We headed down for our seal spotting boat ride. Now I'm afraid this is going to be a partly miserable post as I spent the whole boat journey out to seal island thinking that the boat was going to capsize and we were all going to drown (and yes I know, I am definitely a pessimist when it comes to such things). If we'd been given life jackets I would have felt happier.
Then I spent the whole journey back with head down, eyes closed, desperately trying not to vomit. I've never felt sea sick before (and you might remember just how much I love boats being ever so slightly addicted to speed boat rides on the Thames). But I guess the combination of the choppy sea, the fishy smells, and the smell of the boat fuel, (smells I really can't stand) combined to leave me feeling so queasy.
Miss T found the boat ride 'scary' too in her own words although she did enjoy seeing the seals. We had a really special moment just off the coast of St Ives whilst we were on the boat waiting for it to set off when a seal popped its head up really really close by - pretty much within reach of us.
We later saw two seals who seemed to enjoy swimming very close to shore and were really easy to spot. Had we known that seals could be spotted so easily, I would have saved myself the trouble and money, not to mention the sea sickness and just viewed them from land.
A quick check on trip advisor for a place to eat lunch landed us at The Lifeboat Inn to a very friendly welcome. You don't need to book except on Sundays when they have their carvery.
It seems to be part of the St Austells brewery chain and it was just what you'd expect from a good pub chain. Nothing too fancy, but what they did do, they did well. J had a kids meal burger and chips, D had a kids fish, chips and peas meal, I had baked potato with cheese (their coleslaw was great so I wish I'd got an additional side portion of that), daddy had fish and chips in beer batter and Miss T did her usual trick of having a little of everyone else's.
Desserts were also great. Again nothing mega spectacular, but some good choices, done well.
Although we had heard that meals at Tregenna castle were supposed to be good, the lack of welcome we had received, along with a few other housekeeping issues including a lack of cleanliness in our apartment and a totally blocked shower drain, left us feeling less than inclined to eat in the hotel restaurant. Totally opposite feeling to how we felt at Fowey hall where we chose to take all our meals at the restaurant.
After lunch we tried our hand at crabbing using our crab lines given to the children from Fowey hall (thank you Fowey hall!). We nearly had some success getting quite a few crabs but not being able to reel them in before they let go.
Next it was Porthminster beach. This is a truly stunning beach in St Ives - golden sands - and totally idyllic first thing in the morning or late in the evening when you get the beach to yourself. In the busy part of a sunny August day, not so stunning to look at but still great for the kids to have a play. So despite a rainy start to the day, the weather brightened up beautifully into a beach day.
Porthminster beach is also famous for Porthminster cafe, reputed to be one of the best fish and chip restaurants in England. I'm sure it is somewhere The Brilliant Chef will want to visit next time we are in St Ives.
And home in time for Doctor Who with me having a big sulk missing my Matt Smith (my favourite doctor!). After all our lavish meals at Fowey hall, and our big lunch at The Lifeboat inn, We had a simple dinner back at the apartment consisting of bread, ham and cheese. One of the things we hadn't managed to pick up in a store was any fruit or veg and as I'm always keen for the kids to get plenty of fruit and veg we popped across to the hotel to see if we could buy a couple of apples from them, or even some sort of fruit salad if they served such a thing in the restaurant. Shockingly they had NO fruit on site. They could have named their price for some fruit this evening, and yet they had none.
Again the huge contrast with the outstanding Fowey hall was evident. At Fowey hall there was a huge plate of fruit, regularly replenished, for the kids to help themselves to.
Bed time has gone more smoothly this evening by separating the boys from the outset.
In conclusion, St Ives is definitely worth coming back to but sadly, we wouldn't want to stay at Tregenna castle again. The views from the driveway are breathtaking, but it didn't really have much else going for it.
Day 5 of our Road Trip - Written up on Saturday 23rd August 2014.