Autumn Beach Breaks in the UK – Making the Most of Back to School!
For grandparents, the school holidays can be tiring. Mum and dad often want to drop the kids off for a few days so they can enjoy some quality time together – and of course with children out of school for six weeks we’ve all had plenty of fun finding things to do indoors and out. This year, it seems mainly to have been indoors but then as my friend so often tells me – things come in cycles, next year the sun will shine again.
As I write this, the house is quiet, free from grandchildren, and the back garden is filling up with a little September sunshine. Which makes the thoughts turn to ideas of a British getaway – something cheap and simple to make the most of the empty beaches and pleasure spots around the country, all of which are now entering their second, much quieter season.
I’m talking, of course, about the silver holiday season. Now the pubs are empty of screaming children and the car parks no longer bulge with armadas of family vehicles, it’s time to make the most of the infrequent sun and get out to some of the more beautiful places the countryside has to offer.
For the lover of beaches, North Devon has plenty to offer – stunning coastal scenery; walks ranging from leisurely to challenging; and of course the world famous Devonshire cream tea. That’s two homemade scones, jam and clotted cream. Don’t put the cream on first or it’s Cornish!
Check out Woolacombe for a break that has everything: two and a half miles of gentle golden beach capped at either end by the dramatic headlands of Morte and Baggy Points. Mortehoe, the village at the top of the hill, was once a wrecker’s community and still features precariously balanced churches on awe-inspiring promontories.
Or head to Cornwall’s Riviera – the sprawling fishing town of Falmouth, which boasts glorious Victorian promenades, subtropical gardens and a distinctly chichi selection of bars and restaurants in the town centre. The larger of Falmouth’s two beaches, Gyllyngvase, is ideal for sprawling in the late September sun; whilst neighbouring Swanpool beach is separated from a small nature reserve by a strip of winding road.
Wales’ Gower Peninsula draws plenty of relaxed holidaymakers out of the summer season, and is ideal for camping or characterful B and Bs. Popular with walkers and climbers, the Gower also enjoys some of the best Welsh surfing conditions – so if you’re a silver surfer or a seasoned hotdogger then a cottage by the beach could be just the thing.
A hearty pub meal in a coastal hostelry, post walk or play in the sea, is one of life’s unrivalled joys. If you want to get into the swing of things, fish and chips and a quiet pint (or glass of wine of course) is the way to do it. Try watching the sun go down at Woolacombe’s Red Barn; or head to the Front at Falmouth, a multi CAMRA award winner that welcomes travellers bringing their own fish and chips!