A couple of weeks ago we stayed in Sedbergh; a small and picturesque town just a stone’s throw from the Lake District, the Yorkshire Dales and sitting at the foot of the Howgill Fells.
A couple of our friends have recently moved down there and we took the opportunity to visit them before the end of the school holidays.
We stayed in a self catering cottage close to the centre of the town and within walking distance of all of the shops and other amenities.
I wasn’t quite sure what to expect of Sedbergh itself.
I know of it only because there’s an independent school there.
But I was pleasantly surprised when we left the motorway behind and started down a long and winding hilly road.
When you get to Sedbergh, you’re greeted by lots of rustic stone houses.
And the roads are incredibly narrow in places.
There’s a main street with a few old-fashioned shops, a couple of pubs and restaurants but not much else.
It’s a place you’d go to get away from the hustle and bustle of urban living.
When we were looking for self catering accommodation to stay in, it was a bit of a struggle to find anything suitable.
Many of the properties didn’t have parking, lacked enough bedrooms, or just looked a bit tired from the online images.
In the end though, I found something that met most of our requirements.
Settlebeck Cottage is a two bedroom stone built house just a few minutes walk from the centre of Sedbergh.
It was the most suitable property I could find for us in Sedbergh.
Although I wanted a three bedroom property really, the added bonus of having a parking space outside the cottage swung it for me.
The property was laid out over three floors:
- Top Floor – Double bedroom and bathroom with shower;
- First Floor – Twin bedroom and bathroom with bath and shower over the bath;
- Ground Floor – Kitchen and lounge.
The kids found it a bit strange not being on the same floor as us at night.
And on the first night we struggled to get them to sleep because they were worried about the built in wardrobes.
They soon settled the following evenings though.
Whilst there wasn’t a garden at the property, there was a decent wifi signal so the kids were able to muck around on their gadgets.
The kitchen was well equipped with a dishwasher and a washing machine. They came in extremely handy.
There wasn’t really anywhere for the kids to eat though.
The only seating in the kitchen was four rather cumbersome stools which my wife and I even found hard to sit on.
So the kids didn’t fare well trying to get onto them.
The cottage was very warm and cosy with gas central heating.
There was an amazing gas fire in the lounge which really made the place feel welcoming.
I loved the fact that when we arrived, the owners had put on the fire and left us a bottle of wine, a loaf of bread and a pint of milk.
That was a nice touch.
Places To Visit With The Kids
Apart from a couple of play parks, walking around the town or in the hills, there’s not an awful lot for kids to do in Sedbergh.
We ended up going further afield to find places to visit to keep them busy.
Lakeland Wildlife Oasis
Lakeland Wildlife Oasis is a small zoo just down the motorway from Sedbergh.
It’s split into several indoor sections, including a butterfly hall, an aquarium and there are also animals in an outdoor section too.
My kids seem to travel around places like this at lightning speed.
So it was good that you can dip in and out of the place as many times as you want during your visit.
We went around at least three times before the shop enticed the kids and they fleeced me for stuff they’ll probably only look at once.
For the entry price there’s not much at the place really and it’s a bit run down looking in places.
The outdoors section could do with a good tidy up.
It was interesting to see some snow leopards but they looked bored out of their mind.
Conservation projects are unfortunately becoming a necessity but only when the animals have a big enough enclosure.
Still, it’s worth a look for a couple of hours. I’m not convinced I’d go back again though.
Lakeland Maze Farm Park
Another place we visited was the Lakeland Maze Farm Park.
It wasn’t the easiest place to find, although the sat nav did get us there.
And it was definitely worth finding it.
There’s a huge maze made out of maize and it has a different theme every year.
This year it got a Star Wars makeover.
It can take a couple of hours to get around the maze so if you plan to go around it, you need to get to the farm park by early afternoon.
As you’d expect at a working farm, there are plenty of farm animals to see.
There’s also a kids play area outside with trampolines, a karting track and you can take a tractor and trailer ride around the park too.
If the weather’s not so good outside, there’s still loads of indoor activities for the kids.
The soft play climbing wall and and soft play area came in handy when there were a couple of rain showers outside.
It also gave the adults a chance to sit down and we all had a coffee and a snack in the café until the rain subsided.
Of course my daughter spotted the shop next door to the soft play and fleeced me for even more cash!
Places To Eat Out
Being on holiday, we didn’t really want to cook in the holiday cottage too much.
We ended up treating ourselves a couple of nights whilst we were in Sedbergh.
There were a couple of takeaways but they weren’t always open and also were cash only.
Luckily there were other options available in the town and surrounding villages.
Al Forno Italian Kitchen
Al Forno Italian Kitchen is a recent addition to Sedbergh’s Main Street.
We reserved a table one evening and it was good job we did because it’s a popular place.
We ordered garlic bread as a starter and it was pizza-sized so was more than enough for me and my wife and the two kids.
The pizzas are authentic Italian thin base and are a decent size that will fill you up.
My wife is a vegetarian and asked if they would do a margherita with a couple of toppings of her choice.
She didn’t want any of the pizza options off the menu and the staff were more than happy to oblige.
My son had lasagne and was very happy with his choice. It looked very tasty.
All in all the food was great, the staff were attentive and the prices were reasonable.
We’ll definitely be going again the next time we’re down in Sedbergh visiting friends.
The Swan Inn, Middleton
A few miles South of Sedbergh is the a sixteenth century coaching inn called the Swan Inn.
On one of our last days in Sedbergh we met up with our friends there for a farewell meal before we headed back up to Scotland.
There was an extensive menu, including vegetarian options and even gluten free options.
I had a Lakeland Steakburger with cheese and my wife had Goats Cheese and Butternut Squash Lasagne.
The kids had meals from the kids menu.
The food was really tasty and there was plenty of it. It was a decent price too.
We chose to have the food served outside because the weather was nice and warm that day.
The kids could play whilst the adults sat and enjoyed the warm sun.
It was well worth the visit and one we will do again I hope.
Have You Ever Been To Sedbergh?
Before I knew people that live there, I’d never been to Sedbergh.
Have you ever visited the town? What did you think?
Are there any places you’d recommend in the surrounding area to visit?
What about places to eat out?
Please let me know in the comment section below.