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Francesca's Guidebook

Francesca

Francesca's Guidebook

Local pubs
These are pubs we enjoy fairly frequently and all within a half an hour's drive from the cottage.
This our nearest pub and one that is guaranteed to be fun on a Friday or Saturday night. The food is very basic but fine - we normally just feed the kids chips but they do fine pub grub. Children and dogs are welcome.
The Cruwys Arms
This our nearest pub and one that is guaranteed to be fun on a Friday or Saturday night. The food is very basic but fine - we normally just feed the kids chips but they do fine pub grub. Children and dogs are welcome.
Quite pricey but good standard guaranteed and also food served all day. Games for children inside and outside in small garden. Booking for evening and weekend lunches recommended.
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Mount Pleasant Inn Nomansland
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Quite pricey but good standard guaranteed and also food served all day. Games for children inside and outside in small garden. Booking for evening and weekend lunches recommended.
This is a lovely pub about 20 minutes drive from us. The food is reliably good and in summer there is sometimes live music outside in the garden. There is also a good circular walk from here.
The Old Malt Scoop Inn
This is a lovely pub about 20 minutes drive from us. The food is reliably good and in summer there is sometimes live music outside in the garden. There is also a good circular walk from here.
Award-winning gastropub - definitely go and definitely book! 25 minutes drive from the cottage. Great views from outside seating area in summer and cosy interior for winter. https://www.thecadeleigharms.com/
The Cadeleigh Arms
Award-winning gastropub - definitely go and definitely book! 25 minutes drive from the cottage. Great views from outside seating area in summer and cosy interior for winter. https://www.thecadeleigharms.com/
Slightly further afield in the pretty village of Sandford, this is another foody pub with a good atmosphere and plenty of local drinkers too. Good outside area in summer. Dogs welcome. Worth booking.
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The Lamb Inn at Sandford
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Slightly further afield in the pretty village of Sandford, this is another foody pub with a good atmosphere and plenty of local drinkers too. Good outside area in summer. Dogs welcome. Worth booking.
If you fancy a quintessential English Sunday Roast then book a table here - worth the half an hour drive! Definitely have to book.
Tom Cobley Tavern
If you fancy a quintessential English Sunday Roast then book a table here - worth the half an hour drive! Definitely have to book.
Great food and dogs welcome. Definitely book to avoid disappointment.
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The Ring of Bells
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Great food and dogs welcome. Definitely book to avoid disappointment.
This is about 25 mins from the cottage. We go here regularly as garden great for children (not when too young as right on the river) and the food is always reliably good. Book for inside tables on weekends.
Fishermans Cot Tiverton by Marston's Inn
This is about 25 mins from the cottage. We go here regularly as garden great for children (not when too young as right on the river) and the food is always reliably good. Book for inside tables on weekends.
Family entertainment
These are places local (by our standards!) to the cottage that we regularly enjoy with our children (6 & 3 at time of writing).
About 25 minutes drive from the cottage, this is a unique, family run tourist attraction that we have a season ticket to and never get bored of! There is something for all weathers - good indoor and outdoor play and lots for any train enthusiasts! Check opening times out of season.
Devon Railway Centre
About 25 minutes drive from the cottage, this is a unique, family run tourist attraction that we have a season ticket to and never get bored of! There is something for all weathers - good indoor and outdoor play and lots for any train enthusiasts! Check opening times out of season.
This is a classic National Trust property with a formal garden as well as lovely parkland. You can walk in the parkland for free even if you're not a member, although there is a charge for parking. There is a brilliant fallen tree turned play area as you turn into the drive on the left. Dogs are allowed in the park but not in the formal gardens or the fallen tree play area. An amazing kitchen garden and good cafe.
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Knightshayes Gardens National Trust
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This is a classic National Trust property with a formal garden as well as lovely parkland. You can walk in the parkland for free even if you're not a member, although there is a charge for parking. There is a brilliant fallen tree turned play area as you turn into the drive on the left. Dogs are allowed in the park but not in the formal gardens or the fallen tree play area. An amazing kitchen garden and good cafe.
The picturesque village of Brampford Speke is about half an hour's drive from us but well worth it if, in summer, you'd like to have a picnic and a lovely river swim or if in winter you'd like a river walk. More details on request. Brampford Speke also has a very good gastropub called The Lazy Toad.
Brampford Speke
The picturesque village of Brampford Speke is about half an hour's drive from us but well worth it if, in summer, you'd like to have a picnic and a lovely river swim or if in winter you'd like a river walk. More details on request. Brampford Speke also has a very good gastropub called The Lazy Toad.
Killerton is another National Trust property that we love to visit. It has lovely walks all around, a good cafe, play areas and in winter the house is always themed (ie Narnia, Grimms Fairy Tales) and makes a fun visit for children.
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Killerton House
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Killerton is another National Trust property that we love to visit. It has lovely walks all around, a good cafe, play areas and in winter the house is always themed (ie Narnia, Grimms Fairy Tales) and makes a fun visit for children.
We love visiting here - interesting to learn all about the bees and also good play areas for the children.
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Quince Honey Farm
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We love visiting here - interesting to learn all about the bees and also good play areas for the children.
One of the nicest soft play areas we've been to! Perfect for a rainy day where you have to do something with the children! Always clean and lots of seating around the edge so you can keep an eye on the little ones without having to trudge through the play area itself.
Planet Play
One of the nicest soft play areas we've been to! Perfect for a rainy day where you have to do something with the children! Always clean and lots of seating around the edge so you can keep an eye on the little ones without having to trudge through the play area itself.
About 40 minutes drive from the cottage, this spectacular spot is well worth a visit. Is on the edge of Dartmoor and has lovely walks all along the river and plenty of paddling/swimming/picnicking spots in summer. The pub is open all year round and serves good food all day and is right on the river. Also good place to take bicycles.
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Fingle Bridge Inn
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About 40 minutes drive from the cottage, this spectacular spot is well worth a visit. Is on the edge of Dartmoor and has lovely walks all along the river and plenty of paddling/swimming/picnicking spots in summer. The pub is open all year round and serves good food all day and is right on the river. Also good place to take bicycles.
This is a beautiful ancient clapper bridge in the heart of Exmoor with an excellent pub. Lots of walks, swimming, paddling and ice creams, depending on season. Be prepared for an uphill walk (about half a mile) back up to the car park. Small disabled car park right by the river though.
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Tarr Steps Woodland National Nature Reserve
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This is a beautiful ancient clapper bridge in the heart of Exmoor with an excellent pub. Lots of walks, swimming, paddling and ice creams, depending on season. Be prepared for an uphill walk (about half a mile) back up to the car park. Small disabled car park right by the river though.
A great place for cycling, walking and any lake activities. Good cafe. About 40 minutes drive from the cottage but can easily spend a day here in summer.
Wimbleball Lake Activities Centre
A great place for cycling, walking and any lake activities. Good cafe. About 40 minutes drive from the cottage but can easily spend a day here in summer.
This is a fun, muddy assault course for all ages, open all year round. 35 mins drive from cottage. Must bring change of clothes!
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The Bear Trail
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This is a fun, muddy assault course for all ages, open all year round. 35 mins drive from cottage. Must bring change of clothes!
Brilliant place worth 45 minute drive as so much to do. Near Exeter so can combine with trip there although plenty to do right on site. Go Ape, forest walks, Segway trails, mountain biking, Gruffalo trail, sandpit playground, lots of dens on walks, good cafe - something for everyone. Only negative is expensive car park but worth going in any case.
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Haldon Forest Park - Forestry England
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Brilliant place worth 45 minute drive as so much to do. Near Exeter so can combine with trip there although plenty to do right on site. Go Ape, forest walks, Segway trails, mountain biking, Gruffalo trail, sandpit playground, lots of dens on walks, good cafe - something for everyone. Only negative is expensive car park but worth going in any case.
Costs quite a bit to get in but good fun especially for 7+ as many of the rides have a height restriction. Definitely take a picnic as food not good.
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Diggerland Devon
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Costs quite a bit to get in but good fun especially for 7+ as many of the rides have a height restriction. Definitely take a picnic as food not good.
This is a lovely fruit and veg picking farm and restaurant/cafe. Delicious strawberries and raspberries and great deli shop.
Thorne's Farm Shop
This is a lovely fruit and veg picking farm and restaurant/cafe. Delicious strawberries and raspberries and great deli shop.
Neighbourhoods
Exeter is 40 minutes drive from the cottage and well worth a visit if you've never been before. The RAMM museum is free and brilliant for children. Much of the centre is pedestrian/buses only so not too difficult to negotiate with little ones. The cathedral is beautiful and open to visitors most of the time. There are lots of seasonal family friendly events - please ask us for more details or look online at https://www.visitexeter.com/
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Exeter
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Exeter is 40 minutes drive from the cottage and well worth a visit if you've never been before. The RAMM museum is free and brilliant for children. Much of the centre is pedestrian/buses only so not too difficult to negotiate with little ones. The cathedral is beautiful and open to visitors most of the time. There are lots of seasonal family friendly events - please ask us for more details or look online at https://www.visitexeter.com/