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5 Holiday Destinations Within 3 Hours Of Your New Home In County Durham

Image credit: Rudding Park Hotel and Spa

If you are considering a staycation this summer, we suggest that you take a look at the stunning countryside and city locations we have compiled to discover which destination is right for you. 

 

These locations are slightly further afield, however, if you would prefer a short break closer to your new home in County Durham,  home, have a read of our North East Staycations blog post.  

 

For pure luxury, contemporary style or outdoor fun, these places offer something for all ages. 

1. Lake District

 

 

The Lake District is known for its rugged fell mountains, glacial ribbon lakes, which are perfect for watersports, and rich literary history. 

 

Wander through the scattered collection of market towns, enjoy a traditional pub lunch or participate in something more adventurous. Whatever your interests may be, the Lake District is always the ideal holiday destination. 

 

Ambleside is one of the most popular villages in the Lake District. Nestled on the northern shore of Lake Windermere, England’s largest natural lake, enjoy the picturesque views, unique buildings and small shops. 

 

If you prefer to explore the more unknown, rustic villages, many gorgeous hidden gems are dotted throughout the Lake District, such as Cartmel, Kentmere and Wasdale. 

 

Where to stay?

 

The Quiet Site

 

Located among the fells overlooking Lake Ullswater, enjoy a warm welcome into this multiple award-winning campsite. 

 

After 20 years of innovative thinking and hard work, this campsite now operates as a fully carbon-neutral company. Receiving five sustainability awards between 2019 and 2020, this holiday destination is truly inspiring. 

 

With 15 new carbon-positive holiday accommodations in the works (able to generate more energy than they use up) and the existing glamping and camping pods embedded into the local landscape, live harmoniously with nature and open your eyes to the possibilities of the future. 

 

Gilpin Hotel 

 

Specialising in extraordinary service, exquisite design and stunning culinary experiences, Gilpin Hotel is a true home away from home. Prioritising utter comfort and relaxation, you are guaranteed to immediately feel welcome when you enter Gilpin Hotel. 

 

All 28 rooms offer beautiful views and are completed to perfection. Immersed in the countryside, you are able to relax and reconnect. 

 

The on-site Michelin starred, four AA rosette restaurant, HRiSHi, combines great Lake District produce with interesting flavours to deliver incredible dishes, and the casual alternative restaurant, Gilpin Spice serves pan-Asian dishes inspired by countries along the spice trail. 

 

Another Place, The Lake

 

With views over Ullswater and the fells, this 40-bedroom hotel offers cool contemporary comfort. The 20-metre swimming pool, spa, two restaurants and library provide the space for complete relaxation. 

 

Whether you are staying alone, or with the whole family plus the dog, this original Georgian house ties old and new design together, creating the perfect atmosphere to make priceless memories. 

 

2. Edinburgh

 

Just a 2-hour train journey from Darlington, explore the historic city of Edinburgh for an unforgettable staycation. 

 

If you enjoy authentic city breaks, Scotland’s capital is an ideal place to visit. With bustling shops along the Royal Mile, the iconic Edinburgh Castle and countless arts festivals, there is always something to do in this gorgeous city. 

 

A stone's throw away from the endless green countryside, and even beaches, this city truly offers it all. Spend a weekend in the city centre or opt for a longer stay and explore the outskirts too - whichever you prefer, you’re sure to have a fantastic time. 

 

Where to stay?

 

The Balmoral

 

An Edinburgh icon at an unparalleled address, where the Old Town meets the new, this 5-star hotel is the epitome of class and Scottish tradition. 

 

With several award-winning restaurants and bars, exquisite interior design and a fantastic ambience, this hotel is for those who would like to experience Edinburgh in its finest manner. 

 

The Dunstane Houses

 

A boutique hotel in West Coates, just minutes away from Princes Street, offers 35 beautifully designed bedrooms. This peaceful city centre hideaway is a great accommodation for those who enjoy low-key luxury. 

 

Tigerlily

 

Contemporary style is found throughout this hotel, bar and restaurant. With eccentric designs and many delicious menus, enjoy fun food and a funky atmosphere at Tigerlily, located right on George Street in Edinburgh’s Old Town.

 

3. London

 

The iconic UK capital can’t be forgotten when searching for an exciting city break. 

 

Just two and a half hours on the train from Darlington, London is easier to access from the North East than many people anticipate. 

 

The train takes you straight into King’s Cross Station, right in the city centre. From here, trail off into whichever part of the city you’re interested in, or, if you’d like to explore it all, grab a pass for the Underground and travel around all corners of London. 

 

If you would like to live like a Londoner, taking walks around Brick Lane or dining in Dishoom is sure to uncover a side of the city you may have otherwise not known about. 

 

Each of the incredible West End theatre shows provides unforgettable experiences with world-class performance. From classical ballets to your favourite musicals, a trip to the theatre is always a great idea. 

 

Some of the best places to walk around and enjoy the sheer beauty of London include Regent’s Park, Lancaster Street in Notting Hill, The Churchill Arms in Kensington and the entirety of Knightsbridge. 

 

Where to stay?

 

Nobu Hotel, Shoreditch

 

Nestled among the charismatic energy of East London, this modern hotel delivers the perfect balance of Japanese simplicity and industrial style. 

 

Indulge in beautiful dishes from the world-renowned Nobu Restaurant, enjoy a unique coffee in Nobu Cafe or visit Nami Bar for Japanese street food and chic cocktails. 

 

Shangri-La Hotel at The Shard, Southwark

 

Western Europe’s tallest building, The Shard, is the 72-story architectural icon located in Southwark. 

 

Starting on level 34 - a soaring 125 metres high - the Shangri-La Hotel occupies 18 floors of The Shard. With 202 rooms offering spectacular skyline views across the city, this is the perfect modern city break accommodation. 

 

Providing three signature dining venues and London’s highest hotel infinity pool, enjoy a lavish stay at the Shangri-La. 

 

Rosewood London

 

Situated near Covent Garden, the shopping and entertainment hub in London’s West End, Rosewood London is an ideal base to experience London’s charm. 

 

This Edwardian building is one of the finest 5-star hotels in London and has a family-friendly focus. 

 

Filled with traditional and contemporary art, several stunning restaurants and bars, and spa and fitness suites, this hotel offers exquisite amenities in the most gorgeous setting, perfect for solo trips, couples or families. 

 

4. Sandsend

 

Located near Whitby, Sandsend is a charming fishing village. Just an hour's drive from Redmarshall, this location is ideal for North East holidaymakers.

 

For a family staycation or a short weekend break, this quiet location offers true tranquillity and natural beauty. Rolling green hills, stunning buildings and a beautiful small beach, escape to the coast and spend quality time together at Sandsend. 

 

Where to stay?

 

Raithwaite Sandsend 

 

Between the sea and the moors, Raithwaite Sandsend is a unique coastal retreat. With woodland-filled grounds, stylish rooms and breathtaking Yorkshire scenery right on the doorstep, the entire family is welcome at Raithwaite Sandsend, including any four-legged friends. 

 

The contemporary Raithwaite Restaurant offers the finest local produce on a simple, seasonal menu and Bar 1822 provides a beautiful setting to enjoy refreshing cocktails, pints, wine, bar snacks, light lunches and traditional afternoon teas. 

 

Many local activities are available to participate in, including the in-house Surf School, stand-up paddleboarding and beach yoga. 

 

5. Yorkshire

 

The largest county in the U.K. offers everything from beaches to historic architecture to the endless countryside. Yorkshire is well worth a visit. Whether you’re looking for a Michelin-starred meal, unforgettable views, charismatic villages or spa retreats, the whole family can find many things to enjoy in this wonderful part of the world. 

 

From the alluring beauty of the city of York, the many museums and the endless forestry, you can explore Yorkshire for weeks on end. 

 

Where to stay?

 

The Alice Hawthorn at Nun Monkton


Image credit: The Alice Hawthorn

 

A charming country pub nestled away in the secluded village of Nun Monkton, The Alice Hawthorn provides a brilliant kitchen with flavoursome, imaginative dishes and beautifully designed rooms. 

 

Spend a warm summer's afternoon in the beer garden with friends, and, on weekends, enjoy artisan, handmade sourdough pizzas.

 

For special occasions or a relaxed overnight stay, this destination is ideal for luxurious Yorkshire living. 

 

Grantley Hall

 

Offering 47 outstanding rooms and suites, this luxury hotel and wellness retreat near Ripon is a true Yorkshire gem. 

 

Fine dining in the Yorkshire Dales is available throughout the four indulgent restaurants at Grantley Hall. 

 

The bar and restaurant EightyEight combines local produce and Asian flavours to deliver wonderful dishes in a stunning setting. 

 

Embark upon a culinary journey at the Michelin-starred restaurant, Shaun Rankin at Grantley Hall. Shaun Rankin developed his culinary craft at The Mayfair Hotel in London, but has since returned to his Yorkshire roots to open this exquisite restaurant at Grantley Hall. 

 

Within the Queen Anne wing of the hall is located Fletcher's Restaurant, the perfect setting to enjoy casually sophisticated all-day dining. 

 

Delight in a quintessentially British afternoon tea or unwind in the Three Graces Spa. Grantley Hall enables you to reconnect with the present moment and prioritise your wellness. 

 

Hillside Caravan Park

 

This family-run campsite is the most perfect place to enjoy the beauty of North Yorkshire.

 

Located in Knayton, just a 35-minute drive from Darlington, this 5-star site offers cosy glamping pods, a charming cottage and pitches for touring caravans and motorhomes. 

 

Surrounded by nature, relax, and spend quality time with loved ones at this idyllic location. 

 

Enjoy the countless walking routes and delicious food at The Dog and Gun, an award-winning pub just one and a half miles from the site. 

Image credit: Welcome to Yorkshire

 

Rudding Park

 

Situated in 300 acres of landscaped gardens on the outskirts of Harrogate, this luxury hotel and spa boasts two restaurants, a private cinema, a kitchen garden and two golf courses. 

 

Enjoy award-winning experiences in this incredible setting. 

 

The Rooftop Spa offers a range of hydrotherapy and thermal treatments for you to completely relax, recapturing the essence of Harrogate, originally a Victorian spa town. 

 

Remain entertained for days on the grounds of Rudding Park, or perhaps venture out into the local area. Harrogate is home to Betty’s Cafe and Tearooms, plenty of shops, parks and the Turkish Baths.

 

Experience the local culture and history or simply wind-down and take time out for yourself. Whatever you choose to do, you are sure to enjoy the stripped-back simplicity of this beautiful hotel and its surroundings. 

 

Rudding Park Roof Top Spa

Image credit: Rudding Park

Explore somewhere new this summer and truly appreciate what our country has to offer, whether you prefer small villages, modern hotels or traditional country houses. Dine, adventure and rest at these beautiful locations, all within 3 hours of your new home in the North East.  

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