Waitrose & Partners Weekend Issue 598

4 0 28 APR I L 202 2 Photography: HotHibiscus/Getty, Courtesy of www.garyholpin.co.uk, Sam Breeze, © Faydit Photography, Matt Austin, Lizzie Crabbe WEEKENDING Poole Weymouth Lyme Regis Exeter Darmouth Plymouth St Austell St Ives Padstow Bideford Watchet Never mind Route 66, England has its own spectacular coastal driving route for motorists with a sense of adventure. Lucy Shrimpton gets behind the wheel Get your kicks on the SouthWest 660 We seem to call practically every car journey a ‘road trip’ these days, as if the clicking of the seat belt alonemade it qualify. It left me wondering what does define a road trip, and thankfully the one I’mundertaking – the SouthWest 660, hugging the coastline of Dorset, Devon, Cornwall and Somerset – is the very essence of one. The 660-miler, fromPoole in Dorset toWatchet in Somerset, is newly devised by a collaboration of West Country organisations which recognised that, while the southwest coast is a destination of choice for many, we can’t all head to the same honeypots at the same time. Those narrow country roads just weren’t designed for it. Instead, by providingmotorists with an incentive to experience the south-west coast o -peak – spreading the spend and easing congestion – the tourism industry can better sustain itself and provide year-round jobs rather than just seasonal ones. Road trippers canmake further responsible tourismgains by hiring an electric car and using the charge points en route. The incentive for people visiting between September and June is plain to see, as I drive through crowd-free, blue-sky spring days on go-slow coastal routes far from trunk roads, remindingme how satisfying it is to take the road less travelled. Motorists can tackle the adventure in onemarathon trip or in 12 digestible sections, using SouthWest 660’s website – a curation of accommodation and experiences to assist with your planning, whether it’s food, active, arts, history or wildlife. JURASSIC PARKING Dorset, route #2 If the ultimate travel brag is to have the place to yourself, experienceWeymouth’s quayside early doors, where colourful seafarers’ houses ‘If there’s a formula for the perfect leg-stretcher – Kingsbridge is the sum’ on the road Weymouth beach huts (inset); Polgoon wines (right); Lula Shack, Hayle (bottom); Fire School at High Grange, Dalwood ( far right)