The scenery is indeed gorgeous at Belvoir Castle, whose name translates as ‘beautiful view’. Four towering castles have stood on this Leicestershire spot: from the solid keep built by William the Conqueror’s invading army to the present fairytale fortress. Come for tours of heirloom-filled rooms, lavish afternoon teas and equestrian events in the grounds. Belvoir stood in for Windsor Castle in the Netflix series The Crown and there are some appropriately regal places to stay nearby, bookable with Culture Trip.
Set within 475 acres (192ha) of Lincolnshire parkland, this upmarket golf resort feels like a modern reinterpretation of an English country house. The building looks out across rolling lawns and two PGA-approved golf courses; there’s a spa and health club, and stylish, subtle rooms have an early mid-century feel. It’s worth upgrading to a superior room for fairway views or woodland scenery and lots of wooden furniture. For more stately home adventures, Belton House, a National Trust property, sits just across the A607.
The village has almost absorbed Allington Manor, but enough grounds surround this handsome, double-gabled Jacobean mansion to maintain an air of exclusivity and seclusion. The oldest parts of the house date back to 1450, and an ancient dog-leg staircase sweeps guests upstairs to rooms full of period details like William Morris wallpaper, roll-top tubs and open fireplaces. Even the servants’ rooms under the eaves have been reborn as stylish bedrooms, in keeping with the building’s rich history.
Blink and you’d miss the village of Knipton, which is just how locals like it. On the edge of the village, the substantial, brick-built Manners Arms is a genteel country retreat, with a heart-warming menu of traditional British cuisine, served in an attractively updated, wood-floored dining room. Atmospheric, country-style rooms upstairs await your arrival with lots of old furniture and period details. Another plus: Belvoir Castle is minutes away, just 2mi (3km) to the north.
The stone-fronted Olive Branch inn Clipsham has had a long working life, first as cottages for local farm workers then as a working man’s pub, before being reinvented as a genial gastropub. That classic country feel is paired with stylish rooms decorated in playful colour schemes – think tones of apple, chocolate and aubergine – in adjacent Beech House. It’s friendly, with a provincial feel; many ingredients for breakfast, lunch and dinner are grown in the paddock, or sourced from local dairies and farms.
Stapleford Park is everything you could ask for from an English country house. Forested grounds sprawl for miles around this enormous pile, which has its own chapel, servants quarters, stables and formal gardens. Rooms are large and lavish, with antique furniture and ornaments that recall the house’s rich history, modernised with chic designer fabrics that drape from ceiling to floor. Kids stay and eat free with parents, and there are miles of walking paths and even a miniature railway in the grounds.
No, we don’t mean that Chequers. You probably won’t spot the prime minister in this appealing country pub, but you will find hearty meals served under time-worn beams beside an open fire, and four attractive ensuite rooms with king-size beds in the attached stable block. The welcome is warm, the atmosphere informal, and the menu includes Grasmere Farm pork, Derbyshire fillet steaks and tasty tabbouleh.
The two rooms at the back of Higgins Cottage are pale-hued and pretty, with freestanding tubs, wooden floors, bare beams and brickwork, and beds topped by lush White Company linen and big plump pillows. It’s a gentle escape, opening onto a private garden, in the tiny, tidy village of Denton, a few easy miles from Belvoir Castle. Breakfast is served in a breakfast room attached to the main cottage, or delivered to your room in a basket hamper.
Looking for somewhere different nearby? Book into one of the best hotels near the University of Nottingham, or opt instead for a top budget-friendly stay in the city. Inspire your itinerary with the top things to see and do in Nottingham; take a trip to the nearby Peak District National Park. Don’t miss the best brunch spots in the city.
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Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.