Wanting to get away from it all? Look no further than the Pembrokeshire coast, says Lee Sobot.
Nestled halfway along the coast of St Bride’s Bay in Pembrokeshire, it’s easy to see why Nolton Haven is described as a hamlet.
There’s not much more to it than a cluster of houses and a pub next to a shingle cove, but if you are looking for somewhere to recharge this spot, a six-hour drive from Yorkshire, is ideal.
Local resident Jim Canton owns four cottages in this picturesque corner of south-west Wales and the window of the master bedroom of Shearwater looks across the sweeping vista of the bay.
Given the rugged, dramatic landscape, walkers are in their element and the seaside location sets up endless opportunities for watersports and outdoor adventures, from rock climbing to kite surfing to snorkeling to stand-up paddleboarding. Or take a boat trip.
Then there’s coasteering – a physical activity that encompasses movement along the intertidal zone of a rocky coastline on foot or by swimming, without the aid of boats, surf boards or other craft.
The area is also home to numerous galleries, museums, parks and ample opportunities for horse riding, including Nolton Stables in nearby Nolton, within walking distance along with Druidston, Haroldston West, Broad Haven and Little Haven, with Newgale in the other direction.
The nearby largest town of Haverfordwest, complete with railway station, is only eight miles away but as far as food and drink supplies goes, the advice is to stock up as you set off.
After all, leaving one of these cosy cottages is easier said than done if you’re in simple mood for relax and recuperation.
Shearwater Cottage is the largest of the four properties that nestle side by side painted in pastel blue, pink, yellow and green and while the exterior is quaint, the interiors are modern.
Shearwater Cottage is blessed with a state-of-the-art open plan kitchen, living and eating area with a dining table that can seat 12. The property boasts four immaculate bedrooms – to sleep eight – each with its own bathroom with the master room having its own en suite.
One of the smaller bedrooms even boasts its own first floor private garden.
Back downstairs, Mr Canton has equipped the property with high-speed broadband which is just as well if you want to stand any hope whatsoever of keeping in contact with those back at home as the phone reception here is unsurprisingly pretty much non-existent.
This is like Lake District tranquility, but stepped up a gear and unless it’s the barman in the local Mariners Arms or one of your fellow holiday-maker neighbours, it’s pretty unusual to stumble across anyone, except for the property’s hospitable owner who lives a stone’s throw away from the cottages and will stay on close hand to ensure your stay is exactly as you desired.
Remote, relaxed, secluded, there’s a certain satisfaction as your head hits the pillow for the night as the wind and rain can be heard loud and clear lashing over St Bride’s Bay. One of the most relaxing winter breaks imaginable – but then the property’s owner showcases an array of stunning pictures of the area in the summer. Sun bathing on the beach this time – or even in the property’s secluded first floor garden.
Don’t be surprised if Shearwater has no availability in August. We might just have booked in again.
Shearwater Cottage is property reference number 237922 with Cottages Direct.
Visit http://www.cottagesdirect.co.uk/237922/shearwater-cottage-pembrokeshire.aspx to view and book.