Glamping in North Devon with John Fowler Holidays - What Katy Said

Glamping in North Devon with John Fowler Holidays

Devon has to be one of my favourite places to visit- we go quite a few times a year to visit friends but always the south. I don’t think I have ever been to the north of Devon so when we were invited down to stay with John Fowler Holidays I was excited to see a new part of the country. 

John Fowler are a family run business, running holiday parks across Devon, Cornwall and Somerset for over 60 years. They have 11 parks and all are located near to beaches or top attractions so you can make the most of your holiday. 

We decided to stay in one of their new safari tents as the brochure showed them overlooking the most scenic coastal view and after our rather challenging camping experience at the beginning of summer, I wanted a little more luxury.

The tent did not disappoint at all and I would definitely recommend staying in one if you like the idea of a little taste of camping but without the stress of pitching a tent or having to sleep in a sleeping bag on the floor.

We stayed at the Sandaway Beach park in Combe Martin, a gorgeous region along the north coast. Absolutely stunning views and a private beach to explore and skim stones. They also have a heated pool which is a nice bonus, a shop for any basics you might need and a restaurant if you don’t fancy cooking of an evening.

For a full tour of the tent and a look at our holiday, here is our video:

Things to do in North Devon

Exmoor Zoo

We were invited along to Exmoor Zoo for the day and had a great time. It is an award-winning zoo and it is easy to see why. There is so much to see and it is spread over a massive area so makes for a full day out.

The girls enjoyed the talk given in the arena and were able to stroke a snake as part of the demonstration. We were also lucky enough to follow another family around the zoo who were having a private tour, so had a mini tour for ourselves. Anyone is able to have tour or you can also pay to feed the animals if you want. 

Children can also take part in a treasure hunt which is fun. The only thing that spoiled it for me was that they wouldn’t let William join in as he was a non-paying child. The fact the ‘prize’ was a sticker (which is free around the rest of the park) and a postcard, I am not sure why they couldn’t allow parents to make the decision as to whether their toddler would enjoy it or not. Unfortunately they didn’t share my view and so William was left disappointed in not getting a sticker and I felt he was a lesser valued customer due to his age.

Despite that blip it was a great day out and definitely a zoo we would recommend for any animal lovers. 

Dunster Castle

We love being National Trust members, it is so great being able to have a ‘free’ day out wherever we are in the country. We spotted Dunster Castle was close by and decided to use our passes and give it a whirl. 

Well, easily the best National Trust site we have ever been to! So much to do for young families, with dressing up, games in the ladies’ sitting room and an activity trail around the house. 

Some sites we’ve been to have been very stuffy, with lots of roped off areas and we feel a bit anxious taking the kids in. Dunster have got it just right and will inspire lots of children to enjoy history, I’m sure. 

If you are in the area then it is an absolute must-see as it is just brilliant. 

The Big Sheep

Now, I was convinced we had visited The Big Sheep when we stayed at Berridon Farm near Bude a few years ago. Definitely got muddled though as it turned out we’d never been. We would definitely go back again though as it is fantastic! 

Whenever we go anywhere with the kids, it always seems that Gracie has the most fun and Lils and Wills have to make-do with whatever is on offer for their age. Not The Big Sheep – they have aimed it perfectly, with activities suitable for all ages! 

As the name suggests, lots are focused around sheep, with sheep racing, sheep dog trials, sheep shows, sheep shearing demos and lots more! 

The girls enjoyed a pony ride and Wills had his day made when they went on a piggy tractor ride. 

Honestly one of the best days out we’ve had in ages so definitely worth a visit. 

In summary

North Devon is absolutely gorgeous and staying in a safari tent gave us the opportunity to switch off from technology and the outside world. It is so hard to make time to reconnect as a family and so getting back to nature is the perfect way to unwind and relax together. 

John Fowler Holidays offer a perfect base to go explore the local area and North Devon really does have some lovely coastlines and attractions to keep you busy during your stay. 

Do you have a favourite area of Devon you love?

A big thank you for John Fowler holidays for having us and arranging our visit to Exmoor Zoo & The Big Sheep. All thoughts and words are my own. 


  • Reply
    November 13, 2018 at 7:54 pm

    Aww, what a bummer about Wills not getting to join in!! Obviously not a parent making up the rules, amiright?

    • Reply
      November 28, 2018 at 12:57 pm

      Exactly! xxx

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