The revelation of Newtown Cove
Last official weekend of the camping season, we fell on our feet.
Just about managed to get in under the wire at The Apple Farm and Newtown Cove.
Two brilliant spots but the bad news is that they have both wrapped up for the 2021 season, so they are ones to chalk down for next year.
For us it was a much-anticipated annual return visit to The Apple Farm but a first outing to Newtown Cove. And while we will continue our camping adventures at Vanhalla all-year-round we were delighted to make it to these two sites before they closed for the season.
The Apple Farm is a bit of a spiritual retreat this time of year. Even though the harvest is in full swing the Traas family have the uncanny knack of ensuring the setting remains tranquil, a peaceful place to plug in, hook up to nature and recharge before the onset of the winter months.
While some improvements in providing hard stand park-ups in the circular park lay-out were evident and work very well, the essence of this site remains the same, you could as easily be visiting your country cousin’s farm.
It was certainly with some reluctance that we departed on Saturday after only one night stop-over and vowed to make it a longer stay next time to take full advantage of the serenity which comes with all thing’s apples. Unfortunately, before you ask, they still don’t permit dogs.
After we had stocked up sufficiently on apple stuff, we made tracks on Saturday for Newtown Cove via south Tipp towns Clonmel, Carrick-on-Suir (which looked especially interesting along the riverbank and the narrow old town bridge). This is a pleasant drive through farming countryside, the Suir Valley and touching along the Copper Coast before landing in Newtown Cove camping on the outskirts of Tramore.
Newtown Cove is a meticulously run and well managed family run site about 2km out from the main thoroughfare in Tramore. Sarah and John, the owners leave nothing to chance and are on top of every detail in this pristine site with 40 pitches and a good balance between tourers and mobile homes, although they were not taking tents this year as they would normally.
It’s more lowkey than the larger bustling campsites near the beach in Tramore itself and in that regard, it offers the best of both worlds. A more relaxed and tranquil setting but with all the fun of the fair just down the road in Tramore. A superbly maintained and well-supervised family friendly site, dogs too are welcome once on a lead.
The Newtown Cove caravan and camping park has a full range of facilities, an excellent services block, plentiful water points, all safe to drink and grey water may be disposed of in the drains at the water taps. There’s a playground, TV and Games room, free Wi-Fi (though not adequate for streaming), laundry, kitchen, campers sitting room and motorhome services bay.
Cycling is prohibited on site as are balance boards, E-scooters, and Go-Karts… and hurling! Footballs may be used in the ball court and scooters; Heelys and rollerblades are permitted.
We got an ideal corner pitch, number 10 close to the services block beside lovely neighbours who had a smashing Citroen Relay conversion set up; and friendly departing neighbours on the opposite side even passed on their unused shower tokens which was a nice gesture. I really like that all the hard stand pitches also adjacent to a grass patch and are adjacent to a weather-proof meshed area. There’s a good eco and environmental standard here, BBQs must be raised at least 30cm off the ground and there’s a good refuse and recycling area. All awning ground sheets must be breathable.
What I really liked is that we could slip out the ‘secret’ gate at the end of the park and a few minutes stroll away from the revelation that is Newtown Cove with its designated swimming spot, stony beach, park, and picnic areas. Rock fishing is also popular at this location, away from the favoured designated swimming spots. Newtown Cove’s Guillamene is Waterford’s answer to the famed Forty Foot and even has a throwback sign to the times when it was regarded as a men only bathing area, an era now thankfully consigned to the history books.
From here you can take a lovely leisurely 3km coastal walk into the town of Tramore, incorporating the Doneraile Walk. It is slightly shorter if you prefer to walk the regular pathway from the camping park into town.
Tramore, as we have said in previous blog posts, has come on in leaps and bounds with all the usual attractions and amenities – including a great skate park – being supplemented over the years with a promenade café culture, and a good selection of food and refreshment offerings. There’s a great community spirit flourishing here with the Sunday morning beach clean-up and litter picking in full swing and sending out a strong signal to leave no trace. It’s a great beach for a brisk walk and a super place to learn to surf, with a selection of surf shops and surf schools to chose from for equipment and lessons.
At the further end of the promenade, we discovered a new pizza place, Tomatti, set up in the over-flow car park in a cool Silver Bullet Airstream replica. The proprietors, Antonio and Anna are a delightful pair and their front of house smiles and cheery disposition the perfect appetiser to their delicious pizzas. Highly recommended.
Mixed signals for motorhomes in Tramore
However, I remain perplexed as to Tramore’s mixed signals on motorhomes and campervans. There are five designated campervan parking spots at the end of the prom, next to the public toilets. Even these are not always reserved or respected as campervan spots, despite the extensive parking available for other vehicles. Then someone stuck up ‘No Overnight Parking’ signs at the motorhome bays, which sort of defeats the purpose of providing them in the first place. There are varying reports as to whether this is enforced. I’d rather not chance it and would dread the idea of a knock in the middle of the night being ordered to move on. For the world of me I can’t understand why the relevant local authorities don’t embrace the opportunity here and make proper provision for motorhomes, like Cobh and Portumna aire, which work well for all concerned.
We paid €33 at Newtown Cove and Camping Park. This is made up of €30 for a unit with two adults and €3 extra for a child. There’s no separate charge for EHU, with excellent power points at every pitch. There are €1 tokens for the showers and also tokens for other facilities such as the cooker (€1), washer (€5), dryer (€5) and washing powder (€1).
The tariffs at The Apple Farm in Cahir are €9 per adult and €6 for a child with a fee of €2.50 for EHU. There’s also a full range of excellent produce for sale at the farm shop on site including apple crisps for €2; Con’s Cider for €4 and strong reusable An Fheirm Ull shopping bags €2.50.