Towns and Places

By November 5, 2013 Things to do

Spectacular scenery and a magnificent coastline that hugs around it for 300 miles are just the beginning! Cornwall is a cornucopia of delights with picturesque towns and villages; a lively cultural scene and artistic heritage; areas of outstanding beauty in which to hike or stroll; theme parks that include the unique Eden Project; colourful and exotic gardens; adventure sports such as coasteering and kayaking; modern gourmet as well as tasty traditional food and drink… the list goes on.

The county’s coastline contrasts the North with dramatic Atlantic rollers pounding rocks and golden sands, reaching a crescendo on the western headlands of Lizard Point and Land’s End, with that of the South on the English Channel, dubbed the ‘Cornish Riviera’, with its altogether milder mood. Cornwall’s interior offers the true wilderness of Bodmin Moor.

Although Cornwall covers 1,376 square miles, it is just 75 miles from its border with Devon to Land’s End. Wherever you are located, the beaches of both north and south and the county’s myriad attractions and places to visit are easily manageable trips. From CLC Trenython Manor there is so much to explore, even within a short radius.

Below is a quick reference guide to places you might like to visit.

Bodmin Moor: Over 80 square miles of wild, heather covered granite moorland. Location of the famous Jamaica Inn; Brown Willy (1,377ft), Cornwall’s highest point; relics and stones circles; abandoned tin and copper mines; rare plants and Dozmary Pool – which fans of Arthurian legend will know for its association with Excalibur.

Boscastle: A National Trust fishing village in a spectacular setting of steep cliffs with an Elizabethan Quay, quaint stone-built cottages, shops and tea-rooms. A sheltered natural inlet and unspoilt harbour town.

Bude: A popular seaside destination since Victorian times, on the border with Devon, offering wide sandy beaches, rock pools and unique natural attractions which include a sea pool. Bude possesses a laid-back charm with a variety of shops, art galleries, booksellers etc.

Camelford: Attractive, ancient town on the River Camel located at the edge of Bodmin Moor with Roughtor the nearest of its hills and many prehistoric remains nearby.

Charlestown: A handsome Georgian harbour village built between 1790 and 1810. Once thronged with ships for exporting china clay, now home to a collection of old ships used in film projects worldwide. The Charlestown Shipwreck, Rescue & Heritage Centre is Europe’s largest private collection of artefacts from over 150 wrecks.

Falmouth: An ancient seaport that became the communications centre of the British Empire with the arrival of the first Royal Mail Packet Station in 1698. The harbour is visited by working and sailing boats and near the Custom Quay is the King’s Pipe, a chimney once used for burning contraband tobacco. Attractions include an award winning Maritime Museum and there are several sandy beaches to choose from.

Fowey: Picturesque and historic town on the River Fowey, designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and with a natural harbour visited by thousands of yachts each season – and even cruise ships. Many famous people have lived here, including author Daphne Du Maurier whose writing was inspired by Cornwall.

Gorran Haven: Lovely 13th century village, 3 miles from Mevagissey, with 2 sandy beaches and dominated by Dodman Point, a 400 foot high headland. Caerhays Castle & Gardens are nearby.

Helston: Market town of Georgian and Victorian architecture, best known for its floral or ‘furry’ dance (May) when it is decked out with bluebells, gorse, laurel and flags for a feast of dancing and a traditional mummers’ play.

Land’s End: One of Britain’s most iconic landmarks, labelled ‘the legendary day out’, at the most south-westerly point of the mainland. Be photographed by its signpost for John O’Groats, 874 miles at the other end of the country. Cliff paths provide for spectacular views and wildlife spotting, which can include basking sharks, seals and dolphins.

Looe: A working fishing port and family seaside town with many eateries, including award winning restaurants, for all budgets. Streets wind down to the pier past shops, many located in 16th and 17th century buildings, and the main beach is easily accessed.

Lostwithiel: A charming village of ancient buildings and narrow lanes, with independent shops for antiques and collectibles. There are restaurants and pubs, an award-winning farmers’ market and a lively events calendar.The 13th century remains of Restormel Castle overlook the town.

Mevagissey: Colour washed cob and slate cottages line a maze of narrow streets and lead down to a twin harbour filled with fishing boats, creating a picture postcard scene peppered with cafes, galleries, shops and pubs and seafood restaurants.

Newquay: One of the most popular seaside towns on the Atlantic Coast at the heart of the UK surfing scene and frequented by professionals and beginners, with a lively surf culture enjoyed by all. Many more adventure activities can be enjoyed from here, both in and out of the water.

Padstow: A picturesque working fishing port with a reputation for quality, locally produced food and the location of celebrity chef restaurants of Rick Stein and Paul Ainsworth. Padstow lies at the head of the Camel River Estuary, with stunning scenery and coast around it.

Polperro: Wedged in its cliff ravine location, Polperro is a fantastic jumble of fishermen’s cottages clinging to steep hillsides around a small harbour. Cellars once used to hide smuggled tobacco and spirits now display local crafts. One of Cornwall’s prettiest fishing villages, Polperro enjoys a peaceful, relaxing atmosphere with several art galleries and places to dine in style.

Port Isaac: A lovely little fishing village of ancient alleyways dating back 700 years. Port Isaac was used as the location for TV’s hugely popular Poldark series in the 1970s, and more recently for Doc Martin.

St Austell: Set on the Cornish Riviera with a wide curving bay of sandy beaches, while the 13th century town is a mile inland with its cinema, restaurants, cafes, shops and White River retail centre. Popular with holidaying families and for water sports.   

St Breock: In a quiet wooded valley, the 13th century church of St Breock’s has a slab connecting it to the legend of ‘evil Jan Tregeagle’, whose punishments included emptying Dozmary Pool with a limpet shell. A prehistoric monolith on the summit of St Breock Downs, is Cornwall’s largest and heaviest standing stone.

St Ives: Perhaps the most widely known of all Cornwall’s holiday towns! Colonised by artists and boasting the Tate St Ives, part of the London Tate, the Leach Pottery and Barbara Hepworth Museum, studio and home of the famous 20th century sculptress. A chic resort with breathtaking coastal scenery and winding cobbled streets filled with independent shops, galleries, restaurants, pubs and bars.

Tintagel: Steeped in Arthurian legend with Tintagel Castle reputed to be the birthplace of King Arthur, which many other references in the locality in what has become King Arthur country. With its rugged North Cornwall coast location of windswept cliffs and dramatic views, a place for walks, picnics and to free the imagination.

Wadebridge: The busy market town is the gateway to the Camel Trail one of Cornwall’s major attractions that is popular with walkers, cyclists and birdwatchers. A 17-arch bridge, built in 1460, spans the River Camel joining what were two separate parishes. The Wadebridge and Bodmin Railway Line, one of the first built in the world, opened in 1834.