When you think of a Cornish seaside destination, images of Port Isaac will come to mind. A quintessential Cornish fishing village, it is a popular holiday destination so there are plenty of self catering cottages in Port Isaac to choose from. With fisherman's cottages forming narrow winding streets leading steeply down to the stone walled harbour, dotted with colourful vessels of all shapes and sizes. In fact many of the streets here are so traditional and narrow, including the aptly-named ‘Squeezebelly Alley', a car is not an option so leave it behind while you take to exploring the architecture by foot. Many of the old buildings are listed as being of historical importance and certainly add to the ambience. The fishing industry is still at work here, left over from its days as a busy coastal port in the mid-19th Century.
The inspiration for many a painting, there are plenty of photo opportunities to be had with the lobster cages and wooden rowing boats along the harbour wall. Set down on the seashore, the surrounding area is very hilly and steep, which allows for far reaching views, and several pretty streams wind their way down to the waterfront. Take a boat trip for a spot of sea fishing or just a scenic float-along during the holiday season or walk along the coastal path for panoramic sea views and dramatic cliffs.
The village of Port Isaac, is now most recognisable as Port Wenn, thanks to being chosen as the setting for the television series, Doc Martin. However, many other movies and tv programs have been filmed here such as ‘Saving Grace' (again, starring Martin Clunes) and ‘Amy Foster' with Sir Ian McKellen. It was also frequently used as a set for the Poldark series. The locals are very welcoming and are a tourist attraction in their own right with the formation of Port Isaac's Fisherman's Friends - a group of Cornish shanty singers with a strong following.
A holiday in a Port Isaac cottage will be an excellent way to explore the north coast as there are many good beaches nearby such as the surfing beach of Polzeath and the family-friendly wide stretch of sand at Daymer Bay, which is also dog-friendly. It's only a short drive to bigger towns such as Padstow, famed for its Rick Stein dominated restaurants, and Tintagel with the historic castle ruins. Being on the north coast, it is close to the Camel Trail which follows the River Camel to Padstow, an excellent cycling, walking or horse riding route.