The river Tees flows smoothly past the garden, Hebridean sheep wander the fields and chickens scurry in the lane. It’s peaceful at this light and sunny 300-year-old cobbler’s cottage next door to the welcoming owners house (they’ll take a couple of overflow guests too if you need.)
Bring bikes to follow National Cycle Route 165, or boots for some of the 92 miles of glorious Teesdale Way (you may spot a kingfisher or otter if you’re lucky). Play tennis year-round on the court in the walled garden, ask the Peats about fishing.
Walk to the pub or get in the car and visit Barnard Castle for restaurants, quirky shops and the wonderful Bowes Museum. Return to a wood-burning stove and plenty of books in the sitting room – or stay outdoors for stargazing on clear nights.