When our parents told us they were selling the family home, my brother and I were pretty devastated. Guildford was where we grew up and holds a pretty special place in our hearts. But when we started looking at houses in Devon with them it got us SO excited. They eventually found a beautiful Victorian farm on the border of Devon and Cornwall, and thanks to the lockdown I recently spent two months there until we were legally allowed to drive distances again and I could finally go home to London. So, here’s what I discovered about our new home while I was stuck there in lockdown…
Beautiful countryside everywhere
The new house is in a rural part of the country, my parents are literally in a tiny hamlet that doesn’t even have a shop or pub, and they’re surrounded by fields and countryside. I can’t even tell you how nice it was to go for a walk and see so much nature; the beautiful lanes with verges filled with huge prehistoric ferns and pretty wildflowers, great green trees towering over with their branches intertwining above you, and colourful birds and butterflies everywhere. As well as the local lanes and fields, there’s also numerous beauty spots and national parks nearby, including Bodmin Moor which is over the border in Cornwall, and Dartmoor and Exmoor in Devon.
The most incredible fresh seafood
Devon is famous for its local crab, and although we only had it once during lockdown because there was a shortage, it was glorious! As well as crab, the fisherman also catch lobster, and each week we would go to the fish shop at Widemouth Bay to buy fresh Pollack, Sea bream or Sea bass. The fish is brought in fresh that morning by the local fishermen, so you know it’s the best quality possible. I can’t even begin to tell you just how incredible the quality of the fish was!
Breathtaking sandy beaches
Britain is known for it’s pebble beaches. When I lived in Australia, EVERYONE would ask about the pebble beaches! But actually we’re pretty lucky to have some really beautiful golden sandy beaches around our little island. North Devon and Cornwall has some of the best in the country. I adored weekly walks along nearby Summerleaze and Crooklets beach in Bude, and Widemouth is also a family favourite. Further north within Devon is Woolacombe, Instow, and the little hidden beach of Broad Sands, and further south into Cornwall is the hidden beach of Port Gaverne near Port Isaac, and of course Mawgan Porth.
Friendly and welcoming locals
Everyone supports small local businesses
They don’t have a huge amount of chain places in Devon and Cornwall. The bigger towns and cities have chains, but all of the smaller towns definitely don’t. Even in Bude, the only chains there was a Holland & Barrett, and a Costa Coffee. But even their department store is independent, and all of the restaurants are independent. I noticed there’s just this huge amount of love and support for small local businesses, which is so lovely to see, rather than the boring samey chains that have taken over London and the home counties areas.
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