Liz's 48th

Trip Start Jan 01, 2010
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of United Kingdom  , England,
Saturday, December 4, 2010

I wanted to plan a little weekend away for Liz's birthday, but ensure it was somewhere not too far from Plymouth, so that Katie could be there as well. Much searching ensued, as every hotel in South Devon/East Cornwall that I alighted upon had a minimum two night stay at weekends. I was on the verge of giving up when I saw a review in The Guardian of Brown's, in Dartmouth. Not having been to Dartmouth before, I had a preconception that it was a lovely place - but wasn't sure if that was based on what I'd heard about Dartmouth, Massachusetts! Anyway, on ringing the hotel it became clear that Dartmouth (Devon) was going to be the place, as (a) the folk at Brown's were very obliging, and accepted a Saturday night only booking, and (b) the price for Dinner, Bed and Breakfast for the three of us (Liz, myself and Olivia) was a bargain.

The plan was for us to leave Rode on Saturday morning, arrive in Dartmouth for lunch, explore, etc, and for Chris & Katie to join us on Sunday morning. The plan pretty much worked....we were at the hotel by 1pm, and had lunch in a nice creperie by the harbour. Dartmouth was great - stretched out along the river Dart, with lovely views across to the little town of Kingswear on the eastern shore. The town itself had plenty of quirky little alleys, and some great shops and restaurants. There was a Christmas Market in the gardens by the harbour, and (despite a bit of rain), we spent an enjoyable afternoon wandering the streets and looking at the stalls in the Market. There was even a candlelit procession of boats, although the inclement weather restricted the flotilla to six boats!

Later on we repaired to our room, and relaxed on the four poster (Olivia had a camp bed in a corner!), with Liz unwrapping her prezzies. Around 7pm we wondered down to the bar and had a pre-dinner drink in the company of a lively group of revellers preparing for a pre-Christmas knees up somewhere else in Dartmouth. Dinner was fantastic, and despite choosing several rather pricey items from the menu, I discovered the following morning that it was all included in the price.

The next morning we drove to Totnes to pick up Chris and Katie from the station, then drove back again to Dartmouth for a further wander around the back streets (finding loads of other interesting shops we'd missed the previous day). We lunched in a great Fish & Chip restaurant on the quayside (Rockfish), with a roaring fire and paper tablecloths and crayons for drawing!

After lunch it was time to hit the road - we decided to take a slightly different route back, and caught one of the little ferries to the opposite bank before heading back to Somerset, via Exeter. Despite a bit of rain on the Saturday I was very impressed by Dartmouth, and equally impressed by Brown's....we may be back!
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John W on

It looks as though you had a good time. We like Dartmouth very much. We attended a wedding at the Naval College. The hotel guest house we stayed in was very laid back - when we arrived there was no one there just a note saying 'The door is open, make yourselves comfortable'. I was persuaded to buy a lumberjack shirt in one of the shops and will be using it in Devon should we get there!

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