A couple of weeks ago me and the boys ventured on our first little family trip to Cornwall. We had such a lovely time so I wanted to share some of the things we did and places we visited. I'd only ever been to Cornwall as a baby so it was a new place for me to explore and it's fair to say that in just a few short days, I fell in love.
Holywell Bay beach was breathtaking. An unspoilt beach, hidden behind great sand dunes, it is definitely up there as one of the most beautiful little places I've been to. We were lucky going out-of-season as there were only a few other people on the beach and the view was simply stunning. The sea was so wild, with waves crashing against the rocks, making for the most beautiful photos! Apparently it's one of the Poldark filming locations - I can definitely see why they picked it. To get to the beach you have to walk around or over the sand dunes but it's definitely worth the short stroll. There's a car park fairly close to the beach (ideal if you have little ones that can't walk far) and it's also dog-friendly all year round.
Lappa Valley Steam Railway
Arthur's really into his trains at the moment so we thought we'd take him to Lappa Valley, which is located just outside of Newquay. The leisure park offers so much for families...steam engine rides, miniature railways, indoor and outdoor play areas, a boating lake and tearoom to name just a few things! If I'm being completely honest Arthur was perhaps a little bit young to enjoy the whole experience (after all he's not quite two yet) and was a little impatient when it came to waiting for the trains to set off but we still had plenty of fun. If you've got slightly older toddlers and children it's definitely worth a visit on a sunny day! The ticket price covers the entire park (you only pay extra for food and drink) and children 2 years and under go free. I think they also allow dogs (for a small fee) providing they're on a lead.
The Cornish Arms
After visiting Lappa Valley we had a bit of a drive round so Arthur could have a quick nap and ended up coming across The Cornish Arms in St. Merryn owned by Rick Stein. The gastro pub offers a fantastic menu with dishes to please all. My other half opted for mussels and chips and I went for the linguine with aubergine, tomatoes, chilli and feta cheese (probably one of the best pasta dishes I've ever had!) If you're heading towards Padstow it's definitely worth a stop. We were lucky it was a really sunny day so were able to eat outside in the beautiful beer garden but inside the pub looked equally as lovely.
Before we headed back to our accommodation, we decided to explore Polly Joke - a cove located between Crantock and Holywell. Like Holywell Bay beach, Polly Joke was peaceful and unspoilt. It was so quiet and we were able to enjoy just a few moments of calm whilst taking in the sights, right before Arthur decided to do the world's biggest poo - toddlers and their timing eh? The beach had a stream running down the middle and I've read that it's a great place for exploring rock pools, which we'll definitely be doing with Arthur when he's a bit older. The car park was quite a walk away (about 15-20 minutes) but thankfully Arthur's a bit of a mountain goat and enjoys a good old walk. It was quite a steep hill so probably not buggy / pushchair friendly but you could definitely manage with little ones in a carrier, if they aren't able to walk it.
The weather took a bit of a turn for the worst on Saturday but we'd already planned ahead and decided that it would be a day for indoor activities. After a failed attempt at exploring Newquay Aquarium (let's just say Arthur was not impressed) we decided to take him swimming at Waterworld. The leisure pool was fantastic, with so much to offer kids (and big kids) including 2 water flumes, a water play hut, snake fountain and much more. Even little kids were allowed on the slides providing they were accompanied by an adult and much to my surprise Arthur loved them! He asked to go on AGAIN and AGAIN and I can already tell he's going to be much more of a daredevil than his mother here. If you're looking for a rainy day activity to do with kids while visiting Newquay, Waterworld is definitely worth considering.
Before we headed home on the Sunday we had a quick pitstop in Port Isaac, where the TV show Doc Martin is filmed. The fishing village was much more touristy than some of the other places we visited but it had bags of character, with it's traditional white washed cottages and winding streets. There were some lovely little gift shops, great for holiday souvenirs and I also bought some of the most delicious millionaire fudge from Buttermilk!
So there we have a little rundown of a few of the places we visited on our recent Cornwall trip. I'm keen to go back soon, so if you have any recommendations please send them my way. It really is such a beautiful place. It's no wonder it was ranked as one of the top staycation locations this year!