The warm weather returned to St Francis yesterday and as the wind dropped late in the afternoon it turned into a most beautiful summer evening, ideal for exploring some of what St Francis has to offer. For those lucky enough to own a boat, it was a perfect afternoon for a canal cruise. Little Venice certainly was doing business and as no doubt some of those visiting the area took the opportunity of the good weather to climb aboard  for a canal experience.

Little Venice

Little Venice cruising the canals

Being a Wednesday afternoon, the paddlers too were in luck. With flat waters and no wind, a couple of dozen paddlers set off from their new base adjacent the new Quaysyde Restaurant for their weekly paddle meet. Whilst these paddlers of the St Francis Paddling Club do this as a sport it truly is a great way to explore the canals, even for those who are not into competing for the best 5 or 10 kilometre time through the canals. And certainly is a lot cheaper than running a motor boat. (Note to self – must get a paddle ski.)

Paddlers on St Francis Canals

St Francis Bay Paddle Club members getting some exercise

Watching the paddlers set off on their weekly run presented opportunity to take a look at the Quaysyde Restaurant and in spite of the many negative comments that have floated round the village since its opening in mid-December, it truly is a lovely venue. The actual restaurant is larger than it appears from the roadside but sensibly still quite small . Set close to the water it is the only restaurant in the entire area that really boast being on the water.

Quaysyde Restaurant St Francis Bay Canals

Inside Quaysyde

Taking a peek at the menu, the Quaysyde is not about to threaten the finer dining restaurants in the area and was a little disappointing. Possibly this will change when, rather than if, they are granted a liquor license for it seems to have adopted a rather “burger” choice of cuisine.  That is not to say the selection was not enticing but possibly a few lighter meal options, particularly in the salad department. With time constraints there was no time to sit and savour their fare but we shall return.

The hullaballoo over the excessive cover charge is a thing of the past and certainly it is quite normal to pay a corkage charge for bringing you own so why not go and give Quaysyde a try, particularly on a lovely summer evening. Certainly an opportunity to experience life on the canals even if you don’t own a house on the canals. So take along your favourite bottle of tipple and sit and enjoy the setting.