Symonds Yat Rock Lodge
After a decade in the family-run business, owners Claire and Darren have created something to be proud of – a site with six stylish, self-catering apartments, each with a spectacular vista. The welcoming duo go above and beyond, offering a personal touch at this enticing Gloucestershire retreat. Set in the Wye Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the property has panoramic views – out to the valley in one direction and to the Forest Of Dean in the other, whilst Symonds Yat Rock viewpoint is just a mile away.
The Lodge's four original apartments are open-plan, contemporary and comfortable, with spacious living areas and fully-fitted kitchens. The couple have recently added two additional units, which provide a little more luxury and come complete with a large living and dining area, a king-size mezzanine bedroom, modern kitchen (with dishwasher, microwave, oven) and deluxe shower room. All the apartments have Freeview TVs, CD and DVD players and wifi. Plus, Claire's artwork adorns the walls, an array of re-purposed furniture decorates the spaces and there's a wood-burner in the lounge for comfy evenings after bracing walks.
Whichever option you go for, useful starter packs greet you on arrival, with essentials such as tea, coffee, shower gel and shampoo. Each apartment has an outdoor seating area, is dog-friendly, sleeps two people, and you can walk straight into the Forest Of Dean from your front door – it's the ideal spot for a romantic break. There's also a communal garden where you can light up a barbecue and take in the picturesque landscape – the views are stunning. Feel free to use the herbs that the family grow, or pick fruit from the trees. Prefer to take a break from cooking? There are plenty of restaurants and pubs in the area – the New Inn is the closest, a mile's stroll through the forest.
The added bonus of staying at Rock Lodge is they allow breaks to start on any day, and short stays are fine too. However long you choose, there's no shortage of things to do, and Darren and Claire are passionate about their local area and keen to tell you all about it. You can cycle the Peregrine Path – there are plenty of local bike-hire outfits; canoe the Wye – again, there are numerous canoe-hire places to choose from) or head to the Sculpture Trail (a unique collection of world-class works) or the meandering pathways of Puzzlewood. Failing that, just pick up a walking trail – the seven-mile Dog and Muffler and the three-mile Highmeadow Woods are just two local options. Then it's back to Rock Lodge for some star-gazing.
The Owner Says
From the front doors, guests can walk straight into the Forest of Dean – and head to the famous Symonds Yat Rock Viewpoint, down to the River Wye or take one of the circular walks that start here.
Dogs, walkers and cyclists are all welcomed. The local pubs serve Wye Brewery ales, Severn Ciders, perrys, and local venison, boar and cheeses.
OFFER: 10% at the award winning pub/restaurant The Mill Race Mill Race food
Our favourite spot
Our favourite place is sitting in the garden with a glass of something (ideally cold and fizzy) on a sunny evening and looking out over the view as the light changes. You can hear the trees gently susurrating in the Forest behind, watch the birds and the sheep and enjoy the whole panorama from nearby English Bicknor to the Welsh mountains in the distance.
The local area
Walking straight into the Forest of Dean is the best thing. The area is beautiful and unspoilt, it feels a bit like stepping back in time as the Forest has been protected for so long and the local farmers love their land and keep rambling hedges and rolling fields with lots of wildlife.
Best local places to eat and drink
We eat and drink out a lot as there are so many great places (and we have to keep our list of recommendations up to date!). Current favourites are:
The Miners in Sling - who have a really inspired local chef using local produce. Proper, honest pub food with great personal touches. Look out for their specials like 'Pot Luck Monday'
No3 in Ross - great new bistro, again an independant run by an inspired family team, and they do great cocktails!
Always a must when staying here in the Wye Valley is The Saracen's Head, right by the river, and only a half hour walk from here through the Forest of Dean. Sit and watch the canoeists as you sup your pint of Dorothy Goodbody from Wye Valley Brewery.
Why stay with us?
Peace and quiet but loads to do and great places to eat and drink. This part of the Wye Valley (which includes our bit of the Forest of Dean) is still an undiscovered gem.
Also, we have these cool new self-catering apartments we have just built for you to try out!
There are 6 comfortable self-catering apartments – two standard doubles, one standard twin, one large double and two luxury kingsize.
In low season, 2 days start at £160 for a standard apartment, up to £210 for a luxury one. 7 days start from £360 for standard and £535 for luxury.
Mid-season – 2 days range from £190 (standard) to £230 (luxury). 7 days start from £465 up to £580.
High season – 2 days range from £200 (standard) to £250 (luxury). 7 days start from £500 up to £650.
Open all year.
By car from the south: Take the M4 and exit at junction 24 onto the A449 (this turns into the A40). Then onto the A466 and left across the Wye. Follow the A4136 towards the Forest of Dean and then go left onto the B4432 towards Symonds Yat. Fork left and the property will be on the right.
From Birmingham: Follow the M5 and then onto the M50 (exit 8). At the roundabout, take the 1st exit onto the A449, then take the A40 and follow that to Rock Lodge (which will be on you left).
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