Seatown in West Dorset
This almost perfectly named Seatown is a picturesque coastal hamlet near the village of Chideock. Blink and you’ll miss the turn off the A35, which, rather than a ‘town’, ends with just a few cottages, an upmarket holiday park and a pub sitting almost on the beach. Noted for fishing and smuggling in the not far distant past, Seatown is now a peaceful nook between high cliffs, with Golden Cap, the highest sea cliff on the south coast to the west. The walk from Symondsbury to Golden Cap was featured as one of Julia Bradbury’s Best Walks with a View. You can also walk from Seatown to Golden Cap along the south west coast path, a walk of just over a mile if you’re feeling less energetic. The Anchor Inn at Seatown has a tantalising menu focussing on local Dorset produce and the terrace has stunning views out to sea, perfect for a lazy, hazy summer lunch.
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A mere 15 minute country lane stroll from Seatown is the beautiful Chideock Cottage. Ideal for singles, couples or small families, this cosy and tastefully restored cottage is fully equipped for a comfortable stay whatever the weather. With Bridport, Burton Bradstock and Lyme Regis all within easy reach, Chideock Cottage is a perfect holiday home for a Dorset break.
There is currently no official Lincolnshire Coast Path although Natural England have committed to having something in place as part of the English Coast Path by 2020. There are, however, plenty of walks, circular and linear in this area. The walk from Mablethorpe to Saltfleetby Dunes is a circular half-day walk which as well as great views takes in a nature reserve which is famous for being one of the few places in the UK where you can see natterjack toads. There’s always the option to turn back and make this a linear walk and head for Sutton-on-Sea and the Sea Breeze Restaurant, a few yards from the beach.
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Set on a private road in Sandilands, near Sutton-on-Sea, is Sea Links Cottage, a tastefully furnished contemporary-style home, perfectly situated to explore the Lincolnshire coast and Wolds. Skegness with attractions including the Natureland Seal Sanctuary and Fantasy Island is within easy reach. Slightly further afield is the beautiful Cathedral city of Lincoln with its castle and cobbled streets lined with independent shops.
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Ventnor, Isle of Wight
Ventnor is a Victorian seaside town situated on the south coast of the Isle of Wight, surrounded by the Undercliff, an area of outstanding natural beauty. Sheltered from the north by the national trust owned St Boniface Downs, Ventnor benefits from its own micro climate and as such is home to many usually Mediterranean species of plants amongst its natural habitat.
To the west, Steephill Cove is a tiny fishing village, accessible only on foot and is an idyllic spot to get a drink or an ice cream after an up and down walk skirting low cliffs from Ventnor. The paths alongside the cove also provide access to Ventnor’s famous botanical gardens.
Once in Steephill Cove, you may be tempted by The Crab Shed, which serves produce caught that morning from the sea in front of the terrace. Famous for it’s crab sandwiches and lobsters, there is also a delicious hot crab pasty on the menu.
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Nimrod is a beautifully restored Victorian cliff top villa in Ventnor which sleeps up to eight people over three floors. The main lounge is on the first floor to capitalise on its location and stunning sea views. A short walk from Ventnor’s blue flag beach, the house is located near several other excellent restaurants and if you prefer, you even have the option of hiring a private chef!
Andreas, Isle of Man>
With rugged cliffs, picturesque glens and hidden coves, the Isle of Man is a walkers dream. The walk all around the island is only 100 miles so easily achievable in a holiday. For those who prefer a mix of activities, there are pretty villages to visit, cycle paths galore and a host of water based activities on the island.
The Millennium Way is a 28 mile path between Ramsey and Castletown which you can dip into easily depending on time and ability. The Isle of Man has a number of guided walks and an annual walking festival each May with walks for all abilities and interests. All festival walks are guided by knowledgeable walk leaders who will accompany you through the Manx landscape, taking in the Island’s wildlife and illustrating its dramatic past.
There are a number of excellent eateries in Ramsey including Jean-Pierre’s Bistro, which serves a mixture of French and Italian dishes alongside more tradition British fare.
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A cluster of farm cottages near Kirk Andreas sleep from four to thirteen and share an Aga in a separate laundry/utility room. Guests who are Aga devotees can use the Aga and its equipment for cooking at any time. A local company also runs an Aga cookery demonstration if you need to further hone your skills. Ballacamaish Farm Cottages have been beautifully restored in a contemporary style and make a welcoming home from home for a small or large family gathering.
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The Norfolk Coast Path used to end at Cromer, but as at December 2014 now comes to an end at Sea Palling. The Cromer Lighthouse circular walk is a fantastic beach, cliff and heathland walk with breath-taking views over the beautiful North Norfolk Coast. This is largely a level-ish walk apart from a climb of 236 wooden steps at the top of which you are rewarded with the most stunning views.
Cromer is packed with pubs and restaurants including the ever popular Rocket House Cafe, a fabulously located café featuring a balcony, ideal for lunch with a view. The café serves a wide range of local dishes featuring, unsurprisingly, the famous Cromer crab and lobster.
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White Cottage in Cromer is delightfully situated just 300metres from the beach. The tastefully decorated cottage sleeps up to eleven and is ideal for families wishing to explore this part of the Norfolk coast and beyond.
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