February Half Term

Family days out that are tried and tested by us!

This half term even though the weather may require you to do a bit of forward planning there is plenty to do out and about in South Devon.

Pennywell Farm: Always a favourite with families, the gates open for the 2020 season on Saturday 15th Feb and with your admission ticket you get a return ticket valid until 23 Feb to visit as many times as you like! There have been lots of new arrivals joining the world famous miniature pigs over the winter, including heavy horses, miniature ponies and donkeys. There are lots of animals to meet, feed and cuddle as well as rides and performances throughout the day. There is lots of indoor space for picnics ad play undercover, just in case there is the odd Spring shower when you are there!
Woodlands Family Theme Park: With the UKs largest indoor play centre, exciting rides indoors and out as well as a zoo and falconry centre, families can easily spend a day exploring Woodlands. Catering for all ages (from babies to adults) there is also live entertainment throughout half term. Dress up as a princess or a superhero and children get a free return ticket making a day at Woodlands amazing value for money (tickets just £7.50 pp)
Greenway House (National Trust): Join the countryside ranger for a walk through the beautiful gardens at Greenway, once the holiday home of famous crime writer, Agatha Christie. This is a free event included with normal admission ticket, selected dates available. Wear weather appropriate clothing and sturdy walking shoes to explore the grounds. Dogs on leads are permitted.
Forest and Beach Activity Days: Drop the kids off at Forest and Beach activity centre (on the hillside behind Beeson Farm!) for a day playing in the woods, lighting fires, shelter building and cooking outdoors. The ethos of Forest School encourages children to explore the natural world through practical, hands-on experience, learning new skills through play.
There are also the same year round activities that families can also enjoy over half term including the South Devon Steam Railway, a River Dart cruise, surf school or paddleboard lessons, the Art Cafe in Kingsbridge, crabbing off the Quay, the local cinema, Dartington country estate, the tour of Start Point Lighthouse and of course all our lovely local beaches!

South Devon Beach Guide

South Devon is unique as it combines expanses of rolling green countryside, quaint villages, waterfront towns and picturesque beaches offering visitors a taste of the best the UK has to offer!

Taking your dog on holiday with you is one of the benefits of holidaying in the UK and relaxing on the beach is a perfect day out for all the family!   Here is our showcase of the best beaches in South Devon where your dog is welcome too…

Beesands: Our local mile long shingle beach with award winning pub and seafood cafe, watch the fishing boats come and go in the shelter of Start Bay, and its lighthouse. Everything you need for a day out! 2 mins drive from Beeson, 0.7 miles

Slapton Sands: A golden arch of shingle beach that stretches 3 miles along the coastline and is bordered by a National Nature Reserve. Pubs and eateries at Torcross plus good parking.  8 mins drive from Beeson, 3 miles

Mattiscombe: More challenging to access (walking only) but serene, unspoilt and with a good chance of seal spotting. 11 mins drive from Beeson 3.4 miles

Gara Rock beach: Seacombe sands is an unspoilt sandy cove nestled under the Gara Rock hotel, which is perfect for a lunch stop with the most spectacular views, 14 mins drive from Beeson, 5.8 miles

Mill Bay East Portlemouth: A privately owned beach open to the public with National Trust Car Park. Beautiful sandy beach with stream, woodland and clifftop walks opposite Salcombe. 14 mins drive from Beeson, 5.9 miles

 

Blackpool Sands: One of South DEvons most popular beaches, with cafe, watersports hire and sheltered swimming. Dog friendly throughout the winter. 18 mins from Beeson, 7.8 miles

South Milton: A National Trust sandy beach looking over the iconic Thurlestone Rock that all the family will love- even the dog! Food available at the beachhouse. 25 mins from Beeson 9.6 miles

Bantham: Golden sands, rolling dunes, surf school and a great selection of food from the gastrobus in the carpark. 30 mins from Beeson, 11.9 miles

North and South Sands Salcombe: Only a few minutes from Salcombe town centre, sandy beaches that are perfect for traditional family fun  and with places to eat. 25 mins drive from Beeson, 12.7 miles

Bigbury on Sea: A family friendly beach with surf school and vast expanses of golden sand. Walk over to Burgh Island at low tide for a drink at the Pilchard Inn (or use the sea tractor if the tide is in!) 41 mins from Beeson, 15 miles (dog restrictions apply)

 

Welcome 2020

Well 2019 was quite a year, we completed the conversion on our 6th cottage, The Stables (sleeping 4), and it has had wonderful reviews so far, many saying that the photos dont do the cottage justice…though we arent quite sure why as we think the photos are a accurate representation of the interior space! Maybe what we cant capture in a photo is the lovely relaxed atmosphere that The Stables has!

We are looking forward to welcoming returning guests and new guests in 2020.

South Devon is a really lovely place for a relaxing holiday, whether its as a couple, group of friends or as a family.
We are kicking off the year with the usual Endurance Life trail running event at Beesands and so are fully booked for that weekend.

The Easter holidays are starting to fill up with mainly returning guests but we still have good availability for the rest of the year so do get in touch and see what we can offer!

We look forward to meeting you in 2020!

The Cross Family

Open plan living and dining area

End of Summer Escapes

The end of August and beginning of September are a perfect time of year to visit South Devon! Mild temperatures, quiet beaches, stunning clifftop walks, seal spotting and beautiful waterfront towns to explore….

An ideal time of year for couples who want to explore the local area, or families with young children who arent tied down to term time holidays.

With prices from just £320 a week (special offer) you can embrace all that South Devon has to offer!

A warm welcome awaits you…

National Cream Tea Week

Its practically an unspoken rule that on a holiday to Devon you should indulge in a traditional Cream Tea!

Of course, there is great debate about what should go first….the jam or the cream?!

In Devon there is only one way to enjoy your cream tea, and that- of course, is cream first, jam on top!

We have a wonderful selection of tea rooms, farm shops and cafes for you to choose from when going for a cream tea, here are some of our favourites:

  1. The Seabreeze Cafe, Torcross. A delightful cafe on the seafront at Torcross, we love the coastal themed interior and their generous sized scones! Enjoy your cream tea whilst listening to the sea lapping at the shore!
  2. Stokely Farm Shop Cafe. An excellent farmshop where you could buy all the ingredients to make your own – or simply enjoy sitting outside amongst the greenery and sample one of their homemade cream teas!
  3. Avon Mill Garden Centre. A lovely garden centre with excellent cafe, why not build up an appetite walking along the banks of the River Avon before filling up on a cream tea!
  4. South Allington House. A privately owned country house and campsite, enjoy a cream tea on the lawn.

Wherever you decide to have your cream tea, we hope that you savour every mouthful….and please remember the cream first!

 

A weekend in South Devon

We thought we would put together a couple of itineraries based on things our guests have told us they love to do!

A relaxed weekend away

After you have arrived at Beeson Farm and made yourselves at home why not wander down to the Cricket Inn at Beesands for a delicious seafood supper whilst overlooking beautiful Start Bay, waiting for the light of the lighthouse to come on.

Day 1: Head over to Torcross (either walk along the coastpath from Beesands or take the car). The village has an interesting hist0ry- stop at the tank to learn more about Operation Tiger, the D Day landing practice that ended in tragedy. Spend some time on the beach, feed the ducks or take a stroll around Slapton Ley nature reserve.

Stop for lunch at Stokelely Farm Shop and have a browse of the garden centre and craft/interiors shops before stocking up for a BBQ from the butcher.

Day 2:Drive to Start Point lighthouse and take the circular walk to Mattiscombe beach, stopping for a tour of the lighthouse on the way. Keep you eyes peeled for seals.

Day 3: Visit Kingsbridge, Dartmouth or Salcombe. Each town is on the waterfront and has a lovely mix of independent shops, galleries and cafes

A weekend with the kids

Day 1: Arrive at Beeson Farm and let the children run off steam in our playground, cider orchard or with a game of table tennis or badminton. Head down to Beesands for fish and chips from Britannia Takeaway and sit on the beach whilst the children have a paddle.

Day 2: Have breakfast at Stokeley Farm Shop and buy supplies for a picnic before heading to Mill Bay. The children will enjoy the golden sands, digging dams and rockpooling. Take the passenger ferry over to Salcombe and explore the town if you go drag them away from the beach

Day 3: Head to Kingsbridge with the crab lines and try crabbing from the harbour wall. Ride the miniature train from the tourist informaiton centre to the recreation ground and then head to the Crabshell Inn for lunch or to book a paddleboarding lesson.

A foodie weekend

Day 1: After you have arrived pop down to either the award winning Cricket Inn at Beesands or the award winning Bear and Blacksmith in Chillington for dinner.

Day 2: Have a morning coffee at Fika in Kingsbridge before driving on to Bantham for a walk on the beach (or book into surf school if you are feeling adventurous!) Have a late lunch at the Oyster Shack and stop at Avon Mill Garden Centre for a cream tea on the way home. If you have room enjoy takeaway fish and chips from Britannia at Beesands!

Day 3: Have breakfast at Springfield Farmshop before heading to Gara Rock. Park at Gara and walk the circular route to Mill Bay and back before enjoying lunch with an awesome view!

 

 

Group bookings

Beeson Farm makes the ideal getaway for a weekend or longer with a group of friends, family or for a special reunion and in 2019 this seems to be a particularly popular option.

Our cottages are all centered around the old farm courtyard, which is ideal for gathering outside in the summer months and lighting up the BBQs whilst enjoying a cold glass of homemade Beeson Farm Cider from our orchard.

Children will love to play in the table tennis room, have a game of badminton or enjoy the freedom of running around the field and playarea.

Sleeping 22 guests (plus babies in cots) throughout the five cottages there is enough accommodation for everyone. The Linhay and Dairy have downstairs bedrooms and accessible bathrooms making our cottages perfect for a multigenerational holiday.

The courtyard catches the sun all day long and the beach is a short drive or a mile long walk through the village down to Beesands. The pub has an extensive dining area and also benches overlooking the sea with views towards Start Point Lighthouse.

The local area offers plenty of ideas to entertain all ages, from adventure theme parks to National Trust properties as well as the picturesque waterfront towns of Salcombe, Kingsbridge and Dartmouth.

Book your group holiday and reconnect with those friends and family youve been meaning to hang out with!

A day in Kingsbridge

Our local town of Kingsbridge, just over 6 miles from Beeson Farm, is a wonderful local hub that sits at the head of the Salcombe Estuary.

In summer children love to sit on the embankment with their crabbing lines and watch the boats come and go. The estuary is well used by boats, kayakers and paddleboarders as well as the Kingsbridge-Salcombe ferry.

Kingsbridge town is a lovely mix of independent shops, galleries, antique/vintage shops, places of worship and cafes.

Start off your day at the very top of town at the Cookworthy Museum where you can discover the history of the local area. After your visit pop across the road to the worlds smallest nightclub, housed in a telephone box!

Head down fore street stopping at the community garden on the way.  Walk under the Shambles (an old market hall on raised granite pillars dating from Elizabethan times) and you will come across the old town hall, now the towns cinema. The cinema is one of the most recognisable buildings in the town, with its distinctive clock face which has only three faces- the fourth faced the old workhouse and so wasn’t added to prevent the inmates from clock watching!

Discover the eclectic mix of shops and galleries that line Fore Street. With something for all ages from toy shops (The Trading Post and Non Such) to independent clothes shops (Posh Totti, Cocoa, Spotted, Mint Dress Agency), galleries (the Mayne Gallery, Tidal Gallery and The Art Cafe where you can paint your own pottery) and the wonderful Harbour bookshop.

Coming off the highstreet you can find many little alleyways lined with cottages – often with fascinating names such as Squeezebelly Alley. As the name suggests it is too narrow for more than one person to pass through at a time!

Pass the entrance to the estuary and hop on the miniature railway to the end of the line where you can disembark for the recreation ground (with excellent childrens playgroud) or walk on down for a drink at the Crabhsell Inn overlooking the water.

Kingsbridge has a thriving antiques scene with the Antiques and Craft Centre on Ebrington Street and the eclectic Two Rooms on Lower Union Road (a bazaar of the bizarre, full floor to ceiling with treasures and well worth a rummage!), as well as numerous charity shops.

Kingsbridge Information Centre sits on the town square and the staff are very  happy to help  with recommendations for places to eat and things to do.

No matter what the time of year there are plenty of local events in the town to choose from, incluing the regular farmers market, Kingsbridge Food and Music Festival (June), Kingsbridge Fair Week (July) Kingsbridge Show (September) and Kingsbridge Celebrates Christmas (December)

Kingsbridge also has an indoor pool and sports centre.

Eating Out

Kingsbridge has something to suit all tastes and also numerous takeaways. For families we recommend eating the Art Café, the Crabshell Inn, Cool Beans Coffee shop, La Ranchera (amazing Mexican food) or the Fat Monkey.

For light lunches we can recommend Harbour House Café at the Arts and Yoga centre which has a delicious menu of vegetarian and vegan food, new arrival Fika, a Scandinavian inspired coffee house, and the Old Bakery which has a beautiful courtyard.

For a special meal head to Wild Artichokes (run by chef Jane Baxter) or Twenty Seven run by Jamie Rogers

Whatever you get up to on a day out in Kingsbridge we hope you enjoy it!

Easter in South Devon

On Easter Sunday morning join us on the farm to see what the Easter Bunny has been up too- we can guarantee that there will be plenty of chocolate easter eggs hiding around the farm, cottages and courtyard for our youngest guests!

Head over to the annual South Pool Easter Fun Day on April 20th (Approx 10 mins from Beeson Farm) The fun takes place alongside the estuary in the pretty village of South Pool, home to the fabulous Millbrook Inn. Turn up with your Easter Bonnet for the childrens egg hunt and bonnet competition from 12:15pm and then marvel at the South Pool duck race from 2pm, chose your rubber duck and cheer it on as it floats to victory down the estuary! There will be a BBQ and live music at the pub throughout the afternoon.

East Soar Outdoor Experience is situated on a National Trust farm in one of the the most breathtaking parts of South Devon on the headland, just above the picturesque town of Salcombe (approx 15 mins drive from Beeson Farm). Their yearly Easter family fun days are hugely popular with locals and guests alike and will runs over the Easter holidays. 11am daily, £3 per child.

The Tower Inn in Slapton are hosting their own mini Easter fair on the 20th April, with plenty of entertainment for the children and wonderful food and drink for the adults to get Easter off to a great start!

Start Point Lighthouse

Trinity House has completed the modernisation of Start Point Lighthouse in Devon, upgrading the site’s aids to navigation and control systems to provide simplified maintenance and reliable performance that will extend the life of the station for a further 20 years.
Start Point Lighthouse—located on the most southerly tip of Devon—was built by Trinity House in 1836 and automated in 1993.  The peninsula runs for almost a mile out to sea on the south side of Start Bay. The walk up to Start Point Lighthouse is breathtaking – dramatic cliffs and landscape, and the South West Coast Path runs along this stretch of coastline. There are great walks towards Beesands and Torcross, or East Prawle and Salcombe. You may even see seals or dolphins out at sea – and a host of sea birds and birds of prey.

The lighthouse provides a navigational light comprised of three white flashes every ten seconds that can be seen from Prawle Point to the west and across Start Bay to the east, as well as a red sector light that marks the Skerries Bank, a shallow area to the east of the lighthouse. A hazard warning signal sounds during low visibility conditions that blasts once every 30 seconds when visibility drops below one nautical mile.

Start Point Lighthouse was modernised in 2019, upgrading the site’s aids to navigation and control systems to provide simplified maintenance and reliable performance, including the installation of new LED lamps for the main navigation light and a new hazard warning signal.

The lighthouse is now monitored and controlled from Trinity House’s Planning Centre in Harwich, Essex.