What’s Westholme Holiday Cottage like?
This rural two-bedroom cottage is located in Thwaite, Upper Swaledale – one of the most picturesque and northerly parts of the Yorkshire Dales. The cottage, which sleeps four, is modern yet packed full of character and has a lovely open fire. The Pennine Way also runs right through the village and there are some great country pubs within a few miles’ drive.
How dog-friendly is Westholme Holiday Cottage?
It’s fantastic. Dogs will have a welcome pack waiting for them in the cottage complete with bowls, treats, a blanket, poo bags and some pupcakes. There’s also a doggy first aid kit. Throws are provided for the sofas and owners Leigh and Mike are also happy for dogs to sleep on the beds, as long as their paws aren’t wet or muddy. There is no outdoor space at Westholme but lots of grassy areas nearby and, of course, some lovely walks. Up to three dogs are welcome to stay free of charge.
Tell me more about Westholme Holiday Cottage
You enter the end-terrace cottage through the large porch, which has plenty of space to hang coats, dog leads and collars. A steep stairway divides the downstairs area in two. On the left, you’ll find the country-style kitchen with the toilet tucked away discreetly at the back. And on the right, you’ll find the homely lounge, complete with wooden flooring, a beamed ceiling, open fire, funky red sofas and a flatscreen TV. As a Crazy Dog Lady, I also appreciated all the little doggy touches, such as dog coasters and dog prints on the wall.
Westholme’s two bedrooms are on the first-floor of the cottage, with one either side of the staircase. Both have been decorated in neutral shades, making them wonderfully light and airy. Wooden floors also give them a warm and cosy feel and there is plenty of storage. The master bedroom has a vaulted ceiling and super-comfy sleigh bed, and you’ll find the dinky shower room – which is a bit dated but perfectly fine – just off it.
You certainly won’t be bored on rainy days, as there are a whole host of board games, books and DVDs to keep guests of all ages entertained. There are lots of leaflets for local attractions too, and enough wood and kindling for at least one fire. Parking for one car is available right outside the front door. Don’t be surprised if you spot a few sheep wandering around, either!
What’s the food like at Westholme Holiday Cottage?
This is a self-catering cottage so you’ll need to bring your own, but a fantastic welcome pack contains all the basics – and more. Ours included lots of lovely goodies including tea, coffee, milk, some locally-produced crisps, biscuits, cupcakes and a bottle of wine. Because of the rural location, I would advise bringing food with you when you arrive but supermarkets such as Tesco do deliver. We were surprised to see one van dropping off food to the neighbours at 9pm one evening!
The galley kitchen, although compact, is very well-equipped and has everything you need to cook a decent meal. But if you’d rather eat out, there are some great options nearby. The Kearton Country Hotel, just over the road from Westholme, has a lovely tea room and bar but dogs are only allowed outside. The hotel also closes out of season but pets are welcome all year round at The Farmers Arms, a mile away in Muker. The Muker Village Store & Teashop is also dog-friendly. And you can’t visit the area without popping in to the historic Tan Hill Inn – the highest pub in Britain. The food can be a bit hit and miss, but it’s worth a visit for the location alone.
Are there resident dogs at Westholme Holiday Cottage?
No, but the owners are real dog lovers and have a rescue lurcher called Murphy.
Where are the best walks near Westholme Holiday Cottage?
If the weather is on your side, the circular walk between Thwaite and Muker makes the most of the beautiful local scenery. The three-mile route passes through fields, meadows and trickling streams and takes approximately 90 minutes. You are likely to encounter sheep and cows as you walk so be sure to keep your dog on a lead and under control at all times. Click here to read the route put together by Muker pub, The Farmers Arms.
The Pennine Way – one of the UK’s most famous long-distance walking routes – also passes right through Thwaite. The trail runs for 268 miles, from Edale in Derbyshire to Kirk Yetholm in Scotland, and is hugely popular with hikers. If you’re feeling bold, you can walk up to Tan Hill Inn, which is 526m above sea level. The seven-mile walk from Thwaite takes around four hours. Check out the route here.
You can pick up the Coast to Coast footpath in nearby Keld, too. The trail, which runs all the way across the country from St Bees in Cumbria to Robin Hood’s Bay in North Yorkshire, connects a network of paths put together by fellwalker and guidebook author, Alfred Wainwright. A number of other walks through the Swaledale valley have been compiled by local campsite, Usha Gap. Click here to see their recommended routes.
What Ernie and Stan loved about Westholme Holiday Cottage
The doggy welcome pack, the open fire, having so many great walks on the doorstep
What I loved about Westholme Holiday Cottage
The quiet location, the relaxed vibe, all the thoughtful little touches
How to book Westholme Holiday Cottage
Three-night breaks start from £210. For more information or to book, call 07486 594499 or visit the Westholme Holiday Cottage page on Facebook.