Pupdate 21st & 22nd September 2017 – Archie’s little break away in a National Trust Cottage
Now Archie has joined the family, holidays in the future would be a little different from past holidays as we want to include him, so decided on a short trial run to see if he enjoyed being away. As we are now National Trust members we looked through their brochure where listed are lots of dog friendly places to stay and we found what looked to be an ideal little cottage near Fowey in Cornwall.
We left home at about 11.30 am on the 22nd September 2017. As we could not access the property until 3.30 we decided to go to Lantic Bay which is owned by the National Trust and is only a short distance from the cottage. It is a beautiful dog friendly beach and Steve had read reviews that this was a fantastic place to visit although the 20 minute descent to get to the beach was very steep it was well worth a visit.
Our sat nav took us on a very narrow almost unmade road and was very twisty and Archie was sick on the way, which was a good start to the holiday.
We eventually found the car park and as I had packed up a little picnic originally to take down to the beach we decided to have it on a picnic table and bench on the grassy bank at the edge of the car park,which was very pleasant. It would also be less of a hazard to be carrying when we made the descent down to the beach.
As stated it was a 20 minute very steep walk down o the beach, but the first part of the walk was through farmers fields which were fairly level and the view from the top was fantastic. Then you start to descend down the very steep and when I say steep it was almost vertical and very narrow rocky and slippery path down to the beach a long way down below.
Photos of the path leading to the beach are further down the page as we took them when we came back up
It was worth it and at the bottom the narrow cliff path opened up to a beautiful curved bay which was quite spectacular with the steep grassy cliffs as the backdrop to the beach and the rocky coves which were at either end of the large expanse of small shingle and sandy beach.
Archie was very excited and as soon as his paws touched the sand, he didn’t know whether to dig or run into the small waves that were breaking on the shore or play with his tennis ball.
We walked along the beach and then we sat on some rocks whilst Archie climbed them and where he found a new game. He ran up quite a large high rock with his tennis ball in his mouth, stood at the top and nudged the ball off the rock so the ball rolled down onto the sand which he then chased. He thought this was a great game and did it over and over again, well it saved one of us having to throw it.
We stayed on the beach for a good while enjoying the warm sunshine and then it was time to start the steep ascent back up the track. It was hard going and we had to stop a few times and thank goodness there was the odd wooden bench to sit on to get our breath back and to gain some strength to continue the journey upwards. It was also nice to take in the stunning scenery and actually realise how far down the beach was. The following photos show the ascent as we progressed up the cliff path, but please note that the actual path was a lot steeper than it looks in the photos.
We were really glad to get back to the car and decided to have another cup of tea before we proceeded onwards to our cottage.
We arrived after a short drive at what we thought was our cottage, parked the car by the door and were ready to find the key to let ourselves in and start to unpack, when a lady suddenly appeared and questioned what we were doing there. We told her we had booked the cottage for 2 nights but she told us she had another night to go before she had to vacate. We showed her our booking form and all of us were at a loss as to what had happened. Then she looked at our booking details which showed ours was booked through the National Trust and she said we wanted Pont Creek Cottage which was the other side of the creek, and hers was Pont Quay Cottage, so all was sorted – thank goodness and we didn’t have to share with another couple!!!!
We arrived at the right sweet little stone cottage, located the key and unpacked the car and had a quick look around the cottage to see that it was well equipped with all the crockery, cutlery and pans that you would ever need (including cake tins, which I struggled to see who would want to make a cake whilst on holiday!!!.)
There was a lovely welcome tray with plenty of tea, coffee, herbal teas, sachets of hot chocolate and a box of Cornish Fairing biscuits and some milk in the fridge.
Archie was not forgotten either as there was a china dog bowl with some poo bags and a little tub of handmade Cornish makerell treats (which he absolutely loved) which was a nice welcoming touch and welcoming.
Steve had to park the car a little higher up the quay as it floods on certain high tides which would happen today and tomorrow.
We decided as it was a lovely evening we would go for a walk to Bodinnick which was one half of the well known National Trust Hall Walk which is an undulating coast path and is very picturesque.
We stopped and had a pub meal at the Old Ferry Inn which was situated near the slipway for the small car ferry which runs from Bodinnick to Fowey. We sat out on the terrace overlooking the river, which was very busy with little boats and gigs. It really was a beautiful evening and a lovely place to watch the sun go down.
Steve had beer battered fish and chips which were served in a pail and homemade tartare sauces and he said it was very good. I plumped for lasagne and salad which was again was very nice. Archie was very good, (well he had had a busy day) and laid down whilst we ate our meal.
We came back a slightly different way through fields but still had to encounter the slippery and rocky path down to the cottage which was quite precarious as it was now nearly dark and we couldn’t see the path, but I am glad to say we made it, although not recommended in the dark.
We had a nice cup of coffee and sat down for a much needed rest as it had been an energetic day. Archie was shattered and he eventually settled down and went to sleep
22nd September 2017
Neither of us slept very well, although it was very peaceful as the cottage was nestled in a wood and all you could hear was the stream that ran alongside. I thought it was the bed that was uncomfortable, but came to the conclusion the severe aching was down to too much walking and using muscles on the steep paths going up and down to Lantic Bay which I had probably never used before.
All 3 of us had a bit of a lay in and Archie was not in any hurry to get up. Our intention today was to do the full circular Hall Walk which was a fair old way round but were not sure if our still aching bodies would let us. However after our croissants that we had for breakfast we decided to stick to our plan (well we we were going home tomorrow) and set off.
We walked to Polruan on the opposite side of the river to where we walked last evening and caught the little foot ferry to Fowey. This was going to be a 1st for Archie as had never been on any sort of boat before. We waited on the steps for the little ferry to come and the people in front of us got on, but we were stopped from getting on, as just our luck the boat only takes 12 so we had to wait 15 minutes for the ferry to return, but we first in the queue. Archie had to patiently wait on the steps but he doesn’t like queuing (a bit like me) and got a bit fidgety but he watched the waves breaking over the steps below which kept him occupied for a while.
We boarded the ferry and Archie seemed to enjoy it, he was wedged between Steve’s feet for a while but then managed to squirm his way up on my lap to see where he was going and to sniff the sea air.
The pretty little harbourside town of Fowey was very busy and Archie got very excited as there were loads of people and lots of dogs to say “hello” to and his excited antics seemed to amuse quite a lot of people. We had a walk around and the smell of Cornish pasties was just to too tempting, which made our lunch decision easy. We had 2 large steak pasties from the Cornish Bakery and I have to say that they were probably the best pasties I have every had, they were delicious. We ate them on a wooden bench right on the quay overlooking the river and although it was very windy it helped to cool them down.
Lunch over and after another walk around Fowey it was time to board the little car and foot passenger ferry back across the river to Bodinnick so Archie had his 2nd boat ride in one day.
We then walked back along the Hall Walk coastal path back to the cottage taking a photo of the Quay in Fowey from the other side where we sat and ate our pasties.
So we completed this beautiful circular walk which was very enjoyable not only for us, but super for Archie as well. Once back at the cottage it was a much needed coffee (and brandy time for Steve) and to sit down as we were all tired.
Later on we didn’t fancy going out again so just went for a short walk around the loop which circles Pont creek and then had pizza and a glass of wine and so to bed after another tiring but very enjoyable day.
23rd September 2017
A much better nights’ sleep, had croissant for breakfast and then it was time to pack up the car and travel back to Ivybridge. However we made a quick visit to Steve’s sister and then stopping at Saltram for a walk as it was a beautiful day (and anything to delay the unpacking,) as even though we were only away for 2 nights, we had loads of stuff to unpack, mainly Archie’s which included his bed, plenty of towels, toys, food etc.
We arrived home and so Archie’s little holiday came to an end and he seemed to be really happy to be home in familiar surrounding. I am sure he enjoyed his little adventure and I think he passed the test, so it looks as if future holidays will include him!!!