Family UK holidays

10 great hotels handpicked for short breaks with kids this winter

Last updated 12th November 2022

Weekends away with kids are the short breaks every family needs when winter starts feeling too long. Jane Anderson from The Good Hotel Guide picks the best family friendly boltholes for quick getaways from Cornwall to the Lake District.


Fowey Hall, Fowey Estuary, Cornwall

Fowey Hall, Cornwall: weekends away with Roald Dahl treats

There’s something for everyone at Fowey Hall, a baroque Victorian mansion overlooking the Fowey estuary. A crèche, cinema and library with over 700 kids’ books are matched only by a den, spa, indoor pool and Wind in the Willows-inspired outdoor play area.

For each day of a guest’s stay, the hotel offers 90-minutes free childcare in the Ofsted-registered Four Bears’ Den. Parents and carers can also take advantage of the complimentary audio and visual child monitoring system which allows guests to monitor their child from anywhere in the main hotel on a handheld device. The flexible dining showcases the best of Cornish cuisine, and a sandy cove is a short walk away. A highlight is the Matilda Afternoon Tea in collaboration with The Roald Dahl Story Company.

Family stays at Fowey Hall this winter

A deluxe double room, sleeps two adults and two children, includes breakfast and there’s no extra charge for additional kids’ beds.

Book your stay at Fowey Hall


Try Homewood for weekends away in Bath this winter

Homewood, Bath: free for under-12s during school holidays

You can feel the playful, relaxed air as soon as you arrive at Homewood, a Georgian mansion, with topiary animal sculptures outside, and slightly mad décor within. The outdoor heated pool is open year round, there’s a complimentary pantry to raid and Bath is famous for its Christmas markets. Generous family bedrooms have rollaway beds. Outdoor games in the gardens keep little ones entertained while parents take some ‘aah’ time in the holistic spa with Ila treatments.

Family stays at Homewood this winter

Family rooms sleep four and under-12s stay free during school holidays and enjoy complimentary dinner from the children’s menu.

Book your stay at Homewood

indoor-pool-weekends-away-the blakeney-hotel-2022

Fabulous indoor pool, The Blakeney Hotel

The Blakeney Hotel, Norfolk: weekends away with seal watching in the mix

Its dramatic quayside location means The Blakeney Hotel is perfectly placed for seal-watching trips, as well as for crabbing, fishing, waters ports, and for beach expeditions. Back at base, enjoy the indoor pool together, before adults take a well-earned rest and admire the estuary views while kids hit the games room. The Blakeney staff are old hands at looking after families. The hotel has rooms sleeping four or interconnecting rooms with extra bunk beds and cots on request. The children’s tea and lunch menus or half portions from the table d’hôte menu keep the hungriest tummies happy.

Family stays at The Blakeney Hotel this winter

Family rooms sleep two adults and two children, overnight stays are available and include breakfast.


Winter beaches win on weekends away at Treffeddian, Wales

Trefeddian Hotel, Aberdyfi: a winter beach winner with kids

Generations of families have visited easy-going Trefeddian Hotel, just five minutes from the beach. Today, it’s as family friendly as ever, with play areas and games room, tennis, putting green and indoor pool. It’s also close to Bounce Below in Blaenau Fjestiniog where little ones to grumpy teens can release their inner thrill seeker in this underground net adventure. Back at the hotel, an early children’s supper menu and child-listening services mean parents can relax in the evenings. However, children are also very welcome to dine with parents.

Family stays at Trefeddian Hotel this winter

Family rooms vary in size and sleep up to two adults and two children. Children under-9 stay free and room rates includes full Welsh breakfast and five-course dinner.


Ballyvolane House, North Cork

Ballyvolane House, Castlelyons: fun weekends away in North Cork

A beautiful and historic Irish country house, Ballyvolane is sure to charm you and your children with it warm welcome and You can only stay in the pig arks and bell tents in the summer, but all year there’s a family-friendly vibe here with a tennis court, croquet, badminton, cycling and fishing, plus extensive woodlands and gardens for children and adults to explore. Children will also adore a visit to the resident donkeys. Kids can tuck into high tea, leaving parents to savour a four-course tasting menu and to try Ballyvolane’s gin, Bertha’s Revenge. Babysitting services can be arranged.

Family stays at Ballyvolane House

The extra-large double rooms, with two additional beds for children, are ideal for families. Glamping is also available from May to September.


Augill Castle is the real deal kids will love

Augill Castle, Cumbria: children will adore this ‘real’ castle

There will be whoops of delight when kids realise that Augill Castle is a ‘real’ castle. In actual fact it’s a Victorian-folly of a castle, which makes it even more fun for families as the atmosphere’s relaxed even amid the ornate-ceilinged rooms with wood panelling. There are 15 acres of grounds to explore, as well as interconnecting and family rooms – some with turreted wardrobes – and food everyone can enjoy together. The most difficult choice you’ll have is whether to head to the Yorkshire Dales or the Lake District for a family day out.

Family stays at Augill Castle

The Castle Interconnecting Suite sleeps four guests in a king and two single beds. The children’s room has poetry on the ceiling, and there’s also room for a foldaway bed.


Calcot and Spa, Tetbury, the Cotswolds

Calcot and Spa, Cotswolds: the luxury of four hours complimentary childcare per day

With everything from an Ofsted-registered crèche with four hours complimentary childcare per day to a cinema, Calcot is family heaven. Get the kids exploring some of the 240 acres of meadowland on bikes – part of an ambitious rewilding project. Or sign them up for disc golf and tennis. Follow that up with family splash time in the spa pool. Then eat together in the country inn or gourmet restaurant.

The new suites each have two bedrooms and spacious living areas so that families have plenty of space. One also serves as a self-contained cottage. Here you’ll find an indoor dining space,  kitchenette as well as a private courtyard with a firepit.

Family stays at Calcot and Spa

The Cosy Family Room sleeps four and the room rate includes breakfast.


The Colonsay Hotel, Isle of Colonsay, Scotland

The Colonsay Hotel, Inner Hebrides: winter breaks on the Isle of Colonsay

Take the kids back to a holiday from yesteryear, starting with the ferry ride to The Colonsay Hotel. Hire bikes and explore this beautiful Inner Hebrides island, stopping at white-sand beaches to spot dolphins and seals. Back at base, there’s a kids’ menu and a relaxed atmosphere in the bar and restaurant. Stay in the hotel, or come with extended family or friends and rent one of 15 gorgeous self-catering cottages ranging from crofters cottages to Victorian farmhouses that sleep between 2 and 14 guests. You’ll end up wanting to live there!

Family stays at The Colonsay Hotel

The two-bedroom Avenue Cottage is ideal for families. Or for a multi-gen winter break, try Machrins farmhouse which sleeps up to 14 guests.

Book your stay at The Colonsay Hotel this winter


The Tawny, Consall, Staffordshire

The Tawny, Staffordshire: weekends away close to Alton Towers

Set within 70-acres of grounds, on the restored wild garden of Consall Hall Estate in Staffordshire, The Tawny is a magical for weekends away this winter. Kids won’t want to leave when they see the retreats, some with twin rooms and others with bunk beds. Not only are they scattered around beautiful grounds – perfect for letting off steam – some even have outside baths.

Activities for children include den making, treasure trails, bird spotting and exploring by recycled bikes. Plus, The Tawny’s outdoor pool is heated year round and The Plumicorn restaurant also has a kid’s menu. As an added bonus, many of the family rooms are dog-friendly too.

Family stays at The Tawny

The Lookout Family sleeps two adults and two children, and features one super king-size bed and an extra twin bedroom with two single beds.


Chewton Glen hydrotherapy pool, New Milton

Chewton Glen, New Milton: weekends away on the edge of the New Forest

If you’ve the cash to splash, Chewton Glen takes some beating. Keep the kids busy with cooking classes, indoor and outdoor pools, golf and tennis, or check them into the Beehive Kids Club with everything from scavenger hunts to rocket building, while you check out the spa, and enjoy relaxed family dining together. The luxurious treehouse suites get a huge family thumbs up. Activities for winter include foraging expeditions, and farm experiences. Young guests will be thrilled by the resident goats, Crunchie and Chewy, not to mention four teddy bear sheep, two ducks and two dwarf lop-eared bunnies.

Book your stay at Chewton Glen this winter

For more winter break inspiration take a look at The Good Hotel Guide Editor’s Choice. You’ll find all hotels featured here in The Good Hotel Guide 46th edition, to buy your copy online visit The Good Hotel Guide.


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