Let’s face it – booking a holiday abroad is still risky right now. Following last week’s announcement, many of us would be forgiven for getting excited about this summer. With the promise of beer gardens throwing open their doors come mid-April, and a total lifting of restrictions by 21 June (touch wood), it finally feels like better days are on the horizon.

So, does this mean you can go ahead and book that long-awaited getaway? Well, truthfully, it’s probably a bit too early to tell. Luckily, UK-based staycations in self-catering accommodation have been earmarked for the go-ahead come 12 April, so a welcome break somewhere closer to home offers the perfect compromise.

Whether you’re after slumming it under canvas or something a bit closer to the hotel experience, we’ve rounded up the top 3 campsites all within a stone’s throw of Manchester. All that’s left to do is cross our fingers for some sunshine come mid-April.

Stare gaze this summer at The Paddock | North of Manchester

This really is a campsite that can do it all. The Paddock offers classic camping pitches, alongside glamping accommodation in the form of impressive yurts and ‘Landpods’, which come complete with zip off roof for impromptu star-gazing. Each camping pitch includes a space for a fire, perfect for snuggling up around if the weather does turn chilly in the evenings. Guests can find supplies at the Honesty Shop, or take the fifteen minute stroll into picturesque nearby Ramsbottom. Bringing two households together? The impressive-sounding Safari Tent sleeps up to 8 people on fully made up beds and futons. It comes fully equipped with its own wood burner (yes, inside the tent!) and two private bathrooms.

Best for?

An alternative family getaway.

Just off the M66 to the North of Manchester
Family and four-legged friends are welcome at Hollybank Park | Rixton, Warrington

If you’re after a taste of the great outdoors without sacrificing your home comforts, look no further than Warrington’s Hollybank Pods. Each self-contained pod comes fully equipped with comfy beds, a microwave, fridge and even a TV. Set in a luscious green park, each pod also has space for up to two dogs, so your four-legged friends can put their feet up too. If you’re up for a more traditional camping experience, the site also has pitches for a variety of different sizes of ten. There are shower and toilet facilities, and even a washing machine for if things get muddy while you’re exploring the countryside.

Best for?

Having the best of both worlds – comfortable touches set in the midst of nature.

Off Junction 21 of the M6 (accessible from Manchester via the M56 or M62)
Glamping Hideaway | Buxton

One for the lovers of peace and tranquility (which, let’s face it, you might need after a year’s home-schooling). This site offers the choice of two yurts or a shepherd’s hut and is favoured by romance-seeking couples and weary walkers alike. The nearby village of Flash is the UK’s highest recognised village at 551m above sea level. The views from the site reflect this, with lush green hills rolling as far as the eye can see. All the accommodation options come with personal touches such as Egyptian cotton bedding and board games in case the great British weather isn’t too favourable. The washing facilities are shared and in a luxurious converted barn – there’s even a roll-top bath so that you can soothe your muscles following a day rambling on the nearby routes.

Best for?

A romantic retreat far from the bustle of city-life.

Near the A53 just past the village of Buxton in the Peak District. Accessible via the southbound A6 - head to Stockport and keep going!
Tue 2 Mar
Polly Riggs
Published on:
Thu 25 Mar 2021