November 14, 2016 | Cornwall Airport Newquay
Winter is a wonderful time to visit Cornwall and, with a new and convenient direct flight from Leeds-Bradford to Cornwall Airport Newquay, the south-west’s rolling countryside and picturesque harbour villages are closer than ever before. Driving from Yorkshire to Cornwall takes approximately six hours, while the train takes around eight hours – but the flight takes just an hour and twenty minutes, making weekends away not only perfectly possible but also an exciting and easy idea.
From storm watching to the UK’s third-largest fancy dress party, here are some wintry ideas for your West-Country weekend:
There’s simply no better place to witness nature at its most wild than the Cornish coast. And what could be better than watching a storm unfold from a front row seat, sheltered from the elements in a cosy café or beach bar?
Combine storm and seal watching at Lizard Point’s Polpeor Café (open seven days a week) while enjoying a Cornish cream tea, a crab sandwich or a fresh fish dinner. Afterwards, take a walk to look at the lighthouse that has been guiding ships safely home through the treacherous waters around Lizard Point for over 260 years.
Up for a challenge? You’ll have to brave the storms just to get to The Watering Hole, located between sand dunes and sea on Perranporth’s two-mile beach. It’s well worth enduring the elements for, once inside, there’s an open fire to warm your fingertips as the sea roars and the wind howls whilst colossal waves crash onto the cliffs.
By the sea: With its dramatic clifftop position overlooking Porthcurno Bay, Cornwall’s iconic open-air Minack Theatre is not just for summer. Wrap up warm and watch a play while sipping hot chocolate as the waves crash below. December sees a host of festive events at the Minack, including brass band performances, theatre skills workshops and interactive storytelling.
In the woods: Or how about immersive theatre in the woods? Throughout December, Tehidy Country Park, which boats the largest area of woodland in Cornwall, plays host to the Winter Wood – a festive family show in ‘walk’ form. Starting at the Woodland Gate, fairies lead visitors down a candlelit path to Old Man Winter’s Travelling Theatre Tent, telling stories and singing songs along the way. The Rogue Theatre show includes free hot chocolate, face painting and the chance to make a traditional winter decoration to take home.
Visit the small fishing village of Mousehole, in south-west Cornwall, this Christmas to see the spectacular light display. Started in 1963 by Mousehole-based artist, Joan Gillchrest – who simply strung coloured bulbs along both quays to make the village a bit brighter – this is now an incredible illuminations exhibition (running from 17 December to 7 January), with more than 7,000 twinkling lights reflected in the water – all free to enjoy.
New Year’s Eve in St Ives is always a hit. What started out as a locals’ event is now a well-renowned party destination, thought to be the country’s third-largest fancy dress party – after London and Edinburgh. The streets are full of revellers dressed up in costumes and it is not unusual to see a table full of laughing zombies enjoying a bite to eat or a conversation between Batman and a sheep. The evening culminates with a spectacular firework display in the harbour at midnight; spellbinding as the vibrant colours reflect in the water.
Beat the holiday traffic (and the train strikes) with these new direct flights to Cornwall Airport Newquay from Leeds-Bradford which cost from £19.99 one way with FlyBe. The thrice-weekly service operates on Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays – perfect for weekends or longer.