Unusual places to stay in the UK

Copper Beech Glade caravans

Get away from it all with a special short break in the UK – maybe you fancy glamping in a forest, sleeping in a treehouse, or spending time in a converted bus?

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It’s the perfect opportunity for some forest bathing, wild swimming and waking up to fresh air rather than an alarm clock.

Read more related articles about travel:

Here are ten of our favourite getaways around England, Scotland, Wales and the Channel Islands.

Tree houses and tents

The Red Kite Tree Tent is an amazing spherical tent, hanging from trees with a wooden bridge, and a separate wooden kitchen and flushing toilet on decking. Inside is a circular bed and a wood-burning stove, and the tent sways in the wind as you sleep. It’s near Builth Wells in mid-Wales, close to the Brecon Beacons, and costs from £110 a night.

Red Kite tree tent
Red Kite tree tent glamping

And if you’re ready to blow the budget, you should check out the Chewton Glen Treehouse Suite in Hampshire’s New Forest. Prices start at an eye-watering £850 for a night in a double room, with a hot tub on the terrace and a breakfast hamper delivered in the morning. Plus access to the luxury facilities at one of Conde Nast Traveller’s World’s Best Hotels, with a spa, a 9-hole golf course, and a 20-minute walk through the hotel grounds down to the sea.

Chewton Glen treehouse
Chewton Glen treehouse bathroom

Buses and caravans

The Big Green Bus was restored from a wreck and is now parked up in a wood in Sussex between Lewes and the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It sleeps up to six people in two double beds and two bunks, and dogs are allowed in the downstairs areas. Inside the bus is a bio-loo, shower and a custom-fitted kitchen, and outside you’ll find a hot tub and another hot shower. Prices start from £175 a night for two people.

The Big Green Bus
The Big Green Bus - inside

The Maharani Indian-style gypsy caravan is found in Melrose, just over the border into Scotland from England. It’s one of six caravans in a meadow, fitted with a fridge and electric cooker and a BBQ fire pit outside. Throughout the year they also host themed breaks including wellbeing, yoga and massage. It sleeps two people and costs from £105 a night.

The Maharani caravan
The Maharani caravan - divan bed

Copper Beech Glade near Harrogate is a collection of three gypsy caravans: Bella and Carmen, which each sleep two adults, and Rosita, a smaller caravan for two children. Outside there’s a fire pit, and a private shower and compost toilet. The location of Markington Hall dates back to the Domesday Book, and camping for up to six people starts at £195 a night.

Copper Beech Glade caravans
Bella caravan at Copper Beech Glade

Castles and grand houses

Ackergill Tower in the Scottish Highlands is near Wick, and about 15 miles from John O’Groats. Inside the granite castle are 35 luxurious rooms with six separate cottages in the grounds – or if you fancy something even more unusual there’s a Tree House Suite with a seven-foot circular bed and a circular bath. And from this location you even have a chance of seeing the Northern Lights. Each night in the hotel’s double room starts from £129, and the Tree House costs from £500.

Ackergill Tower Hotel Treehouse
Ackergill Tower Hotel Treehouse Suite

Randy Pike in the Lake District is a collection of three exclusive B&B rooms in an old Gentleman’s Hunting Lodge, with designer interiors, hand-carved beds and palatial bathrooms. Its location is perfect for walking around Windermere, mountain biking or a boat trip, and double rooms cost from £200 a night.

Randy Pike exterior
Randy Pike bed and breakfast

Small but perfectly formed

Inshriach Shepherd’s Hut is in Aviemore in the Scottish Cairngorm mountains, and sleeps two from £65 a night. The shower and toilet are in a farm outbuilding about 600 metres away – or if you don’t fancy staying in the shepherd’s hut there’s also a canvas yurt, a converted Fire Service truck, and a Bothy, all of which sleep two people. Plus you can enjoy a sauna in a horsebox in the grounds!

Inshriach shepherd's hut
Inshriach shepherd's hut

The Trewithen Tabernacle in Cornwall is tucked away in the countryside, 20 minutes from Padstow and the Eden Project, and sleeps two. It’s small but perfectly formed with a kitchen and wet room inside, and outside there’s a firepit and a wood-fired pizza oven.

Trewithen tabernacle Cornwall
Trewithen tabernacle bedroom
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The Nicolle Tower on the island of Jersey is in the south-east, in St Clement. Originally built as a folly in the early 1800s, it boasts great views over the sea in all directions so was used as a lookout point during the German occupation. The tower is 160 feet tall with a double bedroom on the third floor, and costs from £124 for four nights.

Nicolle Tower Jersey