Three Nights in Cornwall… Help!

The title kind of says it all.

I’m taking the May half term week off work and hoping to pack up the car (my husband included) and head down to Cornwall for three nights. What with a busy summer of weddings ahead of me this may be our only chance for a ‘just us’ break before two become three… gulp.

Paul doesn’t think he’s ever been to Cornwall. I know I have been a couple of times as a child but my memories are very hazy, so this will be like visiting for the first time. Now I know three nights isn’t long so I want to make sure we use our time well, whether that means a different stop every night or having a ‘base’ and travelling out from there. The bonus of being pregnant is that come the evening I will be able to drive us out and about, whereas our usual requisite is that we are in the hub of the bar/restaurant scene so that we can get suitably merry and stumble home.

Pretty Padstow

Pretty Padstow

Our only criteria is that we do one night in or close to Padstow. I’ve heard it’s beautiful and bustling and we’d both like to sample Rick Stein’s restaurant if possible. I also require one night in a more luxurious hotel with a spa. As I won’t be drinking I at least want to treat myself to a morning or afternoon of pampering. I’ve also been told by lots of people we should do St Ives… but I’m yet to find a hotel there I like the look of.

In terms of accommodation I would prefer to do hotels as opposed to a self-catering cottage, Air B&B or even guest houses. I love hotels but am a complete and utter hotel snob so do find booking the accommodation the most tricky part. Stylish, boutique, quirky, mod-cons… I like all of the above but we don’t have a bottomless budget. Say, £500 for three nights accommodation? I, of course, know of The Scarlet and would love to spend a night there but that would consume way over half the budget. I’ve also been looking at The Headland Hotel just outside Newquay. It was the outside location for the film The Witches and has been modernised inside with a fancy spa too… but is Newquay just full of stags and hens these days? I just don’t know.

Headland_Hotel271200

The Headland Hotel in Newquay

The other option is that we both like camping… but again, we’re camping snobs. We don’t like holiday parks, we prefer more ‘minimal’ camp sites that allow camp fires and are a little quieter… but not completely isolated. We could perhaps camp for two nights and then treat ourselves to one night at The Scarlet? Or do a pub stay in Padstow and then two nights at The Headland in Newquay with day trips to St Ives and beyond…? Note my extensive knowledge of the region is limited to the Padstow-Newquay-St Ives coastline… ahem. I know nothing about the south coast- are we missing a trick here? And then of course there’s the drive there and back. We’ll do the obligatory stop at Stonehenge, but coming from London- are there any other interesting detours to take?

This is where I’m hoping you might be able to help us…

Those of you who live in or around Cornwall, those who holiday there frequently, or those who just happened to have come back from a fab three night break… talk to me! What itinerary would you suggest? Any cool but affordable hotels or boutique B&Bs you’d recommend? What are the must-visit towns or attractions? Do I need to book NOW if we want to go to Rick Stein’s restaurant? Or is that totally passé these days and there’s a newer, better restaurant on the scene we should visit??

All recommendations and words of wisdom gratefully received. Now let’s talk Cornish holibobs!

Sama xx

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4 thoughts on “Three Nights in Cornwall… Help!

  1. Oooo, if you are looking for luxury close to Padstow try these two. http://www.tregloshotel.com/ http://www.hustyns.co.uk/ both are not very far from Padstow at all, especially for a driver! The Camel Trail is really nice for a walk or bike ride between Padstow and Wadebridge and there is a cafe at the Wadebridge end for a Cream Tea which you MUST have. A trip out for stunning views is The Minack Theatre at Porthcurno Bay. It really is something else, you can have a bit of culture if there is a play on but even just for a trip out and a picnic on the beach it’s so romantic, Ooooo you can have a lovely Cream Tea at the Cafe in the Theatre as well.
    My husband and I ate at Steins Bistro in Padstow where we had one of the most memorable meals we’ve eaten had and it’s quite a bit cheaper than the Seafood Restaurant, you will need to book though, it gets ‘cosy’.
    St Ives? Mmmmmm we no likee, North Cornwall is our favourite.
    You’ll have a wonderful time!

  2. Being a local and being born and raised in Wadebridge ‘8 miles from padstow’ I would advise a stay in the St.Moritz hotel in Polzeath, reasonably priced around 100 a night, but you’ll get pure modern design, outstanding views and lots of comfort (always lovely when pregnant) you can catch a ferry across from rock to padstow there too, no.6 Paul ainsworths restaurant in padstow is lovely and also Nathan Outlaws in Rock is good too! Both amazing chefs and the food is definitely worth the price tag! Or maybe try Jamie Oliver’s fifteen at watergate bay (near newquay) with the restaurant overlooking the beach 🙂
    Hope this info helps!
    Any questions just ask 🙂
    X

  3. Thank you both so much for your comments and recommendations. So it seems I might be better off staying in and exploring the North Cornwall area then? I have to say I’m really pleased by that feedback- it’s where was pulling me but I felt like as we were down that way we should go further afield. For only three nights though perhaps it is best to really explore one particular area. Nathan Outlaw’s restaurant has been mentioned to me several times so it looks like we may well be making a trip there! xx

  4. Hi!

    I can throughly recommend the Scarlet. We’ve stayed there twice now and last time was in March 2014 when I was 7 months pregnant. It was the PERFECT place to stay – so quiet and relaxing. And everyone at the hotel is so friendly. The food is also amazing! It is expensive but it is such a treat when you’re there. Plus, because of its ‘no kids’ policy, it isn’t somewhere you can easily stay in the future. I think they do day spa options with lunch so you could always go for that?

    We also stayed in Newquay at the Fistral Beach Hotel (amazing views) and visited Jamie Oliver’s restaurant for a lunch time menu. Both very nice 🙂
    Ali x

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