Ocean Views and Cornish Pasties

Sunday, 18 September 2016

Earlier on this month, my wonderful parents decided to take pity on myself and Craig (as we are both broke and desperately saving) and took us with them to beautiful Cornwall. You may or may not know this but Keast, my surname, is a well known Cornish name as I am in fact a quarter Cornish, a fact I am very proud of, as Cornwall, is arguably the most splendid place in Britain. Beaches adorned with golden sand and crashing atlantic waves, where brave surfers glide and dive. Country pubs serving fresh fish and chips, and the appliest (if thats a word) cider. Quaint seaside villages, that make you want to take a picture every five seconds (trust me I did) and the best ice creams and pasties you will EVER eat. Its true I love Cornwall, it holds a very special place in my heart.

In this post I will talk about the things we got up to along with some secret hidden treasures that I recommend you check out if you ever visit The West Country.



  Crantock ft The Bowgie Inn 

So our first full day was spent visiting Crantock, a well loved part of Cornwall by my entire family, especially my mum. If you're a bit of a beach bum I highly recommend a trip to Crantock beach as it really is quite a looker! However do be sure to check the tide times before visiting as if the tide is in you can forget walking on the beach. Whether you prefer to walk off your lunch or work up an appetite I have the perfect place for you to graze whilst visiting Crantock, The Bowgie Inn. If you are partial to a Sunday Roast you will not be disappointed, the plate is laden with crispy roasties, heaps of fresh veggies, the cheesiest cauliflower-cheese, all smothered in gravy. As a pescetarian I had the veggie option but I am informed beef is a good choice for you carnivores. As well as their famous roasts The Bowgie serve seafood salads, fish and chips, an array of sarnys and many other Cornish delights, all within the most breathtaking setting with views overlooking the ocean.





The Camel Trail 

On Monday we embarked on the famous Cornish Camel Trail, a 13 mile bike ride adjacent to The River Camel. We hired out bikes and helmets in Wadebridge via a company called Bike Smart. The trail itself was fairly flat and unchallengedng, so perfect if you wanted to do it as a family, plus there were plenty of great picnic spots with killer views if you needed to stop on the way. Although we decided to stop a couple of times, to take advantage of a few picture opportunities, we cycled the entire way into the idilic fishing harbour Padstow, to have a wander and grab an ice cream (I recommend Rick Steins ice cream parlour - peanut butter crunch). After a brief trip to Padstow we headed back to Wadebridge, on the trail, and made a pledge to return to Padstow the next day for a proper explore. 

Admiring the views mid trail

Boscastle 

That afternoon we decided to venture into Boscastle for a well deserved lunch after our bike ride. Boscastle is well worth the visit as it is like no other place you will ever see. A picturesque fishing port with dramatic cliffs and views of the sea. Although it was pouring down with rain that didn't dampen our spirits, and in fact somewhat added to the drama of the scenery. Cobbled streets adorned with English pubs, traditional tea rooms and quirky gift shops, Boscastle really is charming. We escaped the rain and scooted into a tea room (I cannot remember the name!) and had crab sandwiches, another Cornish must. We then ventured down the stream, centred in the middle of Boscastle, climbed a small, yet steep rock face to then be faced with deep indigo and bright white foaming waves pounding the surrounding cliffs - utterly dramatic and well worth get soaked for! We then headed home to the cottage for hot baths and showers.




Padstow

Padstow is possibly one of Cornwall's most famous towns, and rightfully so! My biggest tip if you're visiting Padstow (especially by car) is get there early, as it gets incredibly busy and parking is limited, plus its always nicer to see somewhere when it isn't heaving with tourists. Just as I remember from when I was a child Padstow is about as Cornish as it gets - pasty shop after pasty shop, in fact you rarely walked past someone that wasn't munching on one! Little fishing boats perched in the harbour, whilst people fought for a spot on the wall to admire the view, that smell that can only be described as 'fishy' filling the air - ahh its good to be back. This time round my parents were with us, so we spent a good amount of time walking round and browsing all of the little gift shops and independant fashion boutiques - bliss - I could of spent a fortune.

Three boutiques that I spent a rather a long time in were Bibi - a small but perfectly formed space filled with handcrafted jewellery, scarfs and many other nautical nicknacks, Aloft - a super modern beach shack styled boutique selling the very best in eco friendly beach brands, one being Gandys (a personal favourite) and finally Ocean One - didn't look much from the outside but inside it was like Aladdin's cave, loads of cool bohemian designers I hadn't heard of before, one being Meisïe, I recommend you check it out! Unfortunately the boutiques I have mentioned don't seem to have a huge presence online, however I will still leave links at the bottom of the post.After working up quite an appetite we managed to find the perfect spot over looking the harbour to devour a Cornish pasty each from Pasty Presto (also known as The Cornish Bakery). They did every filling known to man, from classic steak potato and veg, to fantastic veggie options for myself and Craig - I recommend cheese n mushroom.


Letting our pasties go down we decided to embark on our next adventure - taking a ferry boat over to Rock, a little beach and seaside village just across from Padstow. Rock is renowned for its swanky bars and edgy sea view apartments, and although very picturesque there, quite frankly, wasn't much to see, and in comparison to Padstow isn't half as charming. With that said the boat ride was fun and my dog, Fergus, enjoyed the ride. After guzzling a Crabbies ginger beer over at Rock, me and Craig took a stroll across the beach before jumping back on the boat and heading back to Padstow. After strolling round for another half an hour we decided to venture home, where we later devoured Dad's home made seafood lasagne and a warm focaccia bread, curtesy of Rick Steins Deli Padstow.

Polzeath (oh mumma I wanna go surfin') 

On Wednesday we woke up to glorious sunshine - yippee! Luckily we picked Wednesday to go surfing. Heading to one of my favourite Cornish beaches Polzeath, known for its 'rad' waves and beach side bars. A lovely big stretch of sand with long, slow breaking consistent waves, perfect for a couple of amateurs like myself and Craig to try and catch some waves. When we arrived we already had a few surf schools in mind that we searched online, after sussing a few out from afar we decided on Surf's Up (link below). Slightly hidden, high up on the left hand side of the beach, Surfs up attracted us with its brightly coloured merch shop. When walking into the lil beach hut (their office!) we were greeted by some very happy/relaxed surf instructors who informed us that the next lesson would be at 2pm as we had just missed the 10am slot - my advice to all you keen surfers would be to check the times of the lessons before heading to the beach, as there're usually only two a day, and its good to plan you're trip around the lesson. We decided to book up for the 2pm slot and in the meanwhile killed time wandering in and out of the surf shops surrounding the beach. At around midday we joined my mum and dad who were chilling at The Waterfront Cafe Bar to feast on a delicious squid ring salad and basket of chunky chips - both food and view were fab. We then headed onto the beach for a very competitive game of bat and ball, testing out our new Go Pro chest strap! Ditching our stuff with mum and dad, we headed off to Surfs Up to begin our lesson.
Polzeath Beach

I only have great things to say about surfing. Although not as easy as it may look, and in fact incredibly testing at times, surfing is by far one of the most exhilarating and enjoyable things I have ever done. Our instructor, who's name I forget, was brilliant! The lesson consisted of some basic exercises on the sand with the boards practising how to get on and off the boards and then on and off the waves. Once perfecting this on the sand we ventured into the water. The lesson was with 4 other people and lasted two hours, in that time we learnt two different ways to stand up on the board and had plenty of time to try them out in the water. Two hours later and a head full of salt water and I would hardly say I was a surfing pro but I was a lot better than I thought I was going to be and managed to stand up a couple of times - even if I did come crashing down seconds later. All I will say is if you're planning a trip to Cornwall surfing is a MUST and I couldn't recommend Surf's Up at Polzealth enough.

Us with the lovely couple we met on our lesson

That evening we re-fuled in our local pub, The Rising Sun, in Alternun. It doesn't look much from the outside but don't be fooled as the food was really quite something. I enjoyed a seafood chowder, which was literally packed with fish followed by one of the best crème brûlée's I've ever eaten! The staff were amazing - our lovely chatty waitress even let Fergus take a nap on one of the bar stools.


Port Isaac 

Our last day in Cornwall was spent visiting Port Isaac - some of you may be familiar with Port Isaac from BBC hit drama Doc Martin. Port Isaac was the most stunning of all the places we visited during our trip, with a steep walk around the outside of the harbour taking you to the top of a large grassy hill with panoramic views of the ocean. The town itself has good parking facilities, and is easy to get to, with only a 10 min walk into the town centre from the car park. Like Padstow the streets are adorned with quaint cafe's and quirky gift shops. We found a great pub with sea views, called The Golden Lion, where we all devoured a huge portion of fish and chips each. Me and Craig then ventured on our walk to the top of the hill to work off lunch and enjoy the views - and boy were they views!
Look at those colours! 
After exploring Port Isaac we headed home to the cottage to pack and drown our sorrows with the remaining beer and wine before heading home to Kent the following morning... sigh. 

Congrats if you have made it this far into my post - I know its a lengthy one - there was just so much to say about Cornwall. As you can probably tell I love everything about Cornwall and believe there is something for everyone at any time of year. Oozing character and charm with one of the best coast lines in the world (in my opinion) there really is no reason not to visit. 

Please check out the links below for some of the place I have mentioned in my post. 

elly x 



No comments:

Post a Comment