Make your getaway go with a swing: The best mini-breaks for golfers and families revealed
Every week our Holiday Hero Neil Simpson takes an in-depth look at a brilliant holiday idea, doing all the legwork so you don’t have to. This week: Mini-breaks for golfers and families.
Golf courses are perfect for social distancing, but it’s not just golfers who can have a perfect holiday by staying near the fairway.
The best golfing hotels also offer a host of activities for the whole family. Lincolnshire ticks holiday boxes in and around its many golf courses.
Tee time: The luxurious Petwood Hotel is in the town of Woodhall Spa in Lincolnshire, which is home to the National Golf Centre
The town of Woodhall Spa hosts the National Golf Centre with facilities open to all. Play at the centre’s Hotchkin or Bracken courses, then practise in the 18-bay driving range, on the four-acre short course or the grass tee areas.
Then head inside to the swing-analysis room and indoor putting area. Keep non-players happy by staying in luxury at nearby Petwood Hotel. With half-timbered walls and rich red chimneys, it offers classic, country-house style. Award-winning gardens attract visitors all year.
History buffs should head to the hotel’s Squadron Bar – it was the Officers’ Mess for the 617 ‘Dambusters’ Squadron in the Second World War. Or you can laugh the night away at the Only Fools Cushty Dining Experience, and there are plenty of other events. Stays cost from £99 a night (petwood.co.uk).
Over at West Runton on the North Norfolk coast, the original nine-hole links course was designed in 1903 by five-times Open champion J. H. Taylor. Today it’s a bracing place to play, combined with a stay at the Links Country Park Hotel.
A stack of afternoon treats served up at the Petwood Hotel
The club’s professional is there for lessons and you’re only a short drive from the Royal Cromer, Sheringham and other courses.
Non-golfers can enjoy the hotel’s indoor pool, gym and tennis court plus days out at nearby seal sanctuaries, castles, cathedrals and heritage train journeys.
There are family and dog-friendly rooms and it has plenty of deals on offer. Stays from £120 a night (links-hotel.co.uk).
Golfers can tee off on two top quality courses as part of a stay at Rudding Park hotel in Harrogate, North Yorkshire, while families can enjoy a film in a cinema room, pampering in a sleek spa (a nod to Harrogate’s Victorian spa town heritage) or an evening star-gazing in 300 acres of private grounds.
The food is award-winning with many ingredients grown in its kitchen garden. A set of ‘great escape’ packages are on offer from £330 a night (ruddingpark.co.uk).
The Links Country Park Hotel in North Norfolk has a golf course on the doorstep and it is a short drive from a number of other courses including Sheringham, pictured above
Sporty families will love the Esplanade Hotel in Newquay, Cornwall. Staff can arrange golf at the local course or nearby at Perranporth or St Austell.
In the spring, newly refurbished family rooms will give space to spread out and many have great views across Fistral Beach to the sea.
As well as the pool and kids’ club in the hotel, there are surf schools in town for warmer days plus all the other attractions of Cornwall. From £120 a night (esplanadehotelnewquay.co.uk).
On the South Coast you can play at five different courses as part of a city break at the Hilton Bournemouth. Book through yourgolftravel.com and, depending on the season, you can tee off at Ferndown, where Peter Alliss learned to play, Remedy Oak, amid ancient forests, as well as Broadstone, Isle of Purbeck and Barton-on-Sea golf clubs.
Back in Bournemouth, there’s a crazy golf centre opposite the modern hotel as well as a shopping centre and cinema. Drink in the ‘sky bar’ looking out over city and sea, or visit the hotel gym or indoor pool when open. From £80 a night (hilton.com).