How to Get into the Christmas Spirit

Hey you. Yes you! You do know it’s nearly Christmas, right? And you’re heading down to the wonderful West Country for a cosy cottage holiday?

Well then, it’s time to turn that frown upside down and get into the Christmas spirit with a little help from Toad Hall Cottages.

It’s all jingle bells and Ho-ho-hos from here on in with Mr Toad’s Twelve Days of Christmas Plan guaranteed to banish your bah humbugs and see off those winter blues.


Day One

Turn up those classic Christmas tunes. Whether Bing Crosby’s ‘White Christmas’ or ‘The Most Wonderful Time of the Year’ by Andy Williams, get that wireless whirring with your favourite festive songs, perfect for when you and your loved ones are West Country bound.

Day Two

It’s time to decorate! The mere sight of gleaming baubles and sparkling tinsel is sure to lift your festive spirits. If you’re spending Christmas Day in one of Toad Hall’s cosy winter cottages, you can check with us to see if there will be a tree and decorations provided, but if not, why not get creative? Head out outside, gather up some of nature’s finest and ‘deck the halls with boughs of holly’.

Day Three

Get baking! Dig out grandma’s special Christmas recipes and start handmaking your very own selection of pastry treats. When you book a self-catering holiday cottage with Toad Hall, you’ll be able to explore the local farmers’ markets and artisan stores and then cook up a storm back in your very own traditional cottage kitchen. Don’t forget a tumbler of sweet sherry for Santa and a juicy West Country carrot for Rudolf.

Day Four

Gather in the logs and kindling and get the home fire roaring. When it’s cold outside there’s nothing more inviting than the warm glow of an open fire. Our guests are constantly delighted by the swept and ready inglenook fire places and wood burnings stoves that radiate throughout Toad Hall’s cosy holiday cottages. Where better for the family to hunker down and toast their feet, sipping on mugs of hot chocolate and roasting chestnuts, while sharing their latest West Country adventures. If you need a helping hand, here’s our guide to lighting a log fire.


Day Five

It’s time to get the board games out and rekindle those old family rivalries. With the nights drawn in and the weather wet and wild, why not round off the evening with a Trivial Pursuit marathon, a bout of Balderdash, or a Pictionary panto. Many of our holiday cottages provide a selection of board games, but if you’re caught short, you can enjoy endless hours of festive fun with our favourite family party games.

Day Six

Warm the cockles of your heart when you pop along to the village carol singing service or nativity play. So many of Toad Hall’s cottages are tucked away in quiet hamlets and sleepy villages where the gentle pace of life often revolves around the friendly local pub and the seasonal celebrations at the parish church. Escape the festive hustle ‘n’ bustle when you book a stay with Toad Hall Cottages to enjoy nothing but blissful scenic days and peaceful starry nights.

Day Seven

There’s nothing like a festive tipple to get you into the Christmas spirit. Whether you fancy a hot ladle-full of spiced mulled wine or a creamy serving of freshly whisked eggnog, a little Yuletide libation is sure to sweeten the mood and have you puckering up under the mistletoe.

Day Eight

There’s nothing like a cheery Christmas film to fill you with those warm, fuzzy, festive feelings. If you’re not yet dialled in to your Christmas vibe, why not stick on your pyjamas, snuggle up on the sofa and watch some family favourites. From timeless classics such as ‘Miracle on 34th Street’ or ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’, to bumper blockbusters such as ‘Elf’ or ‘Home Alone’, a Christmas flick is sure to revive your seasonal mojo.

Day Nine

Blow out those cobwebs and embrace the great outdoors with a revitalising winter stroll. When you book a stay in a Toad Hall holiday cottage, you’ll be surrounded by some of the UK’s most celebrated coastal and countryside walks. It’s time to round up the family, wrap up warm, and follow the tracks and trails. Afterwards, treat yourselves to some famous West Country hospitality at one of the many cosy pubs and inns that line the merry ways.


Day Ten

Christmas is a time for giving. If you’re racking your brains for gift ideas, take a look at Toad Hall Cottages’ West Country Gift Guide for some South West-inspired purchases. Picking out that special something for that special someone is sure to capture the Christmas spirit, so get the sticky tape prepped and the ribbon and bows at the ready.

Day Eleven

Look to the night sky, it’s time for some Christmas stargazing. Toad Hall Cottages has idyllic holiday properties up and down the sparkling South West coast and there’s nowhere better for a spot of celestial surveying than your very own balcony, garden or terrace. Grab yourselves a hot toddy and explore the wonders of the winter sky, keeping an eye out for Santa’s sleigh and the jingle of his cantering reindeers.

Day Twelve

Any finally, nothing will put a more beamful smile on your face than catching up with old friends and spending precious time with your loved ones. For many of us, this is what Christmas is all about; spreading goodwill and merry-making with our nearest and dearest. A festive winter break at a Toad Hall cottage could provide the ideal opportunity for you to book in some quality time with family and friends, away from all those day-to-day distractions.

Wishing you all a Very Merry Christmas!