Where the Sawday’s team are travelling in spring 2023 

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Ruth Richardson

Sawday's Expert

5 min read

As champions of slow and sustainable travel, we are always looking out for lesser-known places to explore or travel experiences that will give us a deeper understanding of a familiar place. We asked our experts about their upcoming travel plans, and the top tips they’ve picked up from their time on the road.

In the UK

Star spotting goes stratospheric – Emily Enright, Head of PR

Dark Sky Reserves and Dark Sky Tourism have been gaining popularity around the UK and I fancy taking a trip to Exmoor to do some star spotting. The Dark Sky festival officially takes place in the autumn, but I’ll be heading there in the spring to get a head start.   

I’ll be staying at Exmoor Forest Inn, Somerset: Set near the highest point of Exmoor National Park, this lovely pub has been recently refurbished with style. There’s a large garden with picnic blankets provided for nights stargazing.   

View all our places to stay in Exmoor >

Head to Herefordshire – Gwen Vonthron, UK expert

Away from the beaten track, Herefordshire is a lesser-known area but already proving to be one of 2023’s most popular staycation destinations – so far in 2023 it is our second most-booked area on our sister site Canopy & Stars (second only to perennial favourite Devon).  

I’ve been inspired by our Sawday’s Slow Guide to Herefordshire and will be booking a stay at The Bridge House – somewhere between a stylish small hotel and an intimate B&B, close to local restaurants for tasting the best of the county’s produce.    

View all our places to stay in Herefordshire >

In France

Take the train – Agnès Perkin, France expert

Taking the train in France doesn’t need to mean big city hubs; I’m looking forward to making the most of smaller routes this spring to find some rest and relaxation away from the crowds. I’ll be heading to Fontainebleau – just an hour outside of Paris, for good food, history and natural settings. Château de Bourron is close to Montigny-sur-Loing station, and I like that we can hire bikes to head out for a day exploring the forest.  

View all our places to stay close to Fontainebleau >

Look North – Nicky deBouille, France expert

2023 marks the 1000th anniversary of the Mont Saint Michel, so I’ll be heading to the east coast of Normandy – largely undiscovered by tourists who tend to flock to the west coast of the Cotentin peninsula. I’m looking forward to wide-sweeping beaches, like the glorious sands at Montmartin-sur-Mer and colourful beach huts at Gouville-sur-Mer. I’ll be bringing the whole gang and staying at La Brocanterie, a self-catering house with plenty of space for everyone to spread out.  

View all our places to stay in Normandy >

In Italy

Agriturismo: Italy’s slow travel success story – Nicole Franchini, Italy expert

There are few better ways to explore the country than Italy’s agriturismi; a unique type of accommodation built on tradition-sustaining elements like organic food products, off-beaten-track locations, eco-sustainable practices, authentic, traditional lifestyles and passionate hosts. Inspiration is slowly making it’s way to UK accommodation (through the likes of Glebe House in Devon), so it feels like the perfect time to visit the real deal. I’ll be going back to Masseria Il Frantoio Agriturismo in Puglia, where I have fond memories of indulging in a Puglian Easter feast. 

View all our agriturismi >

Love for Lombardy – Ruth Richardson, Marketing Executive

I love a city break, so I’ll be visiting the neighbouring cities of Bergamo and Brescia in Italy’s Lombardy region. They have been named Italy’s City of Culture for 2023, and there are five UNESCO World Heritage sites to explore, as well as art galleries and museums – so I know there will be plenty to keep us busy. After a day’s exploring, I fancy staying at The Garden House, just outside of Brescia– the private pool looks to be just the ticket after a busy day of culture.  

View all our places to stay in Lombardy >

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Ruth Richardson

Sawday's Expert

Ruth loves a good story. Following a decade living in London and working in publishing, her ears are always pricked for a spicy plot twist or unforgettable character. She delights in meeting hosts and discovering the history that brought saffron to her spaghetti, the hiking detours that will lead to temple ruins, and why someone cares so passionately about their special corner of the world. She loves that as a marketer for Sawday’s she can share these stories with others too.
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