Surf, rest and play   3 comments

I needed a holiday! It was already June and apart from a few weekends through the winter and spring I hadn’t had a break since August last year so I was ready. The Jones family like to make the most of holiday time so within a couple of hours of shutting down my laptop on a Friday night we were off to Cornwall. First night spent in the Premier Inn in Liskeard so we can make the most of the first Saturday before heading to our Caravan home for the week.

We spend most of our time on the north Cornish coast so for a change we decided to take a look at the south coast at Looe and its a splendid place. The quintessential fishing village with a cracking beach. We had to dodge some serious showers but they did create some memorable views as we strolled between the squalls across the beach.

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Looe Harbour

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Looe Beach

There is also a really good play area down the river which the kids really enjoyed. Unfortunately I don’t have a picture of J making a complete fool of herself on the rope swing!

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Tarzan Jones

We headed over to our caravan at the Perran Springs site in Goonhavern. A lovely quiet site with really friendly owners who always make us feel welcome. The site has some fishing lakes which double as a nature reserve and makes a nice spot for a quiet wander at the end of the day. GM also joined us for a few days (he’s the less than handsome chap in the photo below) to join me in some surf kayak action (click the link for the post with photos and video)

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Our holiday home at Perran Springs

On our first full day the weather wasn’t very summery but we did have a very pleasant walk on the coast at Porth Joke – no joke – it is a joke – Porth Joke. We were lucky enough to see a couple of seals playing in the surf.

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“Sammy” Seal

Porth Joke is a lovely quiet beach well off the beaten track between Crantock and Holywell Bays.We had a great time exploring the rock pools, nooks and crannys until persistent drizzle drove us back to the caravan.

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J having fun

Perranporth is one of the major tourist beaches on the north coast and one of the kids favourites as well as mine. We spent several days there as its easy to park next to the beach and it has all the ingredients needed (sand, river, caves, surf). J got some bodyboarding in while me and GM surfed the kayaks

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J having fun and posing for the camera

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Showing off now!

The south end of the beach has a whole host of caves and arches which the kids (and me) love to explore. One goes right through the headland and out the other side which makes for a great adventure.

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Chapel Rock which sits in the middle of the beach has one of those old Victorian man-made pools which the kids normally like to swim in but it was just too cold.

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Perranporth Beach and Chapel Rock

When we mentioned to the site that we were staying in another hotel at the end of the trip to make the most of the weekend they very kindly let us stay in the caravan an extra night at no charge. This allowed us to make the most of the Saturday and we went for a stroll along the Gannel estuary in the morning. The river runs onto Crantock beach and when the tide is out you can walk along the sand. The houses of Pentire in Newquay overlook but it’s a really quiet spot and one of Newquay’s best kept secrets.

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Gannel Estuary

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Gannel Estuary

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Crantock Beach

After a picnic in the dunes overlooking Crantock beach, I sat and snoozed after a hard weeks surfing while the kids played and J bodyboarded. The kids had a great time running the dunes

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The river Gannel creates a great environment for crabs and we spent the last couple of hours plucking them from under the seaweed and then watching them swim downstream. L in particular loves this and Crantock is one of the best beaches I know for crabbing (It’s worst feature is the tide goes out for the best part of a mile – long walk with a heavy kayak)

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Who needs Attenborough!

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Teamwork

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“Freedom!!”

The weather had been promising to clear for a couple of days and on our last day it finally delivered. After packing up and leaving Perran Springs we headed to Treyarnon Bay up near Padstow. It was windy but hot and from nowhere the waves were huge. Treyarnon is too narrow for the kayak but its superb for body-boarding so me, J and “Isabelle” (One of L’s dolls!) had a great time

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Anyone can body-board

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Showing off again!

There is always a decent burger van on the beach so we had a nice lunch on the cliffs overlooking the beach

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Treyarnon Bay

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Constantine Bay

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Treyarnon Bay

At low tide there is a superb natural rock swimming pool on the beach and we all had a great time swimming and jumping. It’s a great place to get the kids used to snorkelling in a nice clear calm pool and there is loads to see. It had the added attraction on this day of being about 3 feet from the massive atlantic breakers just below

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D enjoying the natural rock swimming pool

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L enjoying the natural rock swimming pool

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Now who’s showing off|!

I also decided it would be good to sit on the rocks and watch the waves crash onto the rocks from close up. If you watch the slide show below you’ll see the video clip of what happens when you get cocky! I also took some underwater shots with the new camera (Panasonic FT3) – very nervous about using it underwater for the first time but it is indeed as waterproof as claimed and great fun.

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Finished off the holiday with a pasty and chips in Padstow harbour on warm sunday evening. Cracking finish to great holiday.

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Cornwall has it’s tourist fleshpots but if you make a bit effort there are plenty of spots where the crowds are bearable and at places like Porth Joke pretty well unspoilt. I’ve put together a video & photo slide show below or you can look on YouTube – looks better in HD if you have a decent broadband connection and my photos are here on Flickr

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3 responses to “Surf, rest and play

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  1. Looks fab – great photos. Cornwall is yet another place where I need to spend some more time. This whole working for a living business is a major inconvenience!
    Really liked the slideshow, particularly the bit where you evidently got an unexpected soaking. Or was it staged? – you could make a bid to be the Dirty Sanchez of outdoor blogs?
    I have to confess that the music had me foxed – I knew that I knew it, but couldn’t put my finger on exactly where from. How about ‘Half-step’ by DJ Food in a similar (but more chilled) mode or the instrumental version of the ‘The Sleepless’ by Red Snapper which has a different name which I can’t remember at present (which will wind me up until it comes back to me).

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  2. It’s called ‘Snapper’ – the instrumental version of ‘The Sleepless’ – just in case you were losing any sleep over it. Phew.

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  3. Cornwall is a favourite for me due to the surf but Pembrokeshire, scenery-wise is just as good.

    Unfortunately the soaking wasn’t staged. I was sitting on the edge watching the waves break over my legs when a slightly larger one nearly washed me into the surf. If I’d fallen in I’d have been in trouble as they were powerful waves bashing pretty hard against the rocks. Luckily the camera recorded my embarrasment.

    I was going to ask you for music tips for my slideshows, I don’t have much in the way of mood music so it’s normally a bit of a struggle to find a suitable piece.

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