Celebrate Cornwall’s great outdoors this winter with a visit to Ann’s Cottage, followed by a stroll across coast or countryside.
Nobody needs reminding how stunning Cornwall is in the summer, with its lush subtropical foliage leading to a coastline scattered with golden beaches; rays of sunlight dancing off the crystal clear waters. But perhaps its best-kept secret is just how beautiful it is in the winter. As the nights begin to drawn in, in the second half of the year, it is a different beast entirely, yet equally beguiling. Indeed, many will argue that the winter is the season when Cornwall really comes alive, an enchanting wonderland, just waiting to be explored. It offers the chance to escape the crowds, wrapping the family up warm in a snug coat and hat to savour the wide expanses of countryside and secluded beaches, often all to yourselves.
Another great reason for enjoying Cornwall out of season is that the dog ban restricting many of Cornwall’s beaches is lifted, making the county even more dog friendly, and giving you and your pup the opportunity to forge new tracks together.
One great advocate for exploring Cornwall in winter is surfer, former Cornwall Living cover star and Ann’s Cottage ambassador, Corinne Evans, who experiences some of the best surf over the colder months. “I love Fistral, especially in the winter,” says Corinne. “You have to embrace the cold, windy days and enjoy. It’s the best thing ever!” But when not taking to the waves, she’s equally at home walking along the beach, strolling the coast path, or exploring the wild woodland, whether that’s Respryn, near Lostwithiel, or the many miles of trails at Cardinham.
Most of all, winter presents the chance to don your winter attire and embrace the elements. If this sounds appealing, Ann’s Cottage has a wide range of clothing, boots and accessories across its many stores, meaning that whatever adventure you have planned, you’ll remain both cosy and on trend. We love the array of chunky-knit beanies from Barts, complete with oversized poms. As Corinne will testify, they look and feel great, not least when paired with a warming ‘Lost in the Woods’ lumberjack style jacket from Billabong, completing the look with Levi’s SuperSkinny jeans and a pair of Ugg boots – perfect for a casual stroll among the trees.
For a more sophisticated look, you could instead opt for a Brixton Messer fedora and top from Free People Love Leo. And if a brisk walk along the coast path is on the agenda, then the Viva Winta jacket from Animal is a must, with its generous hood with faux fur trim. The sensation of putting it on is like sinking into your duvet, ensuring you’ll remain nice and toasty as you take in the sights, while being infinitely more stylish, of course! A pair of brown Sorel Torino boots makes the perfect accompaniment – again, extremely practical for exploring Cornwall’s rugged terrain – with trims that match the jacket. For the boys, there’s an equally impressive range of beanies, hoodies and jackets, a favourite combination of ours being the Barlow Twill jacket from Billabong and a pair of Reef Voyage boots.
All of these gorgeous items, and many more from iconic lifestyle brands, are available at Ann’s Cottage, either online or at selected outlets. With 12 stores dotted across Cornwall, including Bude, Wadebridge, Padstow, Fistral, St Columb, Falmouth, and the new Surf Centre in Polzeath, you’re never too far from your nearest Ann’s Cottage. Pop in and have a chat to the friendly staff, who are always on hand and ready to give advice on everything from surf gear to the latest outdoor essentials.
Ann’s Cottage is also the perfect place to pick up Christmas presents for those special people in your life. The St Columb stores are open until 8pm every day leading up to Christmas Eve, ideal for those who want to skip the rush of the high street during the weekends.
In our view, there is nowhere more captivating than Cornwall at this time of year. So, this winter, don’t follow the crowds – wrap up warm, carve your own path and discover Cornwall at its most magical.