Witchy Places to Visit in Cornwall
October 15th, 2021
Magic has been an integral part of British culture for centuries; from the stories about boy wizards we read nowadays to dramatic ancient fables, there’s no denying that everyone loves a little bit of magic.
If you’re looking for something wicked to do while staying at our 5 star holiday park in Cornwall, then why not check out our list of mystical and witchy things to do in Cornwall.
The Museum of Witchcraft and Magic, Boscastle
If you’re a fan of all things wicked, then The Museum of Witchcraft and Magic is a must-stop attraction for your Cornish holiday.
Set in the small fishing port village of Boscastle, the museum offers visitors a respectful and accurate look into the diversity of magical practices throughout history.
As well as their extensive selection of historical objects, the museum also hosts educational events and exhibits that show off a variety of unique insights into magical practices with the help of cutting edge scholarship.
Nanjizal Cove, St Levan
Some spots are just too astounding to be anything but magic. One such location is the magnificent Nanjizal Cove on the southwest coast of Cornwall.
The most notable aspect of this remote and mostly unknown spot is the natural rock arch situated at the southern end of the beach. Commonly known as the “Song of the Sea”, this beautiful display of natural beauty is just enough to make you believe in magic all over again.
Rocky Valley, Tintagel
Another amazing and magical spot in Cornwall is the Rocky Valley near Tintagel on the Atlantic coast.
While this National Trust spot offers fantastic woodland and countryside walks for any who visit, that’s not why it’s made our list. What makes this place so fascinating is the rock carvings in the stones, the earliest of which dates back to 1779.
The most notable of these carvings are the two that have since been named the Rocky Valley Labyrinths. The two carvings consist of concentric circular lines in the same style as the turf mazes from the medieval period.
Metaphysical Shops in Cornwall
If you’re looking for retail therapy with a spiritual twist, then Cornwall is the perfect place. All across the county, you’ll find small, independent stores offering a variety of spiritual and metaphysical products. From incense and crystals all the way to tarot cards and even some in-person readings (COVID regulations depending).
Why not check out one of these shops during your Cornish getaway:
Whether you’re a true believer or just an appreciator of the rich history found in the new age practices, there’s plenty of witchy things for you to do in Cornwall this autumn.
If you’re looking to plan your perfect Cornish getaway, why not check out the cottages we have available to book all year round?
The Best Things to Do in Cornwall in Autumn
October 11th, 2021
As the season changes, the trees prepare for winter, and the days get shorter, Cornwall begins its autumn festivities. With a great range of activities to explore – from spending a weekend in luxury cottages in Cornwall to splashing around in piles of crisp autumn leaves – Cornwall is the perfect place to be this autumn.
Most of the activities that draw tourists to the county will still be available throughout the year. Still, autumn and winter offer a far less crowded and hectic period, allowing you to take your time and thoroughly enjoy each day of your luxury Falmouth or Truro holiday.
Let’s take a look at some of the best things to do in Cornwall during autumn!
Romantic Cornish Cottages
Visit The Valley and spend your time in an oasis of serenity. Our luxury holiday cottages offer an escape from fast-paced daily life and allow you and your partner to take some time to be pampered.
With so much to do right outside your doorstep, you can fill your autumn with romantic activities and places to visit. Autumn offers a moment of reflection and peace, so why not do this in a 5-star luxury cottage with a warm indoor pool?
Visit a Food Festival in October
While the summer months are all about enjoying live music, autumn is all about food and drink! Autumn in Cornwall sees three big festivals – Falmouth Oyster Festival, Oktoberfest and the Big Cornish Market.
Here you’ll be able to enjoy local produce and sample some of the finest Cornish ciders and ales. The Big Cornish Market takes place in Truro, offering street food, local produce, live entertainment and craft stalls.
Go Surfing in the October Swells
The milder autumn months are the perfect time to get active. How does a day of surfing sound?
Cornwall has some great spots to surf, including Fistral beach, Perranporth Beach, Porthmeor beach and many more. With potential 6-8ft waves moving into the harbour, you could break your record or discover a new skill.
We do advise using a winter wetsuit for those harsher autumn days!
Halloween in Cornwall
Halloween in the west country is a magnificent display of how to enjoy the spooky season. We recommend taking your family pumpkin picking! With some great pumpkin patches throughout Cornwall, we’re sure you’ll be able to find the perfect one!
Additionally, Cornwall holds a variety of haunted houses and scary mazes for everyone to visit and enjoy! For more information on what to do this October, check out our blog.
Go Rock Pooling and Catch Crabs
Now the summer months are over, the beaches in Cornwall will be far less busy, meaning that you’ll get more of a chance to explore.
There are plenty of beaches with fantastic rock pools in Cornwall, with Castle Beach in Falmouth and Kennack Sands on The Lizard being two great choices.
Rock pooling is the perfect autumnal activity if you still want your fix of the beach when holidaying in Cornwall, as you can get up close to the shore without having to take a dip in the cooler water.
Crabs, fish, anemones and starfish are common Cornish rock pooling finds – what will you discover?
Head to the Beach With Your Dog
On October 1st, the seasonal dog ban gets lifted on most Cornish beaches until the summer months come around again. Your dog will be granted unlimited access to the sandy stretches and can splash in the sea to their heart’s content!
Plus, you’ll be able to visit a beach without worrying about leaving your pup behind at home. However, if you’re not sure, check the GOV website for more information.
Woodland Walks in Autumn
There’s nothing quite as satisfying as the crunch of crisp, golden leaves underfoot, and the woodlands in Cornwall will be full of fallen leaves come autumn.
Explore the woodland paths of Trelissick, head out to Kennall Vale Nature Reserve or one of the many other woodland spots in Cornwall!
Whether you’re following a trail or embarking on your adventure, why not pack a picnic and make a day of your outing? Be sure to keep an eye out for local wildlife when out walking too.
A Guide to Pumpkin Picking in Cornwall
October 08th, 2021
It wouldn’t be Halloween without the chance to carve your very own pumpkin. And what better feeling is there than picking that pumpkin yourself?
So, dust off those wellies and get into the spooky spirit when you stay in one of our child-friendly cottages in Cornwall by checking out any one of these great pumpkin patches this autumn.
The History of Pumpkins
The pumpkin is a member of the Cucurbitaceae family, which includes a variety of other fruits that come from flowering plants. That’s right; a pumpkin is technically a fruit!
Pumpkins are believed to have originated in Central America over 7,500 years ago, although the first pumpkins were nothing like the autumnal treat we love today. They were small and hard with a bitter flavour, but thanks to their solid, thick flesh, they were perfect for storing during cold weather.
It became a challenge for women in the 17th century to find new and delicious ways to serve pumpkin, which ultimately led to the variety of ways it can be eaten and enjoyed today.
A History of Pumpkin Carving
Pumpkins are good for more than just eating. Pumpkin carving has roots in many ancient cultures, particularly Celtic.
The term ‘Jack-o’-Lantern’ was taken from an Irish Folk Tale called ‘Stingy Jack’. In this story, Jack invited the Devil to sit down and drink with him. However, living up to his name, Jack wanted to drink for free, and so he tricked the Devil into paying for their bar tab!
Not a fan of being swindled, the Devil cursed Jack so that when he passed, his soul wouldn’t be able to move on to the afterlife. Jack wandered the Earth alone with nothing but a single lump of coal for light. He would place this coal inside a hollowed-out turnip which earned him the new name, ‘Jack of the Lantern’.
From then on, the Irish began carving out vegetables in his likeness as a way to drive the wandering spirit of Jack away while also offering a guiding light to good spirits.
So, where do pumpkins come into it? In the 1800s, many Irish families immigrated to America, where they found that pumpkins made for much better carving canvases.
Where Can You Go Pumpkin Picking in Cornwall?
If you’re looking to get into the Halloween spirit, then make sure you check out our top picks for pumpkin patches in Cornwall.
Trevaskis Farm, Hayle (Seasonal)
Trevaskis Farm is the perfect place to pick your own fruit and veg!
With 28 acres of stunning Cornish countryside, Trevaskis Farm offers the chance for you to pick your own pumpkins (when they’re in season) no matter the weather! They’ve also got a brilliant on-site farm shop and restaurant with some of the most delicious desserts around.
There’s no need to book; just pop in to pick your pumpkins at any time between 10 am and 5 pm. Keep your eye on their website to see when those pesky pumpkins are ready!
Scaryland at Dairyland Farm World, Newquay (23rd- 31st October)
A trip to Scaryland is the perfect way to treat the kids this Halloween.
Open every day from 10 am until 5 pm, there’s a whole host of activities to keep everyone entertained. Not only do you get to pick your own pumpkin from Dairyland Farm World’s own pumpkin patch, but you can also carve it right then and there to take home with you.
There’s also a Creepy Craft Workshop and access to the rest of the park, including the Farmhouse Kitchen.
Cornish Maize Maze and Fun Farm, Saltash (16th – 17th October and 23rd – 31st October)
If you’re looking for a fun, family day out, then look no further than the Cornish Maize Maze this October. With pumpkin picking, a Halloween maze and farm animals, you’re sure to have a blast!
The pumpkin patch is open from 10:30 am until 5 pm each day, with pumpkins available for a little as £1!
Lobbs Autumn Fest, Heligan (23rd – 30th October)
Celebrate autumn in style this October at the Lobbs Farm Shop’s annual pre-Halloween event, Autumn Fest.
Every ticket holder receives a tractor and trailer ride to and from the pumpkin patch, as well as their pick of hundreds of pumpkins to take home. What’s more, they have a variety of different pumpkin varieties available. If you’re tired of the standard orange, why not pick up one of their stunning white ‘Ghost Pumpkins’?
There’s something for everyone at Autumn Fest, from hay bale photo shoots to baby lambs and even a free Halloween cupcake!
There’s no shortage of amazing spots to pick your own pumpkins in Cornwall this autumn. So, whether you’re looking to guide the way for good spirits, or you want to try your hand at making the perfect pumpkin pie, make sure you head down to one of these great pumpkin patches and find your perfect pick.
For more autumnal activities, check out our guide.
What to Do on a Rainy Day in Cornwall
September 27th, 2021
Whether you’re camping or staying in one of our Truro holiday cottages, if there’s one thing you can’t always depend on while on your holiday, it’s the weather.
Luckily for you, Cornwall is a fantastic place to visit, rain or shine! So, whatever the weather, you can be sure there’ll be something to entertain you and the family throughout your holiday in Cornwall.
Here are some of our favourite things to do in Cornwall on a rainy day.
Museums in Cornwall
Cornwall is rich in culture and history, so why not spend those rainy days learning all about Cornwall’s past and how it came to be what it is today?
Here are a couple of our favourite museums to visit in Cornwall on a rainy day.
National Maritime Museum, Falmouth
You can find this award-winning and family-friendly museum tucked away in Falmouth. The museum is dedicated to celebrating how the influence of the sea has shaped Cornwall’s history and culture.
With permanent fixtures like the National Small Boat Collection as well as fantastic temporary exhibits, there is something to keep everyone entertained. There’s even a pirate-themed play area for the little ones to enjoy!
Royal Cornwall Museum, Truro
If you’re looking for a broad exploration of Cornwall’s rich and fascinating history, then look no further than the Royal Cornwall Museum.
Based in Truro, Cornwall’s only city, the Royal Cornwall Museum offers visitors the chance to browse thousands of historical objects that showcase Cornwall’s history.
The museum also has temporary exhibitions showcasing history from the rest of the world as well as its own art collection and programmes just for kids!
Art Galleries in Cornwall
If you’re a fan of the finer things, then why not check out one of the dozens of art galleries in Cornwall.
From small independent venues and local artists all the way to world-renowned collections, there’s something for everyone’s tastes.
Here are just some of the brilliant galleries you could visit while staying with us at The Valley:
- Falmouth Art Gallery
- Newlyn Art Gallery
- Tate St. Ives
Shopping in Cornwall
Why not tend to those rainy day blues with a bit of retail therapy?
There are shopping centres dotted all across Cornwall filled with high street chains, boutiques and even cute little cafes to help you shop the day away!
Or, if you prefer to shop independent, why not lose yourself to some of the hidden shopping gems and bag yourself a memento of your time away?
As you can see, there’s no need to let the weather get you down! There are plenty of ways to make the most of your holiday in Cornwall, even if the weather isn’t always on your side.
Image credit: Visit Cornwall
6 Cornish Ghost Stories
October 26th, 2020
Cornwall is one of the most atmospheric counties in the UK. With vast moors, mysterious rock formations and a rugged coastline renowned for shipwrecks, it is the perfect setting for tales of mystery and paranormal occurrences!
As we head into the colder months, what better way to spend an evening than cosying up in our Truro holiday cottages with a hot drink and some nail-biting tales to keep you entertained!
We reveal our top selection of ghost stories, from phantom ships to evils spirits! Which ones will you be sharing this autumn?
Lost Land of Lyonesse
Once the home of Tristan in the Arthurian legend of Tristan and Iseult, Lyonesse is now more famously recognised as a mythical lost land off the coast of Cornwall.
The legend of Lyonesse is of a land which once existed between the western coast of Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. It was submerged by water, with the only evidence of its previous existence the sound of its ringing church bells heard out at sea.
Only one man was thought to have survived a tragedy who, by a stroke of luck, was hunting. Upon hearing the noise of the massive surge of water, he rode away on his white horse in an easterly direction towards Land’s End.
As he ferociously escaped, his horse lost one shoe. The survivor’s family used the symbol of three horseshoes and a white horse as the family crest and was used by those who believed they were his descendants.
This ghostly tale has been enhanced over the years by fishermen, who claim to hear the eery ringing of church bells and discovery of old rubble in the water.
Perhaps the eeriest part of the story is that some believe that it really once existed and was hit by a tsunami.
The Ghost of Jan Tregeagle
One of Cornwall’s most feared ghosts is the spirit of Jan Tregeagle.
Once a Cornish magistrate and lawyer in the 17th Century, Jan Tregeagle was infamous for his evil and inhumane acts, including the murder of his wife.
Allegedly in alliance with the devil, he was believed to appear and testify at his court case after his death… spooky!
In the horror that he may not be able to be sent back to hell, he was ordered to do a series of laborious and mind-numbing tasks until judgement day. His first task was to withdraw all the water from Dozmary Pool using a limpet shell.
Eventually, after escaping his punishments, St Petroc was summoned to fasten him in chains where he was then taken to Helston.
The Whooper of Sennen Cove
On a beautiful, clear day, a mist descended on Sennen Cove. Accompanying the fog came a mysterious whooping sound that carried over the sea. It was believed to warn those who heard it of oncoming storms.
One day, two fishermen chose to ignore the warning. Once they sailed into the sea, they were never seen again!
Ghostly Church Bells
At Land’s End lies a mysterious graveyard where the sound of bells has been heard chiming at midnight there. It is believed the bells come from the ghost of a sea captain, who is in denial that his ship has sunk.
The sailors who hear them are feared to meet an unfortunate end at sea —one sailor was lost at sea after reportedly hearing the bad omen.
The Logan Stone
Are you familiar with the term logan stone? A logan stone is a large stone that is naturally balanced and rocks with the smallest force, such as the wind.
At Nancledra, a tale tells of a logan stone which only ever rocked at midnight.
It was rumoured to be the meeting place of witches, and those who wanted to convert would secretly visit the stone. They had to touch the rock nine times at midnight! Its powers were believed to cure children of rickets, but only if their parents were married!
The Ghost Ship of Porthcurno
An old sailing ship was seen off the coast in Penzance. As it sailed across the sea, witnesses feared it would hit the rocks as it headed straight in their direction. However, the mysterious ship defied all odds and continued to sail over the land and eventually faded from eye’s view as it continued through Porthcurno.
We would love to share mystical Cornish ghosts stories all day, as there are so many intriguing tales home to the county! What are the ghostliest locations you have visited in Cornwall? Why not share your tales with us on our social media channels; we would love to hear about them!
The Best Places for Walking in Cornwall this Autumn
October 15th, 2020
Autumn has approached us; the temperature is cooling, and the leaves are changing colour. For some, this time of year may make you want to curl up on the sofa with a hot drink. However, the vibrant colours of autumn make it the perfect season time to head outdoors and explore the coast and countryside.
Our dog-friendly cottages in Cornwall are the perfect base for those who love to explore the outdoors, all the while staying amongst cosy luxury! Located close to Cornwall’s best beaches and heritage sites, we highly recommend wrapping up and heading out for a walk so you can see some of the best of the county as it falls under autumn’s spell.
Read on to see where the best places are in Cornwall for a walk this season!
An easy walk at the most southerly point in Britain. It is short and suitable for children and dogs, and much of the route is clearly signposted.
Starting from the Lizard lighthouse, the route takes you to Lizard Point, where you might be able to spot seals in the cove below.
Further along the coast path, you may be lucky to see Cornish choughs. When you get to Old Lizard Head, you can see out towards Kynance Cove to the west, and Shetland ponies and cattle graze on the coastal slopes.
You can head inland after passing Old Lizard Head, following a path that will take you back to the lighthouse, or stay on the coast path a little longer.
Lizard Point is currently open. However, The National Trust report that the info hut, retail space and The Wildlife Watchpoint remain closed until further notice.
Depending on the weather, the toilets may also close, so this is worth bearing in mind when planning your route.
Lizard Point can be accessed 24 hours of the day.
Another National Trust site, Glendurgan Garden offers a stunning display of autumn colour at this time of year, and there are other unusual sights and scents to come across on a walk.
We suggest having an afternoon out in the garden, taking the time to walk along the paths and stopping to admire the plants.
Some highlights include the Katsura tree, which originates from Japan and has bright colours in October. You may also notice the smell of candyfloss as you pass by the tree
You also won’t want to miss the tulip tree. The giant tree is one of the oldest in the garden and turns a lovely colour in October. The lovely yellow leaves will brighten even the dullest day!
To visit Glendurgan Garden, your visit should be booked in advance with the National Trust, especially during peak times such as the weekend and bank holidays. The morning also tends to be a busier time to visit, so secure your place to avoid disappointment.
Garden and car park: 10:30am–5pm
The dog-friendly estate is perfect for those who are visiting Cornwall with their dog who will love the vast space to play in!
The estate has miles of woodland and open countryside to explore, and you can alter your walk based on time and ability.
You can stroll through the parkland or take a long trek through the trees. In the parkland, livestock can be found grazing, so it is important dogs are kept under control.
The cafe at Trelissick is dog-friendly too, perfect for when you stop for lunch.
If you are travelling to Trelissick by car, it is essential to book your car park space ahead of arrival. However, if you are arriving by foot, bike or bus, no booking is required. The house at Trelissick is currently closed.
Car park: 9am- 5pm
Garden: 10am- 5pm
Have a ramble through Penrose, making your way through a tree plantation and extensive parkland; the huge estate is lovely to walk through all year round.
The route starts from the car park and takes you down the fenced driveway. As you continue down the drive, you will reach a Victorian bath house and the stream.
Cross the stream over the footbridge and make your way into the woods, following the woodland path.
From the path, you have views over the parkland, and you will end up on the drive again, looping back around and taking you back to the car park.
The Penrose is free to access throughout the day. If you are driving to the car park at Penrose Hill or the surrounding National Trust car parks, please be aware the spaces cannot be booked in advance.
Estate: Dawn till dusk
Head up to the top of Godolphin Hill, which has views over west Cornwall.
The area around Godolphin has a long history, dating to the Bronze Age, and you can see signs of the hundreds of years of human activity in the dips and dents beneath the gorse and heather.
The popular walking route takes you past the Slips, a narrow lane with its walls covered in plants, then by old pits and mine shafts until you reach the old deer park.
When you reach the summit of the hill, there are breath-taking panoramas of the area. On clear days, you can see St Michael’s Mount to the south and St Ives Bay to the north.
The house and outer buildings at Godolphin are currently closed. However, the estate and garden are both open in throughout the day. Visits should be booked ahead of your arrival. Peak times include weekends and bank holidays, so bookings will be necessary at these times to prevent disappointment.
Estate: Dawn to dusk
Garden: 10am to 4pm
West Pentire and Holywell Walking Route
In the South of Newquay, between West Pentire and Holywell, the coastline is varied with beautiful flora, and you can view grey seal pups in the autumn months.
The route is lovely all year round, as there are wildflower fields to see in the summer and migratory birds in the winter.
As you follow the coastal path, you can see the sea crash on rocks below, and spy sandy beaches in the distance.
Closer to Holywell, there is an Iron Age fort to stop at and explore, before the path heads back inland, as it circles back to the starting point of the route.
The South West Coast Path is a public route and can be accessed 24 hours of the day.
Which prime locations in Cornwall will you be adventuring this season? Why not share your adventures with us on our social media channels!
Wildlife and nature to look out for in Cornwall this Autumn
November 04th, 2014
Including the area surrounding our luxury holiday cottages, Cornwall is known for its stunning, serene countryside, which is home to a wide variety of wildlife and nature delights. This is especially so in the autumn, when the change in the landscape brought about by the season brings out new wildlife to spot. The Cornish Wildlife Trust has provided information on the wildlife highlights that you may spot this autumn, so keep an eye out for these while exploring Cornwall on an autumn day’s walk:
A common product of the autumn, when the trees shed their foliage, hazelnuts can often be found in the Cornish woodland in shrubs and along river banks. They are also an indicator of wildlife living nearby, as many animals have adapted to crack them open to survive in the winter, such as dormice and bird species. They also make an ideal autumn snack when roasted, so you may also be tempted to forage any hazelnuts you come across on your walk.
Due to Cornwall’s extensive and varied coastline, grey seals often come to breed here, preferring sea caves and cliff-backed beaches. The seals can be spotted on the North coast from Cape Cornwall to Boscastle, and along the South coast at The Lizard and the Fal estuary. Autumn is the ideal time to see the grey seals as October is often when the pups are born, giving you a rare chance to see these wonderful creatures together with their newborns. Following dolphins and whales, they are the largest predators in Britain, weighing in at around 200kg, with Cornwall being home to the largest grey seal colonies in the UK.
Mushrooms are often an underappreciated aspect of the natural landscape, but if you look closely, you can learn to appreciate the diversity that they add to the surrounding nature. Toadstools are especially common in the woodland in autumn, and can measure up to 25cm across. Some toadstools grow tiny hair-like roots which can attach themselves to tree roots, allowing them to extract nutrients and feed off the tree.
With a number of bird species migrating over Cornwall in the autumn, including those who are typically found in continental Europe, Cornwall is an ideal spot for birdwatching. A rare and unusual example of a bird species found over Cornwall in the autumn is the Wryneck, a woodpecker-like bird which is now largely extinct in Britain due to the decline in the number of their traditional orchard habitats. Named after the way that they appear to twist their neck to point their head in the opposite direction to their body (though this is actually an optical illusion), they are notoriously difficult to spot, with their grey and brown plumage enabling them to blend in with the tree branches.