We have been in Cornwall a week now, house and pet sitting on a 12 acre property with an amazing garden that leads down to a river. Every day we walk the dogs (and sometimes one of the cats comes too) down through trees and undergrowth and it’s so peaceful and green. There are wild flower meadows, vistas out to surrounding farmland and everywhere the sound of birdsong. There’s even the occasional rabbit and fox.
This is a stunning area and one I’ve wanted to return to for many years having only seen a little in the 80s when I lived in London. So far we have driven down to Falmouth to visit Pendennis Castle with its history going back to when Henry VIII ordered the castle to be built in case of invasion from across the sea. The harbour is very deep and in theory boats could come in as far as Truro, essentially invading Britain. This didn’t happen although the Spanish did have a go but were knocked back by rough seas. Later the potential threat came from Napoleon and the two World Wars. So Pendennis has a lot of military history and we did enjoy a tour of the Battery and it’s magazine with its various weapons including a disappearing cannon which retracted back and down so that the targeted fleet out in the harbour couldn’t see where the shots were coming from. Shame about the big plume of smoke rising up over the canon, no doubt visible for miles around. They may not have thought that one through!
We also visited the beach at Falmouth just as the rain started. Now I know we are in England. Although to be fair we have had some beautiful weather as well. Let’s call it a mixed bag.
A couple of days later we headed to Port Issac where Doc Martin is filmed. We had some of that beautiful weather and really enjoyed the walk through the village and around to the headland. A lot of tourists here and a few too many Doc Martin mugs on sale but it didn’t detract from the simple beauty of the bay and picturesque white and blue painted cottages.
Another day we walked and climbed to the ruins of Tintagel castle, further north along the west coast of Cornwall. It’s not for the faint hearted as some of the steps carved out of the rock are very steep but it’s so worth it. Ruins in this area date back to the dark ages (5th century) and supposedly it was the home of the mythological King Arthur. We walked down to Merlins Cave and then back up and along the headland with its views out to the Atlantic. Again the weather was sunny although the wind was, let’s say, refreshing. It blew the cobwebs away for sure.
The same day we drove home via Boscastle which has an amazing hidden harbour perfect for smuggling. Really reminded me of my much-loved Famous Five books. Now days the fishing boats bring back crayfish and crabs.
Speaking of local delicacies, Alan is carrying out an in-depth study of the Cornish Pasty. It’s a difficult but rewarding job and I’ll let you know the findings once he has a big enough sample. (As a side note every village we have visited so far has claimed to have won the award for the Worlds Best Pasty. Hmmm).
I’ve had one Cornish Cream Tea and was bitterly disappointed by the crumbling rockcake-like scone (English Heritage cafe at Tintagel). I’ll soldier on though and try again elsewhere. Someone’s got to do it etc.
Here are a few pics from the week that was. Excuse all the scenic shots. I couldn’t stop taking photos, the landscape and seascape is so spectacular in Cornwall and we’ve only just scratched the surface.