With its natural harbour and open access to the Atlantic, Plymouth’s history very much reflects its maritime location. It was here that Sir Francis Drake masterminded the defeat of the Spanish Armada, from here the Pilgrim Fathers left for America, and Captain James Cook and Charles Darwin set off on their famous voyages. The city itself attracts large numbers of visitors – Americans in particular are drawn to the Barbican district where they can visit the Mayflower Steps monument, a permanent reminder of the Pilgrims’ voyage. Tourism attracts plenty of chain eateries, but you can eat very well in restaurants in Plymouth. Since setting up in one of Plymouth’s oldest surviving buildings, Christopher and James Tanner have been wowing visitors to Tanners Restaurant. Elsewhere, the Artillery Tower, one of the oldest military buildings in Plymouth, makes an atmospheric place to eat, and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall has opened a branch of River Cottage in a stunning waterside ex-Naval heritage building.