A Family Holiday To Bude 2019: Our Happy Place By The Sea (Part Two)

A couple of weeks ago I shared Part One of our family holiday to Bude, documenting the first half of our adventures in our happy place by the sea.  This post, Part Two, covers the second half of our family holiday to Bude, including the bonus days we were lucky enough to be gifted by Tim and Maria, the wonderful owners of The Beach Haven – our home-from-home whenever we visit Cornwall.

It really was a brilliant trip and exactly what we all needed after the stress of the preceding few months.  It wasn’t without it’s challenges of course, because travelling with kids is never completely smooth sailing, but it was wonderful all the same.  We’re already counting down the days until our next family holiday to Bude (286 days at the time of writing this, in case you’re wondering!).



I try and plan in one ‘big’ day trip whilst we’re on our family holiday to Bude.  It helps us venture a little bit further afield from the places we’re familiar with so that we get to see a glimpse of what else Cornwall has to offer.  It’s a larger county than you might think and there are so many diverse areas to visit and things to experience.  I have a bucket list just for Cornwall (which I’m planning on sharing soon) and we try and tick at least one thing off of it each year.

Previous day trips have included Clovelly, Hidden Valley Discovery Park, and The Lost Gardens Of Heligan.  This year I was determined to make it to Lanhydrock National Trust.  I’ve heard so many good things about how spectacular the mansion house is, how beautiful the gardens are and how much open space there is that’s perfect for little adventurers to explore.  Let’s just say it definitely lived up to expectations.  I’ll be writing a separate post dedicated to Lanhydrock with lots more photos and information so for now here are a few favourites from our time there:

The bluebells were out in all their glory during our visit and this patch of woodland was just beautiful with the sunlight filtering through the trees.

Exploring the grounds (with the ever-present football that has to accompany us wherever we go!)

Heading into the house, which was absolutely stunning

There were so many amazing old doors (with beautiful flowers nearby) just begging to be photographed.

Exploring the gardens

I love this photo 🙂

Lola found a ‘kindness rock’ and it made her day! She brought it home with her and we’re planning to leave it for someone else to find in a National Trust property near us over the summer to pass on a little bit of happiness.

Wandering through the blossom and magnolia trees

A view of part of the house and grounds of Lanhydrock from the Higher Gardens



Good Friday traditionally marks the return of Bude Craft and Farmer’s Market each year so we decided to head on down to take a look as we’d never been on our family holiday to Bude at the right time before.  We spent ages wandering through the stalls at the canalside, browsing handmade gifts sourced from local materials such as driftwood and seaglass found on the beach and gazing at beautiful artwork and creative jewellery.

Enticing smells drifted through the air from the many food stands: loaves of freshly baked bread stood next to stacks of generously sized Cornish Pasties; tempting sweet treats resided alongside fresh and colourful fruit and vegetables; plus cheeses, meats and pastries… the list goes on!  I can confirm that it’s well worth buying a slab or two (or three!) of the flapjack – it was absolutely delicious.

Bude Farmers and Craft Market

The girls browsing one of the stalls. We had such a lovely chat with the stallholder as we admired her handcrafted jewellery and trinkets

I love this photo of my little tribe having a brief sit-down in the shade to escape the crowds – it was busier than we thought it would be which is great for all the makers and producers who had stalls there

It was such a beautiful day so we spent the afternoon back down at Crooklets Beach soaking up the sunshine, jumping over the waves and breathing in all that glorious sea air.  There really is nothing else like it and I can honestly say that I haven’t felt as relaxed and contented as I did that afternoon in a long time.  Watching my girls having fun playing together, hearing the husband laugh for what seems like the first time in months and realising that my shoulders were down and that my heart was full made me vow to get back down to our happy place more often.


Hearing my girls laugh together as they play really is one of the best sounds in the world


When my Mum and I used to visit my aunt and cousins (who live in Bude) during the summer holidays when I was a little girl, my Nana and Grandad would sometimes be there too.  We would often all make the short journey south to Widemouth Bay, a glorious stretch of sand just 3 miles from Bude itself.

The colourful windbreaks would go up, merrily flapping in the breeze; picnic blankets were haphazardly spread out on the sand and weighed down with a curious combination of hastily-sourced rocks and Tupperware boxes crammed with sandwiches and snacks; deckchairs were wrestled with and (eventually) triumphantly erected for my grateful grandparents; and the bodyboards and cricket set would be gleefully pulled out of the myriad of beach paraphernalia we’d stoically carried down to the beach.

We would stay there for hours and hours just playing and building sandcastles and paddling in the water and collecting shells and feathers and flinging frisbees back and forth and shrieking with joy, before we all piled back in the car to head home with happy hearts and sandy feet and sun-kissed cheeks.  They are such wonderful memories that I hold very dear, especially as my Nana and Grandad are now sadly no longer with us.

For some reason, in all our years of taking our girls on a family holiday to Bude, we’d never taken them to Widemouth Bay beach before and so we decided that this year would be the year.  We’d expected it to be jam-packed with people because of the fantastic Easter weekend weather we’d been gifted, but in actual fact although the car park was busy, the beach itself was remarkably sparsely populated.  Of course the girls made a beeline for the outgoing tideline and we spent a happy hour or so doing what we love best – making childhood memories that will stay with them forever, just like my own ones have.

Wave jumping

Lola walking along the beach looking for shells

A strong contender for one of my favourite photos from our trip

Heart shadows

“Take nothing but memories, leave nothing but footprints”

Noughts and crosses in the sand

I try and capture a photo like this of the five of us every year – they’re some of my favourites to look back on 🙂

When discussing over lunch what to do in the afternoon, a unanimous vote for ice cream was immediately approved.  A few days previously we’d spotted an ice cream parlour we’d not visited before, displaying an array of flavours the girls hadn’t yet tried and they were absolutely desperate to check it out.  Scoop Ice Cream is now officially one of our new favourite places to get ice cream in Bude.

Look at her happy little face!

Getting ready to launch!

As well as having a big day trip to visit somewhere new each year, I also do my best to get us all to do/experience something new too. I suggested hiring a peddalo on the canal and the shout of excitement that went up told me it was a good idea.  So that’s what we did.  We all took it in turns to pedal (it’s much harder work than I thought it would be – my poor thighs!) and we enjoyed it so much that I think it might become another annual tradition on our family holiday to Bude.  We wandered home via Summerleaze Beach and over the clifftops in the late afternoon sun to be rewarded with the most beautiful sunset.

My view from the back of the peddalo

The start of golden hour

I love this photo of Mimi

Summerleaze Beach in the late afternoon

Beach life

Cliff-top plant life with Bude Sea Pool and The Pepper Pot (storm tower) in the distance

I love this photo of Ella taking a photo of the view

Cornish sunsets really are something else. I will never, ever get tired of them.



Easter Sunday dawned bright and sunny again, and whilst the girls were pretty worn out from our peddalo escapades yesterday I was mindful that our family holiday to Bude was quietly coming towards it’s end.  I really wanted to make sure we made the most of every single minute we could, especially as these extra days were so generously gifted to us by Tim and Maria, the owners of The Beach Haven, which is where we always stay whenever we visit Bude.

After a bit of protest (and using the promise of ice cream later in the afternoon as a bargaining tool) I managed to drag everyone out for a walk along the Breakwater.  Whilst we mis-timed it to be able to make it all the way out to Barrel Rock where brave* (*crazy) teenagers were gleefully throwing themselves into the sea with shouts of terror/excitement, it was still invigorating to feel the sea-spray on our faces and the wind whipping our hair as we scrambled across the seaweed-strewn rocks, keeping our eyes peeled for fossils as we went.  My favourite bit is always turning back to see Bude in all it’s glory spread out in front of us, the boats bobbing languidly in the water where the canal meets the sea.

It was a strange, hazy sort of light on this day – so beautiful and mysterious

Heading for the start of The Breakwater

Where the canal meets the sea

Looking back towards Summerleaze Beach from The Breakwater

Holiday pocket money burning a hole in their wallets, the girls requested a visit to the shops in Bude Town Centre in the afternoon.  There really is something for everyone and we all have our favourites shops that we like to visit.  There seemed to be several gorgeous new shops open this year too which is wonderful to see – I really hope they are successful.  We each bought some souvenirs to help us remember our family holiday to Bude before making a return visit to Scoops for the aforementioned promised ice cream.  The husband and the eldest two girls then headed back to The Beach Haven whilst Lola and I stayed out a little longer together.  It was so lovely to have a bit of one-to-one time with her and I think she enjoyed our scoot/walk home too.

The flavour combination possibilities are endless!

Scoops really is the cutest little ice cream parlour – definitely worth a visit

It was so lovely to have some one-to-one time with Lola

Taking in the views from the clifftops

I loved discovering this happy little sunshine gate. Imagine living here!

An absolutely stunning sunset



It’s so hard to pick a favourite day out of any holiday, particularly when we do so many fun things.  But if I HAD to choose I think maybe Easter Monday, our last full day of our family holiday to Bude, would be it.  We try and leave it up to the girls to choose what they would most like to do on our final day in a place and their choice this time was another game of crazy golf!

I plan on taking a photo like this every single year as they grow up, maybe even until they have children of their own!

We take our games of crazy golf very seriously!

Bude Crazy Golf is such a fun little course to play on

As per tradition, we had one final ice cream and wandered down to the beach to say goodbye to the sea.  This is something we’ve done with the girls every year since they were small and it’s unintentionally become a really lovely way to end our holidays.  I hope it’s something that they always remember and perhaps even pass down to their own children when they’re older.

We spent hours playing beach cricket together: laughing; chasing each other across the sand and paddling in the sea as the tide slowly came in.  We watched the sun begin to sink lower in the sky, casting sparkles across the water, before slowly making our way back to The Beach Haven to begin the sad task of packing to go home.  We never want to leave.  Bude truly is our happy place by the sea.

Choosing which flavour ice cream to have

The last ice cream of the holiday

All of us had so much fun playing beach cricket together

A beautiful backdrop for a game of beach cricket

Playing beach cricket

The iconic beach huts overlooking Crooklets Beach

Saying goodbye to the sea


I think perhaps this photo shows most accurately just how much fun we had on our family holiday to Bude this year – three exhausted but happy girls dreaming of beach days and ice creams and family fun. Until next year…

Heading home, tired but happy 🙂

Here’s a video I made of our family holiday to Bude. It may take me forever to create these vlogs, but they hold so many moments and memories within them that it’s totally worth the effort involved. They’re priceless time-capsules documenting us as a family and we all love watching them over again as the weeks, months and years go by, remembering the fun we had together.

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  • Reply July 3, 2019

    Jenny Taylor

    Always such gorgeous family adventures snapped up hunny. Wish we had bluebells near us and we really need to make a day to meet up soon. Been too long maybe a beach kids day out!!! 🙂

    • Reply July 11, 2019

      Chloe Ridgway

      We DO need to arrange a time to meet up! Definitely in the summer holidays – the girls always ask about B and MM and I know they would love to meet O too 🙂

  • Reply July 9, 2019


    So many gorgeous captures Chloe. Your day trips looked lovely. It’s lovely to have day trips planned, making the most of your time. I’m hoping we get back to Cornwall in the next couple of years

    • Reply July 11, 2019

      Chloe Ridgway

      Thank you Kerri Ann. Yes, day trips are always a good idea – I’m already planning a couple for our time there next year! I hope you make it back to Cornwall soon, it really is such a beautiful place.

  • I love the quote about taking nothing but memories, and leaving nothing but footprints. Your holiday looks magical, and you have such a talent for photography 🙂
    Nell (Pigeon Pair and Me) recently posted…What to expect from a Cutty Sark afternoon teaMy Profile

    • Reply July 11, 2019

      Chloe Ridgway

      Oh gosh Nell, thank you! I love that quote too – it applies anywhere in nature I think, not just the beach.

  • Reply July 10, 2019


    How fabulous that you had such great weather, even at easter! So many familiar places captured here on your camera. I particularly LOVE the images of your tribe on the beach. Lovely that you felt so relaxed too. xx

    • Reply July 11, 2019

      Chloe Ridgway

      After the initial couple of days (which locals said were actually colder than it had been in Winter!) the sun came out and it was absolutely glorious – we were so lucky to have had those three extra days as that’s when the weather was at it’s absolute best. I did feel relaxed there – I always do and it’s wonderful. Thank you for your kind words about my photos – I love them too 🙂

  • Reply July 11, 2019

    Ting at MTM

    Such a beautiful place is Bude and you’ve captured your lovely family holiday memories just perfectly.
    Ting at MTM recently posted…Introducing the Kidventures Family Travel PodcastMy Profile

    • Reply July 16, 2019

      Chloe Ridgway

      Thank you so much Ting. And yes, that’s exactly why I take so many photos – they’re our family memories and there’s not much more important in life than having fun and making memories with your family.

  • As always, I LOVE your photos and what a gorgeous area of the UK! Lanhydrock looks beautiful.
    Jenny – TraveLynn Family recently posted…Unique France road trip itinerary for a summer camping with kidsMy Profile

    • Reply July 16, 2019

      Chloe Ridgway

      Thank you Jenny! Bude and North Cornwall are stunning – well worth planning a trip there. Cornish road trip perhaps? Lanhydrock definitely lived up to expectations as well.

  • Reply July 12, 2019


    We love Lanhydrock! The house is wonderful and my girls love the play park by the cafe. Your pictures of Bude at Easter make me want to plan in a trip there again soon!

    • Reply July 16, 2019

      Chloe Ridgway

      Do it! You won’t regret it! We loved Lanhydrock (full post coming soon) – the gardens were my favourite part 🙂

  • Reply December 23, 2020


    Love the colours you get in your images…..are these straight from the camera or do you post-process?

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