It is easy to forget how small the UK is. A miniature country, our little island would fit inside the United States over 38 times and into Russia an incredible 69 times. Itís so small that you can cycle from top to bottom in just ten days, covering a total distance of 874 miles.†It really is tiny.†In the time equivalent to most Americans visiting their nearest neighbouring city, we are able to drive from sprawling London down to the sandy beaches of South West England; a place of rolling moors, rugged coastlines and coastal villages. A perfect place, really, to spend a weekend.

And so last Friday, off we set, on our pilgrimage south. Courtesy of†Unique Homestays, we would be staying near the coastal town of Bude, in the small but perfectly formed†ĎThe Little Charcuterieí.


Our first destination was beautiful Bath. A city best known for its famous Roman Baths and natural hot springs, Bath was an eighteenth century hotspot for trendy Georgians. Today, itís still just as beautiful, with its original Roman Baths and new baths, open to the public.†


Our power walk around Bath over, we set off on the remainder of our journey down to Cornwall. By the time we reached the winding country roads, the hail had begun and the wind was making my little car rattle. After an hour or so we found Waterstone Farm, home to our little weekend sanctuary. As we climbed the steps we creaked open the front door to the cosiest of scenes.


With exposed beams, a wood burning stove, a kitchen filled with colourful tiles and pots and pans, and a big double bed tucked away in the corner, The Little Charcuterie is exactly the sort of place you'd want to stay on a wet and windy night.


I was also shattered and therefore thrilled that Unique Homestays had left a lovely big hamper of food for us. Having safely arrived, I slipped into something a little more comfortable (literally: tracksuit bottoms and a jumper), lit the log burner and sat down to eat most of the contents of the hamper. Life was good.


The next morning, the rain cleared and we finally got some Cornish sunshine. Hurray! We also got to meet Chris and Jan, our hosts. These were possibly the friendliest hosts Iíve ever had the pleasure of meeting. After meeting their three excited dogs, they showed us around their lovely farm, before giving us plenty of tips on where to visit in the local area.


First stop was breakfast at†The Weir†(where owner Chrisí sausages made their debut in and amongst our Full English breakfast!), before a short drive down to the picture-perfect Port Isaac.†A small fishing village, Port Isaac has sat proudly on the Cornish coast since the fourteenth century. Having parked at the top of the village, the walk down to the harbour was a winding one; weaving in and out of the white weather-beaten cottages that line the hill. As it was still down-season, the port was incredibly peaceful. People milled quietly about in the Saturday morning sunshine and just one fishing boat bobbed gently on the water. I was living the Cornish dream.


Our next stop on our coastal adventure was Padstow. A town that has long been a holiday hotspot, Padstow still had its fair share of tourists, even for early March. We immediately went to Rick Steinís fish and chip shop, before finding somewhere to sit on the harbour to eat. Like a complete novice, I decided to walk with the lid open; cramming the chips in my mouth like a total fatty whilst we walked. Unsurprisingly, it wasnít long before I heard a rustle of feathers behind me and I was smacked around the head by a couple of greedy seagulls, who grabbed my precious chips before flying away. I guess I had it coming.

After a walk around Padstow the rain set in and we headed home to our little bolthole, before dinner at†La Bouche Creole†in Bude. When you first think of Louisiana cooking, you perhaps donít immediately think ĎCornwallí, but thatís exactly what this restaurant offers: a little slice of New Orleans, nestled on the edge of the Cornish coast.


This was sadly a bit of a whirlwind trip and after a final night at The Little Charcuterie, it was already time to make the journey home. We had just enough time for a blustery walk on Widemouth Beach before we said goodbye to Chris and Jan, and headed back up the coast. There are some fantastic places to stop and see on the way, including†Lynton and Lynmouth†(two beautiful coastal towns, separated by one large cliff and a Victorian cliff railway) and the medieval village of†Dunster†(with its very own castle).

We arrived home on Sunday evening, a little tired, but mainly happy after a weekend of sunshine and chips at the seaside. Cornwall is a beautiful place to visit and to do it justice, please give yourselves at least a week to explore all it has to offer. Full of tiny fishing villages; white-washed cottages; slate clad houses; colourful fishing boats; rolling hills and fantastic food, itís a special part of the UK.


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