Six of the best remote cabin breaks in the UK

Whether hiding in a secluded woodland or perched among rolling hills, these low-key cabins combine thoughtful design with outstanding natural landscapes for a chance to disconnect from the world — going wild has never looked so good.

Unyoked's Akash cabin in the Black Mountains, Wales. 

Photograph by Unyoked
By Josephine Price
Published 26 Feb 2023, 11:00 GMT

Scandinavian countries and mountain communities worldwide have long adopted the humble cabin as a way of providing an antidote to busy lives in urban environments. The concept is simple: a wooden cabin, with sleek yet stripped-back interiors often featuring big windows, which allow the natural surroundings to take centre stage. And their popularity has boomed in the UK in recent years. The UK’s cabin scene has become a place for architects to run wild with their creative visions and for travellers to get lost in some of the UK’s wildest natural landscapes, with the likes of Airbnb, Canopy & Stars and numerous cottage rental companies now dedicating significant sections of their inventories to these rustic rural escapes. 

Getting out in nature while the days are colder and shorter is a brilliant way to invest in your own mental health during winter and spring, while the attractions of summer and autumn are more obvious. Exploring and understanding our natural landscapes has significant scientifically backed positive effects on our wellbeing, something that the best cabins tap into with tranquil settings in secluded woodlands, among rolling hills or on wild stetches of coastline — with stargazing decks, fire pits and outdoor hot tubs to maximise panoramic views.

Unyoked, North Norfolk

Unyoked is a cabin rental company that began life in Australia with 50 locations Down Under. Launched in the UK in 2022, there are now six locations nationwide, with more in the pipeline. Whether you’re after a creative retreat, a total escape or an energising dose of the great outdoors, this nature-focused start-up is here to make sure you get what you need. Marley, in North Norfolk, is a highlight. Set on the outskirts of Houghton Hall, this cabin sits pretty in a glade surrounded by an ancient woodland full of wildlife. As with all Unyoked properties, the setting is secluded to allow guests to feel as immersed in nature as possible. The cabins are also all designed in a similar style, with stripped-back interiors in plywood, comfortable beds and huge windows to make sure you’re as close to nature as possible — whether you’re inside or out. Sleeps two. From £154 per night.

The Black Shed, Isle of Skye

Sitting at the foot of the Macleods Table hill on the Isle of Skye, the Black Shed is an architectural award-winning single cabin based on a working croft cottage, set in a dramatic location overlooking Loch Dunvegan. The all-pine interiors frame a smartly equipped stainless-steel kitchen, a luxurious rain shower and a king-sized bed with cosy throws from local weavers to keep you warm. But the local landscapes will beg you to get outside to explore. Hill hikes and wildlife await, as well as The Dunvegan — a nearby deli, cafe and restaurant with six bedrooms, where you’ll find local Scottish ingredients and Argentine grill cooking influenced by the proprietors' Patagonian family roots. Sleeps two. From £810 per week.

Left: Top:

The Black Shed on the Isle of Skye.

Right: Bottom:

The view from the Black Shed on the Isle of Skye.

photographs by Anne-Sophie Bak Rosenvinge

Tahuna Bothies, Aberdeenshire

Floor-to-ceiling windows frame the coastal view from these three bothies on the northeast Scottish shoreline, just outside Aberdeen. Nearby bird-watching sites and nature reserves connect you with the great outdoors, and a five-minute walk leads to Newburgh beach and its resident seal colony. Inside, bothies come with simple modern decor — pine floors, brightly coloured furnishings — and a small kitchen sits underneath an elevated king bed (with a double sofa bed for extra guests). But the focus is on the sunrises and sunsets you’ll catch from the windows, and on the wilderness beyond. Sleeps up to four. From £100 per

Kip Hideaways, Shropshire

For a secluded staycation with touch of exclusivity, become a member of Kip Hideaways (£19 a year, or £3.99 a month) to access its collection of cool, contemporary designed cabins, which are found in almost 200 destinations across the UK and Ireland. Launched in 2019, Kip Hideaways has quickly developed a reputation for pairing nature-seekers with some of the best handpicked, off-grid hideaways, and Rolling Hill Cabins in Shropshire is a boutique cabin-seeker’s dream. Four handsome, black-painted huts sit upon hilltops on the forested outskirts of a country estate on the Shropshire-Welsh borders. The interiors are smart and atmospheric, and decorated in moody dark tones. But al fresco baths are the highlight here, with the copper roll-top providing a spot to sink into and offering unrivalled views across those rolling, borderland hills. Sleeps two. From £175 per night.

One of Kip Hideaways cabins in Shropshire.

One of Kip Hideaways cabins in Shropshire.

Photograph by Dan Casson

Cabu Cabins, Kent

Set across the shingles at St Mary’s Bay, near Romney Marsh, on a site of scientific interest, Cabu by the Sea provides the perfect spot to soak up views of the surf and swaying grassland. Depending on the season, you'll find rabbit burrows galore, nesting birds, breeding amphibians and wildflowers carpeting the private seafront grounds. The company has two locations: Country Cavan, Ireland, and here, in Kent, where the little hamlet comprises 20 cabins ranging from petite writer’s studios for two or larger three-bedroomed beach houses with hot tubs. The cabins are luxurious and come complete with log burners, cosy couches and plush rugs, but the setting is enough to urge you to spend time outside, with an elegant, heated pool (March-October) overlooking the English Channel, outdoor hot tub and sauna. Located halfway between the wilderness of Dungeness and the vibrant port town of Folkestone, there's plenty to explore on the doorstep. Sleeps two to four. From £310 per night.

Rest + Wild, Devon

Perched on the edge of Exmoor National Park — home to Exmoor ponies and England’s largest herd of wild red deer — Rest + Wild's latest outpost (its original location is in Shropshire) scatters five cabin retreats across one of the southwest’s most picturesque corners. Set in rugged moorland in a designated Dark Sky Reserve, it’s perfect for nights spent stargazing on the deck, warming drinks in hand, or curled up in the king-sized bed watching the constellations from the picture windows. Wood burners and tiny but well-appointed kitchens make getting cosy inside an activity in itself, but al fresco copper baths, firepits and the lure of the National Park beyond are likely to draw you out. Sleeps two. From £595 for three nights.

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