The Christmas Day Swim
Something of a tradition in Cornwall; and possibly any county almost totally surrounded by salt water. Not for the faint hearted is the embrace of this Christmas spirit: stripping and gaiety. The Christmas day swim is top of the ‘to do’ list in Cornwall. So, where to get wet?
The water temperature is not as warm as it was in September –
generally the warmest sea time after a summer of heating up(?!) But the 25th
December will be particularly cold (New Year’s Day which is my fave dip time
also v. cold, but a marvellous freshener – i.e. hangover cure). So I am
guessing that the sea temp will be about 10◦c with or without snow.
Top 5 places to take
the Christmas plunge:
Polzeath: Jump in and swim – no wetsuits allowed. Warm up
with brandy laced hot chocs afterwards.
Watergate Bay: In front of the Extreme Academy the beach
stretches far along. Brave baring the wobbly pale Christmas bod – it will have
happened to us all – and strip off and jump in. Warm up at The Watergate Bay
and try and snuggle next to the open fire.
Trevaunance Cove, St Agnes: Only for the hardcore, Aggie
beach is the place to dip tough toes and brave bodies.
Gwithian: A Christmas swim or Christmas surf, either way get
on it and splash about until you go comfortably numb. But be aware, obviously,
Sennen: a big coastal tradition here too. The rugged cove brings out the tough in folk!
The pros of a Christmas swim are that you will be so cold
that everything goes taut – it is the ultimate Christmas diet before donning
any body-con for Xmas lunch. It brings about my childish joy and a kudos of
hard earned respect from family and friends. Front crawl?!