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Over due TR Warning it is long.

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Over due TR Warning it is long.

Hello, thought I would just give a quick report on our visit to St Ives in early October, should have done it earlier but have been travelling on business a lot.

I am not going to give a blow-by-blow account, but just highlight some things we liked and maybe not liked as much, although I cannot think of any at the moment that we disliked.

I also thought I should do it as a bit of a think you to all who have contributed when I have asked questions.

We stayed at the Saillofts for the 3rd time, cannot fault anything about it. The apartments are all furnished to a high standard and the people there will help with anything they can. Position wise, very good for Porthmeor beach and 2 minutes from town centre.

Weather was not great when we visited, but we did get a couple of days to sit on the beach, shorts and tee shirt not really sunbathing.

Some restaurants and bars we did and didn’t eat in.

We seemed to spend a lot of time in the Hub, really like this place, staff great, beer kept well, good selection of drinks and good place to people watch.

Saltwater Café was a great meal, glad we ate there before it closed.

Blas burgers was a good place to eat and the communal seating just adds to the environment, but it would not be anything without great burgers, which it most definitely does have.

Tried to eat at Alfresco one night, but it was fully booked, which must say something about it if it gets that busy in October.

I would recommend the Garrack hotel restaurant to anybody who wants great food in a place that treats you as a guest and not just a customer. Not many tourists make it there, which is a great shame as people are missing out on a great restaurant.

Porthmeor café is such a good place for breakfast we ate there 3 times, views spectacular. Also had a couple of bottles of Vedett during the day sat on the balcony, you just feel your shoulders drop.

We had planned to eat in Seagrass, my Wife liked the look of the menu, but seeing the chef having a fag on a bench on the harbour, in his whites, put us off. My Wife also said the advertising boards where at best disingenuous with the amount of writing about Masterchef, she said I can now start putting FA Cup 1984 on my c.v. as I played in the first qualifying round then.

We were in St Ives for England v Montenegro and as the Lifeboat was the only place showing it we ventured in, I have never liked the place since having a bad pint of Tribute a couple of years ago. It was packed and I tried the beer with some trepidation, but it was in fact very good, so I take back any comments I have made about bad beer, I am taking it that I was just unlucky one time as I had a couple later in the week and again they were fine.

The biggest surprise we had all week was the Queen’s Hotel, Blas was closed for a private party and a guy recommended the Queen’s, having been previously we thought no way, walked to Alfresco, fully booked. We thought let’s go and have drink and see if it looks any better than a couple of years ago. It has been taken over by new people and the menu was very good, service was excellent, drinks good, but the food was some of the best we have had for a long time. I must admit I assumed it would be standard pub fare, nothing wrong with that, with it being part of St Austell’s brewery, but no, it was a long way above that, I urge anyone to try it.

We did a day trip to Penzance on the train, great scenery along the way and the station at St Erth has a café that makes you proud to be English. Hopefully will visit when the Lido is open next time as looks fantastic.

If you have read this far, you have done well, I think. Needless to say, we still love visiting St Ives and will be back next year, there are still so many places to try.

If anybody wants to ask any questions about any of above, please do, I will try and help the best I can.

Mick

Manchester, United...
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1. Re: Over due TR Warning it is long.

Hi there Mick, glad you had a great time,

Just want to echo your comments regarding the Queens Hotel, we were also very impressed when we were ther in Aug/Sept. Great Beer, great staff and a lovely relaxed feeling about the place.

I was that impressed I've been telling everyone to stay away so I'll have more of a chance to get one of those comfy settees :).

The board games are a great idea also, especially for families with kids

Best wishes

Jake

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2. Re: Over due TR Warning it is long.

Great report Mick. Another Vedett drinker! And who did you paly for in the FA Cup qualifying round lol.

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3. Re: Over due TR Warning it is long.

Jake, yes it is a shame more people are not pushing the Queen's hotel as it would be a shame if it did not keep going. I would not have even questioned going there if I had known who recommended it to us, it was a chef from the Porthmeor Cafe, if a chef from another restaurant is recommending then it must be good.

Pete, I have made a mistake, it was in fact 1986, Kirkby Town, club have now folded. Yes the Vedett is very good, but I think it helps sitting on the balcony of the Porthmeor Cafe looking over the beach, are you a clear or cloudy, I am a cloudy!

Mick

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4. Re: Over due TR Warning it is long.

Cloudy or clear for me. And yes, it does help supping it with that view!

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5. Re: Over due TR Warning it is long.

Hi Mick

thanks for that report

we're going to Cornwall next June (from Australia) and can't decide whether to stay in St Ives or Falmouth

which do you think?

We plan to spend a week there, maybe hire a car and travel around the area a bit.

Coming from Aussie we're very excited about being able to enjoy some sunshine and sandy beaches on our Eng holiday (that'll be something to tell the folks back home)

We generally prefer larger towns where there's a bit of a vibe and activity like restaurants, pubs, shops etc, so if the weather is lousy there is alternative entertainment

After Cornwall we have 9 days to kill before going to visit friends in Rochester and were wondering whether we should have short stopovers in Torquay (Fawlty Towers?) and perhaps Southampton

or are there better options in that direction?

Regards

Art

Sydney

Australia

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6. Re: Over due TR Warning it is long.

Personally I would see a bit of the Jurassic Coast (Beer, Lyme Regis etc) and end up in Bournemouth. Then maybe head on to Brighton. I would give Torquay a miss. Personal choice of course :)

And St. Ives over Falmouth any day for me.

Bodmin, United...
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7. Re: Over due TR Warning it is long.

Torquay is a bit run down these days and needs some TLC. It has become more of a place for hens and stags than the holiday resort it was in it's heyday.

For what you describe you want, I would say St Ives would probably suit you better for your stay in Cornwall, then either head along the Jurassic coast as recommended by Pete, or head over to Exmoor and have a look along in that direction.

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8. Re: Over due TR Warning it is long.

Hello Art, I have to admit I do not know anything about Falmouth so can not comment. I do know St Ives has some great places to eat and good bars, June should have a good atmosphere as well.

I would definitely try and get a self catering cottage or apartment as you can get some great local fish and local grown products, and it gives you the flexibility to cook for yourself, maybe even buy a disposable bbq and cook on the beach, that would be something to tell them back home. That is a personal thing as we also like to veg out in the day sometimes and it is great to have more than just a room at a B+B, but again you may prefer a B+B or hotel. Also, try and get one with a guaranteed parking space and try and be as close to the centre of St Ives as possible.

I echo Pete's thought on Brighton, you can have a lot of fun in Brighton and they have some great restaurants there, try that forum for idea's.

Also, just in general about your trip, I am sure you have looked into it, but remember we have a lot to see in a relatively short distance compared to over in OZ.

The reason I say this is because I once had a conversation with a couple in the bar of the Old Sydney Holiday Inn, in the Rocks. They were from Queensland and were telling my wife and I how driving 1000km in a day was not something that bothered them and that they did a lot of England in a short period as the distances were so short, to them. He told us how he had calculated most of the trip on driving distances. As an instance, he said they drove from Cambridge to Bristol and visited the cotswolds, he said the distance was not a problem, but I pointed out that he can not of seen anything of the Cotswolds by driving it in a day as there is so much to see. He did not really get my point as he just said the distance was not much for them and that it was fine.

I suppose what I am trying to say is, you may find it better to spend a bit longer in places and explore, rather than try and cover the whole country as it is, relatively, very small compared to home.

To be fair to you, you seem to have it right as you are going to take 9 days from Cornwall to Rochester, that coast has so many places it sounds like a great idea.

Mick

PS, when you visit St Ives, the Porthmeor Cafe does vegemite on toast if you crave something from home.

Sydney, Australia
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9. Re: Over due TR Warning it is long.

Thanks all

Mick, that's pretty much how we plan to do things: mainly staying in self catering places and spending longer than just a few days in most towns.

Altogether we'll be in the UK for over 4 months so we have plenty of time to do things in a leisurely way

Most people seem to prefer St Ives over Falmouth but not sure exactly why?

Falmouth (according to Wiki) is a bigger town than St Ives so in my terms that usually means more choice for restaurants, accom, entertainment etc.

I've had experience with some of these popular "micro" towns" in Sth Africa and here in Australia and I find that they tend to get pretty overcrowded to the point where you can't get a table in a restaurant, if you have a car you can never find parking and accomm is twice as expensive as another town nearby that maybe isn't as popular

another issue we have is that since we're travelling by train from town to town, we want to avoid journeys that have too many stops and are too convoluted

So since Torquay (Basil Fawlty notwithstanding!) doesn't seem to rate very highly, the best route from Falmouth or St Ives to Rochester seems to be via Plymouth and Southampton

Bournemouth we've been to in 2008 and found it a tad underwhelming - but maybe it was because of the miserable weather even tho it was summer and our friends in Roch have adviced against Brighton saying it's a seedy town!!

But then I guess we can always do it as day trip from Lond

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10. Re: Over due TR Warning it is long.

I think everyone is picking St Ives because it is so beautiful. Falmouth has its own plus points but seems to me more like a "harbour" town that a beach resort. It is also a lot bigger and more "industrialised" shall we say. Just have a look on street view and see what you think.

Purely my opinion of course.

As for Brighton being seedy? Well I'm from Blackpool and I know what seedy is lol