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A child-free Forest Holiday in Cropton

Whether you're a family seeking to explore the great outdoors, a couple looking to hide out for a few days, or parents in search of a child-free weekend, a Forest Holiday is the perfect escape.

Beloved and I recently invited four stressed-out parents to join us for a mini-break in Cropton. It was their first time in a Forest Holidays cabin and after hearing so much about it from us, they couldn't have been more excited at the prospect of a weekend away without the children.

As one said: "I was like a kid on Christmas morning!"

Together with its nearby sister site in Keldy, the Cropton cabins are on the doorstep of the stunning North York Moors. Both provide a brilliant base for getting out there and seeing some of Britain's iconic landmarks.

Sit back and let the train take the strain as the North Yorkshire Moors Railway’s very own Hogwarts Express takes you on a nostalgic adventure through a land of film and television.

Three stops after climbing aboard at nearby Pickering, you’ll arrive in Goathland, or Hogsmeade, as it was in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. Alight here and nip up the road for a swift pint in The Goathland Hotel, which doubled as The Aidensfield Arms in ITV’s Heartbeat.


Take the train to the end of the line and you’ll pass through some of the UK’s most spectacular scenery before reaching Bram Stoker’s Whitby. As well as being the inspiration for Stoker’s famous novel, Dracula, Whitby is also famous for its fish ‘n’ chips.

If the number of available restaurants is anything to go by, it’s no surprise! Personally, I’d aim straight for The Magpie Cafe. Just don't forget to book!

Having been warned about its popularity, we felt like VIPs as we swanned past the vast queue of waiting diners. The 5-star treatment continued inside, as The Magpie’s friendly staff encouraged us to enjoy a leisurely lunch, in spite of the masses waiting to get in. We were treated to a delicious meal of the freshest fish with the lightest batter, which definitely lived up to its magnificent reputation.

On the way back to Cropton, we dropped into The Wheatsheaf Inn in Egton where every Halloween, the landlord changes its name to The Slaughtered Lamb in a fun homage to An American Werewolf in London.

Back at the cabin site, our group enjoyed breaking away from the daily grind. We indulged in some great home-cooked food, a glass or three of wine and made regular use of the hot tub on the veranda.

As a group of adults and mindful of our fellow cabin dwellers, one might worry about how the noise might carry in the forest, especially on a fully booked site during half term. But there was no cause for concern. Although not among the trees like many of the Forest Holidays locations, the cabins at Cropton are so well-spaced, we weren't at all disturbed by anyone else.

The cabins at Cropton are so well-spaced, we weren't at all disturbed by anyone else.

Located right on a forest path, our Silver Birch cabin provided easy access for long walks in the forest beyond. It’s not often our friends have any quality down time, so they made the most of the opportunity to relax, re-charge and spend some time alone, without the responsibility of entertaining the kids.

In fact they loved it so much, we’re already planning another adults-only cabin break for next year!

Guest post by Sue Jones, lifestyle blogger at The World of Suzy Homemaker