Archive for Sandplace

10 Reasons to Visit Looe in May and June

1. Best time to visit Cornwall

One of 10 reasons to visit LooeWe’ve selected 10 Reasons to visit Looe in May and June as they’re among the best months to visit Cornwall and Looe is the perfect touring base. Come ahead of the crowds. The hedgerows are full of wild garlic and campions. If you’re quick, be dazzled by carpets of bluebells in early May.  Visit historic houses when their gardens are bursting into colour. It’s also a key festival time when Looe celebrates its connection with the sea at the Looe Festival of the Sea and the Lugger Regatta. Come and savour the wonderful fish and seafood landed on Looe Quay.

3. Cornish Bluebell Walks

Looe Valley Dog WalkCome in early May to see bluebells everywhere! They’re spectacular in the Looe Valley, especially between Sandplace and Duloe. Follow a Looe Valley Walk from Polraen and return for a light lunch or afternoon tea in the new Conservatory Tea Room & Bar now open at Polraen Wed-Sun 11 – 4 pm. 

4. Cornwall beaches without crowds 

Enjoy it all ahead of the crowds – Just by avoiding the school holidays, you can escape to deserted beaches at Whitsand Bay, enjoy a leisurely lunch in some great seafood restaurants. Relax and listen to the birdsong. No queues. No stress.

5. Cornwall Gardens at their best

Polraen country house garden LooeAs May progresses to early summer, the gardens at Lanhydrock, Cotehele, Anthony and Mt Edgcumbe become a profusion of colour. Azaleas and rhodedendrons tower over exotic herbaceous borders. Be sure to visit Caerhays Castle – as it’s only open till the end of June. And the house on the Port Eliot Estate at St Germans only opens in the early part of the summer.

6. Visit Poldark Film sets

Loving the Poldark TV drama?  Come and see the REAL thing in Cornwall! Visit the filming locations.  A walk on Bodmin Moor is guaranteed to provide a sense of solitude and amazement – this is the country for those seeking views and wild walks and a sense of history and folklore. While the familiar Poldark backdrop of the Georgian port of Charlestown harks back to the times of wreckers, smugglers and merchants, when tin and copper were loaded on to tall ships.

7. Rockpool Rambles in Looe

Join expert volunteers from the Looe Marine Conservation Group to discover where to look, how to find and identify some of the wonderful and beautiful creatures and seaweeds that inhabit Looe’s amazing rockpools. May 28th 1.30 to 3 pm on Hannafore Beach. A free event suitable for all ages. There’s no need to book.

8. Festival of the Sea June 4 – The Lugger Regatta 9-11 June

Photo Courtesy of Looe Festival of ood and DrinkCelebrate Looe’s connections with the sea. Alongside the Raft Race on June 4, the Festival of the Sea is an educational day of fun filled family activities and entertainment which takes place on Looe’s quayside. We show our respect for the sea and the livelihood it provides to a fishing community like Looe. So join us to celebrate the sustainable fisheries of Looe and its wonderful marine life.

With the Cornwall Wildlife Trust and Looe Marine Conservation Group, find out how crabs and lobsters are caught, have a go at mackerel line fishing and learn about the wealth of environmentally friendly seafood available in Cornwall. Chef demos, BBQ, stalls, a crabbing competition, puppet show, dancing etc Lots of marine organisations take part including the National Marine Aquarium, the Fishermens Mission, RNLI. And the heritage continues the following weekend with famous Looe Lugger festival when historic fishing vessels return to Looe. 

9. Looe Island Visits

Book a trip across to Cornwall’s only island nature reserve, just off the coast of Looe. See the seals. Spot the nesting birds. Escape to an island for a few hours……….Boat trips can be booked along the quayside and guided walks are bookable in advance via the Cornwall Wildlife Trust.

10. Come by train – get a free cream tea

Top quality guest accommodation in chocolate box historic houseCome to Polraen Country House by train with Great Western Railway in May and June and get a complimentary cream tea in the new Conservatory Tea Room & Bar at Polraen. It’s easy to reach Polraen – just a 300 metre walk from Sandplace Station on the Looe Valley Line – a branch line from the main London-Penzance service to Liskeard. Then you can explore Cornwall using cheap day returns to St Ives, Truro, Plymouth, Falmouth or Penzance. Polraen has both bus and train links so you can leave the car behind in our car park!

Tempted?

Check Availability Polraen Hotel Looe Cornwall

 

Cornwall by Car, Bus and Train

Printed on the back of our breakfast menus, our Top Ten Day Trips from Looe have proved so popular with guests staying at Polraen Country House in the Looe Valley that we thought we’d share our recommendations so you can plan ahead.

Cornwall With and Without a Car

Explore Cornwall by trainBe adventurous!  Why not explore Cornwall by car, bus and train.  It’s rare to find hotel accommodation in Cornwall in such an idyllic rural location enjoying the convenience of both bus and train services.  Our suggestions include days out from Looe with and without the car using Polraen Country House near Looe as a touring base for Cornwall and Devon. At Sandplace in the Looe Valley, Polraen Country House benefits from Bus Route Number 73 – an hourly bus service which honours senior citizen bus passes, and the scenic Looe Valley Line train giving easy access to Looe, Polperro, Liskeard and beyond.

Touring By Car

Whitsand Day out from LooeWithout negotiating any narrow back lanes, it’s a direct route from Polraen’s car park to the A38 via Morval on the A387. In less than 10 minutes, you’ll be on a fast road heading east to fantastic beaches at Whitsand, the Rame Peninsula and Devon or west into deeper Cornwall.

Exploring By Looe Valley Line Train

Just a 2 minute stroll to Sandplace Station, guests really appreciate our proximity to the scenic Looe Valley Line. 5 minutes to Looe or use it to connect with the mainline at Liskeard. It’s perfect for day trips by train to St Ives, Falmouth, Truro and Plymouth. Cheap day returns and group/family discounts make the journey easier, faster, and far more relaxing than by car. It’s less costly too (no fuel or parking charges).  A year round service Mon-Sat and from May 17, a Sunday service too.

Travelling By Plymouth CityBus 73

Polperro Harbour Explore Cornwall by busPlymouth Citybus 73 runs from Polperro via Looe and Sandplace through the Looe Valley to Liskeard and beyond to Pensilva up on Bodmin Moor. It stops on request right outside the hotel and honours senior citizen bus passes so if you qualify, enjoy ‘free’ trips too. We’re happy to assist with directions, timetables & loan Ordnance Survey maps.  New for 2015, a bus service from Liskeard to Padstow, so you can now easily reach the north coast without taking the car!

Top Ten Day Trips from Looe

  1. Looe to Polperro Cliff top walk (on foot and by bus)
  2. Eden Project via Bodinnick Ferry and Fowey (by car)
  3. Lost Gardens of Heligan and the Victorian port of Charlestown (by car)
  4. Lanhydrock – a gem in the National Trust portfolio of historic houses (by car)
  5. Days out by train to St Ives, Truro, Falmouth, Penzance, Plymouth (by train)
  6. Whitsand Bay & the Rame Peninsular – the beaches & villages of Cornwall’s ‘forgotten corner’ (by car)
  7. North Coast to King Arthur’s Tintagel, Boscastle and Rick Stein’s Padstow (by car)
  8. The contrast that is Bodmin Moor, granite formations, ghosts and Bodmin Jail (by car or by bus)
  9. Discover grey seals and amazing wildlife on  visit to Looe Island (by bus/train and boat)
  10. Go on a mackerel or deep sea fishing trip from Looe (by bus/train and boat)

Full details and a print friendly download available here.  At Polraen, we know that a little bit of local knowledge can go a long way in making the difference between a good holiday and a great one. We are more than happy to assist you during your stay, with suggestions on things to do, places to visit and how to get there. Why not book your holiday in Looe now?

Help for Heroes Lifting Spirits in the Looe Valley

At our charity fundraising night at Sandplace in the Looe Valley, we raised £454.50 for Help for Heroes – the British charity providing direct, practical support to wounded, injured and sick service personnel, veterans, and their families. 1940’s crooner Andy Marshall entertained local residents during a Gourmet Bangers and Mash meal at a community based fundraising event ‘Crooning for Christmas’.

Help for Heroes Crooning for Christmas Event at Polraen, Looe, CornwallThrowing the doors open in aid of Help for Heroes, we decided to support this worthy cause  for the second year running. Our hotel, Polraen Country House Hotel at Sandplace, is an ideal venue to host a community party, and we were supported by fellow Sandplace residents including Adam Grundy and Caroline Foster, (seen here with 1940s Crooner Andy Marshall, dressed as a Land Army Girl).

Planned some time ago to foster community spirit, the event brought out the best of British in the face of adversity as it couldn’t have taken place at a better time to help lift the spirits of local residents. The previous two weeks had been a frustrating time for everyone in the Looe Valley.  An unprecedented combination of scheduled roadworks and a landslide in Looe following recent heavy rains had isolated communities severing bus routes and creating traffic chaos on the back lanes as we were  forced to cope with ‘rat run’ detours. We’re pleased the scheduled roadworks on the A387 are now complete and the road is now fully open between Widegates and Sandplace. Not only was this event for a really worthy cause, it helped us to send out a strong message that businesses in the Looe Valley are open for business as usual, including Sunday roast lunch. We’re particularly relieved the public transport is back on track. The Looe Valley train is running and the 573 bus has resumed a service from Looe, detouring via Widegates and Morval to reach Sandplace, Duloe, St Keyne and Liskeard.

We owe a lot of thanks to Andy Marshall, 1940’s crooner, a brilliant talent with an amazing voice, who generously travelled up from St Columb Major near Newquay to Croon for Christmas at Polraen. Thanks Andy!