We spent Christmas at Coombe Mill in 2013 and 2014 and have been itching to return ever since, but due to Hubby’s work it has been impossible, until this Christmas.
It has been a bit of a tough year for him, with the threat of redundancy hanging over his head until December and then having to close his store down just before Christmas, so time away was the perfect tonic.
Spending Christmas away from home is not without its challenges and the stressful part is definitely the run up, ensuring that presents are all wrapped, shopping is ordered and then the dreaded car jenga, but we were soon en-route to Cornwall to start our break.
Coombe Mill was originally a 16th Century water mill, which has been transformed into a beautiful and secluded hamlet of picturesque holiday cottages, Scandinavian and riverside lodges, all set amidst an idyllic 30 acre private estate between Bodmin Moor and the Beach.
The properties are all gorgeous and for our visit this year, we stayed in their largest property, Tree Roots, which sleeps up to 10 guests.
It has a large, open plan kitchen diner, play room with toys, lounge, utility / boot room and toilet downstairs.
Upstairs are four large bedrooms, two with en-suite bathrooms and a separate family bathroom.
It really is a home from home, with everything you need for a comfortable stay and even a Christmas tree ready for you to decorate.
It is the hospitality that makes a holiday at Coombe Mill like no other. Run by Fiona, Farmer Nick and their six children, it offers the best of farm life with a daily feed run that everyone gets to join in with and is the thing that the kids were looking forward to the most, especially Sebby who was a still a baby during our last visit.
The feed run is done every morning at 9am (10am on Christmas day) and gives the kids the chance to explore the farm, feed and care for the animals, find breakfast by looking for the chickens eggs, and the opportunity to drive a real tractor, with Farmer Nick’s help.
All visitors are welcome on the feed run and it is around a mile and a half walk around the farm for the adults, whilst the kids get to ride in the tractor trailer, when it is not their turn to drive.
Animals on the farm include goats, sheep, chickens, pigs, ducks, rabbits, guinea pigs, ponies, alpaca, a herd of fallow deer and even a wallaby!
We spent lots of time with each animal group, ensuring they had plenty of food to eat – the pigs enjoyed our vegetable peelings, and even got to a cuddle some of them.
We also helped move some goats and the alpaca to different fields, by trying to encourage them into a trailer, which is easier said than done.
And catch all the chickens to move them into the barn, in the hope that they would lay more eggs.
Other highlights of a holiday to Coombe Mill is their daily train ride and craft hour.
They also have numerous indoor and outdoor play areas, a gym, a games room with table football, ping pong and pool table and another favourite – the crazy golf challenge.
It is their Christmas activities that really make spending Christmas at Coombe Mill extra special.
Christmas Eve at Coombe Mill
Christmas Eve starts like any other day, with the morning feed run.
You can then spend the day as you please until the afternoon train ride, where a very special visitor arrives with gifts to visit the children in the Christmas Grotto.
It is then onto the local village of St Tudy for the beautiful Christingle service, which all the children are welcome to join in with.
After the service the whole village congregates in the street for mince pies and mulled wine, whilst the kids all get a small gift from Father Christmas who has taken a break from his work to say Hello.
It is then back to Coombe Mill for a Christmas Eve buffet held in the Games Room, where we mingled with other guests and the Fiona and her family.
The kids were nice and tired by the time it was time to head to bed and didn’t stir until a respectable 7.30am the next morning, excited that Father Christmas had remembered we weren’t at home.
The feed run still happens on Christmas Day, but is not until 10am to give the kids a chance to open their stockings.
We gave Rudolph and his herd an extra special treat after all their hard work the previous night.
Once the feed run was done, it was back to the cottage to open some more presents and start preparing Christmas dinner.
I have to say it was one of the most relaxed Christmas Days ever. I didn’t feel any pressure to get the dinner perfect, although it was and it was just a lovely chilled day with almost all the family around us – sadly Callan had to work, but we face-timed him so we could all see and speak to him.
I think having a hot tub definitely helped making everyone relaxed!!
Coombe Mill even ran the train for us in the afternoon too – thanks Guy for being the train driver on Christmas Day.
We had the most amazing Christmas and can highly recommend staying at Coombe Mill for Christmas.
The kids have already asked if we can go back next year!