3 night family break in Landrake, Cornwall: travel diary + photos

On Good Friday I had a quick look on Airbnb to see if there were any holidays available for under £100 per night in Devon for the end of the Easter holidays.

The lockdown restrictions were easing as part of the government roadmap out of lockdown and we were allowed to stay in self contained accommodation from 12th April 2021. Yippee!

Amazingly I found a cottage for just £70 per night in Landrake, Cornwall just next to the border of Devon. It was very lucky as there were only two accommodations available in the entire of Devon and Cornwall for the last weekend of the Easter holidays for under £100 per night.

So we nabbed it!

Continue reading “3 night family break in Landrake, Cornwall: travel diary + photos”

National Trust Ebworth Estate + Sheepscombe Common: a family walk + picnic

On Easter Sunday the weather was surprisingly very warm and sunny. After we had been teased with weather forecasts of potential snow and freezing temperatures, we had planned a family day at home watching movies and eating vegan Easter eggs. However, the weather was so warm we decided to pack a picnic for lunch and venture into the countryside. A place we only just found out about, which is surprisingly close to our home, is the National Trust Ebworth Estate with free parking and access to amazing walks through Cotswolds Commons and Beechwoods National Nature Reserve.

Continue reading “National Trust Ebworth Estate + Sheepscombe Common: a family walk + picnic”

Visiting Painswick Rococo Garden in February

At the end of February we went out for a day trip for the first time in what felt like FOREVER.

We have been in lockdown in the UK since the start of January 2021 and we have not been allowed to leave our local area.

It’s the third lockdown we’ve had and this is probably the toughest as it’s been winter. It’s been freezing cold and we’ve been trapped indoors, had a lack of sun, lack of entertainment, no gym to go to for exercise and escapism, no socialising, the kids have been home the whole time climbing the walls whilst we try to work at the same time… it’s been quite crazy and cabin fever has definitely been setting in… and did I mention it’s been freezing cold?!

Even before this year started we were in lockdown in November and even in December (and for most of 2020) we had restrictions on meeting others, meaning we only met up with one household on Christmas Day indoors and that was it.

Life has certainly been very different and travel plans and days out have totally been put on hold, often leaving us feeling like a prisoner in our own home! We both work from home and have been at home more than ever, day in day out, groundhog day everyday for months on end!

It’s now March and we will be allowed to start seeing one other household from the end of the month, then hopefully we can travel again mid-April. The UK will be gradually easing lockdown restrictions, so things won’t be looking normal for quite a while.

But at least the weather will start to improve now, making local walks more enjoyable and appealing for us and the kids. At least if we can get outdoors more often without being freezing we can lift our moods and feel less trapped.

There has literally been no days out or travel for us for months, but we decided to visit Rococo Garden at the end of February which is around 5 miles from our home and as it’s an outdoor attraction it is allowed to be open for local visitors.

It’s the only attraction local to us that we can legally travel to right now and I will share our thoughts on visiting Rococo Garden in February in this blog post and lots of photos too!

Continue reading “Visiting Painswick Rococo Garden in February”

Our family staycation to Fishcombe Cove and Brixham in Torbay, Devon

After what feels like forever, we finally went away on a mini holiday to Devon!

It’s the first summer that we hadn’t been away on holiday and were desperate to go away.

We had booked a weekend in Swansea earlier this month, but that was cancelled last minute as they went into a local lockdown!

Other travel plans we had set in mind for the year, and luckily not already booked, were cancelled due to the coronavirus lockdown.

We kept our fingers tightly crossed that our Devon trio would still go ahead, but we really thought it would get cancelled so never got our hopes up.

Luckily the south west of the U.K. has remained out of the local lockdowns so far and we were able to take our short staycation in Devon – phew!

Read on to see what we got up to and all our travel photos!

Continue reading “Our family staycation to Fishcombe Cove and Brixham in Torbay, Devon”

Painswick church 99 trees

I’ve always lived in Gloucestershire, living in Cheltenham until I was 26 years old and then moving to Gloucester. Now I live in Brockworth right on the edge of Gloucester, bordering both Cheltenham and Stroud.

No matter whether I lived in Cheltenham, or now Brockworth, we always take the same route to Stroud passing through the picturesque Cotswold village of Painswick.

As a child I’d occasionally go to Stratford Park in Stroud. That was pretty much my Stroud experience as a child and every time we went, I’d remember my mum pointing out the 99 trees in Painswick as we drove past them.

We were always slightly fascinated by them and the story of how there came to be only 99…

Continue reading “Painswick church 99 trees”

Ystradfellte waterfalls: Brecon Beacons National Park four waterfalls walk

On Sunday we did the iconic four waterfalls walk in Ystradfellte, Brecon Beacons National Park, Wales. It was the farthest I’d been from my home since the whole coronavirus pandemic began in March!

The drive was two hours from our house and it was my birthday day out!

9 years ago, just before we had children, Ben had surprised me with a night away in the Brecon Beacons and we did the this very same Ystradfellte waterfalls walk.

It was great to return with the kids and show them this amazing place, make some memories and capture them too in the below photos. Continue reading “Ystradfellte waterfalls: Brecon Beacons National Park four waterfalls walk”

Is Barry Island worth a visit?

At the start of March, Reuben celebrated his 5th birthday!  When we asked him what he wanted to do, his first response was to go to the forest and have a campfire and sleep in a tent!  It’s definitely out of season for camping, so we asked if there was anything else he wanted to do.  “Go to the beach” was his next response!  So on the Saturday after his birthday we decided to visit Barry Island in Wales. Continue reading “Is Barry Island worth a visit?”

24 hours exploring Mumbles, Gower, kid-free!

Earlier this year I asked my mum if she’d have Bella and Reuben overnight for the last weekend of February.  It’s the month of mine and Ben’s anniversary and we’ve now been together nine years.  I wanted to go away for one night and explore somewhere new together.  I wasn’t sure where, but as we only had around 30 hours in total kid-free, it couldn’t be too far.

We’ve been to the Gower in Wales two times before kid-free and love it there.  We’ve previously been to Rhossili Bay and Oxwich Bay.  We decided to go again as it’s not too long a drive, around two hours.  This time we decided to visit Mumbles!

Read on to discover what we got up to in Mumbles and where we found lots of yummy vegan food!

Continue reading “24 hours exploring Mumbles, Gower, kid-free!”

Travel spending diary: 6 nights with kids in Portugal on a budget

Whenever we travel we have a budget to try and stick to.  This is money we have saved specifically for that trip, plus we can add on what we would have allowed for food shopping if we were at home that week.

As well as keeping a travel spending log to stick to our budget (or at least try to), I also like to see exactly where we are spending money and how much things cost.  It means we can see where we can cut costs on travel, if we need to, and also helps me predict how much similar trips will cost in the future.

Hopefully it’s also useful for others to see how much family trips cost or can cost.

When planning our recent six night stay in Portugal, I had a rough budget in mind of £1000.  This all depended on how much we could get our flights and accommodation for as it was half term so prices were, of course, higher than usual.

£1200 was around our maximum and for six nights in Portugal as a family of four with all travel, food, accomodation and entertainment, I think this was a more reasonable amount as a budget.  £300 per person for almost a week’s stay, food and transport.

Read on to discover how close to our ideal budget of £1000, but maximum £1200 we managed to get. Continue reading “Travel spending diary: 6 nights with kids in Portugal on a budget”