Travel / devon

Fun and games in Devon – whatever the weather

By ruth morris, Wednesday Nov 27, 2019

It’s difficult to know what to do with the kids in winter. The weather is unpredictable, and it can be hard to find something both affordable and child friendly.


Bristol24/7 relies on your support to fund our independent journalism and social impact projects. Become a member and enjoy exclusive perks from just £5 per month.


The Manor House Hotel in Oakhampton was recommended as a great option, with lots of activities to keep children occupied. The Devon hotel offers an activity programme, with a wide range of sports and crafts with something for everyone, from beginners to skilled enthusiasts.

The hotel looks out onto Dartmoor

The hotel describes itself as “a three-star hotel with five-star facilities” and this is exactly what you get.

The family room was a little dated but nonetheless warm, comfortable and clean. The highlight was a deep window ledge which my girls liked to sit in and look out across Dartmoor.

On arrival we picked up a timetable where we could choose the activities for the following day. Nearly everything was covered in the original booking cost, with just a few extra costs for some materials.

There is a huge amount to do, including Indian block printing

The variety of activities offered is where the hotel really comes into its own as there is plenty to do for all ages, including adults. With pools and spas to ice rinks and skating rinks, there really was something for everyone.

In addition, guests can expect activities from pottery to decoupage in the hotel’s 16 craft studios, as well as bowls, range sports such as laser shooting and archery, racquet sports and outdoor activites.

Heading for the swimming pool for the afternoon, there were four different slides and facilities for toddlers to teenagers We went back to the swimming pool every day of our visit to enjoy the slides.

The next day we headed off for our planned activities which started with teddy bear making (think a less expensive but equally as fun Build-A-Bear), followed by ice skating and pottery painting, then lunch, roller skating and go karting.

The Manor House Hotel has lots of indoor activities to choose from – perfect in winter

Needless to say, we all slept very well that evening.

The final day started with a good breakfast in the hotel’s lounge area, before visiting the huge soft play. The Manor Fun House is a 300-metre square soft play area. Set over three levels it includes a three-lane slide, tube slide and a ball pool. It doubled as a great chance for the adults to sit down and relax while the children wore themselves out.

We headed home tired and happy having experienced a real variety of activities and enjoying a busy weekend during what can be a dreary time of year.

Find out more at

Read more: A bevvy of food and drink discoveries in Abergavenny

Related articles