Back in early Spring 2021 when we still thought we might be able to fly somewhere hot like the Greek Islands or Turkey, I saw my friend and got chatting about her apartment in Cornwall, she said she was already getting booked up for the summer. I took a gamble, decided to ditch any idea of a trip abroad and booked a week at her apartment in Portwrinkle, South East Cornwall. Thank goodness I did! And how lucky were we that it turned out to be the a UK heatwave week!? Seriously, we could have been in the Med!
But arriving in Portwrinkle was a bit of an experience ... I have never visited that part of Cornwall before. Actually, apart from Bude, which is only just inside Cornwall from North Devon, I have never holidayed in Cornwall!! But Portwrinkle was so remote, our 20 year old daughter was a bit worried about being stuck with her parents in the middle of nowhere for a week!! Her worries were unfounded though and we had an amazing week, a quiet beach, views to die for, a comfortable home from home and peace and tranquility to enjoy the fabulous weather.
Rame Peninsula, Cornwall
The Rame Peninsula or 'The Forgotten Corner' as it is known locally is literally just inside the border with Devon, it is in South East Cornwall and is bordered on three sides by water and it is a haven of peace and tranquility (source: cornwall-online).
I admit I didn't do much (any) research before we arrived, only that it was an hour or so from Brixham where my father-in-law lives and not far from where our niece lives with her partner and new baby. So we decided to travel Thursday, see them and arrive in Portwrinkle on Friday afternoon for our 3 pm check-in!
Portwrinkle was once a traditional fishing village, it has two beaches and a beach cafe, there is a pub and small community shop in the nearby village of Crafthole. There used to be a clifftop hotel called the Whitsand Bay Hotel but it closed up a few years ago and now stands looking a bit derelict and waiting to be given a new lease of life!
Where we stayed ...
Kittiwake is a modern two bedroom apartment with panoramic sea views from all three french doors and has a south facing patio area with wonderful outside dining. It is a 5 minute walk down to the (dog friendly) of the two beaches and a further 5 minute walk to the harbour and second beach (no dogs in summer). It offers a truly 'away from it all' escape, don't expect a mobile phone signal though, although you do get WiFi in the apartment! And Waitrose isn't a 2 minute drive either, we visited the Co-Op in Looe on our first morning to stock up on essentials, we also took a Gousto box with 3 meals and dined out 3 evenings (more on where further down).
This is a wonderful apartment, I absolutely loved the outlook from the patio areas, my friend Audrey and her husband Gary have included so many thoughtful finishing touches and have covered everything you might need. It is clean, bright, well-equipped, beautifully furnished and comfortable. Thank you for letting us visit and enjoy your holiday home!
Things to do in Cornwall
But what to do in this quiet corner of Cornwall? Well as it turned out, we did nothing! But that was based simply on the weather. It was a hot hot hot heatwave and we were all feeling exhausted. My daughter had reacted a bit to her first vaccine dose and I had been so busy in the weeks leading up to our holiday, I was quite happy to collapse on a sun lounger with a book.
However, I'd love to go back. My friend had suggested so many lovely things to do in the Rame Peninsula and I would love to explore properly. So here is my little summary of what I will be doing when we book another week!
First starting with what we did do ...
Paddle boarding - we hired paddle boards (and a kayak) from ABC Watersports and loved it, the weather helped of course and no we didn't stand up! But it didn't matter!
Dinner at The View - this really was amazing, the view (from The View Restaurant) is simply stunning, we loved sitting on the terrace and watching the sun set and the moon appear over Whitsand Bay. The food is excellent, the wine fantastic and the service friendly and welcoming.
Cawsand - we drove along the coast to have dinner at The Bay in Cawsand and loved looking at the little fisherman huts overlooking Whitsand Bay and now slowly being gentrified to provide very upmarket accommodation (look up Unique Home Stays)!
Looe - a flying visit to be honest, but we chose Looe rather than Plymouth to grab our essentials for the week and we wanted to buy beach shoes (we always forget them)!
Finnygook Beach - this is the first beach you get to on arrival in Portwrinkle, it is dog friendly all year round, it is accessed by a short path which is easy going down but a bit challenging coming back up! But it is a quiet beach, it never got over-crowded and there are rock pools to explore, the sea is safe and easy to swim in although beach shoes needed for access!
Above: Serpentine is a stunning architect designed house with panoramic views across the bay, it is available to rent at Unique Home Stays.
And where I want to go ...
Fowey - ideal for a whole day out, lots to do and explore, two lovely beaches, and cute waterside cafes and restaurants, lots of independent shops and you can catch the ferry over to the quiet village of Polruan too!
Polkerris - this is one of Cornwall's best family beaches, an idyllic sandy cove and stunning coastline with lots of watersports available and rock pools to explore. Sam's on the Beach is the recommended place to eat, go on low tide, have a walk first then enjoy lunch!
Cremyll Ferry - the ferry connects Stonehouse in Plymouth with Mount Edgcumbe and Cremyll in Cornwall and runs every 30 minutes throughout the day. Mount Edgcumbe is a stunning country park overlooking the sea with vast gardens, deer park and house) and lunch at The Orangery is recommended for it's beautiful setting overlooking the Italian gardens.
Cawsand Ferry - this service runs daily in high season between the Barbican Landing Stage, Plymouth and the beautiful beaches and Cornish fishing villages of Cawsand and Kingsand. The trip alone is perfect, it is a half hour journey that takes you back in time to visit the quaint fishing and smuggling villages with secluded beaches, spectacular walks and magnificent scenery. Lots of pubs, restaurants, shops and cafes to visit!
Whitsand Bay - one of the best beaches in this part of Cornwall, Whitsand Bay consists of a stretch of sand approaching 4 miles in length. It is however difficult to access with winding, steep paths and swimming here can be dangerous due to the strong rip tides so please take care. It is popular in the evenings and I can imagine a walk and beach BBQ would be an amazing time to enjoy it. I'd love to stay in one of these cabins from Unique Home Stays.
This would be a lovely area to explore with children too, for more ideas check out this post, ideal for multi-generational family get-aways or taking grandchildren on holiday.
I worried that we were 'too lazy' and didn't take the opportunity to explore but it really was too hot to be wandering about. And on reflection I do think that you often get to know a place better on the second visit when you are a bit more familiar with the area. That's my excuse anyway!
Runway Pant from Saint and Sofia for an evening beach walk
On our last evening we took a stroll along the beach and back through the village centre, I wore my new (gifted) Runway Pant with Leopard Stripe from Saint and Sofia and draped the Diamond Knit Jumper around my shoulders in case it got chilly. I love this outfit, the runway pants are so easy to wear, lovely wide waistband, fit true to size, comfortable and come in three different leg lengths. I am wearing the Size 10 x 28" leg.
My black swimsuit is from Mint Velvet this year and was ideal for a bit of a cover-up after a bit too much sun and sarong is from a selection at The Wendy House, I will often buy a lightweight scarf to use as a beach cover-up. My 'Summer' sun hat was from a beach shop in Looe, I couldn't resist the fun of using it for my blog photos! But in terms of longevity and classic style, my Gilly Hat from Creative DeZigns is the BEST! It has sun protection built in (UPF50+) and it is crushable to make packing easier and, wait for it, you can wash it on a hand wash cycle in the machine! Denim shorts and bag both from H&M.
A photo heavy post but my blog is as much about a personal diary of my life as it is about sharing inspiration and recommendations for others.
It felt wonderful to be able to wear my summer clothes, I have really missed being in summer dresses and sandals this year, although we have had some good weather it has felt a lot lot less than in 2020!
Tell me about your holiday in the comments below, I'd love to hear from you, did you get on a plane, did you staycation at home, or did you head to Devon or Cornwall or somewhere else in the UK?
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Welcome to Fifty & Fab, a lifestyle blog to inspire you. I am a blogger with a passion for writing about style, beauty, health and fitness with a focus on the over 50's. I am based in Marlow but work across London and the South East.
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Hi, I’m Michelle and my blog Fifty & Fab is all about my journey into and through my fifties. I share style tips, health and fitness inspiration, I talk about my holidays and days out and I tell you about my beauty regime and my lifestyle. I hope you might pick up a tip or two and get some inspiration!
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