Europe Travel · October 31, 2021

Postcards from St. Ives Bay…


Normally when it comes to being away, I’m a woman with a plan. No café left un-Tripadvisored, no National Trust site left un-booked and no menu that hasn’t been pre-scoured before we set off. I’ll ask on Instagram for recommendations, to which I’m often so generously spoilt with suggestions- and make sure to map out and bookmark as many as possible, squeezing in precious sights and must-visits with every moment. But this trip was a little bit different.

Perhaps it was the fact it was a long weekend; travelling with a baby, having to relax a little and accept that spontaneity might now take a slightly different shape- or maybe the fact that so much seemed to already be on our doorstep. But for once, we didn’t plan anything. Everything had a relaxed air of ‘let’s see how we feel!’ Which made holidaying somewhere like here so special.

On Saturday afternoon, after requesting some of the hire bikes from Three Mile Beach, we found a generous pocket of time to take to the dunes and take a cycle along St. Ives Bay.

We’d seen some of the swooping coastline on our wander the day before, but had also heard whisperings that seal spotting could be seen from Mutton Cove along the bay- which was enough to have us all helmeted up and raring to go before I’d even had time to think about how wobbly I knew I was at cycling.



Thankfully, because the bikes were electric it made cycling off road and slightly off the beaten track all the simpler (which, if you have the kind of stamina I do, will be wholly welcomed) and meant we could feel fully immersed in the sights and environment around us (which is a nice way of saying I nearly fell off of my bike a handful of times)- but was so beautiful nonetheless. We were utterly spoilt with the autumn sunshine, which made soaking in the dramatic coastal views in the late afternoon dusk all the more special.

Seeing the dunes alight with a golden glow and the hills peppered with grazing cows meant that being a total hands-forever-on-the-brakes cyclist was completely worth it. One of the best things about the cycle along the coastline was how the scenes changed so often- from sandy beaches, dotted with miniature surfers in the blue water, and onlookers bundling into towels and fleeces- to lush green dunes waving in the wind, rocky cliff faces with the waves far below lapping the sides and small wildlife reserves with ponds popping up in the overgrowth and plaines- making for a setting of beautiful contrast and perfect serenity.

On top of that, being able to catch a small glimpse of a tiny seal pup with it’s mother, slinking along the shore was the David Attenborough cherry on top- I felt like I’d truly got the full house at great outdoors bingo.

Although the sun might have slightly deceived us into thinking it was warmer than it was, we headed back along Gwithian as the sun started to go down, stopping to take in the striking views of Godrevy Lighthouse as the cars started trickling away from the car park as the day began to dim.

Although I know being organised and planning things with every ‘t’ crossed and ‘i’ dotted is the way I typically do things, it’s little adventures like this that remind me there’s always room for a little unplanned loveliness, no matter what shape that takes. Maybe I am a bit outdoorsy after all…





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