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Welcome to Notes & Stories, our on-line journal (aka, our blog) about staying somewhere else. It's a balance of things you might find useful or interesting, before, during and maybe even after your holiday.

Dip in and out. Bookmark an article for your coffee break. Or get lost in our West Country world. And please, feel free to let us know your thoughts. We'd love to hear about your stories from the South West so email us at nas@classic.co.uk and we'll share them for you.

News & Offers
5 degrees west, training for the London Marathon Part 2

5 degrees west, training for the London Marathon Part 2

Cornwall runner, Paula Brocklesby, charts her training for the London Marathon with runs in the south west

Classic Fodder
Surf Cafe Living: Cookies

Surf Cafe Living: Cookies

The third in our series of exclusive Surf Cafe Living recipes from their cookbook, bake some seaside cookies this Easter.

Visitors' Book
Rip Currents

Rip Currents

It’s best to familiarise yourself with the dangers that come with swimming in the sea so that you can stay safe and happy

News & Offers
A holiday for your dog competition

A holiday for your dog competition

NOW CLOSED As featured in Crufts Show Mag: Win a long weekend away with your four-legged friend

Things to do
Global Boarders surfing in Cornwall

Global Boarders surfing in Cornwall

If you are looking for a fantastic day out, look no further.

Places to Go
Top ten dog friendly places to go

Top ten dog friendly places to go

Beaches become restricted from Easter onwards, so here are some other options when on holiday with your dog.

Places to Go
Best 5 dog friendly beaches in Somerset

Best 5 dog friendly beaches in Somerset

Beaches that welcome dogs all year round.

Places to Go
5 Best dog friendly beaches in Dorset

5 Best dog friendly beaches in Dorset

Don't leave the dog behind when you visit Dorset, there are plenty of beaches you can take them to, year-round.

Places to Go
Best dog friendly beaches in Devon

Best dog friendly beaches in Devon

Devon beaches that don't ban dogs during the summer months.

Places to Go
Top 5 dog friendly beaches in Cornwall

Top 5 dog friendly beaches in Cornwall

Which beaches welcome dogs during the summer in Cornwall.

Places to Go
Family friendly Things To Do for Free in Devon

Family friendly Things To Do for Free in Devon

We are quite a frugal family so the more free things that we can fill our days with, the better. Since we have lived in the West Country we have discovered all sorts of new, free, places to visit and I thought I would share a few of them with you.

Things to do
Distinctly Devon cycle path walk

Distinctly Devon cycle path walk

Totnes to Ashprington is a perfect riverside walk. The path is easy to walk on and beautiful from beginning to end.

Classic Fodder
Serious Mac and Cheese

Serious Mac and Cheese

This is perfect post surf nosh or to tuck into on a stormy night.

News & Offers
BBC TV series Poldark 2015

BBC TV series Poldark 2015

This modern adaption of one Britain’s most successful TV dramas ever is due to air on BBC this Sunday, 8 March. Be sure to keep your eyes open!

News & Offers
World Pasty Championships 2015

World Pasty Championships 2015

Who would be your pasty champ?

News & Offers
5 degrees west, training for the London Marathon

5 degrees west, training for the London Marathon

Cornwall runner, Paula Brocklesby, charts her training for the London Marathon with runs in the south west

News & Offers
Save our moorland ponies

Save our moorland ponies

There's not much time left to help save the charity that saves the ponies, and without the centre there will be no ponies...

Classic Fodder
Surf Cafe Living: Spatchcock chicken

Surf Cafe Living: Spatchcock chicken

As part of an exciting new venture with Surf Cafe Living, here's the first of their recipes - impress your date at Valentine’s with a chicken dish that'll leave them wanting more...

News & Offers
2015 GTBS Award

2015 GTBS Award

Classic Cottages we have been awarded the Gold Award by the Green Tourism Business Scheme. Again.

Visitors' Book
Baby friendly holidays

Baby friendly holidays

We’ve come up with reasons explaining why Classic holidays are perfect for you and your family to set your mind at ease

News & Offers
Cornwall is 5th best place in the world

Cornwall is 5th best place in the world

Cornwall is 5th best place in the world to go on holiday according to Google trends.

Places to Go
Spring in the South West

Spring in the South West

Spring arrives early in the West Country so make the most of Valentines February half term.

News & Offers
School Holiday Dates

School Holiday Dates

Whether you are looking for a small, quiet bolt hole during the holidays or a place for an extended family get-together, we have over 750 lovely places in the South West to choose from.

Classic Fodder
Classic Fodder Christmas Leftover Recipes

Classic Fodder Christmas Leftover Recipes

A load of our staff recipes to make use of any leftover Christmas dinner.

Places to Go
Top places to take tea

Top places to take tea

Warm your winter by taking tea at one of our top 5 places in the south west.

Places to Go
5 best places in the South West

5 best places in the South West

We did a little office poll and chose our 5 top places to visit in the South West

Things to do
Dr Livingstone by Miracle Theatre

Dr Livingstone by Miracle Theatre

A rip-roaring start to winter theatrics, the Ffitch Repertory Players present 'Dr Livingstone, I presume?'

News & Offers
Classic Cottages property photoshoot

Classic Cottages property photoshoot

Capturing the essence of some of the beautiful holiday homes on offer at Classic Cottages.

News & Offers
Large Cottages for Christmas dinners

Large Cottages for Christmas dinners

Christmas cottage holidays mean the whole family can gather round to enjoy festive celebrations in style for 2014

Visitors' Book
An American in Cornwall: A Cornish bus ride

An American in Cornwall: A Cornish bus ride

I read a good deal more books in a year than I previously thought possible. I did a lot of walking. I learned how to slow down and wait. I learned the hard way that buses in rural places don't stop unless you hail them.

Pub Philosophy
A very windy walk to a very hidden hut

A very windy walk to a very hidden hut

A clifftop drive to an ocean view, leading to building barbecues and benches on the beach...

Places to Go
Feast your eyes on the Hidden Hut

Feast your eyes on the Hidden Hut

Finally, we are given the signal and – in true British fashion – the hordes of hardcore carnivores form an orderly queue: mouths watering, plates in hand.

News & Offers
Classic Cottages Gift Voucher

Classic Cottages Gift Voucher

Give the gift of a Classic Cottage Gift Voucher this Christmas

Pub Philosophy
The King Harry Ferry

The King Harry Ferry

If you want to reach the Roseland from the West, the King Harry Ferry is the way to go. Unless it’s having a rare day off , in which case you’ve a 26 mile detour to take around the estuary.

Pub Philosophy
St Just in Roseland Church

St Just in Roseland Church

A place to pull in for a glimpse of the yacht-filled creek that turns out to be so much more.

Pub Philosophy
A trip to St Mawes

A trip to St Mawes

A little wander around the waterfront on our way through St Mawes

Pub Philosophy
Pub Philosophy by the sea

Pub Philosophy by the sea

We bumped into local Pete who told us everything he knew about the area. Well, we don't think he kept any secrets from us...

Pub Philosophy
Buried in a tree

Buried in a tree

A crypt-keeper's poem on an otherwise lovely stroll.

Pub Philosophy
Devil’s roundhouses and cardboard cows

Devil’s roundhouses and cardboard cows

The legend of Veryan where we stopped to talk to some horses and came across a cardboard cow

Pub Philosophy
A cold sea swim with a giant

A cold sea swim with a giant

Pete braved the freezing waters and went for a dip - it was definitely a dip and not a swim... Still, bravo.

Classic Fodder
Looking to Lunch – Places to eat near Portloe

Looking to Lunch – Places to eat near Portloe

If you want to enjoy some good grub, we’ve got the Portloe list for you.

Things to do
Relax in Cornwall with Yoga in Newquay

Relax in Cornwall with Yoga in Newquay

For the first time in a long time I was able to fully shut out all those niggling worries and racing thoughts swirling around my mind. It was total bliss.

Places to Go
The crown of The Jurassic Coast

The crown of The Jurassic Coast

Whilst the Jurassic Coast is overflowing with beautiful seaside destinations, there is one for me whose charm outshines the rest; Lulworth Cove.

News & Offers
Classic Cornish Beach Clean

Classic Cornish Beach Clean

A random assortment of rubbish - the things you find! Not to mention the boss in a pinny...

News & Offers
River Cottage Holiday Competition

River Cottage Holiday Competition

*NOW CLOSED* A little nugget of River Cottage loveliness wrapped up in a Classic weekend away.

Visitors' Book
River, beach, wood and peak: Four walks in Cornwall

River, beach, wood and peak: Four walks in Cornwall

Walk your way around the county, with your four-legged friend in tow (or way ahead of you)

Things to do
Lattes and lunch in lycra - a cycle in Somerset

Lattes and lunch in lycra - a cycle in Somerset

While my husband now conforms to the current male phenomena that is a ‘MAMIL’ (Middle-Aged Man In Lycra) I’d describe myself more of a ‘leisure cyclist’ (I push my bike up hills).

Classic Fodder
October Dorset Food and Drink Festival

October Dorset Food and Drink Festival

Places to Go
A trip back in time at Tyneham

A trip back in time at Tyneham

The reassuring flutter of the green flag announces that the road is open (and free from military practice) to wind down the Dorset valley into the lost village of Tyneham. The village appears casually into view and it is only up close that you realise the eeriness of this place.

Places to Go
October in Somerset and East Devon

October in Somerset and East Devon

We are letting go of the summer very slowly in the West Country.