A Cornish Retreat - Polperro, England
Summer is finally here! The beautiful weather makes a British holiday even more of a reality, and where better to savour it than Looe in Cornwall. Polperro began as a traditional fishing village in the 13th Century before becoming a famous smuggling site during the war. Now it has developed into a thriving holiday spot, attracting tourists from all over the UK and beyond. Spring/early summer is the best time to visit, as you will find the town quieter than mid-summer, yet the weather is still wonderful.
The coastal drive to Cornwall is dazzling, and as we drove past each quaint harbour and sandy cove I felt the surge of excitement that only a holiday can produce. Entering Polperro, we squeezed our car through the winding streets and snaked our way through a small yet lively village, until parking at a captivating harbour.
'Harbour View Cottage' lives up to its name: the views from every room are beautiful, skilfully complementing the unique, sea-themed decor. From the desk in the master bedroom you can gaze across the ocean, or watch the tiny, red tram meander along the streets.
Pack a picnic or grab some fish and chips and take the one minute stroll down to the golden beach, the ideal suntrap. Directly behind the beach and harbour is a short path up a gentle slope which will bring you to a fantastic cliff edge. Take a seat on the old, weathered bench and, with no land on the horizon, it is like being at the edge of the world, where sea meets sky.
Polperro hosts an array of quirky shops offering rare pieces of jewellery, pottery and trinkets. Unsurprisingly, there are also many art galleries filled with paintings and photographs of this fascinating village. Looe, and its surroundings, offer an abundance of activities and places to visit. The coastal path runs right past 'Harbour View Cottage', and is a humbling journey through the dramatic landscapes along the south coast, where you can even indulge in a spot of crab fishing or rock climbing. You also cannot miss a visit to the Eden Project: the world famous conservation development in St Austell. It hosts enough entertainment for all ages, from the Freaky Nature exhibition for kids, to Eden Sessions: a music festival hosting Calvin Harris and 'Mumford & Sons'.
- Beware: phone signal is incredibly weak in Polperro. Thank goodness for free Wifi! The Old Mill House Tavern offers internet access, live music every Sunday at 8.30 p.m, pool, darts, an array of food, a superb Sunday roast and a beautiful, riverside beer garden. www.oldmillhouseinn.co.uk
- There is a wide range of cottages and flats to rent in Polperro, but I would recommend getting as close to the harbour as possible. For prices and availability of 'Harbour View Cottage' visit: www.aspirelifestyleholidays.com/Microsites/Site1/IntroPageAdv.aspx?MId=257
- The nearest train station to Polperro is Liskeard which is 14 miles away. The journey from Paddington in approximately 3.5 hours, for times and fares visit www.nationalrail.co.uk Alternatively, London to Polperro is around 4 hours in a car. Be warned, the roads in Polperro are incredibly narrow- you will get down them but take it slowly!
- The Eden Project is easily accessible via car, train or bus. Save money by booking discounted tickets online: www.edenproject.com
Emily Rycroft (follow Emily on Twitter at emily_rycroft)