Hidden Gems in Cornwall: Tregothnan Tea
August 25th, 2023
Wanting to explore a hidden gem in Cornwall? At The Valley, we’re always seeking the best Cornwall has to offer – with stunning grounds and an opportunity to learn about all things tea, this spot definitely provides a great day out!
Tregothnan Tea is known for being the only tea plantation in the United Kingdom and is renowned for producing high-quality, locally grown tea.
Tregothnan has a very rich history, with botanical firsts happening here since 1334. In 2005, the site sold Britain’s first homegrown tea – safe to say, if you’re a lover of tea or wandering around beautiful gardens, this is the place for you. Here’s all you need to know about visiting this Cornish gem.
Where is Tregothnan Tea Located?
Tregothnan is situated near Truro in Cornwall, just a 30 minute drive from The Valley. The unique microclimate of the region, created by the warm waters of the Gulf Stream, provides an ideal environment for growing tea.
History of Tregothnan Tea
Tregothnan has a long history dating back to the 1330s when it was acquired by the Boscawen family. Tea cultivation began on the estate in the 1990s, and since then, Tregothnan has become a pioneer in British tea production.
Tea Cultivation at Tregothnan
The estate currently grows a variety of tea plants, including Camellia sinensis (the tea plant). The mild climate of Cornwall allows for year-round cultivation, and the tea plants thrive in the rich, acidic soils of the region.
Tregothnan produces a range of teas, including black tea, green tea, herbal infusions, and unique blends. They also experiment with growing different tea cultivars to produce distinct flavours.
Tregothnan is committed to sustainable and ethical tea production. The estate employs traditional and modern techniques to ensure the highest quality tea while minimising its environmental impact.
Visiting Tregothnan Tea
While Tregothnan is primarily a working estate, they do offer limited guided tours of their tea plantation and gardens. This provides visitors with a chance to learn about the tea-growing process, explore the beautiful surroundings, and taste some of the estate’s teas.
With its connection to Cornwall’s landscape and history, Tregothnan Tea offers a piece of British tea culture that is quite different from traditional tea sources.
If you can’t make it to Tregothnan while on your Cornish adventure but are still interested in trying some British tea, Tregothnan’s teas and other products are available for purchase through their online shop.
This allows tea enthusiasts from around the world to enjoy the unique flavours of locally grown British tea.
Visiting Tregothnan Tea is a wonderful way to learn about the art and science of tea cultivation in an unexpected location. It’s a testament to how dedication, innovation, and a bit of favourable climate can create something truly special. If you’re a tea lover or simply interested in unique agricultural experiences, Tregothnan Tea should definitely be on your radar.
If you’re seeking a base for your Cornish adventures, look no further than our luxury holiday cottages here at The Valley! Enjoy a prime location just a short drive away from Tregothnan and an array of other heritage sites and activities.
9 Blue Flag Beaches in Cornwall
March 28th, 2023
A holiday to the south coast just wouldn’t be complete without a trip to one of Cornwall’s stunning beaches. With over 250 miles of stunning, unspoilt coastline, and over 300 beaches to explore along the way, including many family friendly beaches, you’re spoilt for choice!
With so many to choose from, we’ve put together this guide to the Cornish beaches that have been awarded the Blue Flag in 2023.
Make your stay at our 5 star holiday park in Cornwall memorable with a day at one of these fantastic beaches.
What is a Blue Flag Beach?
It’s all well and good for us to rave about Blue Flag beaches, but what does it mean?
The Blue Flag programme is run by the Foundation for Environmental Education who work to educate people across the globe on the importance of sustainability and creating a more environmentally conscious world.
The Blue Flag is awarded to beaches, marinas and sustainable boating tourism operators who have met a series of stringent environmental, educational, safety, and accessibility criteria. So far, the Blue Flag has been awarded to 4,820 locations in 49 countries across the world!
Blue Flag Beaches in Cornwall 2023
Beaches in Cornwall are known for their gorgeous sands and beautifully clear waters. Whether you’re looking for a fab surf spot or just somewhere for you and the family to relax by the sea, one of these Blue Flag beaches is bound to tempt you.
And the best thing about them? They’re all within a 90-minute drive of us here at The Valley!
1. Porthtowan Beach, Porthtowan
23 minutes from The Valley
Porthtowan beach is one of Cornwall’s most popular surfing beaches, but with large expanses of soft, golden sand, it’s the perfect spot for plenty of seaside activities.
With lifeguard cover on weekends during April and daily from 29th April to 24th September, Porthtowan is a great spot for families and even has a children’s play park at the top end of the beach.
2. Gyllyngvase Beach, Falmouth
23 minutes from The Valley
Perhaps one of the most popular beaches in Cornwall, Gyllyngvase Beach is only a ten-minute walk from the centre of Falmouth.
This marvellous crescent of sand offers the perfect location for water sports, and thanks to its wide assortment of amenities, it’s also a popular spot for families. With public toilets, a car park within 100 yards of the beach as well as being buggy friendly, and daily lifeguard cover from 13th May – 24th September, it’s no wonder that this beach was awarded the Blue Flag award this year.
3. Great Western Beach, Newquay
30 minutes from The Valley
Surrounded by cliffs and rockpools, Great Western Beach is one of four beaches in Newquay that’s popular with families and surfers alike.
As well as only being a short walk from the amenities in Newquay, at low tide, you can even walk along the golden sands to either Towan or Tolcarne beach.
4. Carbis Bay, St Ives
33 Minutes From The Valley
With rarely any surf, Carbis Bay is the perfect beach for families with young children –the sea here is perfect for swimming in.
The wide sandy beach has many great facilities including a beach shop, cafe, nearby toilets and plenty of parking available, offering easy access.
From a lost child centre to a first aid post and daily lifeguard cover from 8th July – 3rd September, this beach is definitely a favourite among families.
5. Porthmeor Beach, St Ives
42 minutes from The Valley
Just a stone’s throw from all the brilliant attractions in the St Ives town centre, you’ll find Porthmeor Beach sitting in the shadow of the Tate St Ives gallery.
This lovely, sandy beach is popular with surfers and swimmers as well as offering the perfect spot for a seaside picnic. It’s worth noting that due to its easy access, this beach does get rather busy in the summer months, so make sure you get there early to nab the best spots!
6. Trevone Beach
45 minutes from The Valley
The lovely cove of Trevone Beach is incredibly popular with intermediate and experienced surfers thanks to its great waves from low to mid tide.
This beach offers beautiful golden sands as well as rocky alcoves to sit and watch the day go by. If you fancy taking in some of the stunning scenery, the cliffs to the northeast of the beach offer views of Hawkers Cove, the Camel Estuary and beyond.
7. Polzeath Beach
60 minutes from The Valley
Polzeath Beach is a haven for those who want that postcard beach day. When the tide goes out, the beach offers a huge expanse of golden sand that is perfect for building sandcastles! The water is also perfect for both surfing and bodyboarding with long, slow breaking consistent waves.
Keep your eye out though, once the tide comes in, the sand is almost entirely covered. Luckily the village is packed with cafes, pubs and little shops to browse so you won’t feel like your day has been wasted!
8. Crooklets Beach, Bude
90 minutes from The Valley
While this might seem like quite a trek for a beach, the golden sands of Crooklets Beach in Bude are well worth the trip! Surrounded by rocky outcrops that are perfect for rock pooling, this beach is very popular with families.
Only a short walk from the town centre, Crooklets Beach also offers some great amenities, including level access, a large car park, a play area, a skate park, a cafe and even beach huts for hire.
9. Widemouth Bay Beach, Bude
90 minutes from The Valley
Another Bude beach awarded the Blue Flag this year is Widemouth Bay. Only three miles south of the town of Bude, this beach is popular with newbie surfers and families.
Because of the great surfing conditions, many local surf schools are based in Widemouth Bay, making it the perfect spot to first take to the water. And if surfing is a bit too extreme for you, the waves are also great for body-boarding!
We hope this guide to some of Cornwall’s award-winning beaches helps you narrow down your choices while on your holiday this year.
If we’ve left you feeling inspired for a seaside holiday, why not get in touch with us and book your perfect family getaway today.
Image Credit: Visit Cornwall
What’s On In September
August 12th, 2019
As summer is coming to an end and its time we welcome in autumn, don’t feel disheartened, because, in September 2019, Cornwall is hosting an array of exciting events! From food festivals and summer activities to car shows and sailing festivals, there is plenty to keep you busy during your holiday!
Summer on St Michael’s Mount
2nd – 4th September 2019
Summer on St Michael’s Mount is the perfect activity to spend some quality time with your loved ones and to let the kids get creative. Once you have paid admission to St Michael’s Mount, you can enjoy some crafty family fun free of charge! All of the activities are connected to the Mount stories, and the band of storytellers perform these tales every day during the school holidays!
On Monday, the event that takes place is called “Tall Stories of the Castle” and this is where you can learn all about Cormoran the Giant. You will also get the opportunity to model your own giant’s head using clay and other natural materials. As well as clay modelling, you can also make your own mini catapult!
On Tuesday, it’s all about the “Myths and Legends of the Sea”. Here you get the chance to create your own mini reed boat and test them on the rock pools! You can also collect some seashore treasures and create your very own underwater world.
On Wednesday, it is “Garden Magic on the Mount”, and this is your opportunity to explore the glorious colours of the gardens through the kaleidoscope or create a giant mandala! Furthermore, you can make your own flag using the art of Hapa Zome; this is where you collect numerous natural prints, such as leaves, and paint them to then decorate the flag by pressing the colour down!
St Ives September Festival
14th – 28th September 2019
Back in 1977, the first-ever St Ives September Festival took place, and it has been successful for the last forty years. St Ives is a picturesque seaside town in Cornwall that is very popular with visitors, primarily due to is stunning scenery! From music and comedy to workshops and street entertainment, this is a festival worth attending. With so much to do, you can choose how you spend your time. You could decide to take the active route and join in on walks and workshops, or you might prefer to relax and unwind by watching some plays and listening to live music.
Taste of Scilly Food & Drink Festival
1st – 30th September 2019
The Isles of Scilly are just off the coast of Cornwall and can be accessed by a boat service, plane or helicopter. There are multiple islands; St Mary’s, Tresco, St Martins, Bryher, St Agnes and the uninhabited islands! The stunning Isles of Scilly hosts a food and drink festival throughout the month of September and offers a range of locally sourced produce. To start the event, on the 1st of September, there is the Low Tide Experience; at the sandbank between Tresco & Bryher, visitors roll up their trousers and visit the mini food festival. Here you can try some garlic mussels, seafood paella and much more! Along with the delicious local food, you can enjoy some live music with a gin cocktail or prosecco.
Something new for 2019 is series of Distillery Tours and Gin Schools! At the Spirit Scilly distillery on St Mary’s, you can browse a selection of botanical cabinets, and craft your own juniper creation to take home – the perfect holiday souvenir! In the evenings, you can expect family-farm tours, gin tasting, baking competitions, and so much more! With an abundance of things to see, do, and of course taste, this is an event that cannot be missed. Visit the spectacular islands, meet the local producers and try some of their exquisite food and drink!
Cornwall’s Motorsport Month
1st – 30th September 2019
Cornwall is most well-known for sailing, but many forget its passion for motors! September is the month for cars, motorbikes and everything a petrolhead could dream of. Throughout the month there are different occasions; some of the highlights are the 4 x 4 event, Greenpower and Classic Car Show, Motorfest and Motor Cycle Trial.
Showcasing some fantastic cars and bikes, the Greenpower and Classic Car Show is hosted at the Truro Girls School and is a great day out. On the 8th of September between 11 am and 3 pm, there will be over 150 classic cars, motorbikes and a selection of military vehicles from WW2! As well as all this, there will be a market full of food and drink stalls selling some delicious goodies!
If you are looking to visit Cornwall in September, we hope we have encouraged you to visit some of these fantastic events while you are here. When planning a trip with the kids it can be tough to find suitable accommodation. Here at The Valley, we offer family-friendly holidays in Cornwall with our range of self-catering cottages! Perfect for a family getaway, we are situated in a great location, so you can visit as many events as you desire!
Truro set to see the return of Gig on the Green after six years
February 03rd, 2015
Previous visitors who’ve stayed in the luxurious cottages, Cornwall may well have heard of this superbly popular event in Truro in the past, but the popular event Gig on the Green hasn’t been staged for the more than half a decade. Good news though, there will be a welcome return for the gig as it returns to Truro’s Boscawen Park once again this summer.