Much over due for a family holiday I started looking around for something which would make a magical holiday as it was to be Emmy’s first time away.
Through a recommendation on Twitter I came across Coombe Mill in Cornwall I looked over their website and couldn’t wait to book us in for a family holiday. I spoke with Fiona and the more she described the working farm the more excited I got.
The journey from Essex to St Breward in Bodmin was to take us 4hrs 50 minutes (ish) however the M5 was closed due to a huge accident the day before and obviously with a stop midway for lunch and Emmy’s sanity. We arrived at Coombe Mill just before 7pm on 5th November, after navigating the long windy countryside for a while (to reach Coombe Mill you need to drive down a long windy very narrow lane – which is fine as long as a Tractor isn’t coming the other way). We were greeted at Reception by Fiona who showed us into and around our Cottage – Willow.
(This picture was taken the following day as it was dark when we arrived)
We only explored the cottage on the first night as it was rather dark by the time we arrived but could already tell we were going to have a great time, especially as the first thing Emmy did was jump on the rocking horse and start playing. Our cottage had 3 bedrooms – upstairs a double and a twin room and downstairs another twin room (we were to be staying also with Paul’s Parents who were arriving the next day). As we settled into our rooms upstairs unpacking and finding everything we would need that evening for Emmy, she busied herself in the purpose built playroom which was also upstairs. There were lots of toys, cuddly toys and books for her to play with so she was especially happy!
After cooking dinner in the cottage (I was prepared and had packed cupboard essentials and brought with us) we bathed Emmy in the downstairs bathroom as we thought she may like the whirlpool bath – she didn’t so the upstairs bathroom became hers and we enjoyed the lovely whirlpool bath for ourselves! I have to say I need one of these at home now as it was a lovely place to enjoy an evening glass of wine. The kitchen was very well stocked with pots, pans and other utensils and essential which you desperately needed such as milk etc could be brought at reception. The only thing about the cottage which could be added is perhaps a fridge lock and drawer catches as Emmy kept helping herself to the chocolate in the fridge and we had to move the sharp knives from the drawer as she keep making a beeline for them.
The next morning and every morning after that we met up with the other guests staying at Coombe Mill and was greeted by Farmer Nick (or Farmer Ted some days) and the tractor and off we all went on a feed run. The children climb aboard the tractor and adults walk behind, although as it was November and the tractor wasn’t full the adults were able to jump aboard too, although we were not given the choice as Emmy wouldn’t go on it alone.
The younger children are given a chance to drive the tractor during the week, which after a few days Emmy felt brave enough to do.
This is a great way of meeting the other guest staying on the farm and Emmy very quickly made friends with a few of the children during the feed runs. One lovely girl in particular who was almost 4 years old, you could find them most mornings holding hands and saving a seat for each other on the tractor.
During the morning feed run the children are allowed a very hands on approach with all of the animals. You are let inside all of the animal coups/pens (except for the Alpaca who had taken to spitting) and given the feed so you can feed them yourselves. Emmy loved this spending her time between feeding and chasing the animals.
Here are just a few of the hundreds of pictures I took during the feed runs as this was Emmy’s favourite time of the day:
Left – Right, Top – Bottom: Stroking the Pigs, holding hands with her new friend watching the Donkey’s, the Alpaca and Ponies, the Deer, feeding the Chicken’s, duck’s and Turkey’s, feeding the Rabbit’s, Emmy caught her own Chicken, Cuddling a Goat and catching a Bunny.
Choosing just a few pictures to share then was very hard as there were so many but I hope that shows you just how much fun we all had. (It may look as if they are all taken on the same day – this is not the case I just dressed Emmy, and myself in the same farm clothes each morning as after day 2 I realised that washing them everyday was just plain silly)
The feed run takes just over an hour – Emmy and I had usually been up for hours by that point so on our return back to the cottage she would often have breakfast number 2 which was usually a dippy egg after she had collected the egg herself from the Chicken’s that morning.
The farm is open everyday after the feed run so the guests are able to go and visit the animals whenever they wish, we often went off to see the Rabbits.
We were treated to a fantastic BBQ, Bonfire and Fireworks display during our weeks stay which Emmy loved. This was Emmy’s 1st fireworks display and she loved it – shouting More, More after they had gone off and loving her glow sticks which we had taken with us.
Coombe Mill also has a large outdoor play area which Emmy greatly enjoyed complete with an old tractor which the children can play on, there is also an indoor play area for the kids which each day we visited before bed to wear Emmy out a little more, each time we had the whole barn to ourselves which allowed Paul and Emmy to both act like children and i’m honestly not sure who enjoyed it more. There is also lots of outdoor space (30 acres) to explore and run around as well as a course fishing lake (Grandad is upset he ran out of time for Fishing) and the River Camel runs through the grounds which can also be fished for Trout and Salmon.
Nanny and Grandad enjoy their holiday too. Above – Emmy and Grandad on the tractor and Nanny and Emmy baking cakes.
We can’t wait to go back and are already planning another holiday here next year as it has everything you need for children and Emmy loved it (we plan to take our dog Barney next time too) so much so she cried and screamed when we left.
(Each Child recieves a certificate at the end of their holiday)
Disclosure: We paid for our holiday and really enjoyed it so are sharing with you.