Seven Super Reasons to stay in a Bed and Breakfast


Outside Becketts B&B
 Travelling with children can be expensive and tricky. And depending on the ages of the kids, certain issues - babysitting, cots, large rooms, breakfast times which start early - can become surprisingly important.

But if you are looking for something a little different, and possibly, even a little bit cheaper than a hotel, we would recommend a Bed and Breakfast (or B&B).

We have always been fans of B&Bs even before we had children. When we holidayed regularly in America, we used our travel books (this was pre-internet) to search out recommended B&Bs, and hoped for friendly, informed hosts and delicious breakfast treats. We always got these and for far cheaper than a hotel. In fact, I still remember staying in a wonderful B&B in Newport Rhode Island which also served fresh cookies and sherry for tea every afternoon (all included in the price of course).

B&Bs faded away slightly once we had young children, not least because you become extremely conscious of noise when you are staying in someone's house! However, it was also because of course it meant that you had to go out to eat for supper, which was not always suitable with youngsters. Now the children are 12 and 9 (today - happy birthday Robert!) we love them again. In fact we have loved them again for quite some years. Let me tell you why.

1) The personal touch
Most B&B owners aren't part of a bigger corporation or chain - they do it to earn money and because they enjoy it. This means they really care about their guests' experience, from the breakfast (more on that below) to ensuring that that any information given is up to date and helpful. They rely on good reviews and word of mouth to survive.

2) A delicious breakfast
Hotel breakfasts can be delicious, but are often extremely expensive. At a B&B they are, of course, included, and cooked to order. You will often find all kinds of tempting goodies on offer, including homemade granola or bread, home-grown fruit salad, or delicious freshly poached eggs and sausages. You will rarely go away hungry and the service, because it's not for hundreds of guests, is good.




3) Value
Bed and Breakfasts are nearly always good value - though that doesn't mean they are cheap. Always ring up to find out about the latest offers, and note that not only is breakfast included, with parking often is too.

4) Charm and originality
A Bed and Breakfast is not usually a purpose-built building. Instead you may be staying in anything from a converted barn to an historic manor house(even a castle) or semi-detached home!

5) The opportunity to live like a local
Wherever you go, if you stay in a B&B, you are staying in somebody's home. What better way to find out what it's really like to be in that city - to discover local customs and the best local places to eat.

6) An intimate experience
You won't be sharing your stopover with hundreds of others, which can make it particularly special (and, if you leave the kids at home, even romantic).

7) Options
You might be surprised to find that unlike many hotels, lots of B&Bs have interconnecting rooms for families (read more to find out why I love these types of room). If they don't offer this, then they may have huge family rooms, which are often far more appealing or better suited to the kids than a hotel.

We search for B&Bs whenever we are travelling in the UK and have been extremely lucky with rooms and food (we always warn that we don't eat meat and often arrive to find delicious veggie sausages on offer). We do check tripadvisor for reviews (although that's a dangerous road to travel as someone will always find something negative to say!) and are very rarely disappointed. I can only remember one time in Banbury when the family room was so tiny we were nearly on top of each other as we slept.

That's not to say that B&Bs are for everyone, especially if you are not one for chatting (the flipside of the personal touch) and don't want to share your breakfast table with other guests. In other words, if you are a tad anti-social...

The children's room
Always ring up to find out about prices, rooms and offers. When we went to Kent a few weeks ago, we stayed in a lovely B&B called Becketts in Edenbridge, near Hever Castle. It was particularly exciting for us as the children stayed in a (gorgeous) room which was entirely separate from ours. We felt properly grown-up (and so did they).

Becketts was particularly lovely because, as a converted 300 year old barn, it was genuinely full of character. Our room even had a four poster bed! We also all enjoyed a truly delicious breakfast (toast, poached egg, tomatoes and veggie sausages for us, juice, cereal, toast, mushrooms and more for the kids).
Our four poster bed!


Jess and Rob on the couch in their room
The children's room (which is called the garden twin) is also able to have an an extra temporary bed or cot and prices vary between £85 - £100 for two people depending on midweek/weekend and length of stay.

Read our posts:

In praise of interconnecting rooms

A visit to Hever Castle (just 5 minutes from our B&B!)

You can find out more about Kent from the Visit Kent website.

If you liked this post, please could you pop over to the Britmums website where we are absolutely thrilled to say that we have been shortlisted in two categories for the Brilliance in Blogging Awards (or Bibs). If you could vote for us, Family Travel Times, in travel and video (please click where it says "vote for them now"), we would be hugely grateful. Thank you!





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Family Travel Times: Seven Super Reasons to stay in a Bed and Breakfast

Monday, 28 April 2014

Seven Super Reasons to stay in a Bed and Breakfast


Outside Becketts B&B
 Travelling with children can be expensive and tricky. And depending on the ages of the kids, certain issues - babysitting, cots, large rooms, breakfast times which start early - can become surprisingly important.

But if you are looking for something a little different, and possibly, even a little bit cheaper than a hotel, we would recommend a Bed and Breakfast (or B&B).

We have always been fans of B&Bs even before we had children. When we holidayed regularly in America, we used our travel books (this was pre-internet) to search out recommended B&Bs, and hoped for friendly, informed hosts and delicious breakfast treats. We always got these and for far cheaper than a hotel. In fact, I still remember staying in a wonderful B&B in Newport Rhode Island which also served fresh cookies and sherry for tea every afternoon (all included in the price of course).

B&Bs faded away slightly once we had young children, not least because you become extremely conscious of noise when you are staying in someone's house! However, it was also because of course it meant that you had to go out to eat for supper, which was not always suitable with youngsters. Now the children are 12 and 9 (today - happy birthday Robert!) we love them again. In fact we have loved them again for quite some years. Let me tell you why.

1) The personal touch
Most B&B owners aren't part of a bigger corporation or chain - they do it to earn money and because they enjoy it. This means they really care about their guests' experience, from the breakfast (more on that below) to ensuring that that any information given is up to date and helpful. They rely on good reviews and word of mouth to survive.

2) A delicious breakfast
Hotel breakfasts can be delicious, but are often extremely expensive. At a B&B they are, of course, included, and cooked to order. You will often find all kinds of tempting goodies on offer, including homemade granola or bread, home-grown fruit salad, or delicious freshly poached eggs and sausages. You will rarely go away hungry and the service, because it's not for hundreds of guests, is good.




3) Value
Bed and Breakfasts are nearly always good value - though that doesn't mean they are cheap. Always ring up to find out about the latest offers, and note that not only is breakfast included, with parking often is too.

4) Charm and originality
A Bed and Breakfast is not usually a purpose-built building. Instead you may be staying in anything from a converted barn to an historic manor house(even a castle) or semi-detached home!

5) The opportunity to live like a local
Wherever you go, if you stay in a B&B, you are staying in somebody's home. What better way to find out what it's really like to be in that city - to discover local customs and the best local places to eat.

6) An intimate experience
You won't be sharing your stopover with hundreds of others, which can make it particularly special (and, if you leave the kids at home, even romantic).

7) Options
You might be surprised to find that unlike many hotels, lots of B&Bs have interconnecting rooms for families (read more to find out why I love these types of room). If they don't offer this, then they may have huge family rooms, which are often far more appealing or better suited to the kids than a hotel.

We search for B&Bs whenever we are travelling in the UK and have been extremely lucky with rooms and food (we always warn that we don't eat meat and often arrive to find delicious veggie sausages on offer). We do check tripadvisor for reviews (although that's a dangerous road to travel as someone will always find something negative to say!) and are very rarely disappointed. I can only remember one time in Banbury when the family room was so tiny we were nearly on top of each other as we slept.

That's not to say that B&Bs are for everyone, especially if you are not one for chatting (the flipside of the personal touch) and don't want to share your breakfast table with other guests. In other words, if you are a tad anti-social...

The children's room
Always ring up to find out about prices, rooms and offers. When we went to Kent a few weeks ago, we stayed in a lovely B&B called Becketts in Edenbridge, near Hever Castle. It was particularly exciting for us as the children stayed in a (gorgeous) room which was entirely separate from ours. We felt properly grown-up (and so did they).

Becketts was particularly lovely because, as a converted 300 year old barn, it was genuinely full of character. Our room even had a four poster bed! We also all enjoyed a truly delicious breakfast (toast, poached egg, tomatoes and veggie sausages for us, juice, cereal, toast, mushrooms and more for the kids).
Our four poster bed!


Jess and Rob on the couch in their room
The children's room (which is called the garden twin) is also able to have an an extra temporary bed or cot and prices vary between £85 - £100 for two people depending on midweek/weekend and length of stay.

Read our posts:

In praise of interconnecting rooms

A visit to Hever Castle (just 5 minutes from our B&B!)

You can find out more about Kent from the Visit Kent website.

If you liked this post, please could you pop over to the Britmums website where we are absolutely thrilled to say that we have been shortlisted in two categories for the Brilliance in Blogging Awards (or Bibs). If you could vote for us, Family Travel Times, in travel and video (please click where it says "vote for them now"), we would be hugely grateful. Thank you!





Labels: , , ,

56 Comments:

At 28 April 2014 at 06:24 , Blogger Chloe Griffiths said...

aw this looks so cute, I'm hoping to get away a bit more this year I should explore the little treasures of B&B's xx

 
At 28 April 2014 at 07:12 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

This looks absolutely gorgeous. I definitely need to visit more B&B's this year.
www.merrymusing.co.uk

 
At 28 April 2014 at 13:59 , Blogger Actually Mummy... said...

I agree, B&B's are often much more authentic and personal, and give you a much better perspective on a trip than a more generic hotel. We found an amazing place on Exmoor once (and I can't for the life of me remember the name right now, but I'll look it up and try and let you know).

 
At 28 April 2014 at 23:25 , Blogger A Modern Mother said...

I think research is key for B&Bs. You can luck out with a winner, but it can be a real bummer too if you don't chose well. Though that applies for hotels with lower star ratings too. x

 
At 28 April 2014 at 23:50 , Blogger Trish Burgess said...

You had me at 'sherry for tea in the afternoons'....

 
At 30 April 2014 at 08:38 , Anonymous Globalmouse said...

I know it sounds obvious but I love the breakfasts at B&Bs...they really are often great. Love this post!

 
At 30 April 2014 at 08:51 , Anonymous Lucie Aiston said...

I have always wanted to stay in a seaside B&B... I have no idea why but I will have to do it someday soon!

 
At 30 April 2014 at 09:53 , Anonymous Mandy said...

I usually don't stay at B&Bs, but I'm excited to try them more in the future! Thanks for writing this about them, it's inspired me to make it happen soon.

 
At 30 April 2014 at 10:29 , Blogger Amy Squires said...

I love B&B's they are like finding little gems when holidaying

 
At 30 April 2014 at 11:14 , Blogger Emily Shepperson said...

Fantastic post. I do love B&Bs

 
At 30 April 2014 at 11:21 , Anonymous Mummy of Two said...

We love b&bs and have stayed in quite a few especially before we had children. In fact we honeymooned in one in Bath! Becketts looks lovely and very child friendly.

 
At 30 April 2014 at 11:36 , Blogger Sara-Jayne Jones said...

My parents swear by B&Bs when they visit us! One day I'll get a mini break away and try one :)

 
At 30 April 2014 at 11:49 , Blogger Eileen Teo said...

i love b&b as it have more personal touch than hotel! will take a peek if we heading there!

 
At 30 April 2014 at 11:54 , Blogger Michelle Ordever said...

A great list of reasons - I love the personal touch that B&Bs can give!

 
At 30 April 2014 at 12:01 , Blogger Victoria MyLittleLBlog said...

we never stayed in mine as my worry was sharing toilet with someone else

 
At 30 April 2014 at 12:05 , Anonymous Jenny said...

My children love staying in hotels. They never sleep as they're too excited though!

 
At 30 April 2014 at 12:08 , Blogger Vikki Holness said...

Great post, B&B's are definitely more homely and personal than a hotel. More often than not they do nicer breakfasts too lol xxx

 
At 30 April 2014 at 12:15 , Blogger Sarah Ebner said...

Thank you! And yes, I love the breakfasts too. I really look forward to them.

 
At 30 April 2014 at 12:15 , Blogger Sarah Ebner said...

I hope it does and that you find a gem!

 
At 30 April 2014 at 12:16 , Blogger Sarah Ebner said...

I wouldn't stay in one with a shared loo or bathroom! I hope that doesn't sound bad! You just need to check in advance

 
At 30 April 2014 at 12:16 , Blogger Sarah Ebner said...

Yes, totally! Thanks for commenting

 
At 30 April 2014 at 12:16 , Blogger Sarah Ebner said...

Yes, you should. Make sure you pick a goodie, in a lovely place

 
At 30 April 2014 at 12:16 , Blogger Sarah Ebner said...

Yes, the personal touch is lovely

 
At 30 April 2014 at 12:17 , Blogger Sarah Ebner said...

We love Bath! Went there last summer. We stayed in a B&B in Bristol in fact (with interconnecting rooms - though you wouldn't need those on honeymoon!)

 
At 30 April 2014 at 12:17 , Blogger Sarah Ebner said...

Yes, there's something really special about them

 
At 30 April 2014 at 12:18 , Blogger Sarah Ebner said...

Perhaps this is something we should just introduce into our daily lives Trish!

 
At 30 April 2014 at 12:18 , Blogger Sarah Ebner said...

I totally agree - research is always important

 
At 30 April 2014 at 12:18 , Blogger Sarah Ebner said...

Couldn't agree more with your comment. Oh, and maybe we should go to Exmoor then!

 
At 30 April 2014 at 13:12 , Blogger Hannah Staveley said...

Looks very good, my kids would love this .x

 
At 30 April 2014 at 13:23 , Blogger Polly Davies said...

I always used to stay in b&b's with my mum and dad, loved it!

 
At 30 April 2014 at 13:54 , Anonymous Margherita @The Crowded Planet said...

Couldn't agree more. Some of my fondest travel memories are of B&B's, especially in the UK. As you said, I love the personal touches and the local insight that B&B owners offer.

 
At 30 April 2014 at 14:05 , Blogger Kirsty Phillipson-Lowe said...

The B&B in the pictures looks lovely, next time we go away I might look at some B&Bs x

 
At 30 April 2014 at 14:06 , Blogger Bex said...

I love B&B's - they just feel so much more personal!x

 
At 30 April 2014 at 14:26 , Anonymous Pinkoddy said...

I have to say that this is an option I hadn't considered before. Thank you.

 
At 30 April 2014 at 14:38 , Blogger Damson Lane said...

We used to use B&Bs all the time before kids but now that we have a little one they are not very practical.It is good to know that in a few years time we might be able to pick up our B&B travelling again.

 
At 30 April 2014 at 14:57 , Anonymous You Baby Me Mummy said...

This B&B looks really lovely. x

 
At 30 April 2014 at 16:06 , Anonymous Hannah said...

Oh god I love B&Bs! I usually stay in hostels while travelling but stop every couple week for a little break. Nothing like those home made breakfasts after weeks of boring toast and cereal! Especially the banana fritters I had in Killarney, Ireland...drool.

 
At 1 May 2014 at 05:24 , Blogger Kizzy said...

Great post and somewhere I never thought of staying with the kids

 
At 1 May 2014 at 08:02 , Blogger Charlotte R.B said...

Ooooo this place looks like fun!
I think I've stayed in a B&B once but never with Hayden yet.

Thanks for sharing hun
Lotte xo
Berice Baby - London Lifestyle and Kids Fashion Blogger

 
At 1 May 2014 at 11:21 , Blogger lisa prince said...

I so want to get out and b and b would be ideal right now i just need a good night sleep and peace and quiet to myself x

 
At 2 May 2014 at 02:24 , Blogger Lori Taylor Arnold said...

I haven't stayed in a B&B for years now, in fact since I was little in France but I think I might reconsider now. it looks like such a great stay and the personal touch really does make a difference. x

 
At 2 May 2014 at 06:33 , Blogger Kara Guppy said...

Haven't stayed in a B&B in forever. Must make a plan to do it soon

 
At 3 May 2014 at 01:50 , Blogger Michelle Ashmore said...

I don't think we've ever stayed in a B&B. Maybe we'll take a look next time we want a weekend away :)

 
At 3 May 2014 at 13:27 , Blogger Sarah Ebner said...

Yes, we would definitely recommend it. You are missing out!

 
At 3 May 2014 at 13:30 , Blogger Sarah Ebner said...

We're glad we're making so many people think about it as an option!

 
At 3 May 2014 at 13:30 , Blogger Sarah Ebner said...

They sound SO good...I'd like some right now :)

 
At 3 May 2014 at 13:31 , Blogger Sarah Ebner said...

Yes, lots changes as the kids get older....and travelling certainly gets easier!

 
At 3 May 2014 at 15:47 , Blogger Clare Nicholas said...

I've never been in a B&B before but this has swayed me - Thank you

 
At 4 May 2014 at 01:15 , Blogger Oh so amelia said...

We rarely go B&B but this has made me think about it in the future thanks for sharing x

 
At 4 May 2014 at 16:06 , Blogger Elena Sonnino said...

We love staying in B&Bs when traveling for the charm and personal touch. Our favorite is L'Auberge Provencale in Virginia- beautiful rooms and the breakfast is extraordinary.

 
At 5 May 2014 at 03:56 , Blogger Agata Pokutycka said...

We are planning a trip to Scotland in the end of the month and hope to stay in some local B&B, they are so much better that a chain hotels

 
At 6 May 2014 at 05:25 , Blogger Sarah Ebner said...

Yes, I think you will have such a lovely time if you do this. Research it beforehand and hope you find some gems!

 
At 6 May 2014 at 05:25 , Blogger Sarah Ebner said...

Love to read about it when you've been!

 
At 6 May 2014 at 05:25 , Blogger Sarah Ebner said...

Oh, that makes me want to go to Virginia even more than I did before. You had me at extraordinary breakfast!!

 
At 7 May 2014 at 13:10 , Blogger Amalia Maloney said...

Great post Sarah! I really love how you travel with your kids and family and the style you enjoy that experiences the local culture. I look forward to staying in touch! Thanks for liking and commenting recently on my post about my fave B&B in Italy :)

 
At 19 July 2014 at 10:03 , Blogger Sarah Ebner said...

Thank you so much! Your B&B looked gorgeous too!

 

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