Where did I go: Penzance, Porthcurno, Land’s End – Cornwall, UK
When did I go: March 2015
1240: Officially crossed the Tamar Bridge into the Cornish peninsular
1500: Arrive in Penzance after a 6 hour drive. Weather: Wet, foggy and generally miserable.
1530: Sitting in the lounge of the lovely Warwick house hotel, enjoying a slice of buttered fruit cake and a cup of tea made for us by the proprietress. The clouds part and a ray of sunshine peeps through.
1630: Enjoying a Cornish Pasty at the Warren’s Bakery, which claims to be the oldest pasty maker in the World!
1700: Off for a walk on the Coastal pathway towards Marazion and St. Michael’s mount. Although the location is fantastic and right next to the sea, the walkway is strewn with litter, dog poo and graffiti.
1715: The walk comes to an abrupt stop, thanks to a locked gate on the path. The only other way is down to the beach, which is pretty wet as the tide is starting to come in. Decide to walk back to the town centre.
1745: Walk along the Penzance promenade. Stopped to look at the Jubilee pool, closed for the winter.
1930: Dinner at the Turk’s head pub, which claims to be the oldest pub in Penzance. Great food and lovely staff.
2100: Just said no to dessert (!!!), too full from dinner. Back to the hotel.
0930: Just left the Warwick House hotel, after an excellent breakfast.
1000: At the Minack Theatre in Porthcurno. A wonderful open air amphitheatre atop the cliffs in Porthcurno. Tiered seating surrounds a small stage, on the other-side is a sheer drop into the sea.
Today there is no performance at the theatre, but the waves are putting on a show instead. The sea is completely unsettled, and is providing its own drama. Mighty waves are crashing into the rocks below the theatre, making a thunderous noise. The wind is howling, and the rain is drizzling. I’m reminded of the power of the sea, and thankful that I don’t work on a boat. In the midst of all this, I spot a solitary seal in the sea by the rocks below. It doesn’t look the least bit perturbed by the rough sea, but is just letting the current take him wherever, and just keeping his snout above the water. I could sit and lookout on to the sea forever, but we have places to go, so we decide to make a move.
Before we depart, there is enough time to pop into the Minack theatre museum, which tells the story of Rowena Cade, an amateur theatre enthusiast and “Master Builder”, who built this theatre with her own hands at the bottom of her garden. On the other side of the cliff is the very large and very sandy Porthcurno beach. Even on this miserable day, the beach looks inviting, with the blue-green water lapping the white sands. There is no time down to walk the beach today, so we take our leave, making a promise to come back later in the year, for a day at the beach and a night at the theatre, hopefully in better weather.
1115: At Land’s End – The most westerly point in Britain. The weather is worse now – whether its because of the time of day or the location I’m not sure. The winds have really picked up and horizontal rain is lashing us. You have to shout to make yourself heard above the weather. A dozen or so tourists are braving the awful weather to take photos, us among them. This, coupled together with the size of the car park, amusement arcade and 4D cinema makes me think that this spot must be really busy in the summer.
1145: We pop into the first and last house in England, for a cup of tea. We are their first customers of the season, and they can’t find the teabags. We are offered hot chocolate instead. We sip the hot chocolate whilst looking at the treacherous sea and listening to the wind batter the hundred year old building.
1205: The fog is starting to come down and the wind and rain are worse than ever. We decide to call it a day and head back to the car.
1305: We cross into Devon on the A30, thus ending our time in Cornwall. We take the memories of the 24 hours with us, promising to come back for longer and hopefully to better weather.
Have you been to Cornwall? Would you like to go? Do you have any favourite places to visit? Leave a comment below and let me know.