South Cornwall may be well known for the famous Land’s End, Penzance and St Michael’s Mount, but thanks to cottage hire with Cornish holiday specialists Milly & Martha, we discovered a hidden gem of a village…
Perranuthnoe is a tiny coastal village just two miles from Marazion, the gateway to St Michael’s Mount, and a further drive to Penzance. It was home for a few days thanks to booking a lovely cottage with Milly & Martha. They specialise in self-catering cottage hire, helping people discovered the real Cornwall – the wilds, the nature, the fresh food and simple outdoor family-friendly pursuits.
Their real USP is that all cottage bookings come with a bespoke holiday guide – their selection of the best places to eat and drink, places to go and things to do, based on your needs. Not only did our guide include lots of brilliant family-friendly restaurants, events on during our stay, and special walks and nature activities for little ones – but it meant we were saved a few hours of internet research pre-trip! With so much on offer in Cornwall, you feel you can trust Milly & Martha to point you in the right direction.
Accommodation – the cosy cottage of Trenow
Our lovely two-bedroom cottage, a converted farm building, was immaculate inside with a large kitchen, cosy living room with woodburner, super kingsize beds and a modern bathroom. A delicious welcome gift awaited us on arrival – local strawberries, Cornish apple juice from Helford Creek, and choc brownies from The Little Home Bakery (none of this latest long, yum!).
Although surrounded by other small cottages, you could hear a pin drop at night. The lack of garden doesn’t pose a problem – there is a small terrace area with table and seating outside (a nice spot for morning coffee or an evening drink), but you’ll really want to get out and about with such a lovely village and surrounding area to explore.
The village is clearly a favourite with tourists but doesn’t feel the slightest bit ‘touristy’. You get the sense that this is still a thriving community (albeit quiet and unassuming) even out of season. Just a couple of minutes’ walk down the hill from Trenow cottage is the beach of Perran Sands – a vast expanse of sand at low water which turns into a rocky strip at high tide. You’re just as likely to spot a local artist sitting sketching the view as you are a family on holiday. If you’re as lucky as we were, you may see the sand turn into a giant artwork by local sand artist One Man And His Rake (see picture).
Cafes and pubs
Looking down on the beach is The Cabin Beach Café, open for breakfast baps, lunches and ice-cream and coffees all day (see our top places to eat with a sea view). A few strides up from The Cabin is an art community – a complex of converted farm buildings (unmissable in their brilliant white) housing some lovely shops and galleries selling locally-made gifts, art, food and other basic provisions (for all those self-catering holiday-makers). There’s also the Peppercorn Kitchen Café serving brilliant fair trade coffee, homemade cakes and delicious lunches with a Mediterranean and Middle Eastern twist (catch it quickly as it’s only open from 10am until 3pm).
Perranuthnoe has also become a bit of a destination thanks to the renowned Victoria Inn – reputed to be one of the oldest inns in Cornwall. This gastropub (which also has rooms available), serves top class food far above your average pub fare. Meat and fish are all local and the puddings are inventive (we had a pina colada pannacotta with roasted pineapple). Naturally, local ales are on tap and the service is exceptionally warm and welcoming for everyone, including those with babies and toddlers. It’s no surprise that booking is essential, particularly in the height of the season.
Also, look out for the house with an honesty box stall outside (just down from the Victoria Inn) – you can buy freshly laid eggs and pick your own salad leaves for your picnic, and all the money raised is for charity.
The surrounding area
Thanks to our Milly & Martha bespoke holiday guide we covered a few walks in the area including a 5km round trip to the quaint town of Marazion, to visit St Michael’s Mount (see our post on top Cornwall walks for more).
We were also able to use Perranuthnoe as a base to explore the westernmost tip of England, Land’s End and the stunning coastline. A highlight being a visit to Porthcurno and the incredible Minnack Theatre – even if you don’t catch a show at this outdoor theatre built into the cliffs, the view will take your breath away (read more about it in our walks post).
The popular harbour town of St Ives is also a short drive away – worth a trip when you want a bit more hustle and bustle, and some time spent on the white sand of Porthminster beach.
To browse all of the self-catering cottages for hire through Milly & Martha visit www.millyandmartha.com.
Get Creative – Milly & Martha are currently running Sun + Screen, a creative Cornish break which includes a stay in a cosy cottage and the chance to learn a new skill at a screen printing workshop. Delivered by professional printmaker Dena O’Brien, of Kiwi Print Studio, the workshop will help you to turn your holiday snaps into a souvenir print, postcard or bag. Visit Milly & Martha’s creative breaks on their website for more.