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Our guide to luxury Cheshire holidays

Crumbly cheese, a namesake literary cat, and an observatory housing a hero of radio astronomy; there's much more to the county than rural charm and unspoilt trails. This is the Unique guide to luxury Cheshire holidays.

In many ways, Cheshire is the county that time forgot; its history reads like an epic saga, spanning centuries of conquests and crusades, while its castles, cathedrals, and ancient city (formerly known as Deva Victrix) draw history buffs in their droves. But make no mistake, this northern powerhouse is far from antiquated; catch Gatsby or Shakespeare under the stars at Grosvenor Park Open Air Theatre, peruse contemporary artworks at Ice Galleries, or thrift for vintage finds and bespoke pieces at the half-timbered Rows. Cheshire blends old and new, tradition and innovation, in a see-it-to-believe-it sort of way.

It's a place where the great outdoors meets high society. Pack picnics of Cheshire cheese sourdough sandwiches and set out on a rather British adventure through the Peak District National Park, delve deeper into Delamere Forest, or follow the Macclesfield Canal Trail from Marple to Hall Green by bicycle, traversing aqueducts and waiting for a glimpse of the iconic Hovis mill. After a day of gentle exploration, turn the keyhole into one of Cheshire’s most exclusive properties, then make nighttime reading of the insider tips of what to see, do, and where to dine with our guide to luxury Cheshire holidays.

Locations in Cheshire

A canvas of verdant countryside, Cheshire´s villages — including Knutsford and Alderley Edge — are all tree-lined avenues and cricket pitch charm, whilst historic Chester enchants with its ancient, cobbled streets and Roman relics.

Collections in Cheshire

Our curated collections tick all the boxes; be it a last-minute dash to the countryside, a long-let made for therapeutic rambles through the Peaks, or a wisteria-clad wedding venue that could sit on any magazine cover.

Things to do in Cheshire

Set out to explore the Sandstone Trail — a 55km stretch from Frodsham to Whitchurch — or hop across the border to find Britain´s best mountain biking (plus bike hire and beginners lessons) in Coed Llandegla Forest.

Things to see in Cheshire

Size up Britain´s largest Roman amphitheatre in the ancient city of Chester, drink in water views along the River Dee, or go to Tatton Park to see the deer-dotted parklands and 100-year-old Shinto Temple in the Japanese Garden.

Where to eat in Cheshire

Hunker down over comforting fare in 18th-century coaching inns, or opt for a taste of pre-dinner pinchos and people-watching at Porta, before sipping natural wine and savouring small plates at Covino´s coveted counter.

Journals about Cheshire

Pour a coupe of Champagne and toast to a couple who threw caution to the wind with their intimate elopement, or read tales of how dreams of a rural reading retreat became a reality thanks to one fairytale Cheshire estate.

Channel 4’s Extraordinary Escapes

Channel 4’s Extraordinary Escapes

Sandi Toksvig returns with a star-studded line-up of celebrity friends to showcase the very best homes across Britain and Ireland, with a few Unique Homestays visited en route.

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The best surfing beaches in the UK and Ireland

The best surfing beaches in the UK and Ireland

Surfing nirvana needn´t be confined to far-flung places. Whether a seasoned boarder or a born-again “grommet”, surf trips on home soil know how to pack a punch (and stay under the radar).

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Cheshire FAQ´s

Looking for advice on reaching Cheshire by train? Want to know the most child-friendly locations in the county? If you have a Cheshire-specific query, you might find the answer here. For everything else, visit our general FAQs.

What’s the best way to get to Cheshire from London?

Cheshire is well-connected and, although more than a stone’s throw from the city, easily within reach. By train, routes usually run direct to Chester, Crewe, and Warrington every two hours, with a journey time just over that. By car, the M6 and M56 speed their way into the county but the drive is often double at around four hours. Pack the snacks and ready the games, this is going to be a road trip.

Why are there so many black and white timber-framed buildings?

Cheshire’s distinctive architecture harks back to mediaeval times, when ‘half-timbering’ was a popular technique for creating grand buildings. Wattle and daub, a mixture of mud, straw, and manure, was used to fill in the timber beams, black with tar or soot to protect the wood from the elements. You’ll find some really well-preserved examples of this Tudor and Elizabethan architecture all over Chester, and in Nantwich and Knutsford too.

What are the best places to visit in Cheshire for families?

Whilst miles of wild moorland make for a wide-eyed adventure playground even the most intrepid childhood explorers won’t tire of, Cheshire also offers a plethora of family-friendly attractions. Marvel at the big cats at Chester Zoo, watch the monstrous Anderton Boat Lift raise and lower great barges between two waterways, take a two-wheeled family mountain biking expedition into the enchanted Delamere Forest, or failing that: burn off some energy at Gulliver's World, a family theme park in Warrington.

What food is Cheshire famous for?

There is much to try, but Cheshire boasts a few iconic foods and dishes that really reflect its culinary heritage. There’s crumbly and tangy Cheshire cheese, known for its unique texture and Roman heritage, and Cheshire pork pies, with deliciously seasoned minced pork hidden by a coating of flaky pastry. Cheshire oatcakes are also the local’s favourite; savoury pancakes made with oats, flour, and yeast, and typically packed full of cheese, bacon, or sausage. For those with a sweet tooth: try Chester pudding, a sweet pastry filled with currants, breadcrumbs, sugar, and butter, and Knutsford gingerbread with generous scoops of the local ice cream.

Is Cheshire known for any particular local crafts or artisan products?

Along with its cheese, Cheshire is also known for its heritage in textiles. Pootle along to silk museums and workshops in Macclesfield, where the intricacies of silk craftsmanship all began in the north. The county also has a long-standing history of producing fine ceramics and pottery, readily on display at cosy craft shops and galleries throughout. Though known for many other things – the Peak District, Roman history, even Premiership football clubs – Cheshire has artistic roots, with skilled craftsmanship having been passed down through generations.

Own a property in Cheshire?

Are you the keeper of a wildflower-wrapped cabin? Or the custodian of a cottage by the wetlands? From Lymm to Holmes Chapel to fashionable Knutsford, we´re seeking Cheshire´s most unique homes to join our growing portfolio.

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