STAYCATIONS are the new form of vacation for island residents.
That’s according to Isle of Man Stay on a Farm secretary Beth Martin, who said members have reported a rise in the number of island residents spending their holidays in Manx farm accommodation.
‘This has been a noted trend for the past two years, particularly for short breaks,’ she said.
In June, Julie Bridson, of Main Road, Onchan, spent five days at Thie y Ribbeyder, in Smeale, Andreas, run by Beth and Steve Martin.
She stayed with her nine-year-old son Lewis and mother Mona Caley, who also lives in Onchan. Her husband Richard was working so couldn’t stay but was able to visit at the weekend.
Julie explained: ‘My mum is coming up to 90 and I thought it would be nice for her to go back to her roots as she used to live out at Andreas.’
During their stay, they visited attractions up north, including the Point of Ayre, went on walks, and spent their evenings looking at the stars and wildlife such as owls and bats.
Julie said: ‘Although it’s on the island it’s like a holiday because it’s a different environment to what we live in.’
The family ran Onchan bakery Caley’s until 2005, so Julie said it was nice to go somewhere she wasn’t instantly recognised.
‘It’s one of the best holidays I’ve had. I don’t like all the hassle of flying. It’s just a trip in the car,’ she said.
‘I love the island, I hate leaving it. When I leave I can’t wait to get back!’
Meanwhile Steve Lannigan, aged 42, of Douglas, has stayed at Kionsleu Cottages, in Foxdale, with a group of friends on a number of occasions.
He said: ‘They have lovely spacious cottages that are tucked away but still accessible.
‘As there were a few of us it was important to have something that was open plan – which these are.
‘When you rent a cottage normally you’re falling over each other – not with these.’
He said the self-catering accommodation was ‘very reasonably priced’ and described the owners, Fiona and Tony Barker as ‘very nice to deal with’, adding: ‘They also leave you alone to enjoy your time there.’
When asked what he got out of the stay, he said: ‘Comfort, relaxation, wine drinking, socialising. All good stuff.’
Historically Isle of Man Stay on a Farm members offered four and five star accommodation.
In response to recent demand for budget accommodation, they now feature a small on-farm hostel.
Beth said another reason for the rise was people were keen to experience a working farm holiday, with accommodation providers offering experiences such as quad riding, heritage visits, farm walks and wildlife observation.
An up-to-date edition of the Isle of Man Stay on a Farm brochure will be launched at the Isle of Man Food and Drink Festival, at Knockaloe Farm, Patrick, next weekend.
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Weather for Isle of Man
Saturday 25 May 2013
Temperature: 7 C to 13 C
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Temperature: 10 C to 13 C
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Wind direction: South