Get the lowdown on the top summer festivals plus the finest places to stay, without a sodden tent in sight! The running of the bulls, tomato fights and cheese chases – we've got plenty of ideas for your summer break, from the wondrous to the downright wacky.
Renowned for its pockets of eccentricity, there are plenty of fantastic summer festivals in the UK. Stay in Gloucestershire and chase the cheese down Cooper’s Hill, or try Llanwrtyd Wells for World Bog Snorkelling, Salisbury for Stonehenge Summer Solstice, Bristol for Balloon Fiesta and Llandrindod Wells for Victorian Festival. If you prefer something arty, it’s all going on in August and September at the Notting Hill Carnival, Edinburgh festivals and St Ives Festival.
Summertime is party time on the continent! Stay near Pamplona in Navarre for the running of the bulls, near Buñol in Valencia for the world’s largest tomato fight or in the heart of Paris for Bastille Day. Music fans should rent a pad in Barcelona for Primavera Sound, a villa in Costa del Azahar for Benicassim or fly to Ibiza for the closing parties. While over in Morocco you’ll be wowed by Berber musicians and acrobats at Marrakech Popular Arts.
“Lovely, clean, quiet and comfortable barn just a short walk to Bath” We loved our stay in this great barn, the pictures do not do it justice and were surprised with the size of it. On the first night we discovered how easy it was to walk to Bath when
We stayed at the cottage for 2 nights and it was just wonderful. Beautifully presented,cosy and very clean.
It had all we needed and more.
Location was great just a short walk to shops and restaur… More
Reviewed 9 Dec 2013
The barn was perfect for our girls' weekend in Bath! The property is beautifully furnished & provided a warm, cosy retreat for a relaxing stay. It is very luxurious & the lovely finishing touches made… More
“Would love to stay again!” We had an amazing Christmas staying at Woodland barn, the cottage is very modern with all the appliances you would need. We arrived to lovely welcome gifts and the cottage was beautifully decorated with a Christmas tree. The
Booking was easy and response fast.
Woodland barn was very good, very well presented and clean.
The views where to die for overlooking the valley and river seven.
Plenty to do in the local area and… More
“A little Gem, in Forest of Dean”
Reviewed 23 Sep 2012
This little Barn conversion has been finished to a very high standard, it's owners keep it beautifully, we were 4 OAP's and 2 dogs, and had a wonderful short break. The view from the patio certainly h… More
“Beautiful location, outstanding accommodation”
Reviewed 31 Jan 2012
My partner and I stayed in this charming cottage last summer, It was not our first time in the area; we love it so much we regularly visit.
The Forest of Dean is an exceptionally beautiful area of … More
“Old grannery” We have just spent another amazing weekend here and it was just as good as first time the barn is so well equipped for all your needs and scenery is amazing will certainly be going back in the future
Such a lovely retreat. Even though it is quite remote it is not a problem if you have a car.
Everything is done to a high standard.… More
Thank you for positive review. We are please you had a good stay.
“Lots of light and space inside, surrounded by peace and countryside beyond.”
Reviewed 19 Aug 2014
Celebrated our Ruby Wedding week here with 7 adults, a teenager, a 2 year-old and 3 dogs. Loads of space to gather in - or disperse to. Full-length windows fold to give level access to patio and lawn,… More
Reviewed 24 Oct 2012
Absolutely beautiful property which boasts stunning views. Plenty of parking and enough space inside for 10 people to be comfortable. This house was clean beyond clean and very well equipped! If charm… More
Thank you for your review. We are pleased that you enjoyed your stay
“A peaceful get away in comfort.” Thank you so much for a wonderful time in a marvellous setting. A warm welcome on arrival and with your local knowledge it was all simply perfect. The only down side was we couldn't have stayed longer!
We thoroughly enjoyed our time at The Bryre it was like a home from home. Cosy and warm on arrival with the log fire burning away. We stayed for New Years and we were spoilt with a welcome hamper, a g… More
Thank you for your lovely review. We were glad you found it to be a home from home. We do our very best to ensure that you have a warm, cosy retreat in which to recharge those batteries. Best of luck for 2016 and we hope to see you again before too long.
Stayed for a weekend in this beautifully designed barn located on a peaceful small holding. The owners are extremely pleasant and thoughtful, and have done a magnificent job of renovating this barn. I… More
Thank you so much for choosing to stay at The Byre. There are guests...and then there are lovely guests, people who truly appreciate what we have tried to create. You were such lovely guests. We hope you will return.
“Outstanding! Best kept secret hideaway in the Northern Brecons…”
Reviewed 20 Jun 2013
We were typically late arriving to a lovely heartfelt welcome – with home-made canapés on arrival, we had a calming evening playing scrabble by the fire and woke in our own time to a breakfast of h… More
Thank you for your review of The Byre. We are especially pleased when people appreciate how hard we work to make our guests' stay extra special. It is indeed a labour of love!
“Perfect holiday” We have just come back from having the most amazing holiday ever. The accommodation was perfect and just what we needed after having a hectic Christmas. Bev our host was lovely and very welcoming.
The barn itself is well equipped and
“Accessible, beautiful country getaway that ticks all boxes” We stayed for a long Autumnal weekend and absolutely loved it. The spacious living areas and cosy, comfortable bedrooms, coupled with super easy access both from the M4 and into Bath make it
What a gem of a house! Beautifully set out and in a wonderful location, this is everything you could ask for in an idyllic country retreat.
The house itself is beautiful and yet comfortable at the… More
Delighted to hear you had such a lovely time - you are welcome back anytime!
“Stunning setting, amazing property...”
Reviewed 14 Aug 2013
We have just returned from 2 nights at this property in Dyrham near Bath. Wow what a place! It completely surpassed our expectations. Beautifully furnished..it felt like we'd arrived at a boutique … More
“Everything a rural barn should be.....” A beautiful converted barn. Contemporary interior - open plan, spacious and very well equipped. It is isolated and accessed via tracks and field, like a proper barn. To this extent it has sense of authenticit
“Lovely modern home, easy to find, definitely would return with family or friends. Suits everyone!”
Reviewed 25 Jul 2016
Great weekend celebrating my birthday. The house had everything we needed and more from a fully equipped kitchen to a box full of games and DVDs.
We loved the undercover decking area with the sunken… More
Glad your birthday went well. The hot tub disco lights are always a winner. Come back again next year !
“Beautiful accommodation in a stunning setting” We had a wonderful time whilst staying in this very spacious and modern accommodation. There was plenty of room for the children to play inside and outside and the accommodation was well equipped. We part
“Peaceful and quiet location with lovely rural views , yet easy access to Llanwrtyd and very high standard accommodation.”
Reviewed 14 Jan 2014
We liked the location and very high standard of accommodation so much that we have booked again for next new year.… More
“High quality accommodation, great location”
Reviewed 10 Jan 2014
The name Gwedd y Glyn is fine but to call it a 'Holiday Barn' really doesn't do justice to this fantastic and very highly specified property. Despite the amazing space within the building, the under-f… More
Reviewed 7 Jan 2014
Exceptionally well restored barn, spacious,comfortable and luxuriously furnished. Warm welcome from owners. A real 'gem'!… More
“Lovely accommodation and a warm welcome” Stayed for a long weekend with family to celebrate a milestone birthday. Received a warm welcome from Philip and Buster (the dog) and the accommodation was very well appointed and comfortable with all mod cons.
Hi end barn conversion, done to the highest spec. A really lovely space. A fantastic setting. Can't wait to go back and relax. Thank you.… More
We are very pleased that you enjoyed your stay with us so much that you have re-booked. We look forward to seeing you all soon. Thank you for your positive feed back.
“High quality accomodation in a beautiful setting within easy reach of many interesting places to visit.”
Reviewed 11 Jan 2013
We stayed over the Christmas week, my dad, sister and nephews in the downstairs apartment and myself, my husband and our 18 month old daughter in the upstairs one. Although we all spent most of our ti… More
We are really pleased that you enjoyed your Christmas with us. Thank you for you positive feed back. Many people like yourselves staying in group feel that it is an advantage to have the two separate lounges so we are delighted you benefited from this. We are pleased that you managed to visit many of the fabulous place of interest that we have on our door step.
“Fabulous Stay at Le Gro”
Reviewed 22 Oct 2012
Had a wonderful Weekend at Le gro with family,The accommodation was first class,and
Beautiful setting in countryside.But only short drive into Shrewsbury,which is also lovely,
Also had barbeque one … More
Thank you for your kind feed back, we are really pleased that you and your family had a happy and memorable stay with us and look forward to helping you have another joyful family get together next time.
“Outstanding accomodation, exceptional hospitality. Perfect winter getaway” We stayed in tinkley cottage. The pictures do not do it justice, it really is stunning.
It had everything we needed for a comfortable stay. It is extremely well finished, and
“Beautiful cottage, lovely people and wonderful place”
Reviewed 8 Nov 2013
We spent a week in the beautiful Tinkley Cottage in Nympsfield. The owners David and Anne lived on the other side of what was originally the farmyard. They were very friendly and offered advice on w… More
“Wedding weekend away” An absolutely amazing place to stay with friends. Lots of space for everyone to stay and also lots of lovely communal areas. We only stayed a weekend, but could have easily stayed for a week.
We had a pleasant stay at the barn for my father's 70th birthday but this was marred by the difficulty getting our deposit back from the owners. A crack in a window appeared during our stay which we d… More
This was this particular gentleman's second stay. By his own admission his group had very much enjoyed themselves both times. We are very keen that the barns are kept in pristine order ready for the next visitors and so we have a very clear damage deposit policy. When guests take over our barns we like to leave them to enjoy themselves as if they were in their own property. The trade off is that they become the caretakers for the property and if any damage occurs during their tenure then we have to consider if it should be their responsibility. A damage bond does give even the most careful visitors more incentive to care for our amazing barns and it gives us the peace of mind to continue letting people come to stay. We love to see people enjoying them to the full and everyone does.
In this particular instance, we all agree that a window was cracked next to the front door over the weekend. Any damage is a rare occurrence and usually we return complete deposits after the property has been inspected by our housekeepers. We do not immediately return deposits if there may be a subtraction to be made which has first to be agreed with the guests. We estimated that the replacement double-glazed glass would cost about £125. I visited to inspect personally, our housekeepers took photographs and I spoke to our maintenance man who saw the glass unbroken on Friday and our housekeeper who saw it broken on Monday.
The guest first requested his deposit be returned on 19th May. In his e-mail of 6th June he was still denying responsibility. However, he did very kindly offer to pay £40 towards the repair and we agreed to accept this, noting that if perchance the bill did come to less then we would reimburse him the difference. As we were in agreement, we were then able to return his deposit, less £40 on 6th June.
We very much regret that this small dispute arose at all, but we feel we did everything we could to resolve it correctly. Therefore it is very unfair of this particular guest to attempt to tarnish our excellent track record over such a small matter.
“Perfect weekend away” The cottage and stay was perfect. David the host was on hand to offer tips about the local area, and was very easy to communicate with before the booking as well.
Would highly recommend,
“Beautiful cozy home in stunning Welsh countryside” We recently stayed at The Haybarn and had a wonderful time. The house is really well kept and clean and suited to families. The house has a really lovely warm atmosphere to it and we especially loved
“Wonderfully relaxing and great for family holidays”
Reviewed 27 Sep 2012
We did have a wonderful time at the Haybarn, it's a lovely place and my sister and I could have happily lived there!! It was a brilliant place for us all to get together and we had some fantastic days… More
“The house made the holiday!”
Reviewed 21 Apr 2012
This house has real character and is the perfect place for a family getaway. The place was perfect for a group holiday with young kids. The house is spacious and full of character, yet has all the n… More
“Amazing house full of character, beautiful location.”
Reviewed 13 Feb 2012
We loved the large open plan living space - kitchen, dining area and large sitting room with log burner - great for socialising as a group. The house is full of character, the beds were comfy, the lar… More
“Lovely stay” We had an amazing stay at the Studio Barn. Very cosy with the fire on, well equipped and beautiful scenery. Me mainly stayed indoors during the weekend as it was very cold, but we had a lovely time. The Indian down the road was very good
we are glad to have met you and to be able to enjoy time at your beautiful holiday home. "Studio Barn" is really arranged stunningly and very proper. We liked the magnificent outlook to the sea and th… More
Thankyou ever so much for your lovely lovely review. It was so nice meeting you all and we hope to welcome you again at anytime. We are so happy that you all had such a wonderful time.
“Lovely and relaxing”
Reviewed 30 Dec 2016
Stayed here for 3 nights after Christmas and had a lovely stay! Cottage was gorgeous, had everything we needed and was extremely clean. Lovely to get away and relax. Would definitely recommend.… More
That's great to hear, glad you had a wonderful stay, and thanks for leaving the cottage immaculate! Many thanks for booking with us, and Happy New Year! Katherine & Chris
“Beautiful home from home accommodation” Stayed for New Year with our children.. From the minute we arrived we fell in love with the lovely little place. The little personal touches inside, from the welcome card to candles, bubble bath etc was a bonus.
My wife and I stayed here over Christmas with out three small children. This place is simply magical.
Hidden at the end of a long bumpy lane it is miles from any other houses, perched on the edge … More
Thank you very much for writing such lovely things about the Stables. We are delighted you enjoyed your stay and look forward to welcoming you back in the future.
“Peaceful and in the middle of nowhere”
Reviewed 16 Mar 2015
Lovely place to escape to, feels like its in the middle of nowhere.
Lots of choices of Walks just down the Lane.… More
Thanks for your review. We are pleased you enjoyed your stay.
“Cosy and in a great location”
Reviewed 3 Mar 2015
The Stables is a really lovely place to stay in the Forest of Dean, with fantastic views. The accomodation itself had everything we needed and was a great place to relax in the evenings. The decor is … More
Thank you so much for your review. We are really pleased that you enjoyed your stay in the Stables.
“We said we would be back!” Lovely to stay in the Barn again and to experience it in the cold of Winter (coldest day of the year) as compared to the hottest day of Summer last year!
Martin & Gillie again, were the perfect hosts, around if needed,
“Excellent location for Bath Bristol and the surrounding region.”
Reviewed 30 Nov 2016
Stunning accommodation with massive swimming pool ideally located for exploring bothBristol and Bath. Longleat safari park and Chedar gorge well within reach.
A lovely friendly welcome from Martin an… More
We very much enjoyed hosting Roy and his family, who left the Barn in perfect condition. We thank them for this and would very much like to welcome them back.
“A perfect, peaceful and fun getaway!” From start to finish we enjoyed everything the barn and surroundings had to offer. We had a hot tub before breakfast every day and hit the pool every afternoon or evening. Regular donkey visits were the order of t
I spent a three nights at the Stables with my new wife following our wedding.
It's a beautiful location and the stables were very clean, well maintained, with all mod-cons (except wi-fi, which was … More
We do infact have a T-Mobile pay as you go dongle for guests to use with their lap-tops to access the internet. There is also a really good local pub that has a free wi-fi point. They welcome children, dogs, serve great food and also have a pretty beer garden. What more of an excuse do you need to sample the local beers and snuggle up to a roaring log fire while catching up on all those tedious emails!!
“A fantastic place to spend a holiday”
Reviewed 18 Aug 2012
The Stables is a fantastic holiday venue. Lisa & Mike were incredibly welcoming and friendly.
Where do I begin, watching the stars whilst sitting in the hot tub, watching George & Albert - the ado… More
“Fantastic holiday let”
Reviewed 10 Aug 2012
The stables is spotlessly clean & very nicely decorated. My young children loved the go-karts on the tennis court, the animals , hot tub & swimming pool. There is so much to do in th area. We can't… More
“Perfect Location” Nestled in the Welsh countryside there couldn't be a better location for a holiday if you love the great outdoors. With many walks in your doorstep a great place to stretch the legs. The owners have tried to think of everything. Part
“Spacious accommodation, spectacular location, what more do you need!”
Reviewed 8 Jul 2013
For my husbands 60th birthday we anxiously read the reviews worrying that it would meet our needs - from new born to 60! We were truly amazed at the attention to detail for the property. There was s… More
“Perfect accommodation in a great setting”
Reviewed 28 Apr 2013
I was looking for a venue for a slightly older stag weekend, it needed to sleep 21 of us in comfort, a very large and capable kitchen dining room, easy parking for a number of cars and a layout that d… More
Reviewed 3 Nov 2012
We went here as a large group of friends to celebrate someone's birthday.there was plenty of space for everyone (there was 30 of us) and the cooking facilities were more than adequate.the gym and saun… More
“Excellent accommodation throughout” We are a party of 14 friends who have exacting standards so to get the thumbs up from everyone is impressive and The Willows managed it. Lovely en suite rooms,comfortable communal seating and dining areas, in fact t