You’re walking down the street and you’re startled by a car horn or by some speeding boy racer with either a modified exhaust or a scooter that sounds like one big hairdryer. You’re trying to enjoy a nice meal in a cosy restaurant but there is a baby screaming or a young child throwing a tantrum. You’re lying in bed trying to get some sleep but there is a maddening alarm going off somewhere that won’t stop. Do you crave peace and quiet, tranquillity and the fabled sounds of silence?
Well, thanks to a new book – Sonic Wonderland: A Scientific Odyssey by Trevor Cox, a Professor of Acoustic Engineering – we now know whereabouts in the UK you should head to. After Professor Cox measured factors such as distance to the nearest road or flight path, it was revealed that Kielder Forest in Northumberland is the UK’s most serene spot and the quietest place in the country. In his book, he writes: "Zero decibels is your threshold for hearing and once you get below that there is nothing to be heard other than your own body sound."
Kielder Forest is also nestled in one of the world's largest dark sky parks and it has been recognised for having exceptional starry nights. Indeed, a stay in one of our Kielder Forest holiday cottages could be one heck of an experience, as night-time descends and, in complete and utter silence, the heavens flicker to life above you.