Child friendly cottages in Devon
Being parents ourselves, we know how much kit is required for little ones, so we have plenty of equipment, toys, books and games available at Three Gates to make your life easier and reduce the amount of luggage space required in the car. Just let us know when booking what you need. These items include the following and are subject to availability:
- Highchair with a set of plastic cutlery/crockery
- Changing mat
- Magic bumper foam insert (transition to big bed)
- Child step (for reaching toilet/basin)
- Moses basket & stand
- Bath seat (for use in bath)
- Toilet training seat
- Baby bath
- Stair gates in the Granary (these are permanent)
- Child back pack carrier*
- Maclaren foldaway push chair*
- Black out blinds are fitted in most bedrooms
- Plug covers are provided in all cottages
- Pre-school book & toy library, including puzzles and games (available for all to borrow)
*available for daily loan
Child Friendly Facilities and Grounds
Our indoor swimming pool is a big hit with kids! It’s open all year from 9am to 8pm and heated to 30 degrees (no toe test needed!). The pool is 33ft by 16ft and has a 3½ft shallow end and 7ft deep end. We have a range of toys and swimming aids available for use in the pool (large inflatables may not be used in the pool). Swimming lessons can be arranged for all ages, including babies with a qualified and experienced teacher (subject to her availability).
Outside we have two acres of grounds with grassy areas for games and a play area with swings, a pirate swing boat, climbing frame, seesaw and 12 ft trampoline (available from March to October). On the pool terrace is a permanent table tennis table and a selection of outdoor games equipment. We also have a table football game and a games room with a small pool table and a selection of pre-school books and toys.
We have some super inhabitants of our enclosed pond area including chickens, ducks, moorhens, rabbit and coy carp. Let us know if your children would like to help feed our friendly chickens.
Child Friendly Activities
If it’s too wet to play outside or go to the beach there are still loads of things to do to keep little ones entertained. See our Things to Do tab for a wide variety of activities – here are a few which are particularly child friendly. Some are seasonal, please do check opening dates and times before visiting.
Devon Railway Centre
Bickleigh, EX16 8RG, tel: 01884 855671
Lovely for young families and reasonable prices. Small trains to ride on, model railways, crazy golf, remote control cars, indoor/outdoor children’s play areas and picnic area. Close to Bickleigh Mill (good café/restaurant and gift shop) and the Maize Maze, which is fun to visit in the summer. The Fisherman’s Cot pub has gardens on the banks of the River Exe – a must for a sunny day! 25 minutes from Three Gates (10 miles). Dogs allowed on a lead.
The Bear Trail
EX15 1SA tel: 01392 881780
The Bear Trail is a new outdoor children’s adventure trail. It provides a site for children…(and adults!) to run, jump and climb. There are a series of obstacles which involve stepping across bear infested mud pits, tumbling through the bear tunnels and climbing bear mountain! Bear Cave Café, picnic area. Outdoor wash point (bring spare clothes). Dogs welcome. 30 minutes from Three Gates (13 miles)
Wimbleball Lake Country Park
Dulverton, TA22 9NU, tel: 01398 371460
A variety of activities are on offer at this beautiful lake on Exmoor, such as boat hire, watersports lessons (sailing, windsurfing, canoeing, rowing), trout fishing, an adventure playground, high ropes course and miles of footpaths, including a 9-mile walk around the lake. There’s a café for light lunches, drinks and snacks. Dogs welcome. 45 minutes from Three Gates (14 miles).
Nr Cullompton, EX5 4LB, tel: 01392 881 313
Drive all-terrain vehicles on a ½ mile off-road track, suitable for ages 6 years and up. Tuition and protective clothing provided. 1 ½ mile pro-circuit for speedy adults. Open all year, onsite shop and café. 40 minutes from Three Gates (14 miles)
Crealy Great Adventure Park
Exeter, EX5 1DR, 01395 233200
Theme park with lots of indoor and outdoor fun for families. Just over half an hour from Three Gates (23 miles). Kennels available, no dogs on site.
Clip & Climb
Exeter, EX2 8AX tel: 01392 422 559
Indoor climbing centre suitable for ages 4 years and up located at the Quay Climbing Centre, adjacent to Exeter Quays. Wide variety of climbing walls and climbing based activities with tuition provided. Onsite café and viewing platform. Advance booking strongly recommended. Centre includes large indoor climbing area for more advanced users. 45 minutes from Three Gates (27 miles)
EX6 7XR tel: 0300 067 5826
3,500 acres of woodland, wide range of walking and cycling trails, bicycle hire, Go Ape Centre – fly down zip slides, leap off tarzan swings and sample fun crossings. Go Ape Tree Top Junior for under 10’s, Segway Trail Tours, A Touch of the Wild – Kids Woodland Adventure Club (ages 6-13). Ridge Café, outdoor play areas. Dogs welcome. 50 minutes from Three Gates (29 miles)
The Orange Elephant
Haldon valley, EX6 7YL tel: 01392 833776
Award-winning ice cream parlour set on a working organic dairy farm. The ice cream is made from the milk of their South Devon cows. Summer meadow outdoor play area and farm animals. Check opening times before visit. 50 minutes from Three Gates (29 miles).
Sidmouth, EX10 0NU, tel: 01395 578222
Walk around the fields and meet some of the 200 donkeys of all ages (free to enter). Dogs welcome on a lead. About 50 minutes (30 miles) from Three Gates.
World of Country Life
Littleham, Exmouth EX8 5BU, tel: 01395 274533
One of our favourite family days out! World of Country Life has a full programme of fun and activities, including safari deer train (stops en route for deer and llama feeding), close encounters with farm animals, goat walking, pirate ship, slides and rides, indoor and outdoor play, farm and transport museums (including motorbike collection and vintage cars and steam engines). 45 minutes from Three Gates (30 miles).
Bicton Park Botanical Gardens
Budleigh Salterton, Exeter, EX9 7BJ, tel 01395 568465
Magnificent gardens and landscaped park with all year round enjoyment for all ages (glasshouse, museum, train ride, nature trail, maze, mini golf, large indoor and outdoor play areas, restaurant, shop).Dogs allowed on a lead in grounds, not in play areas or restaurant, £1 per dog. 45 minutes from Three Gates (30 miles).
Marsh Green Road, Exeter EX2 8PN tel: 01392 537333
Indoor trampoline park in Exeter with open bounce zone, dodgeball court, giant airbag, activity & stunt zones, light chaser games and foam pits. Café and viewing area, free WiFi. 45 minutes from Three Gates (28 miles)
Beer, Nr. Seaton, EX12 3NA, tel: 01297 21542
Set on the hillside above the village of Beer, there is plenty to enjoy, including a mile-long ride on the miniature railway, play areas, crazy golf, pretty gardens, stunning views and an interesting model railway exhibition. Pecorama is home to the world’s first manufacturer of model railway track (PECO). About an hour from Three Gates (31 miles). Only guide dogs allowed.
The Big Sheep
Abbotsham, Bideford, EX39 5AP, tel: 01237 472366
One of our favourite family days out (ideal for under 8s). Plenty of indoor and outdoor fun and a full daily programme of activities, including a sheep show, sheep shearing, sheep race, lamb feeding, sheep dog trials, duck trials, horse whispering, pony rides, rides (train, tractor, twister), getting up close to farm animals and indoor play equipment highlighting An hour and 10 minutes from Three Gates (44 miles).