2 (all year)
Smithy End in Combe St Nicholas is the perfect setting for your next escape. The charming rural retreat has everything couples or solo travellers need for a relaxing rural interlude, including beautiful walks from the door and a cosy log burner for warming your toes when you return. The well-stocked village shop is a short stroll away and a walk to the welcoming Haymaker Inn in Wadeford, a mile down the road, is an enjoyable way to build a thirst for a pint of Somerset cider.
The cottage is just over the border of the Blackdown Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). You can step outside the door and soon be on a footpath, bridleway or mountain bike trail that will take you through a picturesque landscape. A favourite local walk starts beside the village school and loops around for six miles, passing through Whitestaunton and over Laps Water to Cinder Hill Copse and Higher Beetham. It's a reasonably challenging route, but there is a wide choice of paths to suit all abilities. The Blackdown Hills is a charming example of the English countryside at its best. Straddling the border between Somerset and Devon, it is appealing in every season with its patchwork fields, flourishing hedgerows, shaded woodlands, and winding lanes that support a vast array of flora and fauna.
You aren't limited to the countryside when you stay at Smithy End, as the stunning Jurassic Coast, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is only 15 miles or half an hour's drive away. Sun yourself on beaches at Lyme Regis and Charmouth, both of which are famed for the quality of the fossils found there. Alternatively, go via Axmouth to Seaton in the East Devon AONB. The South West Coast Path provides spectacular views, especially if you make it there early to watch the sunrise over the Bristol Channel.
Smithy End is a comfortable and welcoming place to stay at any time of the year.
Christine O'Neal joined Independent Cottages in February 2021
Smithy End is perfectly simple with everything you need close to hand. The owners live next door and are there if you have any questions. Otherwise, you'll be left alone to enjoy your stay.
Outside: There is a seating area with a bench out the front of the cottage. Guests are welcome to use the owner's private garden. Off-street parking for one car.
Additional Information: Utilities, WiFi, fuel for the log burner, bed linen and bath towels are all provided. Short breaks are possible, depending on availability. A discount is offered for weekly stays. Smoking is not allowed.
Visit the owner's website (opens in new window)