And so we return…..
Following on from all of the strange and difficult times that Covid19 has brought for many, some people are now returning to holiday at Jasmine Cottage. We visited in August for a couple of weeks and I thought that it would be useful to tell you how we found things and managed to still relax and enjoy ourselves whilst getting used to the ‘new norm’ of social distancing, face masks, reduced capacity at venues, and keeping safe whilst away from home.
The first thing that struck me was that compared with other places we have passed through, Kirkby Lonsdale seemed very calm whilst managing to retain its charm and appeal. The streets are not empty but neither are they crowded. We felt safe whilst out in the town, and the shops, cafe’s and bars still felt welcoming, with the usual cheerful staff managing the new rules to keep us all safe and confident to visit.
We did prepare slightly differently to usual. Normally we arrive with very few provisions and pop straight out to Booths, the veg shop and butchers to stock up. This time we had enough with us to give us time to get used to the way the shops now work before we needed to replenish. Everything seemed very easy to negotiate and we soon got used to the now familiar queuing prior to entry and system around the stores. Very much the same as at home.
When planning our break we came across ‘A day’s walk’ ‘a supermarket-style online shop that delivers only the finest Lakeland food & drink direct to your doorstep’. A lovely way to sample and support the local produce, and with a 2 hour time slot the delivery did not affect our days plans. Colin has been kind enough to offer our customers a 10% discount, so we shall be providing the discount code with arrival information – well worth trying out. We ordered some delicious goodies, and as a thank you received a jar of Cumberland Sauce from Hawkshead Relish which was very tasty, I would also recommend the Bloody Mary Tomato Sauce!
On more that one day we collected salad boxes from The Deli off the Square. The food is first class and served with a cheery smile – good value to. With the sun shining in the courtyard garden this was a perfect way to support a local business whilst feeling relaxed and safe at Jasmine.
The main change that we noticed was the absolute need to book if you want to eat and sometimes drink out. Gone are the days when you could just pop in and be sure of getting a table. So my biggest tip would be to book before you go (even before you arrive at the cottage if possible). This will avoid disappointment, and enable the venues to keep us safe whilst also complying with the rules and regulations that they are obliged to follow.
We did call in to Plato’s for an early doors drink and we were lucky as there was a table available. It was well organised with sanitiser on entry, clear directions, friendly table service and good signage – each table has a card which you turn depending on whether you would like to order or you are ready to leave (saves worrying about catching someones eye!). Not all venues will have re-opened, so again do check when planning your trip.
What hasn’t changed is the fantastic walking opportunities. A ramble along the Fairy Steps walk was thoroughly enjoyable (you will see more about this on other pages of our site as it is one of our favourites) despite the torrential rain fall – well it isn’t called ‘The Lakes’ for no reason! We also spent a day climbing Pen-y-ghent, one of the Yorkshire 3 peaks. This is a satisfying yet only moderately difficult walk and whilst it is a popular route we felt that everyone respected the social distancing needs, and with so much fresh air didn’t feel that the situation had reduced the enjoyment in anyway. A trip to the coast at Silverdale and Arnside gave a welcome taste of seaside air.
We also visited Lake Windermere and whilst this part of the Lake District will always remain a firm favourite of ours I would have to say that it was very busy indeed. So if you are nervous of crowds at the current time it may be best to seek out less popular but still very beautiful Lakes and Tarns to get your National Park fix.
Having a drink at ‘home’ is the ‘new going out’ it seems, so we called at The Royal Barn and purchased some of their delicious Gin (the Rhubarb is particularly tasty with ginger ale and a slice of lime). If you decide to call in there then I think that you will be very impressed with the changes that they have made – and you can easily feel comfortable but protected with the new booths that have been created with clear screens. A perfect example of a business working hard to change with the times.
The new smart TV provided great entertainment. Easy to work which so many options we had plenty of choice. Basic Prime Video is included for you at the moment and if you have other accounts with popular providers you can sign in to watch your usual favourites – just remember to sign out at the end of your stay!
As usual we were sad when our holiday came to an end, but felt very relaxed and so pleased that we had managed to have a break away. All in all the combination of the comfy familiar surroundings, new safety measures and beautiful town and surrounding area continue to deliver. Since visiting ourselves we have continued to receive positive feedback from our guests (see below received today 18.8.20) and are delighted to be able to welcome you back.
“Great property great location”
We have been to jasmine many times and will return. The property is fabulous. The owner is very friendly and professional. Nothing is to much trouble. The location is so close to all the lovely independent shops and restaurants yet in a quiet corner. There is private parking which is a great bonus. Can’t recommend it enough