Cornwall has to be one of the UK’s top destinations for a family staycation. I know I enjoyed several summers there when I was a kid. So why can’t we get enough of this west country holiday hotspot?The lovely people over at Parent Friendly Stays have asked me to come up with some ideas, so here are my 10 reasons why kids love Cornwall:
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1. Ice creams
It’s a holiday diet staple. No trip to the beach or a seaside town is complete without smothering yourself in ice cream. And if you’re after the best then look no further than Cornish clotted cream ice cream. Yum!
Cornwall’s beaches were recently voted the most beautiful in Britain and it’s not hard to understand why when they are picture postcard perfect. Despite living by the coast in Hampshire I think my first experience of sand dunes and turquoise sea was in Cornwall.
3. Caves and coves
They were once the hideout of smugglers but now make great places for little people to rock pool and explore.
4. King Arthur
It’s a legend to fascinate young minds and inspire hours of knightly imaginative play. And what better setting for some sword-weilding fun than Tintagel Castle. This 13th Century ruin is said to stand on the same site where the mythical King Arthur had a fortress.
5. Family attractions
Cornwall is teeming with theme parks and attractions to keep families occupied whatever the weather. Flambards in Helston offers something for everyone with recreations of Victorian and Second World War streets, to thrill rides and an aviation exhibition. If your kids love go-karting and boat rides then Hollywell Bay Fun Park will keep them entertained all day.
Whether your kids want to have a go at sailing, surfing, kayaking or bodyboarding, you’ll find qualified instructors in every coastal town. Visit Cornwall will help you plan your watery adventures.
7. Eden project
The Eden Project is the home to the largest rainforest in captivity. Small people will be agog at the biomes which transport them into a steaming hot jungle. A part from the awe-inspiring plant life the Eden Project is home to England’s longest zip wire, SkyWire, which takes you soaring over the biomes at a cool 60mph. A must-do for thrill-seekers.
8. Seals and dolphins
These beautiful sea mammals are common in the waters around Cornwall. Children with good sea legs love spotting seals, dolphins and other marine creatures on offshore safaris. You can take these trips out of harbour towns like Falmouth and Padstow.
9. Zoos and animal parks
Cornwall boasts a wide variety of parks where little people can meet animals. You can see 130 different species at Newquay Zoo including their newest addition – a Chapman zebra foal born in June 2015. Cute! Conservation is top of the agenda at The Monkey Sanctuary at Looe, which works to protect its habitats for local indigenous plants, insects and animals.
10. The weather
UK holidays aren’t renowned for favourable weather but research has shown that if you are seeking the sun then Cornwall will soon be able to compete with the Mediterranean. Make sure you pack plenty of factor 50 suncream!
11. A bonus reason, because I couldn’t resist…
Mums love Cornwall too. The reason? Poldark. Enough said.
If you’re planning to treat your kids to a holiday in Cornwall you’ll need somewhere super family-friendly to stay like The Valley which is just a few miles from Truro and Falmouth.
It is a luxury self-catering complex of cottages set in 13 acres of Cornish gardens and woodlands. There’s heated indoor and outdoor pools, play areas, tennis and squash courts. Mums and dads will also be pleased to know they offer babysitting, a fitness suite and an on-site bar and restaurant.
You can leave some of your bulkier kiddy essentials at home as all the cottages come with highchairs, stair gates, bed guards and travel cots. There’s also good news for families with furry friends as some of the cottages accept dogs.
Disclaimer: This is my #parentpanel blog entry to win a stay at The Valley with Parent Friendly Stays.