As Home Base Holidays is based in London and has a very large choice of current home exchange offers in the city and near Olympic venues throughout the UK, we are delighted that Budget Travel Adventures, a popular US travel blog, chose to emphasise this in the contest as now is the best time to start planning a home exchange for the Olympics, only a few months away.
Of course you don't need to arrange a home swap in London to take part in the competition. Anyone from anywhere is welcome to enter and choose destinations of interest (winners have a year to claim the free year's membership if not quite ready to list their homes for exchange). You don't need to live in a luxurious home either - home swaps are for everyone!
The contest will run from today, April 25 through May 8. Home Base Holidays will review all entries and choose the three best London tips/reasons for doing a home exchange submitted. The winners will be notified and contacted by Home Base Holidays and announced on May 9, 2011.
It is very easy to enter - see details on Budget Travel Adventures. If you are already a Home Base Holidays member, do pass this on to any friends or family who may be interested as, if any of your contacts win, your current membership will be extended by three months.
Many home exchange members live in areas of special interest to history buffs. Indeed, many homes in such areas are of historical interest in their own right. A few samples from recent home swap offers in England:
Hythe, Kent - A medieval hall house (above) extended in 1910. Once home to Gerald duMaurier, Noel Coward was a frequent guest in the house and indeed rehearsed and wrote material here. Daphne du Maurier is also said to have written in the house. The hall has 15th century carvings and the pannelled dining room is beautiful. The long drawing room overlooks the garden and little stream.
Ludlow, Shropshire - Town centre, 17th century house "newly built in 1656 after burning in the Civil War". High-walled courtyard garden with workshop. Overlooks C12th Castle and gardens. Medieval market town with 500 listed buildings, C15th Church. Stands on river Teme with Mortimer Forest and Trails within walking distance. On the borders with Wales (Welsh Marches), Hereford and Worcester.
Fulbeck, Lincolnshire - Gorgeous traditional stone-built cottage, situated in a picturesque English village within a beautiful landscape and with a traditional village pub!, 30 minutes from the city of Lincoln, the historic city with a beautiful cathedral and castle. We live 10 minutes away from Belton House, a stately home of note and 15 minutes from Grantham, the birthplace and schools of Sir Isaac Newton and Margaret Thatcher.
The house was built over 200 years ago in 1770 and still has many of its original features, the village is soaked in history especially the 13th century church and the impressive Fulbeck Hall.
Worcester, Worcestershire - We live within 5 minutes walk of the centre of Worcester with its Cathedral (on left), many shops, pubs and restaurants. This small ancient city is bounded by the River Severn and the Worcester to Birmingham canal. We overlook Fort Royal Hill park where Oliver Cromwell won the last battle of the English Civil War in the 1650s.
Glastonbury, Avon - Glastonbury is a beautiful pilgrim town steeped in Arthurian myth and legend with the Abbey, Chalice Well Gardens and Wearyall Hill only a fifteen minute walk from our house.
Our house is a three storey split level. We have the most fantastic panoramic views overlooking the Somerset Levels, Quantock and Mendip Hills and the sunsets are amazing. Visit Wookey Hole and Cheddar Gorge and the surrounding areas for fantastic walks and hikes.
Newcastle, Tyne and Wear - The house is a stone built villa over 250 years old, situated in the conservation area of Whickham village. It features in the history of Whickham, a small town on the outskirts of bustling, cultural, historic Newcastle. Because of its age the house has a quirky layout with many rooms leading off one another giving an "Alice in Wonderland" appeal. The village itself boasts a 900 year old church and is a frequent winner of Britain in Bloom.
We are within a 2.5 hour drive of Scotland, the Lake District, Yorkshire and 30 minutes away from the Northumberland Coast with the castles of Alnwick, Bamburgh, Warkworth. Roman forts Chesters and Housesteads are also close by. We live in an area that is bursting with history, Newcastle itself boasts a Norman Keep and some well preserved town walls. The area is particularly rich in Roman remains and coastal walks.
Our house is probably late Georgian and has been recently totally refurbished. The house is on three floors with two bedrooms and a bathroom on the first floor and a further bedroom on the top floor that overlooks the Malvern Hills and the Cathedral.
Q: I am sorry but I have forgotten how to find someone who may wish to visit New Zealand. Can you remind me? Thanks. - Jan
A: Browse home exchange listings (as a member, log on to Home Base Holidays first); click 'Show more options' below the search boxes.
Type New Zealand in the box beside 'To find members looking for a home exchange in your location, enter your city, county/state, or country'.
Choose any other criteria, then click Search at the bottom of the page. If you leave most criteria open, you will find many members who indicate New Zealand as a destination choice.
Note: Searching by your own location as a destination requested is a good way to start to look for the members most likely to be interested in swapping homes with you. However, such search results will only show those who include your country as a destination and not the many members who are 'open to offers' on destinations, some of whom may also be interested in your offer.
The photo is of Jan's home for exchange. Our home is an attractive 2 storey English style home set on a small beach about 25 minutes out of Auckland. We are right on the beach front with lovely views over the water. We have a little boat which we sometimes use to go across to a nearby marina and have a coffee and breakfast.' See Jan's full home exchange offer, HE13992
Lovely home with a spectacular view of Astoria, and the Columbia River. The house has a garden, large deck & sun porch, both with river views. The area has a much to offer. There are good hiking/biking trails, the ocean and beaches are quite near. Local entertainment includes good food, pubs, river front trolley, two movie theaters, as well as live plays and music venues.
Thanks to William and Kate choosing their big day so close to Easter, we've got four bank holidays in the UK within the space of 11 days (from 22 April to 2 May). Search Home Base Holidayshomes for exchange in London if you fancy watching the royal procession. *Note: it is always better to start planning for a home swap well in advance of the dates wanted but, in this case, as there are hundreds of exchange offers in London, and no doubt many Londoners happy to escape the city to take advantage of the extra holiday, you should still find interest in an exchange if you act quickly!
If you prefer to escape royal wedding mania, check out home exchange offers throughout the UK and worldwide.
Home Base Holidays We're here to answers any questions on swapping homes, specific topics related to home exchange vacations plus share Home Base Holidays members' home swap stories and exchange offers.