Devonshire Heartland Holiday Cottages
A holiday cottage in the Devonshire Heartland can cater for anyone's taste, making a holiday not to be forgotten. There are holiday cottages all over the Devonshire Heartland to suit any size family or pocket. A cottage holiday in the Devonshire Heartland is an ideal holiday to avoid the busy seaside resorts and beaches. Inland, you have wooded hills and valleys, where every season has something to offer. The Spring flowers are shown off in these beautiful surroundings. Autumn is often still warm, with morning mist over the valleys. A Winter break is a great break from the hustle and bustle of city life, with log fires and Devon hospitality to lift your spirits on your cottage holiday in the Devonshire Heartland.
On your Devonshire Heartland cottage holiday, you can either wind down by total relaxation or by participating in the many activities available. You can explore on foot, on horseback or on a bicycle, travelling around your holiday cottage. You could also sit in one of the local pubs, enjoying local food and drink. Exmoor, Dartmoor and the North Devon and South Devon coasts are all within easy reach of your holiday cottage in the Devonshire Heartland.
A cottage holiday in the Devonshire Heartland offers things like horse drawn canal boats, quad riding, vineyards, organic farms, fisheries, horse riding, walking, golf, cycling and badger watching. If you want to go cycling, Devonshire's Heartland's quiet country lanes are an ideal setting for a quiet family ride. Also, if you want a more energetic ride, part of the new National Cycle Network - the West Country Way - runs through the area, and there are some off-road routes in Eggesford Forest.
There is the Coldharbour Working wool museum at Uffculme, stately homes, such as Knightshayes and Killerton which are both owned by the National Trust, and Fursdon, a privately owned house. There are also three privately owned castles at Bickleigh, Hemyock and Tiverton, all within easy reach of your holiday cottage in the Devonshire Heartland.
Devonshire's Heartland also has wonderful gardens from the formal gardens of the National Trust properties to the intimate cottage gardens open under the National Garden Scheme. Many will be within easy reach of your holiday cottage in the Devonshire Heartland.
There is a good selection of local specialist shops selling local cheese, honeys, jams, wine and cider, which you can buy as a souvenir to take back from your holiday for family and friends, or you can take back to your holiday cottage in the Devonshire Heartland to enjoy.
Markets, which you can peruse from your holiday cottage, include Crediton, a local producers market on the 1st Saturday of the month, Cullompton, a farmers' market on the 2nd Saturday of the month, and Tiverton, which is an antiques & crafts market on Mondays, a pannier market on Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays and a farmers' market on the 3rd Wednesday of the month.
The Devonshire Heartland Way is 43 miles through the Heart of Devon, linking the eastern Exe Valley with Okehampton, passing through the towns of Crediton, North Tawton and Okehampton, as well as a number of small villages. The Trail passes mostly through a pastoral landscape, especially through the traditional Devon Redlands, and to the west, Dartmoor provides the backdrop. The Trail crosses the Two Moors Way and the Tarka Trail, and joins the West Devon Way, the Two Castles Trail and Dartmoor Way at Okehampton. You can hire a holiday cottage on or near these trails in the Devonshire Heartland. The Trail has parallel bus and / or train routes to allow for short lengths to be walked and it is signposted. Train access is from Newton St. Cyres, Crediton and Yeoford (all on the Tarka Line from Exeter). In addition there are Sunday trains in the summer from Okehampton on the Dartmoor Line, and from Exeter. Bus access is from Stoke Canon (the eastern terminus), Crediton, North Tawton, Sampford Courtenay and Okehampton. So, wherever you are based in your holiday cottage, you can get to something of interest and/or beauty in the Devonshire Heartland.
The Tiverton Museum with its seasonal displays and exhibitions, has one of the best collections of social history in the South West, an excellent day trip from your holiday cottage in the Devonshire Heartland. Tiverton Museum was recently voted 8th among the best small museums in the country by the 'Independant' newspaper. It has 15 fifteen galleries showing the social, agricultural, domestic and industrial life of the area. Most galleries are accessible for wheelchair visitors and are popular for all members of the family. Also in this museum, there is the "Tivvy Bumper" locomotive 1442, which pulled the last train to Tiverton station in 1965, a research library linked with the Devon County records office, an extensive photographic archive, and a shop which provides a wide range of souvenirs for all the family.
There are many excellent restaurants for your cottage holiday in the Devonshire Heartland, and you have to experience the local speciality of a cream tea. There are country pubs with Real ales, beer gardens, fine foods and wines, and there is a good supply of organic and home produced vegetables.
Activities you can take part in from the base of your holiday cottage in the Devonshire Heartland include the Tarka Tennis Centre in Barnstaple, various golf courses, horse riding, quad biking, mountain-boarding near Bideford, fishing, walking, rock climbing, abseiling, canoeing, hang gliding or even falconry. If relaxation is more your thing on your Devonshire Heartland cottage holiday, most of the local health and leisure clubs will allow you to become a temporary member for the duration of your holiday, so you can experience pampering like an aromatherapy massage or beauty therapy session.
There are a few theme parks, which not only have thrilling rides, but special exhibitions and shows, such as flying ferrets, the sheep grand national or you can feed a new born lamb, filling your day with memories you can reflect on at the end of the day in your Devonshire Heartland holiday cottage. Also, there is Paignton zoo, Combe Martin wildlife park, the national marine aquarium, and many other attractions.
In March there is a conservation weekend based at Castle Drogo, Drewsteignton.
In April there are regular walks around the parkland at Killerton with a hawk accompanying the group. You can have a close experience with this magnificent bird as the hawk flies onto your arm.
In May the canal trips start, where you can sail up one of the World's oldest shipping Canal, through Turf Locks, Double Locks, under the Countess Weir Swing Bridge and into the Exeter Basin.
In June there is a classic car show at Killerton, and numerous children's activities throughout the Devonshire Heartland.
In July, in Torquay, you can take part in an Ornithology trail and discover what it is like to be a bird biologist and join in the craft activities to make bird puppets from recycled materials.
In August you can see Romeo and Juliet at Killerton, finished off by spectacular fireworks.
So, whatever you want, from an action packed holiday to a relaxing break, choose a holiday cottage in the Devonshire Heartland.