Cottage at Carbis Bay Hotel, near St Ives, Cornwall

Keeping up the ATWWAH tradition of a child’s first holiday being in the UK we recently took Mini ATWWAH on his first holiday and we chose Cornwall.  Mr ATWWAH had never been to Cornwall and I’d been about six years ago with some friends camping so we were pretty green about the county.  I remembered from our camping trip that St Ives was a nice place so I decided to find us somewhere to stay there.

Through the power of the internet I came across the Carbis Bay Hotel, a family run hotel with its own beach.  It has a variety of self-catering accommodation options and we decided to book a week in one of their cottages which are about a minutes walk from the main hotel.  They have three bedrooms, so plenty of sleeping space, as well as a fully equipped kitchen, living space and bathrooms.  Another plus point was they have a little garden too, you know if the fact they’re located a stones throw away from a Blue Flag beach wasn’t enough outdoors for  Master ATWWAH to take.

What I wasn’t prepared for after the day long drive from London was how amazing the cottages really are.  The photos on the website don’t really do them that much justice or show off how spacious they are.  Every bedroom was huge and easily fit a double bed, and the rest, there was tons of wardrobe space in all three bedrooms too.  The living room was big and nicely decorated with a separate dining area and a large kitchen which made us very excited as our kitchen at home is pretty small and there was also more storage space which revealed household stuff like an ironing board but also a highchair and a downstairs loo……then upstairs there are two double bedrooms, both with their own big bathrooms.  If anything the cottage was too big for the four of us as at the minute Mini ATWWAH is still sharing a bedroom with us but we loved all the space.

The outdoor area which belonged to the cottage was lovely with its own parking space which was a godsend as the hotel car park was packed and a back garden with plenty of space for a kickaround.  There is also an outdoor table and chairs and a couple of sun loungers as the garden is a bit of a sun trap.  But if that isn’t enough you step out of the cottage’s front door and you are just surrounded by country prettiness with a pathway leading up to the train station and coastal path to St Ives.   There is a little brook with a ‘troll bridge’ as we called it.  Look left and there is a huge railway bridge, a real feat of proper engineering, which is something out of The Railway Children and then walk down the hill a bit towards the hotel and you catch glimpse of the beach at Carbis Bay which is just stunning.  It is just one of those places that looks perfect.

Cottage garden

Gorgeous secluded suntrap garden


Lovely big kitchen

Cottage living room

We soon made the living room look ‘lived in’


Downstairs in the cottage


Twin bedroom which Master ATWWAH loved having to himself

A welcome basket awaits on your arrival which was a nice touch and included some good wine, Cornish ale and cider, apple juice and chocolate.  To bring you back down to earth with a bump on the self catering front there is a large Tesco about five minutes drive away or you could be very organised and arrange a supermarket delivery for your arrival.

As you have probably gathered the hotel is in an idyllic location and on a good weather week, which we were lucky to have in early September, you may not even have any need to leave the hotel and its facilities which include the beach in the bay, an outdoor heated swimming pool which is a real sun trap, a spa and a couple of eating options.  There is a terrace that serves afternoon tea, a ‘posher’ restaurant in the hotel, a place called The Shack on the beach, which is literally a shack but serves drinks and food and then the Beach Club restaurant overlooking the beach.  Guests staying in the self catering accommodation can also have breakfast in the hotel for a charge.

The hotel seems to be a big venue for weddings and parties and we were lucky enough to be treated twice during our week’s stay to an impromptu fireworks display through the windows of the cottage at the end of weddings which Master ATWWAH loved.

As we visited during term time there weren’t too many children around and most of the other guests were either pre-school families or middle aged couples.  The beach is used by lots of local clubs though so we got to watch some wave boarding, kids in kayaks, sea swimming clubs and horse riding lessons.


Carbis Bay Beach

The Blue Flag Carbis Bay beach

It’s in a great location for exploring southern Cornwall in particular and the gorgeous town of St Ives is one stop away on the train which run once an hour from Carbis Bay or about a mile’s walk along a nice coastal path route.  It’s even do-able with a pram although there are some steps but if you’re with someone they should be fine and strangers always offered help too so you should be fine.  You could drive into St Ives but parking is meant to be a bit of a nightmare and the walk is really easy.

More on what we got up to in Cornwall in a future post but I’d definitely recommend the cottages and the area for a lovely UK break.  And, if you’re in any doubt, this is not a sponsored post.  We booked the cottages through Owners Direct and received no discount etc.

Interested in more about holidays in the UK?

Try the Isle of Wight

Or, what about Center Parcs?


  1. What great cottages. We didn’t venture quite that far south on our trip but St Ives always sounds so lovely too. #MondayEscapes

  2. I love staying in Cornwall you just can’t go wrong there for a good holiday. The cottage looks gorgeous. I love the ‘troll bridge’! Monkey would have loved that. Although I’ve never stayed near Carbis Bay – must check it out! Thanks for linking up with #MondayEscapes look forward to reading more.

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