10 Unique Vacation Homes in the U.K. | Historical Gems

If you really want to vacation outside the box, review some unusual rental properties — you never know what you may stumble upon. From a restored lighthouse to a former World War II bunker, your options extend far beyond what you expect from a vacation rental. Here are 10 unique rental homes in Europe that will definitely stand out on Facebook feeds the next time you post a vacation photo:

The Lighthouse

Lighthouse for Rent

Built almost 200 years ago to help guide ships into the Caledonian Canal in Scotland, this beautifully restored lighthouse is certainly memorable. Overlooking the waters of Loch Ness, the rental home retains many of its historic features along with modern comforts. The stunning bay window that once held the light that guided ships is now the ideal spot to gaze on the waters of the lock in search of Nessie.

The Railway Station

Railroad House

All aboard! Stay in the Porter’s Lodge of this Victorian railway station. It sits right alongside the Llangollen Heritage Steam Railway in Wales’ Dee Valley. There’s a seating area next to the restored station platform where you can watch the trains go by. Around Christmas time, the Station House gets a festive makeover.

The Toll Bridge House

Toll Bridge House Rental

This unique rental home guards the bridge over the tidal Mawddach Estuary at Penmaenpool in Wales. Built in 1921 as a home for the resident toll keeper, the cottage features a little balcony that’s perfect for watching the sunset. A walking and cycle path passes the door, inviting visitors to explore the area.

The Brewery Vault

Brewery Loft

Built in 1821 as the brewing hall of a former brewery, this quirky rental near Bath has a diverse history. When the brewery ceased production in the 1890s, the space began housing new projects, from a paper store to a World War II air raid shelter. Today, its original features like the stone barrel-vaulted ceiling combine with modern furnishings for a memorable rental experience.

The Bunker

Cornwall Bunker for Rent

Formerly a World War II operations bunker, this unusual rental home is now a beautiful spot for taking in the sights of Cornwall. It’s just a short distance from the famous open-air Minack Theatre, Porthcurno Beach and the legendary Lands’ End. You can also walk to the town of Penzance at low tide to take in its scenic coastal pathways.

The Water Tower

Renovated Water Tower Rental

This stunning Victorian water tower is set over eight floors, making it an interesting spot to stay with friends or family. It’s the tallest building on the Staffordshire Moorlands and dates back to 1896, though it was transformed into a unique vacation home in 2006. It features 360-degree views of the countryside, along with Wi-Fi, a built-in music system and a game area.

The Windmill

Windmill Vacation Rental

Get a spectacular view over the Chiltern Hills in southern England from this converted windmill. Built around 1800, it was used as a working windmill until 1900. Afterward, it served as the home of an actress and a music publisher. Uniquely spread across five floors, the rentals within short distance of historic Oxford and a five-minute walk from Wendover station, which makes for easy access to London.

The Dye House

Comfortable Dye House

Mingle with farm animals and visit the seven indoor themed gardens at this former dye house. Industrial in design to reflect its former use, the home now features modern components like a lounge area with a wood burner and a hot tub. Located near Langley, you’ll be set up for exploring the cities of Manchester, Chester and Liverpool.

The Old School House

Old School House Rental

Situated near England’s Peak District, this charming cottage was once a school house in Kirk Ireton, a charming old world village looking down over miles of countryside. It’s a short stroll from the local pub, which dates back to 1683, and its doorstep opens up to walks that lead to Derbyshire Villages worth exploring.

The Church

Historic Properties

Formerly St. John the Baptist Church, this converted rental now offers a unique little hideaway. The original tall windows let light flood in, while a spiral staircase takes you up to a master suite on the mezzanine level. Outside, a swinging seat in the secluded garden lets you look out on a stream that wraps around the property.

Browse more unique vacation rentals here.