Jonathan booked us up a cottage called "Smuggler's Watch" in Bossiney (near Tintagel). The mattresses weren't up to much and the shower kept cutting out, but apart from that it was great!
One thing the children loved was the shells and pebbles in every room, which they played with a lot.
We arrived late on Saturday and had fish & chips for supper, so nothing much happened until Sunday when we went to the local beach, Bossiney Cove. It was hard to get to but very beautiful; we didn't take any photographs that day but did later.
Monday started slowly. Jonathan and Des went off to a Japanese garden while the rest investigated Trebarwith Strand, which was mostly underwater but worth another visit later.
Alison let John lie in the first few days, so it seems a little unfair that the only bedroom shot we have is of these sleeping beauties:
On Tuesday we went to Pencarrow. Des and Jonathan went round the house, but May and Isaac were more interested in the birds and Wendy house:
May, left: "Oh no, forgot the salt!"; and right: "Ready to serve you now."
After that, John had a day at home to do some writing, while the rest went on the Rock ferry to Padstow, then on to Rock beach:
Alison also stopped off on the way home to get some tasty cheeses and cakes from Di's Pantry.
On Thursday, John, Alison, May and Isaac went to Launceston for some shopping and a trip round the castle. There were steep steps up to the castle itself, but May managed them all — partly because of a game in which dad played a nasty jailor who was chasing her to lock her up! Only one photo survived:
May: "Giddy-up, mummy!"; Alison: "urghhhh..."
The next day, everyone except Des went to Tintagel, intending to go to the castle but ending up (once more) on the beach. On the way home we discovered there was a playground nearby, which proved useful later.
John: "Sorry, can't help — my foot's stuck in this bag."
May: "Let me in! Let me in!"
Isaac: "Peace at last!"
Everyone got together again on Saturday for the Lost Gardens of Heligan, an excellently laid out restored estate with a variety of different types of landscape. John's favourite was the jungle garden, but May preferred the giant pumpkins in the vegetable patch.
John and Alison realised the children would be hard to settle if they had a long car journey before supper, so they went on to the fishing village of Mevagissey and found (surprise, surprise) a small beach. Afterwards May wanted candy floss and we were lucky enough to get the last bag — May and Isaac both got very sticky!
Next day Jonathan and Alison went off for a walk, while John and Des took the children on a steam train from Launceston to a great little play farm in New Mills. We decided to let the unencumbered ones have the camera.
Everyone went to the Eden Project on Monday, but we got separated.
It was so humid in the tropical house we couldn't take any decent photos until we got to the lovely cooling waterfall at the top.
John then had another couple of writing days; Jonathan went looking at stone circles, everyone else went to another beach on Tuesday (we'd heard the weather was due to change so were making the most of the sun).
Wednesday, Alison took May for her first ever horse ride, on a shetland pony called Scooby Doo. She loved it!
In fact, she loved it so much she didn't want to go back to the stables...
Thursday, everyone went to Trerice. The food was lovely but it proved not to be a very child-friendly place; however, they had a lot of fun rolling down the grassy banks and then they found the pond:
On the way home we went to Port Isaac for supper and took a look at the harbour:
On Friday we went back to Bossiney Cove. We had heard that there was a cave that went right through from one part of the beach to another, and this time May found it! The best pictures are below, but there's also a complete tour.
This was supposed to be the last day since we were leaving on Saturday, but although Des and Jonathan went straight home the rest of us went back to Trebarwith Strand for most of the day before grabbing some food in Tintagel and setting off for home in the evening. The waves were great, and made John and Alison wish they had body boards. There was also a natural pool which children could safely play in, deep enough for May to swim, and we found a great group of kids who all played very well together.