On a windswept weekend in winter, we enjoyed hunkering down on a holiday in the Pembrokeshire countryside at the pretty Fron Fawr Holiday Cottages complex.
Deep in unspoilt countryside, and just a few miles from the coast and Cardigan Bay, it’s a cosy collection of five self-catering cottages, converted from traditional Welsh slate and stone barns into modern spaces that still retain old-fashioned countryside charm.
Dogs are welcome – and are equipped with a basket to sleep in, bowls to chow down from and biscuit treats to indulge in.
Our cottage, Glyndwr, had a private garden and even a hot tub . It slept eight people in four bedrooms. Graced with wooden beams and flagstone floors (with luxe underfloor heating in the bathroom and WC), the downstairs is on a split level. A large kitchen/diner perfect for family meals leads up (via some wooden stairs) to a lovely open sitting room with comfy sofas, a log-burning stove, plenty of family games to choose from and patio doors that open out onto the terrace and garden, which gives gorgeous views of fields and the sea beyond.
A short walk uphill takes you to some woods which are perfect for an early morning walk with your pooch – you can let him/her off-lead there for a pre-breakfast stretch of the legs, and the views are great.
The owners leave a handy list of recommended shops, pubs, takeaways and beaches in the area to visit. We enjoyed a jaunt to the ancient, estuary town of Cardigan – bustling with some pretty gift shops and cafes – and brunch at dog-friendly Crwst, a beautifully renovated hardware store, now a thriving deli, coffee bar and bakery.
You’re spoilt for choice when it comes to walkies – with miles and miles of coastal path to hike. And a visit to one of the (many) beaches in the area is a must too. We wrapped up for a breezy walk at Poppit Sands – a huge stretch of beach backed by sand dunes – followed up with a coffee at the beachside café (dogs are welcome on the verandah but not inside).
We also loved the smaller but very pretty Aberporth beach, watched over by some colourfully painted houses. In winter, both beaches are dog-friendly.
After all the wintry walking it was lovely to warm up back at our cosy cottage where we played board games late into the evenings – even though there was wifi!
Fact Box: We stayed with Premier Cottages at Fron Fawr’s Glyndwr Cottage, where prices for eight guests for a week start from £700 and a three night break from £420. www.premiercottages.co.uk, 07974 410385