If you’re feeling the need to get away for a change of scene or a break from the routine, snap up one of our incredible last minute cottage breaks available up until May 14th. These amazing special offers mean you can enjoy great savings on a few days away in the beautiful Devon countryside; think wholesome fresh air, peace and quiet, views that stretch for miles. There are welcoming country pubs nearby and the beaches of the East Devon coast are just 30 minutes by car.
If you don’t already know the rules, up until May 17th one household or support bubble can take a self catering holiday in England, so it doesn’t matter if you’re a big family of 10 or if there’s only 4 of you, that’s how it is for now, and if you need a reminder about the support bubble thing read here. After May 17th, two households or suport bubbles or 6 individuals can have a holiday together and then on June 21st, as things stand, it's business as usual.
Not surprisingly, we’ve had a lot of bookings since 12th April with the first easing of restrictions for holiday cottages, but we have last minute cottage breaks available midweek for the first two weeks in May. It’s a good time of year to get away, especially if you’re headed somewhere like Stonehayes Farm where there’s a choice of five gorgeous holiday cottages, shops just down the road, and plenty to do nearby.
It’s a wonderful opportunity to get out and explore the glorious landscape of the Blackdown Hills AONB – and we can tell you, it doesn’t have that status for nothing! Just at the back of the farm is Dumpdon Hill, an Iron Age fort with views that roll on across the Otter Valley forever; this time of year the beech woods there are full of bluebells beneath the acid green canopy of the newly emerging leaves (it’s all a little late this year, isn’t it?) - such a magical sight! Wander up to Dunkeswell and see the ruins of the 13th century Cistercian abbey; the church there is like something out of a Thomas Hardy novel, the ancient walls edging onto wide open fields, rooks gathering in the tree tops of the neighbouring vicarage.
Just a short drive away is the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site with its very diverse beaches; Sidmouth has a long stretch of sand and shingle, great for playing with the pet pooch, whilst Branscombe and Beer are quieter with a slight feel of yesteryear; they haven’t lost their charm, you see. Both have good pubs in the village and cafes on the beach, and of course they’re on the South West Coast Path, so walk the clifftops, let the bracing sea air blow any cobwebs away and enjoy the spectacular coastal views.
The other thing there’s a lot of round these here parts is good places to eat; we’re very lucky in that respect. The rules are outside only at the moment, but most places have used their noodle and put up gazebos and shelters, so if the sun won’t come out to play at least you can stay dry. Just down the road from Stonehayes Farm Devon holiday cottages is Otter Valley Field Kitchen where they do the most amazing ice cream, made with milk from their own moo cows who graze just metres away.
Pop down to Honiton and give Honiton Wine Bar a go, it’s family run so you’re supporting local business, not a big national chain. JK’s Bistro is good too, and The Holt down by the river, otherwise pick up a takeaway pizza from Bella Pizza. If you’d prefer something out in the sticks, The Drewe Arms at Broadhembury is very good, as are The Culm Valley Inn at Culmstock (great after a walk up to Culmstock Beacon), The Kings Arms at Stockland and The Pig at Combe.
But we have to be honest, a lot of folk who come for a short break at our Devon holiday cottages don’t go far at all because they love it here so much. And who can blame them when you’ve got a cosy well-equipped cottage to stay in, your own area of garden with outdoor furniture and a barbecue, and 15 acres of shared grounds with a children’s play area? 4 of our cottages sleep 4-6; to give you an idea of the kind of prices we're talking about, you can stay at Siskins Nook for just £275 and at Pipits Retreat for only £325! Pippinsands, the original thatched farmhouse sleeps up to 14 and has a large garden with a private hot tub, so that’s a huge bonus for bigger groups; a midweek stay there is £995, saving you £455! Divide that between the number in your group and you'll find it work out at incredibly good value - if there's 5 of you for instance, that's a smidgeon under £50 per night each! And your own hot tub too! Don’t miss out on the perfect spring break in Devon – but be quick and grab those special offers now!