What’s Combe Martin Beach Holiday Park like?
If you thought there was no such thing as a quiet, relaxing holiday park, think again – Combe Martin Beach Holiday Park really is. This small, family-run site is ideally located for exploring North Devon, and pet owners are guaranteed a warm welcome. The park is owned by John Fowler Holidays, which started with a single caravan in a field in 1953. The company now has sites in Devon, Cornwall and Somerset but hasn’t lost that personal touch.
How dog-friendly is Combe Martin Beach Holiday Park?
The site is heaven for dogs, if a little hilly. A woodland nature trail borders the site and John Fowler Holidays also own the beach over the road, which is pet-friendly all year round.
Dogs are allowed in the Manor House too, where you can grab a drink, get some WiFi and enjoy the evening entertainment. This is really quite rare for a holiday park so it is lovely to see. Pets can chill out on their own little sofa next to a jar stuffed with treats.
When we visited, Ernie also had a welcome pack waiting for him in the caravan, complete with a dog bowl, blanket, toy, treats and poo bags. A helpful guide to the park also had lots of information about the best places to visit with dogs nearby. Two pets are allowed to stay per unit for £25 for a short break or £40 for a week. They must be booked and paid for in advance and kept on lead while around the park.
Tell me more about Combe Martin Beach Holiday Park
Guests can stay in either chalets or caravans but for more modern accommodation, I’d go for the vans. We upgraded to Silver standard (the best you can get with a dog) and our modern two-bedroom caravan – number 48 – was fantastic. We had sea views to the left and rolling hills to the right. It also backed on to the woodland trail, which was great for Ernie.
From what we could tell, the van was pretty much brand new and felt like a home-from-home. Not only did it have double glazing and central heating but there was a lovely electric fire to take the chill off in the evenings. The shower was hot and powerful, too – on a par, if not better, than what we have at home!
A handy welcome pack – with all the essentials such as tea, coffee, a dishcloth, bin bags and mini washing up liquid – got our stay off to a great start. The van also had a flatscreen TV with DVD player and a kitchen with all the little things you might not necessarily think of when packing for a break, such as a cheese grater and corkscrew.
The park, which claims to be “quiet and relaxing”, really is just that. We awoke to birdsong in the morning and barely heard any other guests, which was perfect for us. We didn’t book Combe Martin Beach Holiday Park for the entertainment, but if you want a bit more than bingo in the evenings, head to Sandaway Beach – its more lively sister park – just up the road. Visit during the summer months and you’ll have an outdoor pool to enjoy, too.
What’s the food like at Combe Martin Beach Holiday Park?
Most guests at Combe Martin Beach Holiday Park self-cater (the nearest supermarkets are in Ilfracombe, 10 minutes away by car) but if you don’t fancy cooking, head to the Manor House. Here, from 6-9pm, you can enjoy hearty pub-style grub while soaking up the stunning sea views.
There are plenty of pubs, cafes and restaurants nearby but make sure you visit The Dolphin Inn, near the park entrance. The pub serves everything from curries to cassoulet and has great veggie options, including proper pies (pictured above). It is also very dog-friendly, with pets allowed everywhere aside from the upstairs bistro.
Are there resident dogs at Combe Martin Beach Holiday Park?
No, but there are sure to be other dogs staying onsite – we met several!
Where are the best dog walks near Combe Martin Beach Holiday Park?
Start with the woodland trail, where there are plenty of good sniffs to be had. Simply turn left to follow the shortest path, which will take you to the heart of Combe Martin in less than 15 minutes.
Devon has some fantastic beaches to explore too, and they’re all within easy reach of the holiday park. The award-winning Woolacombe Bay (pictured above) is around 15 minutes away by car and the beach is regularly voted one of Britain’s best. Aside from one small section, dogs have the run of this three-mile stretch of sand all year round.
There are also endless walks to be had in Exmoor National Park. Click here for inspiration and to find out when the next guided walks take place. Most of these last around two hours. Alternatively, make a dent on the 630-mile long South West Coast Path. The 13.7-mile stretch from Combe Martin to Lynton/Lynmouth is particularly scenic. For more inspiration when it comes to dog-friendly things to see and do, check out my Ruff Guide to North Devon.
What Ernie loved about Combe Martin Beach Holiday Park
The woodland trail (pictured above), having a beach just steps from the caravan, the doggy welcome pack
What I loved about Combe Martin Beach Holiday Park
The fact the park was quiet and relaxing, the great beaches nearby, being able to walk into town within minutes
How to book Combe Martin Beach Holiday Park
Three-night breaks at Combe Martin Beach Holiday Park start from £69 while a week’s stay will set you back £109. For more information or to book, call 01271 866766 or visit the John Fowler Holidays website.