The Royal Oak Pub with rooms in Luxborough, Somerset

Prices from:
£80 per night

David Hancock says:

  • Authentic Exmoor inn; lovingly revamped
  • Iconic timeless bar; roaring fire, great beer
  • Hearty, local seasonal food
  • Peaceful country classic rooms
  • Fabulous rural spot; walks from the door

Sticky FingersMuddy PawsGood for WalkingOutdoor PursuitsCandlelitPrivate Dining

Real Time Booking Available
Overview

The Royal Oak Luxborough, Somerset, TA23 0SH

The personal touch

Nestling by a babbling stream at the bottom of a steep-sided valley, deep in Exmoor’s Brendon Hills, the red stone-built Royal Oak is a truly rural 14th-century inn. Owner Douglas Yiend (ex Hotel du Vin) has been lovingly restoring the old inn for four years but has successfully maintained the rustic atmosphere that makes the place so popular. The several rooms have flagstone, wood or tiled floors, low dark oak beams, crackling log fires, old pine kitchen tables, painted stone walls lined with country prints and paintings. Arrive early to find a quiet corner by the stone fireplace in the timeless bar or head into the back bar to browse the excellent vinyl collection and sink into a leather armchair and listen to your favourite music with a pint of Butcombe, or why not challenge the locals to a game of pool. The newly refurbished Hunt Room with its part-panelled walls, earthy hues and hunting prints, is perfect for a private party or family celebration. The cosy country look extends go the eight individually decorated bedrooms. The Royal Oak is indeed in good hands and trade displays a healthy blend of great community spirit and a genuine welcome to all-comers that will assure its place amongst Exmoor’s finest traditions of hospitality.

Sticky fingers

Kids are allowed in the pub; smaller portions are served, or the likes of sausage and mash and fish fingers, plus an extra z-bed can be added to the room. 

Muddy paws

Footpaths radiate from the front door, so expect a big welcome to dogs in the bar – your canine friend can also stay in four of the bedrooms for a small extra charge and dog towels are available.

Alfresco

For sunny days there are picnic benches on the front lawn and patio overlooking the stream – a great spot for walkers’ lunches or a quiet reflective pint in fine weather. There is also an enclosed stone terrace at the rear of the pub.

What’s the damage?

8 doubles/twin: £80-£140

What else?

All credit cards taken

Alfresco dining

Private dining (Hunt Room)

Disabled access to bar, restaurant and one ground floor bedroom

Parking

Sleep

The Royal Oak Luxborough, Somerset, TA23 0SH

Do not disturb

Rooms have been thoughtfully refurbished in keeping with the rural location and general feel of the pub; eight ramble across the first floor and one is located on the ground floor, which has disabled access and it’s own private terrace. All are country-smart with cool neutral hues and rural pictures on the walls, individual antique pine furnishings, modern lamps, quality fabrics, good spotlighting, and comfortable wooden beds topped with crisp linen, thick down and attractive throws and scatter cushions to add a splash of colour. Book the suite with its fine vaulted and beamed ceiling, large handmade bed and striking headboard (made from old wall panelling), two upholstered chairs, and gorgeous country views towards Exmoor. The big wood-floored bathroom is a treat – huge walk-in monsoon shower and separate toll-top bath. All bathrooms are fresh, clean and well equipped; some have shower over bath; larger rooms have baths and a separate shower. For those with a day’s planned activities ahead, from rambling through nearby Chargot Woods, exploring the moors on foot or touring the North Devon coast, a hearty breakfast is just the ticket.

What’s the damage?

8 doubles/twin: £80-£140

What else?

All credit cards taken

Alfresco dining

Private dining (Hunt Room)

Disabled access to bar, restaurant and one ground floor bedroom

Parking

Eat & Drink

The Royal Oak Luxborough, Somerset, TA23 0SH

Mastering the menu

(Starters: £4.95-£6.95; Main Courses: £12.50-£17; Desserts £4.95-£7.50)

The food is well worth seeking out as the kitchen makes good use what is seasonal and produced on their doorstep, so expect to find plenty of game from local estate shoots, as well as locally reared meats (Stuart Lowen & Regency Butchers), and vegetables from the pub garden on the daily changing menus. Asparagus comes from Withycombe Farm down the road. Walkers call by at lunchtime for refreshing pints of Butcombe and a hearty traditional bar snack, perhaps a rump steak and onion baguette, ham, egg and chips, or Exmoor Ale battered fish and chips. Evening extras may include salmon Gravadlax with mustard and dill sauce, herb-crusted hake, tomato, olive and chorizo tapenade, crushed new potatoes and white wine butter, or a rib-eye steak with roast tomato and mushroom with hand-cut chips and peppercorn sauce. Leave room and indulge in upside down chocolate crumble with vanilla ice cream. The Sunday roasts are not to be missed – beef topside and pork shoulder with all the trimmings. Owner Douglas is a real ale devotee and avidly supports local and small craft beer breweries, including Firkin Fleece and Exmoor Ales, and will try to convert all non-ale drinkers with a smile. There’s a good global list of wines too.

Time to Eat

Breakfast: 8am – 10am

Lunch: 12 noon – 2pm

Dinner: 6.30pm – 9pm

Time at the bar

11am – 11pm (10.30pm Sunday). Closed Monday

What’s the damage?

8 doubles/twin: £80-£140

What else?

All credit cards taken

Alfresco dining

Private dining (Hunt Room)

Disabled access to bar, restaurant and one ground floor bedroom

Parking

Food Trail

Take it back home
Tour the brewery that brewed your favourite pint, visit the shop on the farm that reared your delicious Sunday roast beef, and seek out the roadside stalls selling the local crab and samphire on the inn’s menu, the Food Trail features the local artisan producers and suppliers where you can buy to enjoy at home.

Change of scenery
Looking for a pub for lunch following a country walk, a different venue for dinner, or a good café for coffee, light lunch or afternoon tea, then the best in the area are listed below. If you find a new and exciting eatery in the area that’s worthy of a mention on the Food Trail, then please to do let us know – gabrielle@innplaces.co.uk.

1 Inn Location - The Royal Oak

Out & About

1 Inn Location - The Royal Oak

Activities

6

Fossil Hunting, Watchet, Somerset TA23 0AA

Watchet is a delightful small harbour town with a maritime history going back two millennia. On the beach between Watchet and Warren Bay, Alabaster can be found in the cliffs, and it’s also a rich fossil hunting area – author Daniel Defoe was impressed with the quality and number of ammonites he found here!

10

Exmoor Pony Centre, Ashwick, Somerset TA22 9QE

This pony centre is dedicated to the promotion and conservation of Exmoor ponies, and you can have a great day’s trekking in magnificent countryside, enjoying the wildlife and flora at a leisurely pace.

11

Fishing on Exmoor TA24 7QP

A combination of beautiful scenery, abundant wildlife and exceptionally clean water makes fishing the rivers and streams on Exmoor a special pleasure. Permit fishing is available on the East Lyn, the Barle and the Exe along with a number of pools and reservoirs. Wimbleball Lake, near Dulverton has an excellent well stocked trout fishery

Places to visit

2

Knightshayes Court, Tiverton, Devon EX16 7RQ

A rare survival of eccentric designer William Burges, Knightshayes is a romantic Victorian country house with Gothic splendours inside, and celebrated formal gardens with lily ponds & humorous topiary, and a delightful restored kitchen garden, which supplies the good restaurant.

3

Dunster Castle, Dunster, Somerset TA24 6SL

Dunster sits on a dramatic hilltop location with sweeping views over the Bristol Channel and Exmoor – it’s a picture book romantic castle with turrets and towers. The gardens are terraced with sub-tropical plants, and you’ll find the National collection of strawberry trees here, alongside a lovely Mediterranean garden, and the famous Dunster lemons. Don’t miss the amazing oak staircase and ornate Gothic plasterwork inside the castle.

4

Selworthy, Somerset TA24 8TP

A delightful time-capsule village packed with character, thatched cottages and village greens situated in the National Trust’s Hornicote Estate. Historic All Saints church is perched on the side of a hill, with a staggering view of the Vale of Porlock – it’s worth going inside, to see the painted nave ceiling and 18th century gallery.

8

Cleeve Abbey, Washford, Somerset TA23 0PS

There’s 800 years of history at this picturesque Cistercian abbey, the most complete and unaltered set of monastic cloister buildings in England. Especially interesting are the Gatehouse and the 15th century refectory with its glorious angel roof and unusual painted chamber. The Great dormitory is one of the finest examples in the country.

9

Coleridge Cottage, Nether Stowey, Somerset TA5 1NQ

Coleridge moved to this modest house in 1796 with his wife Sara and young son David, and wrote Kubla Khan and The Rime of the Ancient Mariner here; his great friends William and Dorothy Wordsworth lived close by, and together they wrote some of their best known poetry.

Getting there

Location, Location, Location

By Road: From M5 (junction 25) follow B3224 towards Wheddon Cross. Just after left fork to Bampton turn right signposted Luxborough

By Rail: Nearest railway station is Taunton – 20miles south east of Luxborough

Address:

, Luxborough, Somerset, TA23 0SH

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