Please sign in to post.

Where to stay in Cornwall/Devon in July?

Does anyone have recommendations for where to stay in Cornwall or Devon in early July for a family with two older children? We have a car and would prefer less touristed areas. We enjoy hiking, history, and exploring off-the-beaten-path types of places. The only sights we really must see are Tintagel and St. Michael's Mount, but we'd like to explore some villages and perhaps hike in Dartmoor National Park. We plan to be there 4-5 days in total, but could extend it if necessary.

We've been to the UK a few times but have never made it out to this area and are having a difficult time getting the lay of the land. Any help you can provide would be much appreciated!

Posted by
5467 posts

These counties are probably the two most touristy in England, so it’s more difficult to escape the crowds, particularly in the summer.

St Michael’s Mount is located in the far south of Cornwall, so a Devon base is going to be too far for a day trip. Tintagel is the best part of 2 hours driving from SMM, so you will need 2 bases. You could stay on The Lizard for walking and SMM then move to somewhere such as Camelford for Tintagel. If you want less touristy, then avoid the coastal towns of Newquay, Padstow, Port Isaac and Rock.

Chagford is a good base for Dartmoor, but you would be less rushed if you had extra days there.

Posted by
2924 posts

Decades ago I went to Cornwall on what we'd today call a "bucket list" quest to visit St. Michael's Mount. It was magical. I wasn't disappointed. I hope you'll enjoy it as much as I did.

As for where to stay, sadly I'm sure the B&B in Truro owned by a Miss Spurgeon must no longer be in existence, but it was within walking distance from the train station and Miss Spurgeon was the most gracious hostess imaginable. She advised me to have dinner in her dining room because the town was "dead" (her word) in the evenings. Dinner was served by a maid named Doris who wore a black dress with a white apron and cap, very much like what we've all seen in recent years on Downton Abbey. At table my place setting included a bell for me to ring when I was ready for my plate to be cleared.

IIRC, I took the train and a connecting bus from Truro to St. Michael's Mount.

Oh, also -- Miss Spurgeon gave me a word of advice about walking on Dartmoor. She said to watch out for the wild ponies because they bite!

Posted by
3 posts

What a fun memory! Thank you for sharing. These sorts of memories are why we travel - and why we love England so much. My kids still talk about our trip three years ago when we were served cake and tea in a similarly memorable way (minus the maid's outfit) at a beautiful tea room in Lacock. An entire team of staff attended to us, with a rolling dolly piled high with delicious desserts, and my kids have wished for similar treatment ever since!