Cornwall in the summer is amazing though you are never really guaranteed beach weather whatever the season. It’s a trip we make each year as a family and have enjoyed exploring the rugged coast line and hidden beaches come rain or shine. So how would it fair for a winter break… well it wasn’t the ‘hot’ baby moon we had originally imagined, but everything changes when it’s your second!
Before we set off to Tredethick Farm Cottages I spent some time exploring their website and trying to work out how we would fill a long weekend if it rained every day. Typically being mid-November the festive activities were not in full swing, Christmas was not quite close enough to sneak in a Christmas fete or to the visit the big man himself. The website gave me a glimmer of hope with a soft play, indoor sandpit, games room and pool. Could we stay ‘in’ all weekend… well we could try if needed.
When we arrived in the pitch black after an extraordinarily long journey, it was hard to work out quite what we were going to wake up to. It seemed like we had driven miles down the Cornish lanes to the middle of nowhere. I was hoping that at the very least there would be a comfy bed and a hot shower waiting. We eagerly opened the door to a large fire place with a wood burner – a promising start!
We were staying in ‘The Dairy’, a two bed cottage which slept 4. The rooms were both spacious with a good sized family bathroom and an open plan kitchen, diner and living room. The kitchen was well appointed with everything you needed including children’s crockery and cutlery, washing machine and dishwasher. The cottage was nicely decorated and had a family friendly feel – no ridiculously expensive furniture for Hugh to ruin. There was milk in the fridge, fresh scones, clotted cream and jam waiting… it was 9pm but who said cream tea had to be enjoyed in the afternoon!
When Hugh bounced into our room ready for a fun filled day we checked the weather and decided today was the day to put the place to the test. Having flicked through the welcome folder we knew the first thing to try was the animal feeding. Hugh jumped on a ride on tractor from the shed outside our cottage and headed to the barn where Farmer Jenny was waiting to meet us.
Inside the farm shed lives pigs, goats, guinea pigs and rabbits, they were all in need of their breakfast. Farmer Jenny helped Hugh to feed all the animals before walking down the drive to feed the lamas and last but not least the chickens. After he had finished his work for the day, Hugh checked the chicken coup for eggs and as if by magic there were 3 freshly laid eggs waiting for him.
Our eggs safely made it back to the cottage for lunch so we headed out to the play park and to explore the farm before the rain was due to set in. The play park has a good selection of equipment; it is safely fenced in and in good condition. We considered one of the mapped walks down towards the river Fowey through the fields, but sensibly decided that after days of rain, it may be a little too soggy.
We headed into Lostwithiel to get a few essentials and see what the town had to offer. We found everything we needed in the local butcher, baker and well-appointed small supermarket. There were plenty of gift shops, cafés and restaurants that looked inviting. I perfect place for some mummy time!
At lunch time two new arrivals were going to join us on the farm, young lambs no more than 2 weeks old that needed bottle feeding. Hugh once again rode his tractor to the barn and eagerly joined farmer Jenny for their first feed. An opportunity you don’t get often and one we shall treasure. To top it off, Hugh was asked to name the lambs, Lightening and McQueen, why not?!
In the afternoon it was time to test drive the soft play, sandpit and pool. All of the facilities were clean, tidy and well maintained. The soft play has a coffee machine and a selection of papers and magazines making it my personal favourite. The sandpit is also in an indoor barn along with a selection of activities for older children such as table football.
The pool was warm and inviting, a spacious changing room with showers makes it easy to use. But Hugh’s personal favourite bit… the hot tub garden! Andy and Hugh enjoyed a dip in the tub looking over the rolling fields whilst it drizzled; made perfect by the plastic wine glasses in the cottage for a cold vino in the tub.
As Hugh dried off in front of the log burner, I sat and reflected on how much we had done in a day. We had adventured no further than a mile to the town yet we had all thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and it was safe to say we were going to all sleep well.
On Sunday we decided we would visit the Eden Project. With it only being 15minutes from the cottages it offered a perfect solution for a chilly day. We could pretend we were in the rainforest in the heat of a biome! Having visited a number of times in the summer holidays we knew what to expect but it was nice to enjoy it with a lot less people. Being largely indoors it proved a great winter activity.
It was Monday and our last day so we got up and headed down for one last opportunity to feed the animals. To add to his farmer duties, Hugh spent some time grooming Ladybird the pony before riding her round the farm. At the end of his ride Farmer Jenny kindly presented Hugh with his first rosette. He proudly wore it all the way home telling anyone who would listen, that he had ‘won’ it for his riding!
Our wet and windy winter break in Cornwall was a success from start to finish. Tredethick has so much to offer that come rain or shine you can easily fill a weekend. Supplemented with all the local attractions within only few miles, a week in the winter months would definitely be a great option. Cornwall is definitely not just for summer… Hugh will vouch for that!
NB: Emily and her family visited Tredethick as their guests but all views and opinions are her own.
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