From log cabins, lighthouses and helicopters - the best hotel alternatives for a memorable winter getaway

Team Hoo
1st December 2021

With international travel once again thrown into doubt due to Covid, we decided to look at the cost of an alternative staycation in some of the nation’s most unusual accommodation.

It's that time of year again when lots of people start thinking about taking a wintery weekend break ahead of the busy Christmas period, or perhaps plan for a post-Christmas escape in January as a gift to a loved one. But if a regular hotel feels a bit ordinary, there are plenty of interesting options available.

hoo looked at the average daily room rate of 11 alternatives to hotels, from lighthouses to windmills and even former helicopters. However, these memorable locations will cost you. With an average daily room rate of £169, they come in 132% more than the average cost of a UK hotel.  

A firm festive favourite is a log cabin and at £107 per night, the good news is that they are one of the more affordable alternatives analysed by hoo. In fact, only repurposed train carriages (£85) and helicopters (£70) come in cheaper than traditional accommodation. 

Opting for a stay in a windmill is the next most affordable, costing £123 on average. Cottage stays (£124), chapels or churches (£145), treehouses (£154) and boats (£186) all come in at less than £200 per night on average. 

For the best coastal views available,y staying in a lighthouse will set you back £211 per night, while a converted barn break comes in at an average of £215. 

However, the most expensive of all is a stay in a castle. On average, a weekend of pretending to be a royal will cost you a chunky £440 per night. 

Hotel Alternatives For UK Winter Staycation

hoo Co-founder, Adrian Murdock, commented:

“Sometimes, a quirky alternative can bring a whole new dimension to a short staycation. Given the fact we’ve largely settled for domestic breaks since the outbreak of Covid, we might be yearning for something a little different. 

An out-of-the-ordinary stay can also make for a great Christmas gift. Not only is the recipient sure to love it, but you can also sleep easy in the knowledge that you’re helping boost a UK travel and tourism industry that continues to suffer during the pandemic.

If you’re looking for a pre-Christmas getaway, what could be better than a few nights in a log cabin? Costing little more than £100 per night, a cabin or lodge provides a really intimate and cosy alternative to a hotel room.”

(Data sourced from, and

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