The excitement is mounting…well for most it is anyway. For others there’s a twinge of dread as we think of in-laws and extended family descending en mass, piles of packaging and cardboard to dispense with and our otherwise organized lives being thrown into a frenzy of pine-needle and wrapping paper strewn chaos.
There is however an invaluable tool that a handful of expert festive season survivors arm themselves with to ensure a fairly breezy build-up to the big day; it’s loosely referred to as the pre-Christmas getaway (otherwise known as ‘The Great Escape’), and it’s guaranteed to give you a much-needed breather before the tinsel hits the fan.
We’ve asked award-winning self-catering accommodation experts Luxury Coastal to give us their top weekend spots to steal away to in the West country for a soupçon of rest and relaxation; so if you find the idea of a pre-Christmas sojourn tempting, we think we’ve got you covered.
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Inner Visions, Upton Towans in Gwithian, Cornwall
Stunning sunsets and legendary Atlantic surf have put places like Gwithian Beach on the north Cornwall coast at the top of most reputable travel magazines’ lists of their best coastal escapes; and if you’re looking to spend a few days in a luxury eco-house that’s just an amble from three miles of golden sands, it doesn’t get better.
Cliff Cottage in Brixham, Devon
Quaint and quintessentially coastal, this cottage perches overlooking one of the country’s most famous fish markets (you may remember Brixham being featured in the Sky TV series Fish Town) and is just a short stroll from the town’s vibrant working harbour and superb seafood restaurant scene. Laze your days away on the small terrace with a coffee or a glass of your favourite tipple, and enjoy an other-worldly perspective of this very cool town.
Sunrise in Mousehole, Cornwall
If you’ve not yet meandered the narrow streets of Mousehole on the south coast of Cornwall, you’re missing out. It’s a real little gem and one that’s famed for being a great example of an original Cornish seaside village. Sunrise is tucked away within the maze of traditional fishermans’ cottages that line the heart of the village and is perfect for whiling a few carefree days away.
1 Quayside in Appledore, Devon
Rows of pastel cottages, independent shops selling local crafts and wares, and wonderful wide views over the Torridge estuary from its pretty quay give Appledore a warming authenticity that few other seaside villages possess. 1 Quayside lies a few yards from the waterfront in an utterly enviable position and has an interior that’s packed with tasteful furnishings and creature comforts including a private courtyard garden and a wonderful wood-burning stove.
Wasson Cottage in St Ives, Cornwall
One of Cornwall’s best-known seaside towns, St Ives bursts with culture that permeates not only its local arts and crafts, but its foodie scene as well. Loft restaurants, artisan bakeries and coffee clubs culminate in a hot spot of gastronomic delight within the old part of town or Downalong, and if you fancy something a little more run of the mill you’ll be spoilt for choice for fish and chips and crab sandwiches. Wasson Cottage with its courtyard garden and eclectic interior, makes a pretty special place to enjoy the delights of the town, so if you’d like to see what all the fuss is about then this is the holiday bolthole for you.