on February 25, 2009
Cumbria has always been a special county for me. Especially the area surrounding the city of Carlisle. Compared with the Lake District this area is far more peaceful but just as pretty in a wild, old fashioned way.When spending a few days in the countryside I like to stay in self catering accommodation. I find it is a more flexible alternative to staying in a hotel or Bed and Breakfast. You can come and go when you want. The accommodation I am going to review today is is a 2 bedroomed cottage on Tottergill Farm on the outskirts of Castle Carrock which is very close to Brampton.The cottage is part of a farm complex situated high on the western flanks of Castle Carrock Fell. Our cottage had French windos which opened out on to a small garden which overlooked some amazing views of Carlisle and during our stay there we were able to see the Solway Firth and even the backdrop of the Scottish hills. It was Christmas time when we stayed for 7 days so on New Year's Eve it was a rare treat to open the doors, take in the views which were like a cloud of illuminated light, whilst drinking our glasses of champagne to let the New Year in.Decor~~~~The interior of the cottage was very attractive with beamed ceilings, pine furniture and an open log fire with, of course, a basket of logs sitting close by the fireside. The sofa and chairs were very comfortable as was the double bed on the mezzanine floor. Another bedroom was available and although, small, there was enough room for a bed, side table and a desk. The views from the small bedroom overlooked the farmyard and its stone buildings and the view from the main bedroom overlooked the plain of Carlisle which was quite a stunning view. Adjoined to the main mezzanine floor was a built in room which was very large and this was the space for clothes and laundry.Kitchen facilities were top notch with a modern hob cooker, microwave and every utensil necessary including a potato masher and corkscrew. All plates and cutlery, pots and pans were included. The dining room table was made of solid pine and the owner had placed in a glass vase some very pretty peach coloured flowers which blended with the grain of the wood. Also placed on the table for our arrival was a box of chocolates as a welcome present and the fire was already lit giving the living area of the cottage a warm rustic glow.We chose this particular cottage because the owner of the complex was an animal lover and it was okay for us to take our dogs and cat. The views from the cottage were very pretty and every morning we used to take a walk down the farm path into the woods close by which are actually situated in the Eden Valley. This whole area has been chosen as an area of outstanding beauty in the North Penine area. The birdlife in the woods was very chirpy and colourful and every now and again we saw the quick body movements of a red squirrel. Talkin Tarn isn' too far away, where a lake is available for sailing. Other recreational activities on offer close by are climbing, horse-riding, fell walking and shooting.The small village of Castle Carrock is 2 miles away and Brampton is 4 miles. A car is necessary when staying here. Newcastle airport can be reached in an hour. My overall impression of this area was one of great beauty. The cottages were excellent value for money even if it was a Xmas period. I think I paid £200 for the week. The buildings were in immaculate conditiopn, well equipped and had fantastic views of the area.
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