And Britain's happiest place is....

Yorkshire is 'Britain's happiest place'Welcome to Yorkshire

Feeling glum? Then you need to pack up and head for Yorkshire - officially Britain's happiest place.
Almost 60 per cent of people living in the county say that they are satisfied with their lives compared with a national average of 50 per cent, according a new survey.
Londoners are the least content in the UK, with just under half of them claiming to be happy.
Tourism experts say they are unsurprised by the findings. Gary Verity, chief executive of Welcome to Yorkshire, said: 'Yorkshire is not only blessed with some of the most breathtaking natural scenery in the world, but also some of the friendliest people on the planet. Who wouldn't be happy living in 'God's Own County'?"
Mintel's annual British Lifestyles survey found that Yorkshire-dwellers' happiness stems from the county's abundance of open spaces. 56 per cent of people living in villages were happy, compared with just 44 per cent in urban centres.

Need to get away from it all? We've picked out ten beautifully secluded places around the country - perfect for putting a smile back on your face!

Wonderfully secluded cottages by the sea
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And Britain's happiest place is....

Gather your closest friends and/or family (the cottage sleeps ten) and retreat to this idyllic spot overlooking St Brides Bay, in the Pembrokeshire National Park – but make sure you get on well because there's not another soul for miles. Cliff paths lead down to the sandy beaches below and along the entire coast, making it ideal for keen walkers and twitchers.  Visit

For celebrities, hermits, recluses and lone wolves, there's no better hideaway than your own private island. Apart from the ruins of a medieval Highland fortress, the three-bed cottage is the only building on this mile-long island off the west coast of Scotland. Use of the island's motor boat is included in the rental price and can be used for exploring the nearby coves and skerries and spotting dolphins, porpoises, otters, and sea eagles. Visit

Not strictly speaking seaside, but we had to include this unique retreat teetering on the edge of the River Dart. Built in 1760, the completely secluded converted bathing house is only accessible by walking through fields and woodland, although a 4x4 will bring your luggage in and out when you arrive and leave. Visit

One of only two properties on the Kynance Downs, surrounded by National Trust land and in an area of outstanding natural beauty, Carn Goon is a corker of a beach house. All mod cons are on hand – Sky TV, Internet, a huge downstairs walk-in shower perfect for rinsing off the sand from Kynance Cove and vast tub dryers for all those beach towels – but the stunning 180 degree sea views from the wooden veranda are the true star attraction. Visit

What could be more romantic than staying in an 18th century converted dovecote? These unusual looking buildings were once valuable storehouses for meat, eggs and manure, but thankfully all that has long been cleared out to make way for underfloor heating and Wi-Fi . The quirky circular rooms and stunning views along the Northumbrian Coast and over to Holy Island from the 65ft high tower remain. Visit

The Hebrides are not the easiest place in the British Isles to get to, but the deserted white sand beaches, turquoise seas, wildlife and whisky galore and spanking-fresh seafood (lobster, scallops and peat-smoked sea trout, mmm) more than repay the effort. Once ensconced in this traditional Hebridean thatched 'black house', watch the resident seal colony frolic outside the house and hunt for eagles and otters. Visit

This one-bedroom cottage on its own private beach, with uninterrupted views across the Kilbrannan Sound to Arran and the Island of Davaar. Cosy up in front of the wood-burning stove with a dram from one of the local distilleries and croon Paul McCartney's 'Mull of Kintyre' to your loved one. If cabin fever sets in, escape three miles up the road to Campbeltown, home to the country's oldest cinema, the art deco 'Wee Picture House'. Visit

Remember Fraggle Rock? Well, this lighthouse, at the furthest point of the Roseland Peninsula, was the setting for that well-loved Eighties children's programme. It's completely private as the lighthouse is automated these days (and the Fraggles are long gone), but bring your ear plugs if the outlook's misty as when the electronic fog signal goes off, you'll know about it. Visit

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