A La Ronde with a touch of Japan.

The grounds and gardens of A La Ronde (National Trust property, Exmouth) were looking beautiful today. The Kokedama balls hanging from the trees in the orchard are full of spring flowers and create a lovely effect. Kokedama is a Japanese inspired planting technique and obviously one that can survive the strong winds and downpours we had last weekend! A walk around the edge of the grounds is equally beautiful with camelias, daffodils, primulas, and snowdrops in large numbers, alongside wild flowers and signs everywhere that Spring is almost here.

Citizen Science

Nearly all environmental research these days depends upon at least an element of “Citizen Science”, for everything from bird & plant spotting to the landscape itself.

We now have a photo point on the wall near the Lifeguard Hut at Dawlish Warren where you can insert your mobile and take a pic, with details as to where you can then send it to. I expect there have been a few of these installed so will now be on the look out for more!

Dawlish Warren

Surf Action

We are not particularly known for surfing action at Dawlish Warren but whenever the waves get big enough there are always a few people out with their boards. Storm Dennis certainly resulted in some bigger an usual waves and it was great to see some hardy surfers out there braving the elements. The rest of us were taking no chances and wearing all of our waterproofs!

Dawlish Warren surf action

Dawlish Warren

Would you like to make a “Coastal Contribution”?

Teignbridge is considering a visitor donation scheme to raise funds for “conservation and tourism related projects”, starting this year.

This would be voluntary on behalf of visitors, but not on behalf of accommodation providers like Sandays who are within a mile of the coast. We would be obliged to participate by requesting donations, collecting cash and making payments online.

See more information here: https://www.teignbridge.gov.uk/media/8742/information-sheet_.pdf

Snowdrops by the Dart

Wonderful walk down by the Dart this week, starting at Dartington Hall.

Thousands of snowdrops on a beautiful sunny morning, along by the picturesque river Dart. Wear wellies or walking boots: it’s muddy down there!

Signs of Spring & Valentine’s Day

We opened for the 2020 season a week ago, on 31st January,  and – despite the time of year – have enjoyed the company of guests all week. We are also enjoying hearing from some of our regular guests who are making bookings for later on in the year: thank you!

Bird cruises, National Trust events, art exhibitions, are just some of the things happening around here at the moment, and a good week weather-wise has meant some wonderful sunrises and sunsets and good times  for cyclists and walkers. As we head towards Valentine’s Day there are a host of offers and special events for the day itself and indeed the whole weekend. What could be better than some time by the sea?We are fully booked on the Saturday night but have some availability on the 13th, 14th, and 16th if you can be tempted away!

We have a bit of wild weather forecast for tomorrow as we catch some of storm Ciara but mild days have accelerated the signs that Spring is well on the way, and the pansy baskets will be going up in a couple of days.

 

January Days

We are looking forward to re-opening soon at Sandays : Friday 31st January is coming up fast and we have some guests booked in for that first weekend, but there is space available!

In between sprucing everything up we took the advantage of some glorious sunny days to do a walk on beautiful Dartmoor, starting off by Buckland Beacon and the ten commandment stones.
Stunning.

Enchanted Saltram

Saltram House is a National Trust on the edge of Plymouth. It is an interesting place to visit at any time of the year but becomes “Enchanted Saltram” during December and into the beginning of January.
Very beautiful indeed and a truly enchanted feel, wonderful for families, lots of young children the day I visited. Easily identifiable themes inside the house (Cinderella, Alice in Wonderland, etc) portrayed with a good helping of Christmas magic to be enjoyed by all ages. A well laid out and illuminated garden with fairy houses to look out for, and plenty of hot drinks available to buy to keep everyone going!
The direction of the gardens are such that there is also the chance of seeing an amazing sunset if you are there at the right time of day and we were lucky with that: “a War of the World sky” as I heard someone remark!

It takes around an hour to get to Saltram from Sandays and requires a car,but definitely worth the effort.

Sandays Winter Closing Dates

We are approaching that time of year when we close for a short period during the winter.
This year the last possible night to stay with us is Friday 13th December, and we will re-open on Friday 31st January 2020.
For any 2020 bookings just contact us as usual, preferably by email. We start taking bookings for the first quarter immediately, but for anything beyond that we log the details and get in touch when we re-open.
Look forward to hearing from you.

Mayflower 400

The Mayflower 400 celebrations have started in Plymouth and Dartmouth. We visited “Illuminate” in the Royal William Yard in Plymouth which was once again spectacular. Nice dry evening, lovely setting for all the light displays, lots of people and some interactive stuff to enjoy.
Look out for lots more to come in honour of the Mayflower 400 anniversary in 2020.

Illuminate the Darkness at Dartington

Made it to the last evening of the illuminated gardens event at Dartington today, which was lovely despite the rain! Ever changing scenes as the mix of colours changed. The graveyard and old church tower looked particularly dramatic.
Look out for lots more of this type of event locally over these next few weeks.