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South Allington House (Chivelstone, Kingsbridge, Devon)
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South Allington House (Chivelstone, Kingsbridge, Devon)South Allington House may be slap bang in the middle of a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty between Start and Prawle Points along a sweep of South Devon's coastline, but the fact that you can camp in its grounds is a rather closely guarded secret - the owners don't even mention it on their website. So don't tell them we think their secretive site a bit of a camping oasis, with its facilities offering a cocoon to the least intrepid of campers, while its location in a beautiful valley surrounded by farmland will gently coax the toughest city nuts back to nature.

You can treat yourself to a highly civilised cream tea with dollops of home-made jam at the Georgian manor house while the kids mooch off in search of woodland wildlife. Little ones are kept happy making friends with the grazing sheep, marvelling at frogs in the pond, and trying to keep up with ducklings as they wander around the manicured grounds. And if the weather goes pear-shaped you can always opt for a room in the manor house B&B or other self-catering options. Just be sure to book early during school holidays.


South Allington House (Chivelstone, Kingsbridge, Devon)


COOL FACTOR A cosy site in the grounds of a Georgian manor house near stunning coastline.

WHO'S IN? Tents, campervans, a couple of small caravans, dogs - yes. Big groups - no.

ON SITE Well maintained facilities in a converted outbuilding near the camping field (35-40 pitches on lawn) include toilets, showers, washing-up sinks, washing machines, tumble-dryers, fridges, and freezers. No electric hook-ups and no campfires unless you take your own brazier.

OFF SITE Besides local beaches and stunning coastal walks, there's the 'hippy haven' of Totnes with its castle and South Devon Steam Railway (www.southdevonrailway.org) to visit.

FOOD AND DRINK Cream teas at the manor house are a must, and in nearby East Prawle there's food and entertainment at the lively Pigs Nose Inn (01548 511209; www.pigsnose.co.uk), or you could try the quieter Piglets Stores and Cafe (01548 511486) across the road. For local produce, Stokeley Farm Shop (01548 581010) in Stokenham.

GETTING THERE Going south, pass Frogmore on the A379 and follow signs for East Prawle until you reach Chivelstone Cross. Turn left and site is И mile further, on the right.

OPEN May-October.

THE DAMAGE Tent plus 2 people £15 per night. Child £1.



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