It was two weeks and two continents ago, but it still lingers in my imagination. So here’s my latest travel tips for the loveliest corner of England: Cornwall.
To begin, and always a good technique: share the planning! That way your trip is always varied and exciting. And at least one of you knows what’s happening.
First hotel – selection by Matt: Jamaica Inn in the civil parish of Altarnun.
“There would never be a gentle season here, thought Mary; either grim winter as it was today, or else the dry and parching heat of midsummer, with never a valley to give shade or shelter, but grass that turned yellow-brown before May had passed.”
So of course, this is where Matt thought we should stay first!
We read the novel on the way there (and actually most of the weekend) and we got really excited about it, it’s a great story of pirates, smugglers, murder and moors. And we were going to stay in this hive of villainy!
When we eventually arrived, the place itself was a bit of a disappointment and completely different to our imagination. It has been done in such a tasteless way, it’s actually upsetting. The rooms were o.k., but the restaurant and the food itself…really not great.
They organise ghost tours there and it all felt just soo touristy…so I would not suggest for you to go there…but I definitely suggest you read the book. In this case, the fantasy was far better than the reality.
Second hotel – my selection: Scarlet hotel, an eco hotel atop the cliffs of Mawgan Porth bay.
Its website says: “It’s an escape for grown-ups to eat, dream and play in peace”
You can check on Foursquare what other people say about it: But honestly, what an amazing place!! The rooms have bathtubs in front of the window and a large balcony where you can sit accompanied by a seagull enjoying the stunning views over Mawgan Porth bay. I want to live there!!
So I think I won the planning competition. Matt agrees. They even have a natural pool, complete with algae and pond stuff. It’s very eco.
During our stay we did some day trips to:
Home of King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table! Home of Merlin’s cave and the Holy Grail… Lancelot, Morgan Le Fey, Guinevere. Except you know, not really. Another one of Matt’s fiction tours. A place that has taken on the magic and mystery of these great British stories, but hasn’t really got any solid connection to them. Just rumors and myth, traded down the centuries. The site lends itself to these stories, it perches on the Cornish Coast, ready to be washed away into the dreamy Atlantic. Worth a visit! And don’t forget to make your way down the cliff side to visit Merlin’s cave. It really is magical. (Just don’t do it at high tide)
The Eden Project
An amazing creation, built out of a abandoned quarry. Two and a half giant glass domes, full of Nature’s bounty, bid you to come inside. You will not be disappointed. Slightly pricey, but all for a good cause, The Eden project recreates the various Biomes of the world, my favorite being The Rainforest Biome. Imagine a rainforest without giant spiders and bugs, where you can get a smoothie. It felt like the future. Matt seems to think this is what living on Mars would be like. So long as they have smoothies there, I’m in. Definitely recommended.
A lovely day trip to the seaside town of is always interesting. Especially when you discover the National Lobster Hatchery, where local scientists are working on ways to keep the Lobster population strong. There’s also a massive Lobster in there that will haunt your dreams… So there’s that. Also, lots of icecream, and kung fu seagulls.
Cornwall is one of those places, full of hidden pockets of magic, mystery and beaches. You can find details of my last Cornish voyage here.
Any recommendations for my next one, are very welcome!