Hello all. This week, I’m back on the coast in a tale of beautiful scenery, friends and phones!
Deb came round for a coffee and a chat. I told her I was pondering on what to do for Kimtime. ‘I’m off on Friday,’ she said. ‘I’m going down to the holiday home in Devon for the day – wanna come?’
‘But what about my steps?’ I said…….
The Holiday Home
So we set off early, with Deb driving. The M5 was pleasantly clear, going southbound on a half term Friday morning. The Devon Cliffs resort is 3 miles from Exmouth. As it said at the entrance when we got there – Park of the Year 2016. Nice!
It’s a big place, full of mobile homes (or static caravans as they called them when I was growing up) Many of them had views of the sea, and lovely decking and veranda areas.
Deb’s parking left a bit to be desired, but there was room to be a bit wonky, so never mind!
We went inside to drop off some bits and bobs, and she showed me round. It has 3 bedrooms – one ensuite – as well as a lovely kitchen/dining area, lounge, bathroom and all mod cons. There’s a nearby view down to the sea, and a beach with red, jurassic cliffs.
‘It’s for sale, as well as for hire,’ she said. A lovely holiday home and potentially a good little earner.
Time to get steps
Once we’d finished, we focused on walking. I’d arranged at short notice to meet a friend and former colleague of mine for lunch on the seafront, and we had an hour to get there.
We set off to find the coastal path to Exmouth.
The sign said ‘coastal path’ – in both directions……
It was a good job Deb knew which way she was going, because I may have turned left instead of right and ended up in Budleigh Salterton!
There was also a helpful robin available to point us in the right direction
So, we were going the right way but, with me stopping to take photos and Deb on the phone every 2 minutes, I had a feeling it was gonna take longer than we had anticipated!
We negotiated a set of wide steps that led up to the top of the cliffs, where there was a really good view of the holiday park and the surrounding cliffs.
Here’s the view from the top:
On the way
On the way up the steps, we encountered another signpost – one that actually tells you the way. Geoneedle – that sounds interesting!
We walked along, avoiding the mud and chatting between phone/camera stops.
The sea was always in sight; we were sometimes close to the cliff edge and sometimes further away. Here are a couple of other observations on the way to the Geoneedle:
The Geoneedle and Rodney Point
This is a modern monument to the Jurassic coast that marks the beginning of the World Heritage site. The needle itself represents the time periods in layers of the rock that make up the cliffs, and each step towards the needle recounts the timeline. There is also a set of stepping stones, each one a different sample of the local rock.
The shiny plaque explained all. It also gave us a unique opportunity for an un-selfie! This explains why I forgot to take a picture of the needle itself – whoops….shame the phone got in the way of the pictures though.
There was also a large compass laid out in stone. Fab idea, I thought – it would look lovely in our garden, pointing out landmarks around Weston. I mentally filed it in the folder marked Jobs for Husband.
By this time, we were about halfway there, when we came across a pathway down to the cliff edge with steps right down to the sea
It looks like you can walk round the cliffs to the nearby beach from here when the tide is out. Not sure I’d like to try it right now though!
We walked back up the hill, onwards and upwards, and along a narrow stretch of path that passed some houses. It seemed a bit sad that there were high garden fences in place along the path, blocking what must be a beautiful view of the sea from the houses. I guess the many walkers that pass this way must cause a bit of disruption that the house owners choose to shut out.
The path zig-zagged down the hill. It reminded me of Santorini, but on a smaller scale and without the donkeys that people ride on. More like Shanks’s pony for us!
So, we’d done the cliff walk and reached the beach. We could have done with reading this information, further back along the path – too busy with our phones, I expect!
There were loads of people on the beach, even though it was a mid-February dull and cloudy day. There were dogs everywhere, and loads of children – digging, running and generally having a great time. I guess it had something to do with half term.
I loved the brightly painted chalets on the hill. They looked both trendy and traditional at the same time.
As we passed the new lifeboat station, we caught a glimpse of the very impressive lifeboat. There were free tours of the station. I’ve since been told it’s worth a tour, so we will have to go back soon.
This is such a popular part of the Devon coastline, judging by the size of the Devon Cliffs holiday park and the number of people on the beach. There were also signs that people were stopping here on their way to and from other places-motorhomes parked all the way along the seafront.
An hour after we set off, we arrived at the Pavilion in the middle of Exmouth seafront. I’ve been to Exmouth only once before – and had lunch at this very place. Here I was again, lunching with Lesley. She’d already nabbed a table, and flagged us down as we headed for the entrance.
It was so good to catch up. We chatted about old times and former colleagues, while Deb attended to a couple of pre-planned conference calls that couldn’t be moved from the diary.
Finally, it was time to go back. Deb and I said our goodbyes to Lesley, promising to keep in touch and do it again soon. We could have walked back, but we were running out of time. According to the timetable, buses took nearly an hour to get back, so we indulged in a taxi and 10 minutes later we were marching across the park, heading back to the car, then back up the motorway.
How many steps?
I hope you enjoyed this week’s ramblings. Comments and suggestions are always welcome.
See you next week!