Today I’m launching a new monthly feature called There’s No Place Like Home. So many of my favourite magazines highlight international cities but I want to focus on what we love about our own home towns. How many of us can realistically afford to jet off to far off lands on a whim? It’s time to rediscover what made us fall in love with our own locales.
Except for the first year of my degree (when I lived in Winchester), I have always lived in Cornwall (between Penzance and Camborne), and I love where I live, most of the time. It can be a bit dull when the weather is lousy, but it is gorgeous six months of the year and can be quite the cultural hotspot. Welcome to my world!
You know you’re coming home when you can see St Michael’s Mount. You can see it for miles along the coast, and, having been raised in Penzance, it will always signify home for me. I finally went up to the castle this summer too!
Porthmeor Beach, in St Ives, is like another country. The sea is clear, the sand is soft and white and there’s a lovely cafe right on the beach, complete with bar. You can also bodyboard there or have a surfing lesson and lifeguards are on duty, so you (and the kids) will be perfectly safe. It’s also right next to the town so you can wander the streets before relaxing on the beach.
Best place for coffee and cake
Cornwall is full of small, artsy cafes, but one of my favourites is a little place in St Ives called Madeline’s Tea Room. The cakes are homemade, the furniture is traditional but stylish, there are cute little tea sets to buy and the staff (and locals!) always have time for a chat. You won’t find a friendlier and tastier place to spend half an hour.
Best place for cocktails
Zero Lounge, on Chapel Street in Penzance, do a great range. It’s also an incredibly stylish basement bar with quiet corners and comfy sofas.
Best place to eat out
Lately I’ve been loving going to Trevaskis Farm which, conveniently, is just around the corner from our home. It’s cooked fresh and great value for money.
Best ice cream
Willy Wallers, found opposite Wharfside Car Park in Penzance, does an incredible range of flavours, catering to people whose tastebuds favour fruity flavours as well as chocolate. I’m quite partial to the rhubarb and custard myself!
The boyfriend will tell you it’s the restaurant at The Savoy but he hasn’t been to The Stable in Newquay! Although the juice from the chorizo dripped all over my hands something rotten, it was sooo tasty. The place specialises in pizza and cider – two of my favourite things! And it’s right on Fistral beach, a view you won’t get at any of the other venues in the chain.
Favourite quirky store
Space, in Penzance, might be a small shop (find it on Arcade Steps) but they’ve managed to pack in a whole load of awesome. They stock some of my favourite brands, including Wild & Wolf, Cath Kidston and Happy Jackson.
Best for art and culture
Cornwall has got culture coming out of its ears, with numerous festivals (Golowan, Flora Day, Falmouth Week), live music venues (The Acorn, Heartlands, Hall for Cornwall, Eden Sessions) and art galleries (The Exchange, Newlyn Art Gallery, The Tate St Ives, Barbara Hepworth Musuem). You’re spoilt for choice as a local or tourist. Having seen Jimmy Carr, Dylan Moran, Simon Amstell and Dave Gorman at the Hall for Cornwall, that has to be my favourite.
Place to take the kiddies
Paradise Park is great value for money, incorporating general animal attractions (primarily birds but also red pandas, otters and penguins), a cafe, indoor soft play area, petting area (you can feed goats and sheep) and a train track, so you can take in the sights. Little ‘uns can also get involved with feeding the penguins and even have their photo taken with one (grown ups can too!).
Interested in writing a guest post about where you live? Get in touch!