Branch out for a getaway.
AUTUMN GLOW: Stunning Whinlatter Forest in Keswick rises 1,000ft above sea level and can truly claim to be England's only mountain forest. Soak up spectacular views walking one of the waymarked trails or take an exhilarating ride on one of the mountain bike trails. The forest has some of the longest ones in the Lake District. If that's too heady, try a sedate stroll on the shore path on the west side of one of the national park's largest lakes, Bassenthwaite. More often than not boats from the local sailing club are on the water.
COSY UP: Base yourself in Braithwaite village and stay at Oak Leaf, one of three self-catering properties at Oakvale, sleeps two, costs from PS5,200 for seven nights' rental arriving October 23, through Cumbrian Cottages (ref 114153). CONTACT: www.cumbrian-cottages.co.uk, 01228 599 960.
AUTUMN GLOW: Explore Dunglass Wood on the Hirsel Estate in the Scottish Border town of Coldstream. Venturing further afield, Northumberland National Park, covering almost a quarter of the county, is an easy drive away. The rolling Cheviot Hills are on the north edge with Kielder Water and Forest Park in the west and the World Heritage Site of Hadrian's Wall in the south.
COSY UP: Stay at one of the newly built Old Pump House Cabins in the Scottish Borders, a mile from the leafy hamlet of Lintlaw and five from the market town of Duns. Two-bedroom Jessica sleeps up to six (there's a sofa bed in the lounge) with five nights' rental from PS295 arriving October 19 through Northumbrian Cottages (ref CC538033).
CONTACT: www.northumbrian-cottages.info, 01228 406 721.
AUTUMN GLOW: Enjoy the splendour of the Cornish countryside in the peace and quiet when the tourist hordes have disappeared. Head for the north coast or discover the wild beauty of Bodmin Moor, which featured in the popular Poldark TV series, on its moorland footpaths. A steam train can take the strain on a 13-mile round trip on the Bodmin & Wenford Railway line. Trains run between Bodmin Parkway and Boscarne Junction via Bodmin General (www.bodminrailway.co.uk).
COSY UP: Moorland trails run past the doorstep of Blackadon Farm Cottage in the hamlet of Bolventor on Bodmin Moor. A three-night break in this traditional three-bedroom cottage (sleeps six) starts at PS297 through Sykes Cottages (ref 927491).
CONTACT: www.sykescottages.co.uk 01244 356 695.
AUTUMN GLOW: The 2,000-plus miles of rights of way through the wide open spaces, ancient woodland and rolling pastures of the South Downs National Park, England's newest, are perfect for a long ramble, a cycle or horse ride. You can reap the autumn harvest and brew your own cider with apples from the orchard at Upper Neatham Mill Farm near the market town of Alton. The two-day course will take through the steps of pressing the juice through to the fermentation process - and, of course, you get to take home the fruits of your labour.
COSY UP: Upper Neatham Mill Farm by the river Wey in Holybourne, offers a three-night B&B ba break starting at PS220pp based on two sharing a room and includes the two-day cider-making course.
CONTACT: www.upperneatham.co.uk 01420 542 908.
AUTUMN GLOW: Walk through the colourful heather moorland of the majestic Angus Glens on the east coast of Scotland. This region, with the hills of Angus merging into the Cairngorm National Park offers plenty of scope for exhilarating walks and mountain-biking. The picturesque 64-mile Cateran trail starts and he finishes at Blairgowrie.
COSY UP: Just a 30-minute drive from the town of Kirriemuir, known as the Gateway to the Glens, Middleton Bothy near Blairgowrie is a snug studio sleeping two. A week's rental starts at PS225 through Unique Cottages (ref DA2).
CONTACT: www.uniquecottages.co.uk 01835 822 277.
AUTUMN GLOW: Go on an wildlife adventure in the Exmoor National Park, where you could see red deer and the renowned Exmoor ponies roaming free. The evenings will be pretty astronomical as well - the park is Europe's first designated International Dark Sky Reserve.
COSY UP: Yeo Farm, on the doorstep of Exmoor National Park, is small country estate in the picturesque hamlet of Waterrow on the Somerset/ Devon border at the foot of the Brendon Hills. Seven nights self-catering for two arriving October 24 costs from PS433 through English Country Co CO Cottages (ref: ERE).
AUTUMN GLOW: For a quintessentially English autumn display of colour, the Cotswolds has it covered with a bounty of botanical wonders. Beat a path to the Batsford Arboretum, near Moreton-in-Marsh, to see the leaves of its magnificent maples turning into deep gold and orange blaze of colour www.batsarb.co.uk/arboretum. And for a heady explosion of colour head to the National Arboretum in Westonbirt, near Tetbury, home to some 15,000 trees from all over world. It's a leaf-peeper's paradise www.forestry.gov.uk/westonbirt.
COSY UP: Stay in a stylish safari tent or bell tent at Manor Farm Glamping on the banks of the River Isbourne, in the village of Aston Somerville, near Broadway. From PS80 per night in a tent sleeping up to four people through Pitchup.com.
AUTUMN GLOW: The North Pembrokeshire countryside is stunning all year round but come autumn it's a breathtaking riot of colour.
Take the family in half term to Clydey resort in Lancych, where the children can play at being little rangers, going on woodland adventures - such as autumnal leaf identification walks - mini-beast safaris, river clay modelling and then, in the evening, they can toast marshmallows round a camp fire (PS15 per child, www.clydeycottages.co.uk).
COSY UP: Stay in a Fron Fawr cottage, in Boncath, six miles from Clydey and you'll have access to all the facilities at Clydey. A three-night break in either Taliesin or Madog Cottage (each sleeps five) costs from PS540.
CONTACT: www.fronfawr.co.uk, 01239 698 619.
REST EASY: Oak Leaf cottage, Lake District
MOORISH: The Angus Glens
RIGHT TRACK: Blackadon Farm Cottage, Cornwall
CIDER HOUSE RULES: Upper Neatham, Hants
TRANQUIL: River Spey in the Cairngorms
COMFORT: Taliesin in Pembrokeshire
GOOD WOOD: A stroll in the National Aboretum
PEACEFUL: A river in Exmoor