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Moving into the chillier months means a whole new staycation experience, especially if you're looking to enjoy a minimoon in the regions.
Country walks wearing wellies, blackberry picking, a glass of red wine or two and a roaring log fire are enough to tempt anyone out and that's what's on offer at THE PIG properties across the South West, with plenty of availability midweek from October and on weekends from November.
THE PIGs have some of the South's most iconic beauty spots right on their doorsteps, from picturesque headland paths, craggy coastlines, winding woodland trails, quaint villages and local foodie finds - you don't have to jump on a plane to feel miles away! If you're looking to head off the beaten path, we've put together our very own 'Insider Guides' from our local friends and THE PIG teams, so you can discover the hidden hotspots when you next pop to a PIG this autumn.
THE PIG-at Combe in Devon (pictured) has your next trip covered... General manager Chris Charles has been with the property for just over three years. After joining as food and beverage manager, Chris moved into the role of deputy general manager then on to general manager in January this year. He revels his guide to Devon including what to get up to while you're there.
He says," There is so much to love about living in Exeter and Devon. It has everything within touching distance, the Jurassic Coast of Sidmouth, Beer and Branscombe and the rugged north Devon Coastline. Inland there is Dartmoor National Park and Exmoor, great for getting out and exploring the beautiful countryside. Exeter is a Cathedral City with a beautiful quayside and Roman history, you can easily lose a day walking through the city and taking a bike ride along the Canal and River Exe towards the small village of Topsham which has a couple of lovely pubs to sample some Devon Ales, antique shops and incredible views across the Exe Estuary. If you are feeling really energetic there is the option of renting kayaks from the quay but judge the tide as the paddle back can become strenuous after one too many beers!"
He continues, "there are a couple of hidden gems around the hotel to explore as well, a short drive from the hotel is East Hill, this opens to a beautiful walk that looks out over Sidmouth. Walking the coast from Sidmouth across to Beer you will find the opportunity to drop into some quiet coves and beaches that are away from the beaten track."
Chris reveals where to eat around the area, aside from the hotel. He says, "The Jack in the Green has been renowned as one of the best places to eat around for years and is only a 15-minute drive from the hotel, Harry's in Exeter has a lovely buzz and Mark Hix seafood restaurant at Lyme Regis has some amazing views to go with great a dining experience. At Combe we are spoiled for choice with the local suppliers we have, a favourite of mine in the winter would be a Red Ruby topside of Beef from Darts Farm or a couple of their stunning steaks. In the summer it is always fish, no better supplier than yourself, fishing off the coast at Branscombe for mackerel and sea bass, or, if you don't fancy trying your hand at catching your own the fresh fish hut in Beer is amazing. Head to Chris Piper wine shop in Ottery St.Mary for a nice bottle of wine to help it wash it down!"
To book, visit https://www.thepighotel.com