Escape to a National Trust holiday cottage this Easter

This year, celebrate Easter with a break to a National Trust holiday property.

With family-friendly events being run at National Trust properties around England, Wales and Northern Ireland, why not make a week of it and stay in one of the Trust’s cottage or at a campsite?

From hiking outstanding coastline, canoeing on lakes, or hunting for chocolate Easter eggs – there are plenty of things to do to keep everyone – including four legged friends – entertained.

Travelling as a couple or group of friends? From luxurious country manors to back-to-basics bunkhouses, there’s a destination to suit everyone. Guests could find themselves strolling through woodlands carpeted with daffodils, on a bracing coastal walk, or enjoying a casual stroll to a country pub.

Every stay at a National Trust holiday cottage contributes towards the charity’s conservation commitments.

Here are some of great Easter escape options:

For activity lovers

Low Wray Windermere ©National Trust Images, Paul Harris Canoe

Low Wray Windermere © National Trust Images, Paul Harris

Low Wray Campsite, Cumbria

On the shore of Lake Windermere, this campsite is a favourite with families. The campsite is a short walk or cycle from Wray Castle, which has lots of activities to keep kids entertained over the Easter holiday. Choose from waterfront or woodland camping pitches, or for an extra special Easter break, treat the family to a stay in the glamping pods or safari tents.

Facilities include an onsite shop, three toilet and shower blocks, laundry facilities, washing-up areas, a children’s adventure playground, bike hire, and when the weather permits, a wood fired pizza oven and smokehouse BBQ and grill. Canoes, rowing boats, sit-on kayaks and paddleboards are also available to hire.

Leave the car behind and head out on your bikes or on foot along the lakeshore to Claife Viewing Station for scenic views, or for something quintessentially English head to the Beatrix Potter Gallery in Hawkshead.

Price: camping pitches from £10 per night. Pods from £35 per night. Safari tents from £260 for three nights (Fri – Mon).

Booking: visit holidays or call 0344 800 2070. Minimum 3 night stay for tents, campervans and pods on Bank Holidays.

Butterhill Barn Bunk House © National Trust Images, Mike Henton

Butterhill Barn Bunk House © National Trust Images, Mike Henton

Butter Hill Barn Bunkhouse, Devon

Sleeps 6, 1 bedroom, 2 dogs

Butter Hill Barn Bunkhouse offers a family or group of friends the chance to bunk down together in this simple, but comfortable, accommodation. On the fringes of Exmoor, it’s a stone’s throw from the South West Coastal Path. Whilst hiking along Watersmeet Valley, look out for deer amongst the trees and otters in the river.

For a pleasant walk follow the River Lyn along the stunning East Lyn Valley. A stop in Watersmeet Tea Rooms for a cup of tea and a slice of homemade cake is the perfect pick-up, at the end of the walk.

The local area offers plenty to keep everyone entertained including the famous cliff railway, in nearby Lynton and Lynmouth.  With the Atlantic close by, surfers are in for a treat; the wide bay at Woolacombe is perfect for learners and pros alike, while the village of Croyde welcomes huge swells into its small beach.

Price: entire bunkhouse for five nights £300.

Booking: call 0344 335 1296 or visit

For wildlife lovers

Mill Farm Barn © National Trust Images

Mill Farm Barn © National Trust Images

Mill Farm Barn, Norfolk

Sleeps 6, 3 bedrooms, 2 dogs

For a worry-free break where the kids can run free, stay at Mill Farm Bank on beautiful Blickling estate. With a 55-acre garden on the doorstep, this spacious barn conversion is ideally located for little explorers.

Inside there is a large sitting room with a double height beamed ceiling and multi-fuel stove. On warmer days sit out in the enclosed garden and look out for the deer and hares that roam the surrounding meadows.

Guests are able to explore Blickling estate for free. A 30-minute walk leads to the grand Jacobean hall, walled gardens and sweeping parklands. Bring a bike as there are lots of cycling trails around the estate.

The sandy beaches and cliff top paths of the Norfolk coast are a 20 minute drive. Blakeney Point Nature Reserve is 20 miles away, and offers a unique opportunity to spot rare wildlife, such as grey seals and terns.

Price: six nights from Saturday 24 March £1,150 (Can only be booked four weeks in advance).

Booking: visit or call 0344 800 2070.

Willow Cottage, sitting dining room © National Trust Images, Chris Lacey

Willow Cottage, sitting dining room © National Trust Images, Chris Lacey

Willow Cottage, County Fermanagh 

Sleeps 3, 2 bedrooms, 1 dog

Willow is a cosy cottage on Crom estate. Crom is one of Ireland’s most important nature conservation areas and in spring winter birds can be seen departing and migrants arriving from the south. With a bay window and views over woodland, the cottage dining room is the perfect spot to sit and watch the birds swoop past.

Take advantage of the cottage’s unique location and explore some of the 2,000 acres that make up the estate. Guests are also able to take a free tour of nearby Florence Court, an impressive country mansion dating back to the 18th-century. Further afield, enjoy a fascinating walk around Cavan Burren; a prehistoric landscape is dotted with monuments and stunning geological features.

Price: seven nights from Sat 24 March £556.

Booking: visit holidays or call 0344 800 2070.

For social butterflies

Thatch Cottage, Derbyshire, exterior © National Trust Images, Mike Henton

Thatch Cottage, Derbyshire, exterior © National Trust Images, Mike Henton

Thatch Cottage, Derbyshire

Sleeps 6, 3 bedrooms, 1 dog

This charming 17th-century thatched cottage on Calke Abbey estate, combines country rustic with contemporary luxury. Its original features have been preserved, while modern furnishings have been added for a luxurious stay. The plump sofas around the open fire are a lovely spot to relax in, while the modern kitchen is perfect for cooking up a family treat.

With 600 acres of parkland on the doorstep, grab a map and head out to spot wildlife in the gardens and deer park. The southern end of the Peak District is less than an hour’s drive, for those that want to explore this wild landscape.

The nearby Georgian market town of Melbourne is less than a 10 minute drive away, offering guests a wealth of tea rooms, pubs and restaurants.

Price: seven nights from Monday 26 March £1,258. (Can only be booked four weeks in advance)

Booking: visit holidays or call 0344 800 2070.

Emley Farm House © National Trust Images, Marianne Wanstall

Emley Farm House © National Trust Images, Marianne Wanstall

Emley Farmhouse, Surrey

Sleeps 10, 5 bedrooms, 2 dogs

This Grade II listed farmhouse has remained largely unaltered since the 19th-century, retaining its unique country charm. Remnants of its past can be found in each room – from the low beamed ceilings and inglenook fireplaces, to the latticed windows and even an internal well.

Surrounded by the Surrey Hills this is perfect walking country, with footpaths leading through shady woods or across open heathland dotted with grazing cattle and wild ponies.

Price: four nights from Tues 3 April £1,590.

Booking: visit holidays or call 0344 800 2070.

For animal lovers

Old Linceter, Herefordshire

Sleeps 5, 3 bedrooms, 2 dogs

Old Linceter is a traditional stone cottage, in a peaceful spot on Brockhampton estate. In March and April, the fields around Brockhampton are filled with leaping lambs and during the Easter holidays, the estate runs special events where visitors can meet them.

Built in the 1800s the cottage still features original quarry tiles and a wood burner in the sitting room. Its secluded location means only the bleating of the sheep and singing of the birds breaks the silence.

Explore the estate’s woodland, open parkland and working farms before heading to the manor where, guests can enter for free. A little further afield, the Malvern Hills AONB is within easy reach of the cottage. Ramble along one of the many walking routes before heading over to nearby Worcester for a hearty lunch.

Price: seven nights from Friday 23 March £873.

Booking: visit holidays or call 0344 800 2070.

For a romantic escape

Treleddyd Fawr Cottage © National Trust Images, Mike Henton

Treleddyd Fawr Cottage © National Trust Images, Mike Henton

Treleddyd Fawr Cottage, Pembrokeshire

Sleeps 2

Stay in possibly one of the last surviving vernacular cottages of Pembrokeshire. After an 18 month restoration the cottage has been brought back to life and is now a cosy one-bedroom cottage. Inside it oozes rustic charm with its bumpy stone walls, low beamed ceilings and an inglenook fireplace.

Less than a 10 minute drive to the blue-flag beach, Whitesands Bay, which offers some of the best surfing ‘breaks’ at the northern end, while the southern end is perfect for paddling.

For a stroll along the coast, there are a number of footpaths that run close by the cottage, which link onto the Pembrokeshire Coast Path for walks along St David’s Peninsula.

Price: seven nights from Sat 31 March £749.

Booking: visit holidays or call 0344 800 2070.

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