Port Isaac

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Date of travel

May, 2018

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Adult family

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On a recent visit to Cornwall we spent a day in charming Port Isaac, also known as the village of Port Wenn, home to the television series Doc Martin. It is such a lovely spot, it shouldn’t be missed. We parked above the town in the new parking lot on Trewetha Lane; £3 for 3 hours or £5 for the whole day. We played it safe and paid the £5. There is a shuttle bus (£2) to and from the village but, in the end, we opted to walk both ways. We followed the footpath down to the village and stopped at “Fresh From the Sea”:https://www.silvertraveladvisor.com/review?id=190840 for delightful crab sandwiches. Across the road from the café are a number of trailers set up for filming and they appeared to be getting ready for something. As we ate alfresco we watched a bookstore set up for a book signing and headed over after our early lunch to check it out. The books turned out to be children’s stories from “The Manor House Series” and the author was very chatty describing the stories and showing us the pictures, which it turns out, she did too; Jani Tully Chaplin. The stories are charming and the illustrations are delightful. We all bought books and had her write the children’s names in.

While in the shop I also purchased a little map and guide to the town highlighting the Doc Martin buildings. Using the map we headed out along Port Gaverne Hill to the police house in Port Gaverne. There are lovely views along the coast that seem familiar from Poldark; Doc Martin isn’t the only filming done here. We retraced our steps towards the village and stopped to use the facilities in the lower car park for £0.20. There is also a dining bus in the car park for the filming cast and crew. From here we headed along the coastal path around to the village and harbour. It brought us out past Louisa’s house and Port Wenn School. If you want a more personal Doc martin experience, Louisa’s house is a holiday let. From the school’s car park you can see the red umbrella on the back terrace of Louisa’s house.

Looking across the harbour we could see Doc Martin’s house and Bert Large’s Restaurant below it. There was filming happening just up the hill from the Doc’s house but it turned out not to be that show; it was a documentary about the “Fisherman’s Friends”:https://thefishermansfriends.com/; local men who sing sea shanties. Their newest CD was playing everywhere we went and it sounded good. We continued on our way around Fore Street to Buttermilk Confections which is the Pharmacy then headed up Roscarrock Hill to check out the filming. We ended up having to stay put for a while during filming so my aunt and I explored a bit of the coastal path that goes around the harbour. Before we got too far, we saw there had been a pause in filming so we were able to head back down the hill.

We were distracted on our way down the hill by the old church which is now a shop/café (Port Isaac Pottery). My one aunt and I twisted another aunt’s arm and she bought a lovely purse – it didn’t take much. She was sat downstairs resting her weary back and we dangled the purse over the balcony at her and suddenly she was upstairs. She wasn’t the only one who walked out with purchases. By now we were starting to get peckish again so after wandering around the sweet shop we headed into “The Slipway”:https://www.silvertraveladvisor.com/review/restaurant/190842 for a lovely Cornish Cream Tea. Fortified for some more exploring we found our way around the quant cobbled lanes to Aunt Ruth’s house up Church Hill. The village is purely a delight to wander around; higgledy piggledy lanes with passage ways tucked in here and there. We drank in the last of the views of the coast on our walk back to our car.

Denise Bridge

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