Situated a mere ten kilometres from the coast in the stunning countryside of Devon, the quaint town of Ottery St Mary offers visitors the perfect mix of exciting activities and relaxation. The fact that the settlement is located some way off the beaten tourist trail also makes it the perfect destination for a quiet family or couple's getaway. The limited number of available holiday properties to rent furthermore aids to keep the region peaceful, and provides visitors with the privacy and space that can so often prove lacking in larger settlements.
Holiday cottages in Ottery St Mary range from lavish historical manor homes to quaint barns, although amenities such as internet access, BBQ areas and beautiful wood-burning fireplaces certainly make these rentals comfortable for the whole family (including the four-legged members), regardless of season. With holiday accommodation in Ottery St Mary averaging roughly £300 per week, the town is also greater value for money than direct seaside locations such as beautiful Sidmouth.
-Family activities: A great place for families with young children, Escot Park is an 89-hectare private park located a mere five kilometres from most Ottery St Mary holiday homes. The perfect daytrip destination, the park gives visitors the opportunity to get up close and personal with a variety of different animals, not to mention the fantastic hedge maze, treasure hunt and woodland walks specially designed for children.
-Culture: Held on the 5th of November every year, the Ottery St Mary Carnival is well known throughout England, owing to its inclusion of the historical tar barrel tradition, which dates back to the early 1600s. During the carnival, flaming tar barrels are carried through the town’s streets by specially chosen locals, although why this is done is something of a mystery! Visitors who aren’t overly impressed by history and tradition, however, will still be able to enjoy the associated fireworks display.
-Beaches: There are a number of beaches situated within roughly 20 kilometres of Ottery St Mary holiday cottages, although Sidmouth is the closest and most easily accessible. The only downside of Sidmouth beach for parents with children is that there is no lifeguard service, which may make other beaches such as Exmouth (which has a lifeguard from 10.30am – 5.30pm during the warmer months) a more attractive option. Branscombe holiday homes are an option for a location closer to the beaches.
-Outdoor activities: An exciting way for the whole family to explore the region, Segway tours incorporate everything from town tours to extreme off-road Segway experiences. Holidaymakers may even like to package their Segway tour with another activity like clay pigeon shooting, laser tag or paintball, which are guaranteed to provide hours of fun for the whole family.
-Walking: Most Ottery St Mary holiday homes offer great access to a number of walking trails, such as the “Paths of History”, which guide visitors to some of the town’s important historical attractions, including the Parish Church and the Old Town Hall. Travellers interested in longer and more challenging treks, however, may enjoy the Ottery St Mary to Tipton St John circular walk, which offers a glance at the fascinating River Archimedes Screw Turbine.
Ottery St Mary experiences a typical temperate climate, which means that the summer months generally provide the most pleasant weather for outdoor holiday activities (20 – 30º C). Visitors wishing to sample the region during the cooler, wetter months of winter, however, will also find that the countryside and coast near their Ottery St Mary holiday cottage is spectacular at this time of year.
The best and simplest way to get to Ottery St Mary is by car, as it is situated just off the A30, which allows easy access from larger cities including London. Travellers may also choose to get there via a bus or taxi; with a bus trip from Exeter costing approximately £5, and a taxi costing roughly £40.