With the freezing temperatures of January over, it is time to look towards spring and of course, celebrate our loved ones with a romantic getaway for Valentine’s Day. Whether you’re treating your significant other to a cheeky break this year or you’re planning a getaway with your partner later in the year, here are our suggestions for a romantic break.
If you’re looking for something cosy and intimate, make sure to take a look at the various cottages and self-catering properties available across the region. With coastal and rural properties on offer, you can easily hideaway from the world and enjoy each other’s company in beautiful surroundings. One option is Catboat Cottage, a 200 year old former fisherman’s cottage which has been lovingly restored and has retained many of its original features – it is even said that the beams were repurposed from a ship! There are fewer things more romantic than imagining the adventures the ships of the past would find themselves on!
You’ll find Catboat Cottage in Appledore, a cute village with a picturesque estuary and pastel-coloured houses, which provides a lovely place for leisurely strolls and beautiful views. The neighbouring town of Instow is one of the best places in the region for chasing the sunset and with a host of award-winning beaches on the doorstep, this is a great option for anyone who wants a coastal getaway.
Image: Catboat Cottage
Alternatively, My Favourite Holiday Cottages are a North Devon-based agency with a huge array of self-catering properties, perfect for couples on a romantic break. They have just about everything you can think of, from small rural cottages with roaring fireplaces, large properties with plenty of outside space and ones that have hot tubs for those clear evenings relaxing together.
If you want to be right on the beach so you can be lulled to sleep by the sound of the waves, check out Saunton Beach Villas. Backed by Braunton Burrows, one of the largest sand dune systems in the UK and with Saunton Beach on the doorstep, this is a wonderful location for anyone looking to write their names in the sand and go for gentle walks along the shore. All the villas are also dog friendly, if you want your furry friend to be part of your getaway. On arrival, all dogs are treated to their own welcome pack, complete with bedding, crates and throws!
Similarly, Saunton Sands Hotel is right on the front and features all the luxury and comfort you could want from a North Devon hotel stay. The hotel has a host of wonderful facilities, including spas, indoor and outdoor swimming pools and an award-winning restaurant. What could be better than enjoying a cream tea while looking out over one of Britain’s best beaches with your favourite person? Saunton Sands is also known for being a truly epic wedding venue, should you get taken up by the romance of it all!
If you’d rather be in the heart of the action but still take advantage of comfort and quality, the Royal and Fortescue Hotel might be the one for you. Located in Barnstaple, where you’ll have access to a host of restaurants, shops, pubs and more, it’s a great choice for anyone who wants to enjoy the town’s vibrant nightlife, while not being too far from the coast. A stay here also gives you a chance to use the leisure facilities at their nearby sister hotel and being in Barnstaple also puts you within easy reach of some of the region’s best golf resorts and the Exmoor National Park – ideal for the couple who likes to enjoy the outside and town life.
Image: Royal and Fortescue Hotel
Looking for more options for romantic places to stay? You can find a host of accommodation options here
Some of you will have selected your home from home and will be planning to spend your time relaxing and enjoying the peace and quiet, but if you’re the kind of couple who likes to stay active, why not take advantage of being on England’s adventure coast by having a few adventures yourself? There are plenty of places you can enjoy the region’s romantic scenery, including the village of Clovelly. This picturesque fishing village is like stepping back into the past with its cobbled streets, no vehicular traffic and 14th-century harbour, it is a place you can experience nostalgia for a simpler time. Plus, there are some delightful meals to be had at the inn in the harbour!
Like the idea of being surrounded with natural beauty? You could take a walk around Exmoor or explore some of the routes on the South West Coast Path. If you choose to stay around the Hartland Peninsular, there are some incredible walks with dramatic vistas you won’t find anywhere else, while on Exmoor, you can follow in the footsteps of the great romantic poets that once called the region home. People like Percy Bysshe Shelley and William Wordsworth understandably found inspiration in the region to fuel their poetry – you never know, something similar might happen while you’re exploring. You can also enjoy the natural world with a trip to RHS Rosemoor. The gardens, which are open to everyone, with discounts for members, are a haven for plant lovers and those who appreciate the beauty of the great outdoors alike. The garden’s tea rooms offer a cosy spot to refresh and the various landscaped gardens offer something different, no matter the season.
For the adventurous among you, why not spend some time visiting Lundy Island. Not only is it a conservation area where you’ll be able to see a host of animals, including seals, sea birds and other rarely seen creatures, but there are several activities available too, including climbing, snorkelling and more. The island doesn’t have electricity and isn’t connected to the internet, so if you want a digital detox and the opportunity to spend time together with no distractions, this is the place.
Want some more suggestions for things to do while visiting North Devon? Click here for more inspiration.