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May, 2018

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Adult family

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Our first morning exploring Looe, we headed out along the lane behind our “cottage”:https://www.silvertraveladvisor.com/review/accommodation/188019-review-three-ways-cottage as we wanted to explore where it went on foot after driving down it the night before and experiencing a harrowing ride. There were numerous cars parked along the lane with various degrees of scraping evident on their sides. The lane took us from the houses on the hill in East Looe above the harbour, past some gardens and many holiday lets down towards the harbour at the bottom of Barbican Hill. I promised my aunt we’d take a taxi back so she wouldn’t have to walk back up to the top of the hill as her back and legs had been bothering her for a few weeks.

At the Old Guildhall Museum and Gaol we turned left down Tower Hill and headed through the narrow winding streets to the Town Trust East Looe Beach. It was Saturday morning in early May and a sailing school was setting up lessons on the promenade by Banjo Pier and an inflatable red octopus merry go round was being brought to life. On the beach a bouncy castle was also being inflated. The beach is lovely and the sun was shining through the clouds. We explored the beach and walked along to the end of Banjo Pier before investigating the shop in the Old Lifeboat Station and continuing along to the shops on Buller Quay. There is evidence along the shore of walls and fortifications.

If you’re interested, there is a Looe Heritage Trail that you can take around town. An interpretation board on Buller Quay shows the map and some information about the town that used to be two separate towns; East and West Looe. The trail takes about two hours and provides information about Looe’s historical heritage. Pamphlets can be picked up at St. Nicholas Church in West Looe.

We stopped for coffee at “The Old Boathouse”:https://www.silvertraveladvisor.com/review?id=189592 and continued along the quay stopping in the various boutiques and the tourist office. Eventually we had lunch at the “Black Swan”:https://www.silvertraveladvisor.com/review?id=189590 before heading across the bridge to West Looe. We had seen a statue of a seal across the river but part of the river walk was closed due to construction so we headed up the hill and down to the river walk to take a closer look – minus an aunt who stopped for a sit down by the river rather than struggle up another hill. Nelson, the one-eyed, scarred bull Grey Seal was a familiar sight around Cornwall for over 25 years and set up home on the rocks on Looe Island. The bronze statue by Suzie Marsh was installed in 2008 as a reminder of the marine life in the area and the need to preserve it. We retraced our steps after visiting Nelson, picked up my aunt and continued along the river walk on West Quay and under medieval Looe Bridge to the Old Mill Gift Centre and the mouth of the West Looe River to the Mill Pool. From here we saw the train arriving at the station across the East Looe River and decided to head back over the bridge for a possible adventure on the rails. Our trip to Liskeard on the Looe Valley Line is covered in a separate review.

When we returned to Looe from Liskeard it was approaching six and the shops were shut except for the Co-op. No Cornish pasty for tea tonight. True to our plans, we nabbed a taxi by Looe Bridge back up to the cottage and it’s a good thing we did; the heavens opened up as we got out of the taxi a few yards away from the cottage. We would have got soaked if we’d walked it. The best £4 spent that day! I should point out that the taxi was a larger vehicle than ours and the driver had no hesitation about driving up the narrow lanes – old hat to him.

Denise Bridge

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