We always knew what a stunning part of the world we live in. But now its been confirmed by everyone else in the country! Coast magazine recently announced the winners of their annual Coast Awards and the West Country came top winning nine of the ten categories of ‘Best Seaside Holiday Destination’, ‘Best British Beach’, Best Coastal Camping or Caravan Site’, ‘Best Hotel By The Sea’, ‘Best Beach Café’, ‘Best Seaside Restaurant’, ‘Best Coastal Path, ‘Best Watersports Provider’ and ‘Coastal Hero’.
So where better to explore?
Starting in the far west of Cornwall, St Ives was voted ‘Best Seaside Holiday Destination’, so we’d recommend a ramble around the area as there are several walks near St Ives. If you’ve little ones in tow, or even not-so-little ones, turn your walk into a Treasure Trail adventure for a fun day out. And afterwards, reward yourself with lunch at the ‘Best Seaside Restaurant’,Porthgwidden Beach Café.
Even further west, the Minack Theatre at Porthcurno won ‘Best Seaside Attraction’, an accolade well-deserved. You can enjoy a short walk along the coast to this spectacular finale by walking from Porthgwarra to Porthcurno. Alternatively, explore the area in another context, with Fat Hen Foragingwalks, discovering what the countryside has to offer, and eating it.
South West Cornwall also faired well, with the Lizard Peninsula having the best campsite and ‘Best Beach Café’. Harbour Lights can be your reward once you’ve had a march around Coverack to Black Head – it’s a bit of an effort but worth it for the views.
The ‘Best British Beach’ award went to Woolacombe beach in North Devon, a three mile stretch of sand shielded from the busy tourist town that fronts it. If sand-walking makes your legs feel like lead, go slightly further along the coast to find a woody windswept route from Lee to Bull Point. It’s only four miles long but described as ‘challenging’.
Finally, once you’ve discovered each of the 630miles that make up the South West Coast Path, head inland to Dorset, as Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall was voted ‘Best Coastal Hero’ for his Fish Fight campaign. You could go and congratulate him at his River Cottage Canteen in Axminster.