It can feel like winter is never-ending – and with two fairly brutal storm systems blasting Cornwall this week, the season seems in little hurry to give way to spring.

At this time of year, the instinct is to hunker down and hibernate.

But, here at Babel Fish, we’re appreciating the first shoots of the new season along with new students.

Whilst we might not agree with all the schmaltz and frequently false sentiment of Valentine’s Day, we certainly feel that spreading a little bit of love is a grand idea…

As having fun is equally important, here’s four fab suggestions for variant Valentine’s Day vibes, or little excursions for this half term.

  1. Gilmore’s Newquay

Golf. Tacos. Tequila. Beer.

Says it all really.

Throw in some funky tunes, awesome ambience and the meanest Mexican eats on this side of the Atlantic and you’ve hit on one of Newquay’s coolest haunts. Oh, and did we mention the golf is totally cray cray.

Good for an alt.romantic night out or, as the nights are lighting up, pop in post surf (it’s just back from Fistral beach) for a beer, burrito and a little bit of retro 80s putting action.

2. Watergate Bay Hotel 

With a view across the bay towards Newquay’s headlands this hotel is, at the right time of year, the most perfect sunset spot. In the winter months it’s still pretty special: their ‘Swim and Dine’ nights are affordable and allow locals to sample the feeling of a spa retreat only minutes from home.

3. Go on a coastal jaunt fuelled by  Canteen’s superlative coffee and cake

There aren’t many places whose sugared buns would make us walk miles to sample: but Canteen at Wheal Kitty, St Agnes is one of them. Head from St Agnes Beacon around the coast path, or trek from Perranporth for a longer amble.

Your destination: an old wheal house – Kitty – and one of the most interesting pockets of business enterprise in Cornwall, with eatery Canteen sitting proudly amongst them.

A relaxed vibe on communal tables, grab a coffee and one of their delectable cakes, or a fresh and inventive one-plate lunch.

They say it best: good people, good food.

4. Cycle the Camel Trail and sample a fish supper

A bicycle made for two? Don’t mind if we do.

Hire a tandem, or even your own two wheels, from one of the cycle-hire shops in Wadbridge which cluster around the town’s entry point to the Padstow leg of the famous cycle trail.

This route will see you hug the brackish Camel, fly over bridges and score you some impressive views down to Padstow and Daymer Bay, Rock and the Doombar.

Nothing says, ‘I love you’ like a fish supper, or is that just us?

Cosy up with your crew on the quayside and watch the fishing boats do their thing. Rick Stein’s fish shop is perfectly situated for satisfying those hunger pangs… just as you enter Padstow, opposite the Lobster Hatchery.

Warning: those ninja-like sea-gulls who will stop at nothing to nick a chip. Part of the fun is thwarting their efforts 🙂

Many of the above are destination, or experiences, on our English with Art and Culture course. We’re also super excited about our new English with Walking programme, running in May.

If you like the sound of exploring the majestic Cornish coast (as well as its moors and forests) – and excellent English teaching – this two week special programme might be for you.

Get in touch for more information.