In March Hoover and I had a week away in a dog friendly holiday lodge at The Park, Mawgan Porth in Cornwall. Unlike our usual holidays we had a few more criteria than usual to take in to account when looking for a holiday home as The Parents were coming with us, and Dad’s mobility had deteriorated dramatically over the last few months. Because of this the quaint cottages that usually attract our attention were out: we needed wide doorways, no steep steps, no low ceilings, and a bedroom & a loo on the ground floor. We also needed to be near the airport as The Parents would fly down because Dad found this less arduous than a long drive in the car. I also wanted to have wi-fi and be somewhere lovely. After an online search I found The Park at Mawgan Porth (website), just a few miles from Newquay and the airport. What a find!
In their own words: “The Park is a secret huddle of distinctively chic, self-catering homes, hidden in a tranquil valley garden, mere moments from a stunning beach on the north Cornwall coast. Every home is unique, with lush interiors and designer furniture, from lodges with hot tubs and private terraces to yurts and retro trailers with log burners and campfires. Enjoy food from scratch in our restaurant Gusto, swim in our heated pools, explore the gardens or amble to Mawgan Porth beach on our doorstep. Roam the Cornish coastal path, paddle in rock pools, explore Cornwall or just drift. Here you have freedom to choose, space to think and time to breathe, whether you’re a couple or a party of twelve. This is boutique beach chic; this is where you belong, this is The Park.” This just about sums things up…
We chose to stay in Scatho (website), which is a family lodge with three bedrooms, one of which has a wet room – ideal for Dad. It had everything you could need. In fact they went the extra mile, including useful (and often forgotten) sundry items such as washing up liquid and dishwasher tablets. These are the sorts of things that are often included in a privately owned holiday cottage, but they are unusual for a holiday park. The lodge has underfloor heating, so it was toasty warm on the chilly March mornings…yet in the afternoon when the day had warmed up we could throw open the patio doors and sit out in our own little private, enclosed (safe for hounds) garden.
The grounds of The Park are beautifully kept and the landscaping is relaxed, imaginative & kind of funky in places: the fences are constructed imaginatively from bark-clad timbers, there are willow walkways here and there, and the dog poo bins have been ‘Farrow & Balled’…it’s a nice environment to wander around. The path the runs long the front of the site is a bridle path, so it’s ideal for the pre-bed, late-night dog walk.
The little village of Mawgan Porth (map) is a great base for a holiday, and I’ve since learned that two of my close friends holidayed here with their families regularly when they were children, so it’s beautiful beach comes well-recommended. A couple of hundred yards down the lane from The Park is the beach and the village centre (streetview) which has a grocery store and a newsagent, as well as an The Merrymoor Inn, which serves food. On Tuesdays and Fridays between 5pm and 8pm “No.43” rocks up: this is a mobile noodle bar run by a dude with a wok, who’ll rustle you up some freshly-cooked, take-away supper in no time at all. The menu is limited due to the tiny kitchen, but the food is great. In the summer season (Easter onwards) a charcoal pizza grill is set up on the green….sadly we were too early for this.
The beach itself is beautiful: the tide seemed to go out for miles and the sunsets were stunning. You can pick up the South West Coast Path here and walk for miles in either direction. There is lots to do just a short drive away: Newquay is nearby with it’s famous Fistral Beach, as are The Bedruthan Steps (website), which are well-worth a visit (there’s a National Trust gift shop and tea rooms here too). Padstow is a short drive away, the magical Tintagel Castle (website) around 45 minutes, and Land’s end was around an hour. We also squeezed in a visit to Port Isaac (home of Doc Martin), Boscastle, and St. Michael’s Mount, so The Park is in a pretty good spot whether you want to chill and do nothing, or whether you want to see as much as possible. We’d definitely stay here again.