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The West Country comes into its own in winter with its mild climate and wonderful scenery. Here are 7 very good reasons to visit Cornwall in the winter months.

1. The beautiful scenery offers fantastic walks

Cornwall boasts 300 miles of coastline encapsulating both dramatic cliffs and sandy beaches. If you’re a dog owner, you can bet that your four-legged friend will be even more in love with you if you take them onto the blissfully deserted sands (seasonal dog bans are lifted) for a game of fetch or a swim.

If you prefer a view of granite tors and undulating moorland, then walking across Bodmin Moor is a fine alternative. There are a number of walks available for both the intrepid hiker and the casual stroller.

2. Wonderful gardens to stroll around

The mild climate means that landscaped gardens lose none of their beauty as winter sets in. The 200 acres of the Lost Gardens of Heligan, recent winners of the Silver Award for Large Attraction in the Cornwall Tourism awards, has a wealth of festive family activities as well as the gorgeous gardens to explore.

The Gold Award for Large Attraction went to another garden, and country house estate, Lanhydrock. From its formal gardens, marvellous magnolias to wooded, parkland and riverside walks, there’s something for everyone.

CLC Trenython Manor is the perfect base to explore both Heligan and Lanhydrock and offers guests 24 acres of estate to wander around with fantastic views over St. Austell Bay from the terrace.

3. The weather

The weather is generally mild in the winter but when the storms come, gosh do they arrive! For those who love dramatic weather a Cornish storm with the Atlantic Ocean sending waves crashing against rocks and lighthouses is a must. When the storm clouds clear, the low sunlight is ideal for photographers and artists to capture the beauty of the landscape.

4. Cosy pubs

After a bracing walk along the cliffs or moor, what’s better than getting warm inside and out in a cosy pub? Cornwall is brimming with them. Just picture yourself in front of a roaring fire, with your drink of choice, reliving the wonders of your latest wanderings.

5. Christmas Markets

There’s no need to hightail it to Bavaria or Austria to enjoy a Christmas market, Cornwall has loads to choose from, offering traditional Cornish fare or a foodie focus.

Local to Trenython Manor is Fowey Christmas Market which runs for the weekend of 9-11 December. Set in the historic riverside town the stalls offer food, drink and arts and crafts.

For a fresh, contemporary take on the Christmas arts & crafts fair pop along to Outlaw Christmas Market in Falmouth.

Padstow Christmas Festival, meanwhile, has a foodie twist with chef demonstrations and festive treats in the Christmas Market. There’s also a Santa Fun Run & Cycle in aid of Cornwall Hospice Care. The market runs from the 1st to 4th December.

6. Mousehole Lights

The small seaside village of Mousehole is renowned for its Christmas lights that decorate the harbour. The big switch-on is 17th December at 7pm and the lights will be on every evening thereafter until 7th January 2017.

7. Ice-skating at Eden Project

The ice rink is already open if you want to strap on some skates and perfect your flying camel spin. Part of Eden Project’s Festival of Light & Sound, little ones can hire a penguin skating aid while older children (including the adults!) can join in the fun and games on ice.

So, if you’re looking for a winter getaway, these are just 7 reasons why Cornwall could well be the answer.