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Twenty Out of the Ordinary Holiday Experiences for 2020

Host Writer
Published 17/01/2020 Twenty Out of the Ordinary Holiday Experiences for 2020


We all love a break in a brand-new place - but when it comes to the local activities, there are times when doing some shopping, going for a bracing walk, then ending up in the pub just doesn't cut it.

So, if you're looking for a stay that's imbued with a little more ‘wow-factor', we've got just the thing. It's hard to top a luxury cabin stay surrounded by cared-for lions, for example! Or how about resting your heads in a windowless wooden box, instead?

Filled with stays that put the quirk into quirky, our Out of the Ordinary selection is packed with experiences that are guaranteed to leave you open-mouthed!

Image: Lion Lodge | Port Lympne, Kent
Author: Nina Jervis @NinaWrites

Trafalgar Square

Trafalgar Square

There's nothing quite as iconic as a red London bus, and now you can stay in one at Trafalgar Square!  This fantastic piece of 1960s history offers unique accommodation for two, complete with luxurious décor, quirky original features, and even a hot tub. Based at the South Causey Inn - an independent hotel in County Durham's spectacular Beamish Valley - Trafalgar Square…

Champing™ Aldwincle

Champing™ Aldwincle

Snuggle down inside the original Champing™ church - All Saints in Aldwincle, a beautiful ancient space in Northamptonshire. First there was camping, then there was glamping, and now, there's ChampingTM. Church camping is revolutionising the traditional camping break, giving you exclusive use of some of the UK's greatest listed buildings for the most unforgettable sleepover of your…

Cockpit Cottage

Cockpit Cottage

Experience tropical luxury at Cockpit Cottage, in the heart of the Costa Rican jungle...where it's first class all the way! Creatively converted from the spacious cockpit of a McDonnell Douglas MD-80 plane, this smoothly streamlined cottage for two couldn't be better placed for a tropical break with fresh ocean scenery - think all the very best sights from your plane window, without any clouds…

Harbour Crane

Harbour Crane

Experience an out-of-this-world hideaway just moments from (and high above) the heart of historic Harlingen! Is it a spaceship? Is it a spider? Is it a sea creature emerging from the Wadden Sea? No, it's the Harbour Crane! The moment you set eyes on the Harbour Crane, you'll quickly see how it earned its many nicknames. ‘The Spider', ‘Blue Head' and ‘Long William' just about sum up…

Canopy Tower

Canopy Tower

Get up close and personal with the natural world, from the comfort of a treetop bedroom in Panamá's tropical paradise. Originally built in 1965, the Canopy Tower once helped defend the Panamá Canal. Today, it serves as a stunning observation point and as restful accommodation in the heart of Soberanía National Park, surrounded by some of the very best birdwatching spots in the area. You…

SWEETS hotel

SWEETS hotel

Take your pick from one of the unique bridge house suites, beautifully scattered along the canals of Amsterdam.  Featured in the New York Times Magazine and Monocle Magazine, Amsterdam's SWEETS hotel is an innovative collection of 28 bridge houses scattered throughout the city, all accommodating a maximum of two guests.  Former bridge keeper's houses are set along the city's famous…

Hôtel de Glace

Hôtel de Glace

Fall willingly under the magical spell of a hotel constructed from ice and snow, in an unforgettable North American stay. Beautifully located just 20 minutes away from Québec City, the artfully glistening Hôtel de Glace is newly constructed each year from fresh ice and snow. This stunning hotel has been the captivating setting for many television and film projects, such as Disney's launch…

Bulworthy Eco Cabin

Bulworthy Eco Cabin

Learn unique skills and relax in a lovingly handcrafted off-grid cabin, secluded in its own Devon woodland glade. You'll find the award-winning Bulworthy Project, a sustainable woodland enterprise and recent Gold Award recepient by Green Tourism, set within 12.5 refreshing acres of Rackenford woodland - on the crest of a hill known as Bulworthy Knap, to be precise! Friendly owners Anna and…

Zero Box Lodge

Zero Box Lodge

Experience Porto from a unique, groundbreaking concept and design-led lodge that thinks outside the box...while you sleep cosily inside it! Trust us...you won't have stayed anywhere like Zero Box Lodge before. A perfect base for exploring the thriving coastal city of Porto, the hotel is a shrine to Portuguese art and culture, with bedrooms that are simple, windowless, industrial-style…

Boatel

Boatel

An award-winning, seriously quirky ‘bed in a boat' with some spectacular mountain views and lashings of charm.A nation of shed lovers, apparently a whopping 67 per cent of Brits "would prefer to stay in a shed over a cottage, caravan or tent" when it comes to taking a staycation. If you're one of them, look no further than the 2013 ‘Shed of the Year', with its attached 'Boatel'.Comprising…

Lion Lodge

Lion Lodge

A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to become part of the pride, in a luxury lodge set within the lions' natural habitat.Found in Hythe, on Kent's south coast, the award-winning Port Lympne Hotel and Reserve is home to over 90 different rare and endangered species of over 700 animals, in an authentic and awe-inspiring setting.Far from a conventional zoo, you can take a safari ride through the…

Hobbit Hideaway

Hobbit Hideaway

A unique eco home-from-home, crafted naturally with love, and peacefully nestled at the foot of a striking Speyside mountain.Combining the ‘wow-factor' elements of an architect-designed masterpiece with the breathable beauty of nature, Hobbit Hideaway is the perfect escape from everyday life. You need not take our word for it, as it has also been awarded Best Green Home in the European Holiday…

Tiny Tiki Retro Hideaway

Tiny Tiki Retro Hideaway

The ultimate in luxury, get-away-from-it-all glamping retreats, secluded amongst the sandstone cliffs of California.You'll find just about everything you could ever wish for at the luxurious, grown-up Tiny Tiki Retro Hideaway glampsite.A wide open sky, with 360-degree mountain, city, and valley views? Check. Blissful seclusion, far above the city lights?  Check. Immaculate vintage…

Camp Baboon

Camp Baboon

Sleep under the stars and meet a host of exotic animals, in an exclusive Bristol camp that promises unforgettable adventure.You'll find Camp Baboon within Wild Place Project, which was established by the British Zoological Society to protect exotic and endangered animals. Surrounded by ancient woodland, Wild Place Project helps visitors immerse themselves in the wonders of nature, so you'll…

AirShip 1

AirShip 1

An eco-friendly architect-designed pod, rich in comfort and secluded in West Sussex woodland for an out-of-this-world escape.AirShip 1 is a creatively-designed, contemporary pod for up to three guests. Secluded in magical West Sussex woodland, it's the perfect excuse to grab two of your best friends (or just your loved one, if you prefer) and make your escape from hectic daily life.You'll begin by…

Apollo 11

Apollo 11

Gaze at the ultra-dark New Zealand night sky in all its star-studded glory, from a handcrafted ‘spaceship' with mountain views.Always wanted to embark on a space mission, but were put off by the heavy space suits and cumbersome oxygen tanks (plus, the not-so-trivial issue of leaving the Earth to do it)?With a stay aboard Apollo 11, a hand-crafted ‘spaceship' set close to Mount Cook in Pukaki,…

Quetzalcoatl's Nest

Quetzalcoatl's Nest

A fantastical, fairytale stay in an architect-created sculpture garden, amidst the rugged landscape of the Valley of Mexico.Inspired by an Aztec serpent god, Quetzalcoatl's Nest is an awe-inspiring sculpture garden, created by the acclaimed Mexican architect, Javier Senosiain.With the aim of creating an organic space that would respect the rugged natural environment of Naucalpan de Juárez, just…

Red Kite Conker

Red Kite Conker

Unplug from daily life and unleash your creativity, in a designer off-grid glamping pod, gently nestled in a remote Welsh valley.Set on a vast, eighty-acre conservation private estate in mid-Wales, the gleaming Conker is an off-grid, state-of-the-art glamping pod that's been expertly engineered for comfort.Positioned high on a grassy hill in its own enviable setting, you can luxuriate in the…

Melbury Vale Winery Glamping Barrel Pods

Melbury Vale Winery Glamping Barrel Pods

Lovers of the grape rejoice, in a cosy hillside haven on the soothing grounds of a Dorset vineyard.There are plenty of good reasons to visit Melbury Vale Winery.  Set within 28 gentle acres of rolling countryside in Dorset's beautiful Stirkel Valley, you'll receive an immediately warm welcome from the friendly family owners.  Not only that, the winery itself is a soothing sight to…

Kalle's Inn Glasshouses

Kalle's Inn Glasshouses

Drift off under the stars (and possibly the Northern Lights!) from the unique comfort of a heated, prism-shaped Finnish glasshouse.Offering a truly magnificent view over the Gulf of Bothnia - the nature-steeped, UNESCO World Heritage archipelago of Kvarken, to be exact - a stay at Kalle's Inn Glasshouses is a magical, other-wordly experience that promises never to be forgotten.There are eight…

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A hand-picked directory featuring the most unusual and exciting holiday accommodation in the UK and worldwide.

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