I love Devon. The word itself conjures up memories of cream teas, crabbing in Ilfracombe under the Statue of Verity and watching the kids on their belly boards at Woolacombe.
It’s been a few years since we last managed to get down to the west country but I am sure sooner or later, that we’ll be packing the car up and revisiting our favourite places again.
The fact that Paul’s dad was sent to Hele during the war meant that, as a child, every summer, his parents would pack up the car and go for a two-week break with their four boys. We cannot go down without spending a day in Combe Martin, a visit to Ilfracombe and a long list of plenty of other wonderful places to choose from.
From the quirky choices like Berrynarbour and spotting the flowerpot men around the village, to the fascinating gardens dotted throughout the rolling hills.
One thing we do when we’re in Devon, is to eat pasties. There are some fabulous pastie shops with all kinds of wonderful recipes to try. In fact, they are so good we always buy a huge box to bring home and freeze so we can extend our holiday memories that little bit longer. There’s nothing quite so sad as pulling out the last pasties from the freezer!
We have stayed in plenty of different places in Devon but one idea that really captures my curiosity and one that gives the real experience of living in the area would be to book a cottage, that way we could really make the most of our time and for a moment live the west country like the locals.
Christmas by the Sea
There, I’ve said it. I have said out loud what would be a dream Christmas for me – Christmas by the sea in Devon. I’m imagining long coastal walks wrapped up in gloves, hats and scarves, I’m picturing pub lunches in villages that are celebrating the locals rather than crammed with tourists. Drinking local ales and eating freshly caught fish or locally reared lamb.
How about a family night in your seaside cottage playing board games whilst the Cornish pasties are being reheated? Candles flickering on the fireplace and a log fire burning in the hearth?
I know Paul would want to go in the sea with his wetsuit and belly board, I would place money on the girls following him in too…imagine doing that on Christmas Day? There would be nothing to say you can’t do it, just push back the roast turkey to later in the day! In fact, there are some wonderful places that can sleep large families too and are dog-friendly too; Baxter would be in his element down there.
The more I think about it, the more this idea is taking hold in my mind and, fingers crossed, one day I will celebrate Christmas in Devon overlooking the sea and feasting on pasties and cream teas.
Where would you like to spend an alternative Christmas? Norfolk also offers a wealth of things to do and see.
Disclosure: A collaborative post