Staycations have become increasingly popular in recent years, with many of us seeking something closer to home. In fact, more than 5 million Britons are planning a UK staycation for the August Bank Holiday weekend this year, with a third (30%) of people planning to take a summer staycation.
So, while you may not be able to go abroad, there is an upshot, as it gives you more scope to travel with your furry members of the family. Cats have largely been the underdog when it comes to pet-friendly accommodation choices. Thankfully though, an increasing number of hotels, hostels, B&Bs and other establishments are relaxing the rules of having feline pals to stay, giving pet parents the green light to bring their cat companion along for a full family getaway.
With that in mind, you might be wondering, where can I stay in the UK that is feline-friendly? Well, not to worry. We've done all of the homework for you, offering the ultimate list of accommodation from across the country - including cat friendly hotels and B&Bs, and even a whole kitty-compatible cottage.
So without further ado, let’s take a look at the top 5 feline-friendly staycations ahead of your August Bank Holiday weekend:
5 FELINE-FRIENDLY CAT HOTELS THAT ARE THE CAT'S WHISKERS
THE ROAST OX INN, WALES
Located in Painscastle, Wales, this feline-friendly inn offers an eye-opening visit to the beautiful borders of Wales.
The area offers awe-inspiring sights of natural beauty, from rivers, forests and mountains, to nearby sleepy market towns, such as Hay-on-Wye and Kington.
With eight en-suite bedrooms boasting super-king sized beds, not to mention cat-friendly hosts - including resident moggy Michael, who is always on hand to welcome guests - this is the perfect place for a digital detox, as mobile phone signal is hard to find in the area (no chance of disturbing a cat-nap, then).
THE MERRY HARRIERS, SURREY
Up next is for the naturalists. For those who prefer getting closer to nature, here at The Merry Harriers, you can stay in a bespoke shepherd's hut beside a peaceful pond on the grounds of a 16th century pub. But not to worry, they still offer 21st century necessities such as Wi-Fi and smart TVs - not to mention Nespresso coffee machines.
Your cat will enjoy endless entertainment exploring the luscious landscape - as there are over 1,000 different tree species at the nearby National Trust Winkworth Arboretum - and even llama treks.
The curious amongst us can look through the list of landlords' names dating back to the early 1700s, which are displayed on the walls of The Merry Harriers Inn. Or you can simply relax with a glass of wine under the starry night sky with your cat on your lap. As you'll see from their Instagram, they are perfectly pet-friendly.
THE JACK RUSSELL INN, ANDOVER
Don’t let the canine name fool you, the Jack Russell Inn in Faccombe favors Fido and feline alike.
With stunning views of the surrounding estate - and a focus on the conservation of the natural beauty and wildlife in the surrounding areas, this endearing inn also offers local food that celebrates great British produce. Not to mention the nifty underfloor heating you and your cat will want to curl up on.
At Natusan, we are all about the environment and believe in making less waste and more wonder. This is why The Jack Russell Inn has made it into our top five list, as they provide environmentally friendly and vegan British bath and body products on arrival - perfect for guilt-free pampering.
TIGGER’S COTTAGE, BERKSHIRE
Set in the heart of beautiful Bray-on-Thames, this 180-year-old Tudor cottage has it all for a quiet weekend getaway with your cat companion in tow.
The cottage is a short walk from the highly-Instagrammable Bray High Street - a culinary heaven offering Michelin star dining within walking distance, including the famous Fat Duck.
The elegantly decorated cottage can be hired as a one or two-bedroom retreat. From the beamed ceiling to the ornate coal fireplace and Yves Delorme bed linens, you and your cat can enjoy the luxurious lifestyles you deserve.
The owners’ two lovely Labradors, Sambuca and Truffle, are always on hand to join you for a walk if your cat would rather enjoy the enclosed garden.
SUMMER LODGE COUNTRY HOUSE HOTEL, DORSET
If you and your cat fancy a spa weekend, this is the purr-fect choice for pampering.
Located in idyllic Evershot, Dorset, this five-star country house hotel is surrounded by rolling hills and beautiful countryside - definitely one for the fancier felines among us!
Winner of the 2015 Best Pet-Friendly Spa Hotel award in The Resident’s Travel Awards, four-legged friends are more than welcome, with a range of pet beds, bowls, mats and menus all available for your cat.
To further cater to your kitty’s needs, they also have on-hand gift packs of delicious homemade biscuits.
TOP TIPS FOR TAKING CATS ON HOLIDAY
Taking cats on holiday isn’t always smooth sailing. All cats are different and you’ll know your pets best, but there are some tips and tricks to follow that can help make your holiday with cats as stress-free as possible.
Remember to always make a reservation in advance - especially amid the current COVID-19 climate. Either choose from our superb staycations listed above or use a pet-friendly travel site to find somewhere and book.
Remember to always make a reservation in advance. Either choose from our superb staycations listed above, or use a pet-friendly travel site to find somewhere and get booked in.
Get your cat car comfortable
If you are planning to drive down to your destination, it’s always a good idea to get your cat comfortable with the car ahead of your trip. Look to start bringing them along for a ride in their carrier a couple of times a month. This will get them used to the motion of travelling in the car. After all, we don’t want any car sick cats, or for them to feel discomfort.
Microchip in advance of your trip
Before you set off on your staycation, make sure your cat’s microchip details are all up to date. We all know our curious cats like to roam - so it’s good to get organised and make sure the microchip is sorted as a careful precaution.
Bring a little bit of home with you
Help your cat to get comfortable in a new environment by bringing along their favourite toys and blankets. The familiarisation and safe smells will help to acclimatise them. If you use a cat carrier, leave it out for a few nights with your cat’s favourite blanket inside so they can get used to it, and look to leave it open in the room so they have a space of their own to retreat to.
Don’t forget the litter!
We may not admit it, but at the end of the day, everyone prefers their home toilet, and the same is true for your cat. Being sure to bring the litter which your cat is accustomed to is a great way to make them feel at home - without having to contend with too many new smells.
The natural odour-trapping properties of Natusan cat litter also remove any worries of awful odours overwhelming your B&B room, so you can keep your cat’s tray in the bathroom. After all, everyone likes a bit of privacy!
Opting for a clumping cat litter helps to make cleaning the tray a quick and easy job - ideal if you’re on holiday - and if you’re travelling with a kitten, Natusan Wheat is an ideal cat litter for kittens.
IS IT BETTER TO TAKE A CAT ON VACATION OR LEAVE AT HOME?
Taking your cat with you on vacation can have advantages for both you and your cat, and may prevent your cat from getting lonely. All cats are different, however, so if your cat finds travelling stressful or uncomfortable, it might be best to leave them in the care of a cat sitter.
WHO CAN LOOK AFTER MY CAT WHEN I GO ON HOLIDAY?
When you go on holiday, you can ask a trusted family member or friend to take care of your cat, find a local cat sitter, or consider a trusted and recommended cattery.
There are plenty of options when it comes to cat friendly holidays in the UK, and it’s important to make the right choices for your cat and your family. Taking cats on holiday might not be for everyone - or every cat - so consider your cat’s character and preferences (and brush up on the signs of stress in cats).
For those that are happy travellers, there are ways to make a holiday with cats a fun and enjoyable experience for all the family!
How do I prepare my cat for a holiday?
If you’re planning on taking your cats on holiday with you, it’s a good idea to get them used to car travel well in advance. Ensure your cat is microchipped, and pack their favourite things to help them feel at home.
Do cats get lonely when you go on holiday?
Some cats will miss their humans when they’re away for a few days, but some more independent cats might not be as bothered - as long as someone’s still around for regular food and treats!
How long can you leave cat for holiday?
Cats can be left alone for around 24 hours, but if you’re leaving your cat while you go on holiday, it’s important that someone is checking up on them daily and providing them with fresh food and water - and some fuss and attention as well.
01/07/2020 by NatuTeam