1. The Craven Arms, Appletreewick, Yorkshire Dales
This is one of the best pubs in the Yorkshire Dales. The best bit? You can spend the night (and your dog is allowed to come too). The building dates back to the sixteenth century, and inside you’ll find stone floors, gas lamps and church pew-style seating, along with the obligatory log fire. The menu’s firmly focused on local fare (think venison, boar and other game dishes) and there’s always a fantastic selection of craft ales on offer. Accommodation takes the form of three quaint shepherds’ huts, all of which sleep two people.
2. The Gurnard’s Head, St Ives, Cornwall
This seven-bedroom inn is one of Cornwall’s best hotels, thanks to the famously friendly welcome extended to guests, and the spectacular views – depending on the location of your room, you’ll enjoy views of either the Cornish coastline or dramatic moorland. In the summer months, visitors to this dog-friendly pub and hotel can dine outside on the beautiful lawn area. In the colder months, most choose to head inside to sip a pint of local ale by the roaring log fire. There are always three local, Cornish ales on tap, and in the bedrooms, there are White Company toiletries, paintings by local artists and dog treats for four-legged friends.
3. The Mistley Thorn, Essex
This historic pub dates back to 1723 and was once the home on the infamous, self-appointed Witchfinder General, Matthew Hopkins. There are 12 large rooms (opt for one with a view of the Stour Estuary if possible) and it’s one of the few restaurants in Essex to be highly commended in two Michelin Guides (in the 2005 and 2006 editions). But standards haven’t slipped – the menu’s highlights include the bread and ice cream, both of which are made on the premises. Spend the night and you’ll enjoy perks like fresh flowers in the bedrooms, luxurious REN toiletries and homemade cookies. There are also several dog-friendly rooms for those travelling with Fido in tow.
4. The Plough at Lupton, Lake District
Nestled in the Yorkshire Dales, this gorgeous pub hotel has just five rooms – and we recommend booking early, because they’re highly sought after. Our favourite is the Torsin suite, with its standalone bath tub and enormous sleigh bed, although we’re also smitten with the Redman suite, which has breathtaking views over the gardens. It’s the perfect accommodation if you’re planning on exploring the moors on foot – a log fire, fine wine-filled base to retreat to at the end of a hard day’s hiking.
5. The Maytime Inn, the Cotswolds
Let’s fact it, cosy pubs and hotels are ten a penny in the Cotswolds, but this little gem really does raise the bar. There’s a wildflower-filled garden (complete with rustic stone wall), delicious grub and six beautiful bedrooms. You’re also guaranteed a warm welcome – not just by Dominic (the owner), but by his lovable dog, Alfie. If you can, book the Saddlers’ Room, which looks out onto the courtyard and is filled with well-loved antiques, including a vintage travel trunk.
6. The Scotsman Hotel, Edinburgh
Nothing says a warm welcome like a glass of whisky on arrival – which is exactly what you’ll get when you check into this Edinburgh hotel. There are 56 rooms in this historic property, although the Scotsman’s famous for treating every guest like a long lost friend. Inside the impossibly cosy rooms you’ll find lots of tartan, enormous beds and, if you nab one of the suites, a warming log fire. Every room is unique, but all of them have added extras designed to make life a little easier: Nespresso machines, GHD hair straighteners and a pile of glossy magazines, to be precise. We also love the addition of telescopes, installed to help guests admire Scotland’s famously clear skies. The Scotsman is also located only a 5 minute walk from Waverley station making it ideal for those travelling by train.
What can be more cosy than a tree house? There are three at Chewton Glen Hotel, and they’re all perched 35 feet above ground. But if the thought of a tree house conjures up memories of the one you built in your garden as a child (complete with rusty nails and warped wooden planks), think again. These beauties have marble bathrooms, kitchenettes and hot tubs on the balconies. When the mercury plummets, huddle up by the wood-burning stove and crank up the hi-tech sound system. In the morning, you’ll feast on a breakfast hamper left outside the door to your tree house. We suggest eating al fresco on the balcony, with only the tweeting birds for company.
Wannabe Lords (or ladies) of the manor will love this property – one of the best country house hotels in the UK, and one of Dartmoor’s most popular places to stay. Built in 1906 for stationery supremo WH Smith, the castle has sweeping mahogany staircases, enormous stone fireplaces and breathtaking views of Dartmoor. There’s a golf course, spa, tennis court and rifle range, although the enormous property still feels cosy and intimate, thanks largely to the attention to detail in the rooms: you’ll find decanters of locally-made sloe gin and ESPA toiletries to pour into your roll-top bath.
Missing Downton Abbey? Retreat to this gorgeous country pile for the next best thing. The sprawling Grade 1-listed mansion is surrounded by beautiful gardens designed by Capability Brown, along with clusters of outbuildings (one of which contains the spa). The property has remained largely unchanged, with a beautiful drawing room, an equally spectacular dining room and spacious rooms with tall sash windows. To crank up the cosiness, opt for the Manor Room, with its interior wooden beams and sloping ceiling, or the antique-filled State Room.
10. The Falcon Hotel
This beautiful hotel is due to reopen shortly, following a huge renovation, but it’s definitely still worthy of a place in our line up. A stunning sixteenth-century coaching Inn, the Falcon Hotel is just a short walk from the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, and we reckon the bard would have loved this place if he was still around. Rooms have been furnished with beautiful, bespoke fabrics, and the restaurant is an explosion of log fires and wooden beams. It doesn’t get cosier than that.