The country town of Chard provides an interesting and delightful base for those looking to discover some of the best that Somerset and Devon have to offer on a cottage holiday. Chard is the most southerly town in Somerset, being close to the border with Devon. It is also the highest at 400-500 feet above sea level. Today it is a thriving town with excellent shopping and restaurant facilities. Located inland, it is 17 miles to Taunton from Chard, 30 miles to Exeter and just 12 miles to the coast at Lyme Regis.
Advice on Cottage Holidays in Chard
Chard is a town with a rich history. Possibly dating back to pre-historic times, there is certainly evidence of Roman occupation of the area that is only a few miles from the Fosse Way. Chard was the original seat of Cedric, the first king of Wessex, and as it is considered by some that the legend of King Arthur was based on Cedric, then surely Camelot must be close to Chard! Despite a fire that destroyed the town and led to rebuilding in the late 16th century Chard continued as a centre for cloth manufacturing cottage industries, backed by an intensity of local sheep farming, even transporting their wares to France. Whilst on a self-catering break in this part of the West Country you can learn more and get more information about the town’s history at the Chard Museum.
Historically, another successful, international industry for the region was cider making. In nearby Ilminster you can get a first-hand insight into the cider manufacturing process at Perry’s Cider Works and taste the results by visiting a company who specialise in cider production.
Those interested in learning about historic and religious architecture whilst on a cottage break must visit Chard’s Church of St. Mary the Virgin, rebuilt in the 15th century but with parts dating back to the 11th century. Another must visit place with historical interest is Forde Abbey and Grange. Founded in 1146, it was recognised as one of the most important Cistercian monasteries in the country. Nowadays it is a big tourist attraction with state rooms, beautiful gardens and numerous children’s activities. More of the town’s historic past is on view in Goldworthy House, Chard’s museum that includes an exhibition of John Stringfellow, a local precision engineer who went on to become the inventor of powered flying machines.
For more information about what Chard has to offer locally and further afield whilst on a self-catering holiday, head for the town’s Tourist Information Centre where you can get some friendly advice and pick up some free leaflets. If you have been to Chard and have some recommendations get in touch with us and let us know.
Just a mile from the town centre and appealing to bird watchers, fishing enthusiasts, dog walkers and lovers of nature alike is the Chard Reservoir Nature Reserve. It must be Chard’s best kept secret as it is so well hidden that many visitors to the town are unaware of its existence. So for a bit of peace, quiet and reflection you know where to go when you’re visiting this part of the West Country. Whatever the type of self-catering accommodation you are seeking, we trust that you will enjoy browsing through the options that we feature.
Whether you choose to book a holiday cottage in Chard, an apartment, a lodge or another type of self-catering holiday accommodation, we hope you have your best holiday yet in Somerset.