Of course, here at Quingo Scooters we know that everyone only watches the BBC series Poldark for the stunning scenery. Aidan Turner might steal a few of the headlines, but for us Cornwall itself really is the star of the show. So here, as part of our Accessible Getaways series, we find out more about what this gorgeous part of the world has to offer.
We’ve picked Padstow and the surrounding area because it really does have a bit of everything. We see it almost as a kind of Cornwall in miniature: beautiful beaches, a quaint fishing town and of course some amazing destinations for food lovers. There’s an impressive seven beaches within easy reach, and the coastline has everything from golden sands to those wild and windy cliff tops made so famous by Mr Turner. It’s a great base for exploring the Cornish countryside, but if you’re in love with the sea then you’ll also find it’s the perfect place to surf (but more of that later). Here are a few of our top things to do.
- Take in the beautiful coastline
Parts of the South West Coast Path are suitable for those of us using mobility scooters and we certainly recommend the first part from Padstow Harbour to Tregirls Beach and Polzeath to St Enodoc. There are more details on the South West Coast Path’s website here. There is also a great route out of Padstow to the Day Mark tower and the Coastwatch lookout station. These are set on an impressive headland and the grass and stone covered path takes you across some beautiful farmland with stunning views of the sea and the Camel Estuary. It’s around a mile and half long, and you can park in the Hawkers Cove Car Park near Padstow. There are no dedicated Blue Badge spaces however.
- Go surfing
Padstow’s beaches are a prime location for surfers, and if you’ve never tried it before, now could be your chance. There are two gorgeous Blue Flag beaches nearby, and we recommend you give the team at Wavehunters a call to find out more about their surfing lessons for people who use wheelchairs or mobility scooters. Book a lesson with them online here or give them a call on 01841 532339. They’re located on the North Quay in Padstow and there are four Blue Badge parking spaces at the Broad Street pay and display.
- Ride the Camel Trail
There can be few better ways to explore this incredible area than by heading out on the Camel Trail. It’s around 18 miles long, and follows a disused railway line through some gorgeous countryside. It’s popular with cyclists but it’s also perfect for those of us on mobility scooters too. The surface is smooth and it is pretty much level all the way. You’ll get to see the stunning Camel Valley, and you may even want to spend a moment or two at the Camel Valley Vineyard on your way. Keep your eyes on the sky too as there’s a good chance you might see one of the local Peregrine Falcons or even an Osprey in this Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. You can find out more about the Camel Trail here.
To find out more about the facilities available in Padstow and the local area, look here.
Where to stay
If you fancy a bit of art deco glamour, then there really is no better place to stay than the St Moritz hotel. It’s a little way out of Padstow, but it is a gorgeous place that has really taken into account the needs of visitors with mobility requirements. This classic hotel has two fully accessible rooms, as well as access to the main restaurant via a lift. There is also an indoor pool with a dedicated changing room for disabled guests, and a wet wheelchair and hoist system for getting into the pool itself. The great news is that all of the treatments at the hotel’s Cowshed Spa are also fully accessible. Just give the team a call on 01208 869800 to discuss what you need.
If you want to be a bit closer to the hustle and bustle of Padstow itself, then we recommend the lovely Prospect House in the town. You’ll find it behind Rick Stein’s St Petroc’s Bistro, and they have two quiet, accessible rooms, as well as dedicated parking for guests.
If there is one thing that Padstow is rightly celebrated for, it’s the quality of its sea food. And any selection of Padstow restaurants has to start with Rick Stein’s place, The Seafood Restaurant. The restaurant (and Rick himself) are Padstow institutions and well worth a visit. There’s wheelchair access and you can park in any of the nearby pay and display car parks in Padstow, at the harbour, South Quay, Link Road or Lawns. Each has its own Blue Badge parking, but Badge Holders are also usually allowed to park on double yellow lines in the town for a limited period (but check your badge restrictions first).
If you’re interested in something a little less formal (and crowded), then we don’t think you can do any better than heading to the Prawn On the Lawn for some gorgeous seafood. It’s a great place with a real emphasis on fun, fresh food. It also has its own fishmonger, so if you fancy taking some of the local produce away and cooking it yourself then we recommend you certainly check it out.
Getting to Padstow is relatively straightforward by car. If you’re coming from Penzance, then head north on the A30. If you’re coming from the north, take the M5 towards Exeter and then head in the direction of Bodmin, and from London take the M4 to Bristol, then south on the M5 to Exeter and then follow the A30, the A38 and finally the A389. There are trains from right across the UK’s network running to the nearest station at Bodmin Parkway every day of the week. It’s also possible to fly, either to Newquay Airport (only 12 miles from Padstow) or to Exeter Airport which is around 1hr 50mins drive away.
The Quingo Scooter range features six models to suit your needs and budget. New models are now available from just £22/week on our new contract hire scheme which includes all servicing and maintenance, Insurance, Roadside Recovery, Call Outs and Consumables including Batteries and Tyres. For more information on this or the latest Quingo Scooter range, please visit our website. Alternatively, if you have any service questions you can always contact us or call customer services on 01582 430 900.
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All Quingo Personal Mobility Vehicles are provided by Forever Active, the UK’s exclusive distributor. Forever Active is a trading name of Advantage Marketing Corporation Limited (AMC). AMC Limited is an appointed representative of First Senior Insurance Services Ltd which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. First Senior Insurance Services FSA Register number is 308478.