I have missed a few weeks of my Cornwall posts, since returning home from Scotland back in June we have been busy, busy with work and in all honesty until recently the weather has been pretty pants. When we do have a nice day we try and make the most of it, this Summer the nice days seem to feel few and far between.
We have kept our days out very local lately visiting Fowey, Truro, Falmouth and our local village (Charlestown). We do love a pretty harbour town and along the South Coast of Cornwall, we are quite spoilt for choice. So we tend to head out for walks along the coastal paths & end up in a harbour – wishing we lived in one of the sweet cottages that line them.
Big news (for Cornwall) a beautiful new Waitrose opened in Truro and they have a lovely separate shop dedicated to Cornish produce and its so nice, they also have a Cornish cafe serving locally sourced produce too. So we have been doing much of our shopping there and stopping for lunch too.
Cornwall is getting busy with Summer holiday visitors so every journey takes so much longer, so that is another reason we are staying closer to home. Our local beach has some cute pop-up restaurants, cafe’s and a small outdoor theatre, it feels like you are on the Mediterranean coast and we have been spending many an evening down there sipping cocktails & enjoying the sunshine. The water is still too cold for me but lots of people are getting out in the sea and I have seen people doing Yoga classes down on the beach too. I feel lucky having such a nice beach so close by & plan on spending as much time down there as possible.
I hope you’re all having a lovely Summer so far, maybe some of you are planning a visit to Cornwall this year?
We needed a base in Cornwall pretty last minute so we could view a few properties & after exhausting all the Hotels & B&B’s we thought we would browse Airbnb with everything crossed we could find a place that had availability (as it was the height of the Summer Holidays). Almost immediately my husband spotted the listing for ‘Bespoke cabin set in meadow‘ the photos looked incredible and the location couldn’t have been more perfect for us to use as a base, so of course we had to book!
At £90 a night we were blown away by the location, accommodation and just how friendly the host Carol was. To get to the Cabin you wind your way along the back roads from Bodmin, which are breath taking in themselves but you come across the cabin which is set in a Valley in one of the most peaceful locations I have ever visited. The Cabin has its own gates, white gravel drive and there is a meadow as far as your eye can see. We instantly felt relaxed.
The Cabin itself is rustic, minimal, has touches of modern and the attention to detail is second to none. I lost count of how many times I said to my husband that I would be 100% happy to live there. Its all wooden inside which has such a nice cosy feel & the use of soft furnishings and bright colours make it feel homely. The space is more than comfortable for two and everything from the furniture, right down to the amount of light that comes streaming in thought the beautiful windows has been carefully thought out so the cabin feels bright and like you’re part of the countryside.
We had two very happy days here & were lucky enough to enjoy the sunshine & sit out on the decking area until it went dark and also snuggle up with the wood burning stove lit on the day it inevitably rained. It felt cosy, romantic and although the heavens opened the well positioned windows let in so much light that it never felt gloomy.
If the Cabin wasn’t beautiful enough you have access to your own private meadow and use of the Summer House which sits at the top of the hill which has breath taking views over the Luxulyan Valley. Its a romantic spot to watch the sunset.
To say I fell in love with this hidden gem is an understatement and I was thinking of keeping this discovery to myself but I know that would be selfish and if you’re thinking of heading to Cornwall make sure you see if this Cabin is free and take full advantage of its location and what it has to offer.
Its taken me almost 6 months to post my photos from our week in Amsterdam, this was our third time in there & we are planning on going back in March. We just love this city so much, its beautiful, cultural, friendly and so vibrant. There is always something to see or do and we never have a dull day there.
We have done most of the touristy things during previous visits so on this visit we just relaxed and explored the city making many pit stops for coffee & cake. Its such a beautiful city to walk around, It feels like you never go up the same street twice.
I would say Anne Franks House is well worth a visit, it is so moving and even worth waiting in the long queue. Canal tours are a nice way to see the city & relax. I recommend using the smaller 6 – 10 seater boats run by Eco Tours, they are very intimate, the guides are amazing & the boats are electric which are environmentally friendly too. The guides are really knowledgable and you learn a lot about the history of Amsterdam and little quirky pieces of information, we had an amazing guy called Nikolai.
We had a really rainy day on this trip & decided to take shelter in one of Amsterdam’s brown cafes. These are really old & traditional bars. It was like stepping back to the 1920’s and the place had great atmosphere. The one we visited was on the corner of Nieuwe Vijzelstraat and Flevoroute.
On the same rainy day we visited the Rijksmuseum to see some of Rembrandt’s paintings including The Nightwatch. The museum was extra busy as it was raining outside & it was in the middle of european summer holidays, but it’s well worth a visit. I would recommend getting there early. The area around the Museum is really pretty & if you manage to visit on a sunny day there is lots of green space to relax on & have a minute or a picnic. Amsterdam has so many beautiful parks that you’re quite spoilt for choice. They’re very well kept & a great way to escape the hussle and bussle of the city streets.
I took so many photos on this trip, I must have a few thousand to sort through & edit so I’ll write a part 2 to this post soon.
Let me know if you have any recommendations for places to visit in Amsterdam or things to do.
Its been over 2 months since I went to San Francisco with my husband and I can’t believe how fast that time has gone. This year is just flying past. It was my second visit to this wonderful Californian City, I went for the first time in 2006 and once again it didn’t disappoint. We went for 1 week and loved every second of it. Even though it has been so long since I went I thought it would still do a little photo post. I took so many photos it was very hard to narrow them down.
We normally fly from Manchester and connect in London but this time we found a great hotel mystery deal which included a nights stay before the flight & parking for 8 days for £60. The mystery hotel turned out to be The Marriot near Heathrow so we drove down, had a relaxing night the night before flying and took the airport shuttle to Heathrow the next morning. This was a much more relaxed way of flying to the states. Normally our flights from Manchester are really early but doing it this way we got up at a normal time and had breakfast in Heathrow.
We were really impressed with the Heathrow departure lounge (much more so than the SFO one which was awful). From designer clothing & makeup to fancy whisky and nice places to eat, it really wasn’t a hard place to spend a few hours before flying. I can never resist a little duty-free shopping, esp when it comes to makeup!
Flight to SFO was straightforward, we flew Virgin Atlantic again. It’s been a few years since we last flew VA as we have mostly been visiting Europe for the last few years. My husband is quite tall so we pay for extra leg room so being 5ft tall I have ALOT of room. The food on Virgin is always so good, I can’t be the only person that enjoys plane food?!
On arrival in SF we went straight to the hotel. Normally we stay at major hotels, it saves any disappointment on arrival and you kind of know the quality to expect. However we have recently started staying at Independent & boutique hotels. this trip was no exception and we stayed at the brilliant Hotel Diva, in a Junior Suite. Trip Advisor highly rates this hotel. The decor is amazing & a little filthy (very sexy hotel). They didn’t have a hotel bar but they did have an on site Starbucks & restaurant. Perfect. Also they left us a little gift inside the safe but I’ll leave that up to your imagination.
The hotel was in an excellent location, just one black from union square & almost opposite Lefty O’Douls. Really easy to wander into town for a bite to eat. That first night we had a wander around. It had been 7 years since we last went to SF so it took a little while to get our bearings. We soon got the hang of it.
We went down to fisherman’s Wharf the next morning. We wanted to book a trip to Alcatraz as we did this in 2006 and loved it. The Alcatraz tour has had a big revamp and has been given its own pier and visitor centre. This has obviously increased the popularity as we couldn’t get tickets for the next 10 days. it was fully booked up. So my advice would be to book these tickets from the UK before you go. Just glad we saw it last time or it would have been a major disappointment.
We tried to do all new things on this visit, things we didn’t get chance to do last time, which I’ll cover in later posts. We visited Haight Street & the painted ladies, we hired bikes & cycled the coast/golden gate, Walked from Union Square through North Beach, Japan Town & we went out to bars in the evening (something we have never been able to do due to Jet Lag kicking our butts). We love just walking around neighbourhoods and off the beaten track exploring and finding small places to eat and drink and relax the day away. San Francisco is perfect for that as the architecture is so pretty and there are lots of cafes and Vegan restaurants, we were worried before hand that we would struggle finding Vegan options but we had no trouble at all.
San Francisco is such a laid back City, there is no stress and you can take it at your own pace. The people were so friendly, we met some characters! I’d go back again for a third time in a heartbeat.