The cottage is located around 18 miles north of York in Leavening. This sleepy little village is well placed if you want to nip into York for some sightseeing or shopping and be close to the North York Moors for bracing country walks. And if you fancy a pint or dinner out one night, there's a lovely pub in the village which serves excellent pub grub, with lots of fantastic gastro pubs in the area too.
Leavening is set in the rolling Howardian Hills in the southern reaches of the North York Moors. Designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in 1987, the lush pastures and woodlands of the southern moors play host to grand country houses, atmospheric ruins and handsome market towns. The landscape is particularly well-suited to cyclists and walkers with miles of stunning off-road walks and cycle paths in every direction. Nearby Kirkham Abbey, in particular, has some lovely walks along the River Derwent and you can stop for lunch at the local pub. And you also have the Wolds Way nearby to explore.
Castle Howard (18 miles) is an absolute must during your stay. The wonderful series Brideshead Revisited, and now lavish film production was filmed on location here. This quintessentially English tale of forbidden love and loss of innocence set pre WWII, has the perfect backdrop in this magnificent house and gardens.
The handsome town of Malton is also just a few miles away, a destination fast becoming known for its excellent food and drink - home to the renowned Food Lovers Festival as well as fantastic restaurants, an excellent selection of food shops and great food and drink producers. There is a regular livestock market, a traditional market every Saturday and a new Food Lovers Market. The town is filled with charming independent shops as well as some high street favourites. It also has a small family-owned cinema.
A few miles further will take you to the town of Pickering. You can catch a steam train from here taking you all the way to Whitby via some picture-postcard villages and stunning scenery. Pickering itself makes for a relaxing afternoon's mosey with its pretty houses, shops and tearooms.
The beautiful market town of Helmsley is also close by and is well worth a visit. If you fancy a little pampering, you'll find a fantastic day spa here; the Verbena Spa. There is a theme park and zoo at Flamingo Land (8 miles) and Eden Camp, a fascinating modern history museum, is 2 miles away. And of course, York itself is just 18 miles away. Explore its maze of cobbled streets, gaze in wonder at the York Minster and indulge with a Fat Rascal at Bettys Tearooms. And with the North York Moors and the Yorkshire Coast all within close reach, there are countless options for day trips.