Main image: © Harbour Hotel & Spa, Sidmouth, East Devon
There’s nothing quite like an indulgent afternoon tea whilst on a staycation, whether you are on a romantic getaway or a group family holiday. It’s an experience, a chance to treat friends and family with lots of little delights, and it’ll make you feel very special.
The perfect afternoon tea has a wonderful selection of textures and flavours, a good balance between sweet and savoury - and a scone or two on the side (non negotiable)!
With this in mind, and to celebrate Afternoon Tea Week on 9-15 August 2021, we’ve rounded up 10 amazing places to try afternoon tea on your next Staycation Holiday.
1 Harbour Hotel & Spa, Sidmouth, East Devon
© Sidmouth Harbour Hotel & Spa
Sidmouth Harbour Hotel & Spa is a picture perfect seaside retreat and its famous afternoon teas can be enjoyed in the Upper Deck Restaurant with new alfresco dining terrace soaking up fantastic views across Lyme Bay and the red cliffs of Sidmouth An indulgent and tasty treat, the afternoon tea features four delicious varieties of sandwich, a selection of delicate cakes and pastries, finished with irresistibly tempting warm scones with jam and clotted cream - all freshly made. It’s the perfect accompaniment to a flute of fizz if you fancy pushing the boat out.
Find out more: The Westcliff, Manor Road, Sidmouth EX10 8RU; www.harbourhotels.co.uk/sidmouth
Where to stay nearby: Our East Devon cottages are within a 14-30 minute drive.
2 Prested Hall, Colchester, Essex
© Prested Hall
Prested Hall is a beautiful 15th century manor house in Feering. Perched next to a lake in 75 acres, it’s the perfect location for an afternoon tea and you can sit in one of the charming reception rooms, while in warmer weather you can be served on the decking overlooking the moat. The menu of freshly prepared finger sandwiches, scones, and gorgeous miniature cakes changes according to the season and costs £21 per person, £28 with a glass of champagne. They offer a children’s portion at a £10, making it ideal for families. They also now offer a savoury Gentleman’s tea option too.
Find out more: Prested Hall Chase, Feering, Colchester CO5 9EE; prested.co.uk
Where to stay nearby: Our five luxury lodges at Wakes Colne are a 15 minute drive away.
3 Chatsworth House, Derbyshire
© Chatsworth House Trust by Simon Broadhead
There’s a luxurious feel to the afternoon tea at this magnificent estate and, if it’s sunny, you can sit inside the outside in the courtyard. The selection of savouries such as beetroot cured Scottish loch salmon or sweet treats such as pistachio, pink grapefruit and rose financier and white chocolate and mango tart, make this a perfect addition to a day at Chatsworth or for a special occasion. Tuck into Afternoon Tea for £37.50 or indulge with a glass of Laurent-Perrier Cuvée Rosé along with your afternoon tea for £50.
Find out more: Chatsworth, Bakewell DE45 1PP; www.chatsworth.org
Where to stay nearby: Just 20 minutes’ drive from our Bakewell holiday cottages.
4 Polurrian on the Lizard, Cornwall
© Polurrian on the Lizard
Polurrian on The Lizard proudly won the Afternoon Tea of the Year Awards in 2019! The boutique hotel’s truly Cornish afternoon teas comprise a selection of sweet and savoury treats focusing on local ingredients and flavours, served with a pot of Cornish Smugglers Brew Tea. For extra luxury, add a chilled glass of Cornish Prosecco or refreshing Camel Valley Brut, a Cornish sparkling wine. Perched on the cliffs of the Lizard Peninsula on the edge of Mullion, afternoon tea can be enjoyed in the relaxed restaurant or on the sun terrace on warmer days.
Find out more: Polurrian Road, Mullion TR12 7EN; www.polurrianhotel.com
Where to stay nearby: Less than 10 minutes from our five Bonython holiday cottages set in the tranquillity and seclusion of the magnificent Bonython Estate Gardens.
5 Biddy’s Tearoom, Aylsham, Norfolk
© Biddy's Tea Room
Biddy’s is an independent Victorian-inspired tea room, dreamed up in 2010 by owner Charlie Buchan and named after her dog Biddy. Everything is homemade in large portions in its Aylsham bakery which also features a courtyard for sunny days. Biddy's specialises in creating tailored afternoon teas made by choosing your own sandwiches, cakes, scones and any of the wide variety of loose leaf teas on offer. Choose from the Afternoon Tea and Halfternoon Tea for one or two, served between noon and 4pm Tuesday to Saturday. Please use the online form to book.
Find out more: 16 Market Place, Aylsham NR11 6EH (also 15 Lower Goat Lane, Norwich NR2 1EL); www.biddystearoom.com
Where to stay nearby: Biddy's is just 7-10 minutes drive from our holiday cottages near Aylsham.
6 The Old Village Bakery, Melmerby, Cumbria
© The Old Village Bakery
Discover this popular Melmerby tea room offering an irresistible Afternoon Tea drop off service exclusively for guests staying in our holiday cottages nearby. Orders need to be placed at least 24 hours in advance and the tea consists of a savoury selection of open sandwiches, sweet and savoury scones, butter, jam and cream, a selection of mouthwatering cakes and a choice of fruit teas or cafetiere. Open daily, it also serves delicious breakfasts, lunches, coffees, homemade bread and cakes and has a lovely ladies fashion, interior and gift shop upstairs.
Find out more: Melmerby, Penrith CA10 1HE; f: @TheOldVillageBakeryMelmerby
Where to stay nearby: The bakery will provide pre-booked drop off meals and pre-order breads for any guests staying at our six properties on the Melmerby Hall Estate and Todd Hills Farm, only a short walk away.
7 De Vere Cotswold Water Park, Cotswolds
© De Vere
You can delight in a cream tea or sip a delicate speciality blend in virtually every town and village in the Cotswolds. For an afternoon tea in idyllic surroundings, why not head to De Vere Cotswold Waterpark Hotel where you can indulge in a delicious Afternoon Tea while enjoying picturesque lake views. Afternoon Tea is served in the Brasserie with a scrumptious selection of freshly-prepared finger sandwiches, cakes and scones, alongside a glass of bubbly if you fancy. Priced from £19.95 per person.
Find out more: Lake 6, Spine Road East, South Cerney, GL7 5FP; devere.co.uk
Where to stay nearby: Our Cotswold Water Park Lodges are within a 5 to 10 minute walk away.
8 The Atlantic Hotel, Newquay, Cornwall
© Atlantic Hotel Newquay
Served on an elegant three tier stand, enjoy a classic selection of freshly cut sandwiches using locally sourced produce, homemade crumbly scones served with Cornish clotted cream and preserves along with a selection of delicious miniature cakes and pastries. Choose to eat on the sun-drenched sea view terrace, with panoramic views across the North Cornish coast, the opulent Silks Bistro and Champagne Bar or Café Atlantica. Priced at £16.00 per head, or a tad extra if you fancy a glass of Champagne to wash it all down with!
Find out more: Dane Road, Newquay TR7 1EN; atlantichotelnewquay.co.uk
Where to stay nearby: Our ten Glamping Yurts four miles away and Rosevean House in St Agnes are ideal for discovering this tempting tea room AND exploring Newquay.
9 The Polly Tea Rooms, Marlborough, Wilts
© The Polly Tearooms
Opened in 1912 by one of the original suffragettes, The Polly Tea Rooms have been a favourite of many, including Sir John Betjeman on his annual visit to Cornwall. One can still enjoy the same blueberry muffins as those Kate Middleton looked forward to every Wednesday afternoon with her friends at Marlborough College. The fine cakes are handmade using traditional skills without machines. Get stuck into Polly’s luxury afternoon tea, ranked 15th in The Sunday Telegraph's top 30 places in the UK for afternoon tea from £21 per person.
Find out more: 27 High St, Marlborough SN8 1LW; thepollytearooms.co.uk
Where to stay nearby: Discover these tempting tea rooms during a stay at Stable Cottage, a 15 minute drive from Marlborough.
10 The Dwelling House, Fowey, Cornwall
© The Dwelling House
With eclectic décor, wonderful service and fantastic food, The Dwelling House is a little slice of bygone Britain. Perfect for afternoon tea, the amazing array of cakes, teacakes and scones are freshly cooked in the homely kitchen’s Rayburn and served on vintage crockery in the quirky tearooms. There is a small, walled courtyard where guests can sit, soak up the sun and breathe in the fresh sea air on those warmer days.
Find out more: 6 Fore Street, Fowey PL23 1AQ; 01726 833 662
Where to stay nearby: Just 30 minutes’ drive from our farm cottages near Liskeard.