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“Great Location for exploring, walking and relaxing”

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Whitelee Holiday Cottages
Harrogate, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
17 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Great Location for exploring, walking and relaxing”
Reviewed 5 April 2013

We stayed at Birch cottage for a week at the beginning of March, and cannot praise it highly enough!
The cottage itself was fantastic, clean, highly equipped with everything you could possibly need and a large roaring fire met us on arrival.
John and Jill who own the cottages were great, John greeted us and made us feel welcome.
The surrounding land was great for walking the dog who loved jumping in and out of the beck and tackling Whitelee Hill!
This is a working farm and sheep do roam around the properties, with an enclosed garden and keeping our dog on lead until away from the fields we had no problems. We didn't notice any other dog excrement but there is obviously sheep and other wild animals who roam!
Lots to do around the area, perfect for exploring beaches, Alnwick, Scotland and local nature reserves.
We will be going again, i cannot rate the accommodation highly enough. You will not be disappointed. The added extras such as the nature cameras in the property really top of the accomodation off.

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank semb87
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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25 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
  • Rooms
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  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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English first
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
Reviewed 16 March 2013

We stayed here for a week in March. It really is a lovely cottage.

The cottage itself is very comfortable and has everything you could need or want. It was lovely and warm at all times in the cottage, even when it was very cold outside.

The owners are really nice but completely unobtrusive. The garden is enclosed so perfect for dogs.

There is a really good supply of local ice cream, beers, honey and jam you can buy at the cottage, we enjoyed them all!

The animal cameras are amazing, we saw foxes, badgers, pheasants, owls, frogs and herons. There is a bird feeder outside the kitchen window which is a hive of activity.

We had a great time visiting the local area, Kielder, Alnmouth (lovely beach), Jedburgh etc.

There are supermarkets at Hexham, Jedburgh and Hawick. However the kind owners left us milk and tea bags out so we could have a cup of tea on arrival.

  • Stayed March 2013
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Rosemary3012
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Epping
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 February 2013

I don't usually bother to write reviews of holiday cottages as they're usually pretty much OK and we don't tend to spend too long indoors when we're on holiday. However, I just had a quick look here to see what other people had written about our latest destination and was so surprised to read a negative write up for this cottage that I thought I would add my opinion.
My family went to Rowan cottage for a week over the Feb half term. We found it easily, were met and welcomed personally by the friendly but never intrusive owner who showed us round, explained the eco heating system and pointed us in the direction of the nearest shops (which are a (spectacular) drive away, but you wouldn't come to Northumberland to shop, would you? I didn't). We got a Tesco delivery. The cottage is very snug and warm and we didn't want for anything while we were there. Bath fine, shower fine, beds fine, heating fine, everything working, no problems. The surrounding walks (with our bouncy puppy who had never seen sheep before) were breathtaking, there's a lovely nature reserve right across the road (I honestly never saw more than a couple of cars on it at a time, it is an A road but it's much quieter than the B road that runs past our house in the crowded South East. In the house were walking directions for easy and more strenuous walks, and some good maps too. And a selection of books and DVDs and box games for rainy days. And a roaring logburner, ready lit for us when we arrived. The wildlife camera is as interesting as it sounds on the farm website, we saw the barn owls daily. Just looking out at the ever-changing colours on the surrounding hills or watching mist flow up the valley was memorable. We drove to the coast at Seahouses (east wind very bracing) and to Edinburgh for lunch, both interesting places to go. I think this cottage is very well placed for exploring Northumberland, and I liked being welcomed by friendly people who tolerated my slightly feral children and untrained dog without any fuss.

  • Stayed February 2013, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank LizGiz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sunderland, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
69 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 February 2013

Having arrived at the property and found in excess of 10 dogs piles of excremet on the footpath leading to front door and front lawned garden we were quite concerned about the cleanliness of the place. On making complaint to owners this dogs dirt was removed quite quickly, although it proves the area gone un checked prior to our arrival!.

We were not impressed nor dissapointed with the cottage but would say that although it was very clean, it is in need of a bit TLC to the building internally itself.

We found that the cottage was very very cold and the owners had pad locked the room to where the central heating controls were located therefore you could not adjust the heating which wnet off during the evening meaning you were waking up in a very cold cottage. The radiators in all the rooms are totally undersized to produce the correct BTUs required for the size of the rooms therefore even when the heating is on full, the radiators can not correctly heat the rooms.

Bathroom is terrible. Its like a fridge, totally freezing and certainly no good if you have children. The shower is also very bad, trickles out with no pressure and very loud and would wake anyone up if sleeping.

You are attatched to another cottage and to the otherside there is another cottage therefore your not alone and its certainly not secluded.
The surrounding fields are full of sheep and therefore if you have a dog, they need to be on a lead at all times.

Our main concern to this cotage is that the main A68 busy Jedburgh road runs past at the bottom of entrance which is only 100 metres from the cottage. This is very busy road with fast moving cars and HGV therefore not suitable for children or pets to play un supervised. Unfortunately for us, the fact the road was so near took away the feeling of the country side.

Thats the bad parts done.

The owners are very nice helpful people who i am sure enjoy making peoples holidays great. They have a great CCTV looking at wild life located within their own barns, great for the kids.

Once you get over that terrible busy road, there are some lovelly walks and a four mile drive will take you into some good forrest walks.

FINAL BAD POINT.

The nearest pub is the Redesdale Arms which is approximately 10 mile drive on a horrible road which actually takes around 20 minutes to get, a total of 40 minute round trip.

The nearest shop is around 15 miles in Otterburn, again a terrible drive.

Bedrooms very nice with very comfortable beds.

  • Stayed February 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank visitor227059
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
County Durham
Level 5 Contributor
87 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 January 2013

Ours was a last minute 'must get away from it all' 3 night break. On booking our break John and Jill were extremely helpful in messing around with our dates.

Very heavy snowfall almost forced us into a re-schedule, but as we arrived we found John and Jill with shovels in hand, clearing the way for us to get to Birch Cottage.

We have stayed at many similar places, but none which are 'home from home' and fit our needs to perfection. The cottage was warm, comfortable and with all the accessories to make a relaxing stay.

OK, so appreciating having things like a dishwasher, complete with tablets, might seem quite petty, but little things like this make all the difference. One of my pet hates is getting to a holiday cottage and having to go to the nearest supermarket to stock up on washing up liquid, soap and other essential items.

With Sky TV, CCTV of wildlife, wi-fi, a four poster bed, beautiful views and such welcoming hosts, we will certainly be back again.

Because of the snow, we were unable to explore the local countryside, but if it is half as stunning as it looks, we are in for a treat

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Colmate
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wales
Level 4 Contributor
17 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 May 2012

Two couples stayed end of April beginning of May 2012. I was going to give this a straight 5 stars however the reason why I am giving this property 4 ¾ stars instead of 5 stars is owing to the ‘Power Shower’. The shower is over a bath and is just powerful enough to be classed as a Power Shower. I found it ample for my needs but the women in our party would have rather had a more powerful one. (women!!)

To the main review.

We stayed for a week in Rowan Cottage. You cannot really get a view of this cottage on the website. It is in a very quiet location so if you want the bright lights – well let me say the ‘Outside Light’ is very bright at night – that is it. You cannot walk to a local pub etc – well I suppose you could but it would take you hours and the A68 is rather a dangerous road. If you are looking for a high standard of property in the middle of nowhere – DO NOT look any further. When I say the middle of nowhere it is not in the back of beyond. It is 2 miles form the Scottish border on the main A68, the cottage is situated up a hill about 100 yards from the main road. When approaching from the South after going around a sweeping right hand bend after the Reservoir just outside Byrness the road dips to the right and you will see a rather large Silver Shed on your left hand side at an apex of the bend as the roads bends to the left up another hill. Opposite the shed is the turning to Whitelee cottages. The single road to the cottages rises steeply over a hump half way up the hill. Rowan cottage is a sharp turn left about 20 yards further on, the other two cottages are on your right as you approach Rowan cottage.

You will not be bothered by any road noise, if fact the only noise you will hear is either the birds outside or the noise you make in the house. Noise pollution is not a problem here – in fact no pollution is a problem here. It is 11 miles from Otterburn and 14 miles from Jedburgh (for shopping, pubs etc).The website describes the cottage to a T. Be advised – book other two cottages if any of your party has any problems with walking as there are high steps to get into either of the doors of the property

When we first arrived, we all made a collective sigh as we thought that the external decoration was quite drab with a dark red colour to the bottom of the cottage which is a little jaded. I wondered what the inside would be like, have no fear as soon as you open the door you will smile and nod contentedly as you look around the property. From all my reviews our main thing is cleanliness, this place is spotless everywhere. It is quite obvious that John and Jill take great care and pride and this was showed when we met them. They are very friendly people without being too friendly. We were made to feel at home and the whole holiday (1 week) was very relaxing, with only one day of rain when the rest of the country was under a downpour. They explained everything that we needed to know in minute detail. A rather lovely touch was the welcoming bottle of wine for each couple. John & Jill were rather busy when we were there with lambing but if you need them, all you needed to do was go to their house which is about 50 yards from the cottage. This is an extremely comfortable cottage and a pleasure to return to each night after exploring the Borders area.

Outside of the cottage is a large field to the right, small garden at the front and rear and to the left is a large shed which houses a generator – this will not disturb you at all. I will not go into what is in the property as the website describes this. The beds are comfortable as is the leather 3 piece suite. The animal CCTV as others have said is a joy to watch, easy to follow instructions to switch from TV to CCTV are in the living room. Jill sells items from a local firm; we bought various jars of jam and marmalade. Jill is cheaper than anywhere we found in the area and they taste great, oh and beer she sells is good quality.

There is basic Sky package should you need the ‘box’, wireless WiFi which worked well, tons of Tourist information leaflets for you to read

Would we go back? – DEFINITELY. One thing though a week is not long enough to discover the area and do it justice. We spent a week and we could have easily spent at least another week as there were so many places we were not able to go and visit.

One important issue for anyone driving on the A68 and other main roads in South Scotland – there are loads of SPEED CAMERAS every few miles so be careful.

Thank you very much Jill & John for a wonderful relaxing holiday, Rowan cottage was excellent for us. You have an extremely well thought out business and your down to earth approach put the seal on it. We look forward to retuning and having that drink with you, we will make sure that it is not in the ‘Lambing Season’ next time.

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
5 Thank Rhin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
40 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 April 2012

Owned by two delightful and friendly people, Jon and Jill, I don't think it's possible to overstate how perfect this cottage is. The only downside being you can’t take the view home when you leave. Close to some wonderful walks, only a mile or so from the border. The owners have created and continue to create a little oasis of calm in one of the loveliest parts of the country. It’s easy to see how this award winning, charming cottage would be top of anyone’s favourite places to stay.

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank Vasgo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Whitelee Holiday Cottages

Property: Whitelee Holiday Cottages
Address: Near Byrness, Otterburn NE19 1TJ, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Northumberland > Otterburn
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 3 Speciality Lodging in Otterburn
Number of rooms: 3
Also Known As:
Whitelee Holiday Cottages Otterburn, Northumberland

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