It’s looking like 2021 is going to be another write off for those of us who like international travel. But… Not to worry, we’ve got some of the most incredible scenery from anywhere in the UK right here in the Westcountry. Which means perfect places for a summer staycation.
If you’re not a fan of camping, one of the best ways to enjoy a summer staycation in the UK is to rent a cottage.
These are our favourite places to hire a cottage in Devon and Cornwall in the summer.
1. Salcombe, Devon
Gorgeous Salcombe is a popular spot for good reason. Nestled along the banks of the Kingsbridge Estuary, a holiday cottage in Salcome gives you the option to explore the gorgeous town of Salcombe, to wander the coast, paddle up the estuary or head to one of the nearby beaches.
You’re also just a short hop from both Kingsbridge and Bigbury, which are great for day trips.
2. Fowey, Cornwall
Fowey is another popular pick with tourists, with that estuary view, lots of brilliant beaches right on the doorstep and your pick of boutique shopping. In short, it’s a no brainer for a Cornish summer staycation… If you can find a place to stay.
Take the ferry to Polruan and head around to Lantic Bay, take a day trip to the nearby Eden Project or enjoy the view from the Castle overlooking the town. A perfect holiday spot!
3. Constantine Bay/Harlyn, Cornwall
On the Cornish north coast, this cluster of quaint villages and stunning beaches is made for staycations. On a hot summers day, its hard to find a better looking part of the country.
Pick a holiday cottage in St Merryn, Treyarnon or Constantine Bay, with several holiday parks in the area making it ideal for basing yourself for a British beach holiday.
The beaches are stunning, with great surf and fantastic sunset views. For day trips head to Padstow or Newquay or just enjoy the laid back vibe in your holiday cottage.
4. Calstock/Tamar Valley, Cornwall
If you’re not the beach type, the Tamar Valley might be the perfect place for some peace and quiet in the summer. The Tamar Valley is theoretically the entire area lining the river that separates Devon from Cornwall. But Calstock is a pretty little town which is very much the icon of the area.
With it’s old viaduct crossing the river, the National Trust’s Cotehele and winding old streets, this truly is quaint Cornwall at it’s best.
Enjoy riverside and woodland walks, drop by local pubs and soak up the ambiance with a holiday cottage anywhere along the Tamar Valley.
5. Tavistock, Devon
Sitting on the edge of Dartmoor, Tavistock is a lovely historic town with a lively vibe and some great architecture. It’s like a less hippy version of Totnes, with boutique shops, old architecture and a relatively vibrant nightlife (for this part of rural Devon).
Although you can easily enjoy a day sightseeing in town, you can also head up onto Dartmoor for countless walks, follow the canal to Sir Frances Drakes old house or take a trip to places like Princetown or Okehampton.
6. Totnes, Devon
It might be one of the best known towns in Devon for a reason. Totnes is a funky and happening town, known for it’s hippy and artistic community. The town is also one of the best places for vegetarians and vegans to enjoy the cuisine, and there are independent breweries and funky bars to enjoy in the evenings.
If you’re looking for a base for a Devon staycation, Totnes is perfecly located a short hop from Torquay and the south coast of Devon. Or, if you prefer, you can be on Dartmoor in about 20 minutes with a car.
A holiday cottage in Totnes, or the surrounding area, is a great base for a weeks stay in the westcountry.
7. Barnstable, Devon
On the craggy North Devon coast, Barnstable is a staycation hotspot with plenty to keep you busy for a week. Explore the coastal paths, or head to Saunto Sands for some beach action. Or, take a trip to the pretty town of Lynton, with its funicular railway, or explore Ilfracombe or the stunning Hartland coast.
You’ll find great places to rent a holiday cottage in the area, from Ilfracombe to Braunton, so shop around and see what you can find.
8. Falmouth, Cornwall
Fun Falmouth is set in a stunning location and is one of those places that is deceptively buzzing. With a lively student population, the town has some good nightlife and great eateries, as well as a top notch local brewery.
On top of this you’ve got a stunning natural harbour to explore by boat or SUP, a choice of beaches and some great shopping too.
As if this wasn’t enough, you’re just a short drive from Truro and St Ives if you want to explore on a day trip. Falmouth is one of the best places to base yourself on a Cornwall staycation – check out holiday cottages in the town itself but also check out nearby Penryn.
Finding a holiday cottage
There are a lot of options for holiday cottages in the Westcountry, but one of the best options is Sykes.
SykesCottages.co.uk offers great homes for short stays all over the UK, with one of the best choices of properties in Devon and Cornwall.
If you’re planning a trip to Devon or Cornwall (or both), check out Sykes Cottages.