Tuesday, July 13, 2004

Living Coasts

We decide to give the Living Coasts at Torquay a try this morning and despite my usual distaste for zoo type affairs, they seem to have at least tried to establish natural environments for the coastal birds and seals here.
It certainly is fascinating to be able to get so close to the waders, auks and penguins and see them from above and below.
The centre is set out amazingly well and is a fantastic optimisation of what is actually a very small space. It’s totally wheelchair friendly and the cafĂ© terrace offers unparalleled vistas across Torbay.
After lunch, we follow the coast round until we reach Babbacombe. The funicular railway down to the beach area claims to be wheelchairable, but the sloping paths at each end and a seriously intimidating 45 degree ramp off the car is far from suitable. Once we get to the bottom, Dad and I are seriously concerned re our abilities to get Mum back up.
Fortunately I manage to sweet talk the Beach Amenity Manager into letting us bring the car down the twisting access road (usually off-limits) and the problem is solved.
After all this excitement I drive us back to Ilsington so that Mum can have a rest and I a good long swim before yet another mega feast in the amazing hotel restaurant.

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