. Alternatively, why not enjoy a memorable steam-powered trip on the South Devon Railway – from days out with Thomas the Tank Engine to meeting Santa, there’s always something exciting going on!
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Another one for the beach-lovers amongst you! With over 95 miles of coastline, Dorset is a popular choice for families throughout the year. Even if your little ones are too young for dinosaurs and fossil hunting, you’ll find plenty to keep you busy. From digging holes and building sandcastles on the beach to getting up close and personal with the residents of the local farms, it’s a fantastic place for your smallest family members (and perhaps you!) to discover something new.
If you’re looking for a family-friendly beach to visit during your stay, Alum Chine in Bournemouth could be the ideal choice. With soft golden sands, safe waters, paddling pool and a playground, you can happy spend a day here. There are also toilets with baby changing facilities, lost children centres and RNLI lifeguard stations.
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5. Lake District
You’ll be blown away by the unmatched beauty of the Lake District – there’s so much to see and discover. Although miles of walks may not be on the agenda with a baby or toddler, there’s still plenty of ways to enjoy this spectacular part of the UK. Whether you’re taking trip out on the water in the Ullswater ‘Steamers’ or spending a day with Peter Rabbit & Friends, you’re sure to make memories which last a lifetime.
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Whichever UK break you have in mind, holidaying with little ones is a truly special experience. Of course, there is suddenly a lot more to think about! Here are our top tips for making your next UK break as stress-free as possible:
- First, consider how to make the car journey as easy as possible. Many babies like to sleep in the car, so you can work your journey around feeding and nap times. You could even consider driving at night, as long as you’re not too tired! Remember to factor in stops for nappy changes, feeds and breaks.
- Make sure any car seats are secure and, if it’s summer, you fit sun screens to the window. You can also buy bottle and food warmers which plug into the cigarette lighter for use on the move.
- Look for accommodation which is geared towards families, as they often provide some of the bigger items. For example, our baby-friendly cottages often supply cots, high chairs and stairgates, which saves you bringing them with you.
- Make sure to bring some home comforts! Pack your little one’s favourite toys and games – bonus points if they’re not too bulky! It’s also a great idea to pack familiar bedtime comforts, such as a nightlight or blanket. Such things can make a huge difference when helping your little ones settle in an unfamiliar environment.
- Find out about baby friendly things to do in the local area – the ideas above are a great start! Try and organise your time and get a few ideas together before you go, so you don’t have to worry when you’re there.
- Find something for you! Whether it’s a hot tub so you can soak under the stars after baby goes to bed, or even booking a local chef to pop round and whip you up a delicious meal, make sure you remember to treat yourself as well.
Don’t forget, all the information here is only a start! Do the research, make notes and get organised, but certainly don’t put it off! A UK cottage break with your baby is a fantastic experience – there’s nothing like seeing your little one having fun and discovering new things, and you’ll come away with wonderful memories which will last a lifetime.
Browse our full range of baby-friendly properties here.