The beautiful village of St Ives lies on Cornwall's north coast. It's consistently one of the most popular destinations in England due to its mild climate, tropically golden sands and bright light. Add to that Cornwall's romantic heritage of smuggling and shipwrecks, and you'll see why the county and stunning villages like St Ives continue to enchant visitors. From picturesque coastal cottages to stylish self-catering apartments, St Ives has a holiday rental to suit everyone.
The village's days of being dependent upon fishing are over, but that doesn't mean you won't still spot colourful fishing boats sailing into the working harbour. Behind the harbour, disappear into the 'Downlong', a maze of winding streets and cottages. Here, you can learn all about how St Ives has evolved over the centuries from sleepy fishing village to thriving art centre.
Many visitors to St Ives are drawn by the perfect conditions for watersports including surfing, windsurfing and waterskiing. Porthminster beach is arguably the most popular, but just around the headland there's also Porthmeor. Venture just a little further westward from the town and you'll find miles of breathtaking coastline scattered with secluded coves. Head in the other direction for a delightful stroll following the railway line from St Ives down to Carbis Bay.
Don't miss Seal Island, the rocky home of a seal colony located a few miles off the coast. A boat trip gives you a great view of these adorable creatures, as well as a perfect panorama of St Ives itself.
St Ives has a long history of artists who were inspired by its natural beauty. It began with Turner and Henry Moore in the 19th century and continued with Virginia Woolf who discovered the lighthouse at Godrevy as inspiration for one of her most famous novels. Now, it's a haven for ceramicists, painters, sculptors and art enthusiasts. To explore the creative side of St Ives, head to the Barbara Hepworth Museum and Sculpture Gardens or the Tate St Ives.
Rent a little cottage here and you'll be rewarded with spectacular views. Don't leave without sampling some of the region's specialities including the scrumptious cream tea and the fabled Cornish pasty. And on the journey there, be sure to look out for a chap with seven wives...