The north and west coasts of Cornwall has a unique atmosphere – a mixture of the charm of St. Ives, famously beloved of artists and home to a branch of the Tate Gallery, to some of the wildest and most dramatic scenery along the entire English coastline. Add to this the wildlife, from peregrine falcons to dolphins, the fascinating mining heritage, the exhilaration of standing at Land's End, the magnificent open-air Minack Theatre, and the pretty fishing villages of Mousehole and Newlyn, and you have a magnificent moderate to strenuous walking holiday.
Highlights of the Mystery of Cornwall include:
- Charming St. Ives
- Land’s End
Day 1: Arrival and first overnight St Ives. This seaside town offers steep streets, great views, good surf and a beautiful light that has attracted artists for centuries. The St Ives Tate Gallery, The Barbara Hepworth Museum and Sculpture Garden are just some of the reasons why St. Ives is called the cultural capital of Cornwall.
Day 2: St Ives to Zennor. The walk starts out as an gentle walk out of St Ives to Clodgy Point soon becoming a strenuous hike of roller coaster climbs as you walk down towering cliffs into beautiful coves until you reach Zennor, described by D.H. Lawrence a “the most beautiful place, lovelier even than the Mediterranean”. The area around Zennor is designated both an Environmentally Sensitive Area and an Area of Outstanding Natural
Beauty. 7 miles (11km) (B)
Day 3: Zennor to St Just. The path continues its rollercoaster journey along the coast passing the remains of an ancient settlement and cliff castle at Gurnard’s Head and the site of an Iron Age cliff fort at Bosigran Castle. Seals are often spotted at the secluded sandy cove of Portheras Cove and from Pendeen Lighthouse you can look out at one of the most dangerous stretches of coast (for ships!), in Britain. The coast path continues to Cape Cornwall, the most westerly point of Cornwall where the Atlantic currents split. This area was is also dotted with the ruins of the once thriving tin mining industry and you can visit Geevor Tin Mine Museum and Heritage Centre at Pendeen along the route before heading inland to St Just for overnight. St Just has a history of farming and mining. It attracts painters and potters and has some great cafes and pubs and a fifteenth century church. 11 miles (17.5km) (B)
Day 4: St Just to Porthcurno. The first part of the walk is a mixture of easyopen walking along high cliff-tops and short ascents and descents. Walk from St Just to Whitesand Bay enjoying spectacular views, perhaps a view of seals as well as a variety of seabirds such as peregrine falcons, shags, herring gulls and rock pipits, to the lovely fishing village of Sennan Cove with a beautiful beach and great surf. Continue to Land’s End, the most southerly tip of Britain. Continue along the clifftops as far as the open air Minack Theatre. Finally a steep climb and then descent takes you down to the idyllic beach at Porthcurno. 12 miles (19km) (B)
Day 5: Porthcurno to Penzance. A strenuous walk from Porthcurno to the sub-tropical cove of Lamorna. Passing through an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the Path changes quite dramatically as it crosses rugged cliffs, with some difficult ascents and descents, and then turns to easy walking on tarmac through Newlyn to Penzance. The historic association of artists with both Lamorna and Newlyn continues today as the area attracts painters, writers, potters and craftsmen. Overnight Penzance. 11 miles (17.5km) (B)
Day 6: Depart from Penzance after breakfast. (B)
Tour prices are per person based on double occupancy. Single supplement is only applicable if you are traveling solo and/or have a room to yourself.
Your trip price includes the following.
- 5 nights in a B&B with private bathrooms
- Luggage transfers
- Trail maps and trail notes
- Local emergency contact
“Meals at our
hotel were superb, outstanding. Pub lunches
were excellent. Our guide’s leadership
was a high point of the trip — his
knowledge of the region (topography, history,
social and cultural characteristics), his
overall concern for the group, his keen
insight and well-developed sense of humor
D Swoap Clearwater, FL
“For the Cotswolds — an
area steeped in history — one needs
a guide who is steeped in the knowledge
of it. Ours met this criterion to the max.”
J & C Tate Malvern, PA
“It was a very
friendly group — helping to make
the tour an excellent experience. Meals
were superb, both the quality of the food
and the serving staff.”
A Matz PA
Best Time to Go
May through October
London Heathrow (LHR)
London Gatwick Airport
Birmingham International Airport
Traveling By Rail: arrive and depart Penzance.
For details on schedule and fares please contact BritRail at (800)677-8585 or www.britrail.com Another resource is The Train Line at www.thetrainline.comTickets can be purchased in advance online and collected at your departing station but you must use the same credit card that paid for them to redeem them. You can take a coach and rail connection from Heathrow via Reading train station. Please see www.railair.com.
Follow this link to the Meteorological Office for information on climate and rainfall averages.