Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Dartmoor - Buckfastleigh Abbey & Coming Home

This is the last of my posts about our holiday on Dartmoor.

It was the last full day of our holiday and we weren't really ready for going home. We'd both really fallen in love with Dartmoor and we'd been really comfortable and happy in Moorbrook Cottage.

For our last day we'd got a nice easy day planned, with a return visit to Widecombe-in-the-Moor to have a look round the National Trust owned Church House, which was open today as there was a Craft Fayre under way. 

We were then aiming for an early lunch at The Rugglestone Inn, followed by a visit to Buckfastleigh Abbey. 

We spent a really relaxed couple of hours sat in the garden of The Rugglestone Inn, in the warm sunshine, surrounded by ducks, which really seemed to take a fancy to us. The food was great too, we would definitely recommend it. 
Eventually we dragged ourselves away and made our way to Buckfastleigh Abbey, where we had our last Church Micro cache of the holiday on the cards, along with a good wander round the Abbey and gardens. 
We really enjoyed our visit to the Abbey, its quite a commercial affair, in that there are a number of gift shops and a restaurant, along with the abbey itself, and some some nice gardens to have a look round. 

We started with a look round the Abbey, which is open to the public, but closed at prayer times. The abbey was immaculately kept with some really impressively decorated ceilings and stained glass. 

The gardens were lovely too, with a sculpture display currently on, though I am not sure if this is a permanent thing.




We took lots of photos before heading back to Moorbrook Cottage for the last time.

Friday morning came and it was time to pack up, leave Moorbrook Cottage, and head for home. We had loved staying there and could both quite easily imagine living there more permanently.

We had also fallen in love with Dartmoor and would definitely be making a return visit.

One thing that did perk us up a bit on the way home though.  We stopped at Gloucester North services on the M5.  Now, a service station normally is not something that I would say would be a pick up, but this was a very pleasant surprise.

The services opened in May of 2013 and this is the first time we have ever stopped there.  It was completely different to any other services we've ever stopped at.  The buildings have been built to blend in with the surrounding countryside, with turfed roofs, even of the petrol station.

The services on the South bound side of the motorway are currently under construction and are planned to open in Summer 2015.

There is not a McDonalds or Burger King in sight, so it might not be for everyone, but there is a restaurant serving all manner of proper home cooked food.  It's a bit pricey, but that's service stations for you.  We were really impressed with the choice, lots of healthy options, lots of comfort food and plenty of home made cake.

As well as the restaurant there is an amazing farm shop, selling all sorts of things, including a very well stocked meat counter, with proper meat, and proper butchers, with very big knives.

We had lunch in the restaurant and it was a really nice end to a lovely holiday.


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