10 Best Things to do during your stay at Court Farm Holidays

UNIQUE CASTLES & CURIOUS CAVES

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1    Tintagel Castle, Tintagel

Said to be the birth place of King Arthur, the thrill of visiting this Cornish castle comes from its natural topography.  Its split across an eroded headland, so part of the castle is perched on an island while the rest remains on the mainland.  In the wards on the mainland, search for Dark Age pottery, before crossing the chasm to the island and climbing stone steps to the castle’s Great Hall and chapel dedicated to local saint St Juliot.  Also on the island are rectangular huts and the Iron Gate, which guards the only landing-spot on the isle.  Its and ideal day out for avid explorers and history buffs.

Merlin’s Cave is located below Tintagel Castle, Merlins Cave is best explored at low tide when you can fully access it.  The cave was made famous by Tennyson in his Idylls o the King, describing waved bringing young Arthur to shore and Merlin carrying him to safety.

Open from 10am – 4pm daily, 15-21 Feb and weekends 22 Feb – 24 Mar.  Entry fees are £7.20 for adults and £4.30 for children (english-heritage.org.uk)

 

EXPANSIVE GARDENS

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2    Lost gardens of Helligan, Pentewan, St Austell

Twenty-five years ago, Heligan’s historic gardens were unknown and unseen; lost under a tangle of weeds. It was only the chance discovery of a door in the ruins that led to the restoration of this once great estate. Today, the Lost Gardens have been put back where they belong: in pride of place among the finest gardens in Cornwall.

Visitors can explore Cornwall’s only outdoor jungle garden, duck and dive under giant rhubarb, banana plantations and avenues of palms before passing ponds on a raised boardwalk. The sub-tropical environment also contained a 100 foot high Burmese rope bridge, which is not for the acrophobic. Keep an eye out for the Giant’s Head, Mud Maid and Grey Lady on the Woodland Walk before stopping off at the Heligan Kitchen and Bakery.

The gardens and estate are open every day from 10am – 5pm until 31st March, when closing extends to 6pm. Garden admission costs £12.50 for adults, £6 for children and is free for under 5’s (heligan.com)

 

SEASIDE CYCLING

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3     The Camel Trail, the Camel Estuary, Wadebridge

This renowned cycle route runs between Wendfordbridge & Padstow, passing through Bodmin & Wadebridge.  The 18 miles trial follows a disused railway and routes through a Special Area of Conservation, which makes for stunning surroundings.  Most of the trail is free from traffic and steep inclines, so it a family-friendly cycle ride, and it offers spectacular views of the Camel Estuary, which are ideal for picnic backdrops.  There is free access all year round and bikes are available to hire from Padstow and Wadebridge (visitcornwall,com)

 

SUSTAINABLE SEAS

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4    National Lobster Hatchery, Padstow

Sustainable seas are something that we should all be striving for.  The work of the National Lobster Hatchery – a marine conservation, research and education charity – is helping us preserve marine biodiversity by aiding baby lobsters through their early life and releasing them into the wild.  On a visit to the lobster hatchery, you will learn all about marine conservation, see young lobsters (as well as the resident giant lobster) and take part in fun activities, which are available for all ages.  Don’t forget to visit the Little Shop of Lobsters and , if you like, adopt a lobster for yourself.  The visitor centre is open daily from 10am.  Admission fees are £3.75 for adults, £1.75 for children and under 5’s go free (nationallobsterhatchery.co.uk)

 

RESCUED WILDLIFE

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5   Cornish Seal Sanctuary, Gweek

Surrounded by 40 acres of undulating countryside, the Cornish Seal Sanctuary is a haven for stray, sick and injured seal pups that are discovered along the coast of Cornwall.  The centre provides educational talks about how seals are rescued, rehabilitated and released.  Look out for the sanctuary’s beloved cross-eyed Ray, who is suspected to be brain damaged and Babyface, who is living with one eye at the grand old age of 32.  If tums get hungry the Seal Sanctuary Cafe provides tasty titbits and i Summer, a BBQ.  Open daily from 10am – 4pm.  £10.46 for adults & £8.75 for kids (visitsealife.com)

 

ICONIC BIOMES

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6   The Eden Project, Bodelva, St Austell

The eco-friendly site is speckled with biomes, Mediterranean and rainforest ecosystems, and outdoor gardens brimming with plants and sculptures.  Don’t miss the giant bee amidst the flowerbeds, the WEEEE Man (a 7 metre high sculpture showing how much electronic waste a British household discards in a lifetime) or the chance to treat the rainforest canopy walkway.  For adrenaline seekers, the Eden Project is home to England’s longest zip wire and giant swing.  The site is open 10am – 4pm daily.  Tickets cost £22.50 for Adults and £12.50 for kids (edenproject.com).

 

NAUTICAL HISTORY

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7    National Maritime Museum, Falmouth

Packed with historical arfefacts, the National Maritime Museum Cornwall will not disappoint. Current exhibitions include Mermaids: Women at Sea (ends 21 February) and Viking Voyages – where treasured relics sit alongside a full-scale replica Viking cargo ship and visitors lean about myths and legends – which runs until 2 January 2017. The museum also provides activites, workshops and lectures. Open from 10am – 5pm daily. Adminssion is £11 for adults, £8.50 for children and under 5’s go free (nmmc.co.uk)

 

SEA POOLS

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8    Bude Sea Pool, Summerleaze Beach, Bude

Created in 1930 to provide a safe swimming haven, Bude Sea Pool has become a much loved feature of the town.  Nestled under the rugged North Cornish cliffs, this semi-natural pool is created using the curve of the cliffs which fills itself up twice a day at high tide.  (budeseapool.org)

 

WATERSPORTS

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9    Bude, Widemouth Bay, Sandymouth Beaches

Bude has a thriving surfing community, primarily due to the consistent beachbreak peaks. Whilst all of our beaches are great for surfing, most popular are Widemouth Bay, and north to Duckpool, Sandymouth and Northcott beaches. In the town itself, Crooklets and Summerleaze both face west, work on all tides and hold swells up to about eight feet. Local surf shops and tutors offer advice, and we highly recommend our local surf schools and outdoor activity centres for both surfing and for more activities below…

Surfing is what Bude is famous for, but there is so much more to do on, and off the water! including Kayaking, Canoeing, Rock Climbing, Coasteering.

 

SHORELINE THEATRICS

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10    The Minack Theatre, Porthcurno

This waterside open-air theatre thrives during the summer, when a programme of drama, musicals, opera, comedy and storytelling takes place. The 1930’s-built theatre is made from granite boulders, its construction orchestrated by Rowena Cade, who lived in Minack House on the clifftop at the time. The theatre’s first performance was The Tempest in August 1032, but today you can catch the likes of Port Isaac’s Fisherman’s Friends and The Three Bellies. Shows start on 15 March.

The theatre is open 10am – 3.30pm daily until 31st March, when it opens 9.30am – 5.30pm Entry Fees are £4.50 for adults and £2.20 for under 15’s (www.minack.com)

 

Evie & Issey’s Adventures : Winter walks

These are my girls; Evie-Mae who is 2.5 and Issabelle who is 1.5 ….  The wind and rain does not deter us during the winter months, we just togg up and choose a sheltered walk … one of our favourites during the winter months, during the wet and windy weather being Stowe Woods, Nr Duckpool, a lovely woodland walk , 14 miles by car from Court Farm, Marhamchurch, or 9 miles from Northcott Farm.

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This is an annual event, the 3rd picture below was taken there last year, when Issey was just 8 months old, Evie 20 months when she too preferred to be carried than walking too far! … good ol Daddy!  … now seeing them both this year walking and running hand in hand up the path in the woods makes all the effort of getting all the gear together, last minute nappy changes, dealing with temper tantrums as I couldn’t find Rabbie , Evie’s ‘cannot live without’ toy and actually making it out the door! …..worthwhile ..

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The walk basically consisted of more re-tracing steps rather than actually getting anywhere but a) we were well out of the wind b) there were lots of muddy puddles to enjoy splashing around in and c) Job done, tired out, they slept right through last night!

Vicky

 

Pet Friendly Holidays in Cornwall

We are very much a dog friendly holiday destination. At Court Farm Holidays we understand that your pet is one of the family, so you won’t need to leave your four-legged friend behind when you stay in one of our beautiful Pet Friendly properties.

There are acres of space around Court Farm and a host of wonderful walks on the doorstep for your and your dog to enjoy. Step out of your door and take a stroll along the fascinating Bude canal, take shelter on a windy day and take a loop around our local woods, or explore the footpaths across the fields to the stunning beach of Widemouth Bay. Guests staying at Northcott have direct access from our farm lane on to the Cornish Coast Path and the local dog-friendly beach of Northcott Mouth.

We are in one of the most dog-friendly regions in the UK, most of our local beaches allow dogs on leads even during summer. Each beach has different restrictions regarding dogs but, off season, dogs are allowed on all beaches …Nothing beats walking along the shoreline as the sun goes down watching, your dog playing in the waves or chasing in circles around the beach having a wonderful time.

For information on dog-friendly beaches, please visit www.thecornishcoast.co.uk or cornwall.gov.uk/leisure-and-culture/beaches-in-cornwall

There are also a number of dog-friendly restaurants and pubs nearby aswell as many local attractions also now allowing dogs as follows …

Generally speaking any attraction that’s animal related do not allow dogs for obvious reasons but all is not lost as they may offer shaded parking, onsite kennels, dog walking nearby or flexibility in returning to your car as often as you need to.

At the end of the day, holidays are for all the family and its never quite the same if someone is missing. So bring your dog with you, they will have more fun visiting dog friendly Court Farm Holidays than staying at home without you.

Here are a few suggestions from us to get you started but its the tip of the iceberg. If you want to pick our brains for more ideas, please don’t hesitate to contact us

The Milky Way Adventure Park Just over the border into Devon, this family friendly park has a bit of everything, roller coasters, slides, massive ball pools, its own mini train track and maze to get lost in! Dogs are allowed on site but not inside the building or to the live shows and the bird of prey display.

Clovelly Village  Dogs are allowed into the village and there are 2 superb scenic walks from the visitor centre of between 3-4 miles.

The Eden Project Has allowed visitors to bring dogs for sometime now. (There are restrictions, they are not allowed in the biomes or other eating areas.) They have also added more covered parking in the car park and dog waste bins around the site.

Hartland Abbey and Gardens  No dogs in the house, but you can go into the gardens and they have a lovely walk through the woods down to the beach.  They do ask that dogs are kept on a leads at all times.

Docton Mill Garden and Tearooms   Allow dogs on leads, as they have their own resident dogs.  In addition to the garden there is a lovely walk to the coast of about 20-25 minutes to Spekes Waterfall this links onto the South West Coast Path and Hartland Quay if you’re feeling energetic and want a longer walk.

Pencarrow House and Gardens  Dogs need to be kept on a lead around the immediate vicinity of the house and Peacock Cafe. However, once you are approaching the woodland walks, you can let them off the lead for a good run. There are designated shady car parking spaces in the car park for dog owners, the gift shop staff can advise if you cant find one.

Bodmin & Wenford Railway  Dogs are allowed for free, but must remain on the floor and not the seats. Only assistance dogs are allowed in the dining train.

Bude Bikes  Located in Bude next to Petherick Mill and the traffic free cycle trail for Bude Canal, they have dog trailers that attach to bikes. They also offer bike hirer at Tamar Lakes has a cycle track around the lake, but even without the bike, it’s another good dog walk.

Bridge Bike Hire based in Wadebridge offers the same which give access to the traffic free cycling on the Camel Trail.

We welcome well-behaved dogs at the following properties, each with enclosed gardens; 3 of Our Cornish Cottages, namely Honeysuckle, Wheelwright & Lilac each with 2 Bedrooms, sleeping up to 4 plus 2 dogs; Southpark, our modern bungalow, featuring luxury hot tub, sleeping 6 plus up to 3 dogs; The Cabin at Northcott, also with luxury hot tub, sleeping 2 plus 1 dog; Little Northcott, luxury hot tub, sleeping 8 plus up to 4 dogs;  Northcott Farmhouse, with 2 luxury hot tubs, sleepings 17 plus up to 4 dogs

If our pet-friendly cottages are unavailable on your preferred dates, there is a local kennels just one mile outside the village www.breezelyn.co.uk, but book early and we will accommodate you all!

 

 

 

Brilliant Bude Wins Gold Award for “Best UK Coastal Resort”

We are thrilled to be able to tell you that our local town of Bude has been awarded the above price at this year’s British Travel Awards.

To mirror an article from Bude’s Tourist Information Centre, please read on ….

This award caps a fantastic recent renaissance for the town, which has more great things to see, do, taste and experience than ever before. Whether it comes to great attractions and activities, stunning wild coastline or amazing local food and drink, Bude has raised the bar. In truth, many locals have known the resort’s potential for years; but to see the realisation of this capped by an award is fantastic

From old favourites to new additions

Besides raising the bar for the resort as a whole in recent times, Bude has also raised the curtain on some of the biggest and best events the town has ever seen. Musical specials such as Bude Jazz Festivaland Folk Festival continue to thrive, while new highlights like Bude For Food have helped cement the resort’s reputation for excellent food, with an unbelievable variety and quality of restaurants, pubs and eateries packed into a single cute seaside town.

Ongoing redevelopment has also been vital however, and continues to improve the town. Our cracking new beach huts are a prime example, delivering these elegant, classic looking seaside shelters to more holiday makers.

Similarly, our base at Bude Tourist Information Centre is better and friendlier than ever, whether you want to book a local trip, explore some fascinating local history or buy a quick souvenir or an ice cream.

Last but not least, we believe that Bude has succeeded through developing in harmony with its surroundings. From young kids right through to avid ramblers and wildlife spotters, guests love the leafy walks, unspoiled beaches and sense of seclusion. How many British seaside resorts have otters, wild orchids and even the odd pine marten just footsteps from the town centre?

One of Britain’s best resorts, as voted for by you!  

It is fantastic for Bude to be officially recognised at a big event with guests that included big names in tourism and hospitality. However, the real pride for Bude is that these particular awards are voted for by the most important people of all: you, our visitors and the public! So perhaps you can forgive us for being in a celebratory mood; no longer is Bude a beautiful but unsung location, but now officially recognised as an excellent destination.

Don’t take it from us or the awards however, but come and see for yourself what makes Bude such a vibrant place to visit. We guarantee you a warm welcome and stacks to enjoy and experience here in the prettiest and friendliest of Cornish resorts.

Short Breaks

Escape to Cornwall this winter for a last minute getaway. While it is certainly a little cooler and a bit windy at times! It’s a magical time of year when you can indulge your inner child. Rediscover the simple pleasures of kicking your way through piles of crunchy, colourful leaves, collecting conkers in the woods, or listening to the fizz and crackle of fireworks as they light up the night sky.

Wrap up warm and head to the coast to enjoy long walks on the beach – or if you’re feeling adventurous, go surfing, coasteering or kayaking. With cheeks aglow and windswept hair, head back indoors to sit by the fire in a cosy pub and relax.

Here are our suggestions for fantastic Winter activities in Cornwall

Sink back and relax

Take advantage of our on-site Therapist Vicky Barnes and book yourself in for a treatment whilst your partner or friend swims in our lovely warm pool and meets you back in your Cornish cottage, cosy barn or luxury house. Sink back into your Hot-tub and let all your cares float away.

Go sunset spotting  

Head to one of our local beaches and watch the sun goes down – at Widemouth Bay or Bude’s Summerleaze or Crookelts Beaches. For a really indulgent evening, enjoy a sumptuous dinner at one of our restaurants overlooking these beaches, starting with cocktails at the very least at The Beach Hotel or Life’s a Beach both overlooking Summerleaze Beach or The Beach House or Bay View Inn both overlooking Widemouth Bay

Grab your walking boots

Sunny Winter days are perfect for walking in Cornwall. There are miles of coast path and woodland walks just waiting to be explored. Take a look at the South West Coast Path website for some seasonal inspiration.

Winter short breaks at Court Farm

Fancy snuggling up in front of a roaring wood burner in one of our self catering Cornish cottages or luxury houses with hot-tubs … Recharge your batteries with a weekend away or a mid-week break, or stay for longer and let Cornwall work its magic on you and ease away any lingering tension.

If you need help deciding which cottage is right for you or planning your perfect break, just give us a call on 01288 361494.

– See more at: http://www.courtfarm-holidays.co.uk/adverts/winter-short-breaks/#sthash.Xv8ZZFHp.dpuf

Christmas Breaks With Court Farm Holidays

There’s always a crisp, magical and enchanted feeling in the air at Christmas in Cornwall. It surrounds the community of Bude and it’s neighbouring towns of Stratton and Marhamchurch, immersing visitors into a culture of family and togetherness.  This Christmas you can feel the magic of a festive break like no other with Court Farm Holidays.

Our self – catering accommodation, made up of cosy Cornish cottages, full of home comforts, are perfect for a festive family holiday or romantic break. With wood burners and hot tubs our cottages will keep you warm this Christmas, leaving you with no excuse not to take part in the Christmas day swim.

500 people usually take part in this character building event, with all proceeds going to the Bude Life Saving Club. Its character building because there are no wetsuits allowed, its swimsuits only folks. Fear not though there will be mulled wine and mince pies and of course you can head back to your cosy Cornish  cottage, to relax in your hot tub with some indulgent and well earned fizz.

Don’t worry though, not all of our local Christmas festivities come with the caveat of a character building challenges. A visit in early December, the 4th to be exact, will enable you to immerse yourself in the magic of our late night Christmas shopping. Where the community combines like no other in support of its local stores. The very foundation of Christmas is formed by a community spirit that you and all visitors will soon be enchanted by.

Plan your festive break around our Christmas Calender , to ensure adults, children and loved one’s alike are enthralled by the magic of our North Cornwall wonderland.

Whatever your reason for visiting North Cornwall this Christmas, Court Farm’s family friendly facilities and cosy accommodation will ensure a magical festive holiday is had by all.

Halloween at Court Farm

Oh didn’t we have fun at Court Farm Holidays this October Half Term.   We held a mid-week Marshmallow Toasting evening around the campfire

Marshmallow Toasting at Court Farm Holidays

The play area and games room decorated in a Halloween Theme, all of our guests were given pumpkins to carve with spooky sweet parcels for each child.

Halloween Scavenger Hunt at Court Farm

We had  a scavenger hunt on the Wednesday morning with 10 clues for the children to find around the play area involving searching for objects and wriggling around in pumpkin flesh and leafy ponds to find the missing objects.

Court Farm Holidays Scavenger Hunt

Witchy flew in on her broomstick then took a rest in the outdoor play barn where she cooked up a stew of eyeballs, fingers and snakes in the outdoor play barn – whilst the ghosts and bats hung around overhead, until moving on until next year.

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Bonfire Bonanza

Firework night marks the start of a bonfire bonanza here in Bude and North Cornwall. Immerse yourself in the festivities of this family and community extravaganza whilst staying in one of our cosy Cornish cottages. Some cottages are still available, for short breaks, check availability for up to date details.

Court Farm Holidays is a family run business based in Marhamchurch, Cornwall and a short distance from the coastal town of Bude. Placing family and memories at the heart of everything we do here at Court Farm, we understand the magical moments that can be created at this time of year, in the run up to Christmas. We feel Halloween and Bonfire night  mark the start of a very special time of year for families, couples and friends alike. So, throw yourselves into our community festivities starting with a Bonfire and Fireworks Night at Bude Rugby Club on 6th November, with Guy Fawkes judging, a bar and a BBQ. The bonfire will be lit at 6.30pm with fireworks following at 7pm!

The Bonfire and Fireworks night is followed by a Firework Spectacular at The Bay View Inn, Widemouth Bay from 6pm. Enjoy a comforting hot chocolate, an indulgent toffee apple or a fulfilling hot dog, whilst sharing in a breathtaking display.

Or if you’d prefer, stay warm within our cosy cottages or relax in a hot tub and take in your wonderful surroundings. This truly is a magical and meaningful time of year and whatever your reason for visiting North Cornwall, we know you’ll enjoy the festivities and we will do our best to ensure that you have a memorable stay.