Although we love to stay at hotels (especially The Four Seasons), we have also rented houses, villas or apartments for some of our vacations ever since we were in our twenties. Our first experience was a farmhouse rental just outside of Prague. My husband and I were coming from London, and 3 of our friends came from the US. It was a wonderful experience, there was plenty of room for the 5 of us and we used it as our base as we explored as far away as Vienna. For those of you that don't want to give up room service we have also stayed in houses on hotel properties and that is the best of both worlds, lots of space, and all the creature comforts of a hotel.
Our most recent experience was last summer when we rented a 17th century thatched cottage in a small village in England. We all agreed that it was our favorite trip there ever. Partly because we just had so much space to roam around in during our free time! We love each other but now that the children are 16 and 13 we all appreciate some quiet time to ourselves. There were plenty of country walks to be taken, a small summer house hidden away at the bottom of the garden to explore, plus the children each had their own room to escape to. We stayed in Wiltshire and it was a great location for day trips to Devon/Cornwall, Bath, Oxford, London, Portsmouth and Stonehenge.
We used Hideaways to book our cottage. Highlights of our trip were afternoon tea at Fortnum and Mason, visiting HMS Victory in Portmouth, Oxford university tour (Harry Potter fans keep your eyes open), tickets to see Les Miserables in London, a walking tour of Bath and many, many beautiful country pubs.
Travel Tip : If you have an early morning flight then consider spending your last night at an airport hotel.
Do you have any travel tips?