From Boston, we drove south, through some utterly beautiful countryside, to get to our next destination, Plymouth. Plymouth, Massachusetts is a hugely famous and historically important town, well known for being America’s Hometown – the place where the Pilgrim passengers of the Mayflower first settled. It’s a gorgeous place, full of pretty, colourful houses, wide, tree-lined residential roads and beautiful beaches. Our destination, The Mirbeau Inn & Spa, took us by surprise, though, as we drove up the windy road, and came face to face with a pretty French style Chateau. The glowing, ochre manor house, inspired by the soft colours of the paintings of Claude Monet, even has elegant gardens and water features inspired by Monet’s own garden in Giverny. It’s a breathtaking sight, and the experience only gets better as you’re greeted by a polite doorman, who won’t let you carry a thing.
Rooms are ridiculously luxurious, and obviously French-themed, decorated in rich colours and fabrics with a huge double bed, fireplace, and a pretty spectacular bathroom with free-standing bath and walk in shower:
We arrived just as the sun was setting, so after a quick explore (there’s a beautiful spa too, which unfortunately we didn’t get to visit, complete with a huge gym), we headed to the lovely lounge areas for a bottle of delicious Zinfandel, a wonderful selection of cheeses, chutneys and crackers, and a sofa made for two (well, about five probably, but we bagged it all):
The next day, we hopped into our hire car and drove to Long Beach, Plymouth. It’s jaw-droppingly beautiful and unspoiled, and even though it was nearly the end of October, the weather was bright, clear and really warm. It’s a long walk to the end of the beach and back (as the name suggests), and we were rather wrapped up in jumpers and trainers. Still, the views were spectacular:
After all that walking, we’d totally worked up an appetite, and headed for local institution, Woods Seafood, on Plymouth harbour, for lobster rolls and fries. Woods is a non -nonsense harbourside restaurant, serving fresh fish, lobster and seafood. You place your order, take your number, and then get stuck in! Mr E even came face to face with his lunch:
We spent the afternoon exploring the fascinating Plimouth Plantation, which re-tells the Pilgrims’ story with a recreation of their 17th century English village, complete with live actors, livestock and homes decorated exactly how they would have been at the time. You can ask the Pilgrims their stories, and it’s a fascinating place to discover more about these incredible first settlers, who suffered so much to create their new home in America. The settlers weren’t prepared for the harsh environment and cold of their new home and a large percentage of the original settlers died. You can even visit the Mayflower II, a full scale reproduction of the ship that brought the settlers in 1620 (although it’s now away until 2019 being renovated).
In the evening, we headed to the East Bay Grille – a fabulous restaurant serving more great local seafood. I took barely any pictures, but we had delightful company, and chatted and laughed while feasting on fresh local oysters, crab cakes with a fruity salsa, coconut shrimp, fresh caught local fish and even more local lobster.
And the desserts, oh my goodness me. I can’t even remember what this was – something to do with Oreos – it was about as big as my head.
After all this food, we walked it off in the weirdest, but most amazing way, with a ghost tour through Plymouth. The Dead of Night ghost tour with Jan Williams is hugely entertaining and Jan is really knowledgeable about the history of Plymouth and the original settlers. We walked through the historic streets of Plymouth, and discovered the graveyard with lanterns while Jan regaled us with terrifying tales of Pilgrims, and unfortunate frozen fisherman. Great fun.
We adored Plymouth, and lingered over our last delicious breakfast at the Mirbeau, while chatting with the lovely staff about our next adventure: heading further down to Falmouth and then Martha’s Vineyard. They even printed off maps and information for places they recommended for us. Of all the places we visited, Mr E and I could actually see ourselves living at this gorgeous little town. We’ll definitely be back to explore more and highly recommend it if you’re heading anywhere near Boston or Cape Cod on your travels.
Huge thanks to Natalie at Norwegian for all her hard work, and Paula, Paul and Natalie in Plymouth. Click here for all the information you need about travelling to Boston with Norwegian, including Hertz car hire. For more information on visiting Massachusetts, click on massholiday.co.uk, or SeePlymouth for Plymouth County.