Wow what a week! A holiday by the beach (well almost) near Perranporth in Northwest Cornwall. We stayed in a farmhouse nestled in a hollow surrounded by beautiful gardens and a patchwork of fields crammed with wild flowers and dense, leafy woodland. The location was also the intersection of lots of PRoWs which allowed us to set off on foot for most of our adventures. Perranporth is an easy 3 kilometre trek from the house… straight onto Perran Beach (which is coincidentally 3 kilometres long!).

During our amazing stay in Cornwall we also ventured out into the narrow lanes nearby in cars! This presented it’s own challenges as being able to reverse for long distances is a pre-requisite! The furthest we drove was to visit the Eden Project. Situated North East of St Austell the Eden Project is a fascinating tourist attraction and an educational charity. Yet another amazing sunny day provided the perfect backdrop to a surreal experience in and around the massive Biomes at Bodelva.

One evening, most of the group enjoyed a special meal at Rick Steins restaurant in Padstow Rick Stein’s Café. I’m reliably informed the food and the refreshments were amazing!

Walking routes for the week included a section of coastal path around St Agnes Head which also followed a route through ‘Poldark Country’ amongst the iconic engine houses – a silent reminder of Cornwall’s mining heyday. The starting point was St Agnes, a beautiful village sporting its own brewery/pub called the Driftwood Spars Brewery. This was, of course, a brilliant location to start and end a country walk!

Another route was straight out the front door of Hendra Farm House and onto winding country paths, through pastures,  meadows and woodlands to an amazing beach at Holywell. The first visit allowed no time to do anything other than to stop and stare at its stunning sands and turquoise seas. From here we traversed another length of coastal path via the Cliff Castle at Penhale Point and Ligger Point then back down to beach level at the northern end of Ligger or Perran Bay where lies Perran Beach then on… and on and on, over 3 kilometres of golden sands with the backdrop of the Atlantic Ocean roaring in our ears and scorching sunshine out of a clear blue sky overhead (who needs to travel abroad?).

On the last day of our stay Catherine and I walked once more to Holywell beach, There were many sandy  shelters in the mighty dunes to hide from the chilly north wind so we stayed for an hour or so and soaked our skin with sunshine – then into the Gullrocks Bar at St Pirans Inn for a very well deserved cold beer before our 4 mile trek back to the farm. In the evening we walked once more from our base down to the Smugglers Den Inn, a short 1.5 miles wander through cow herds and the narrowest country lanes strewn with lush vegetation reminiscent of the Eden Project biospheres! The return journey was a true adventure! It was dusk as we crossed one of the pastures and every cow in the field began to move up towards the narrow opening into the next pasture. As the cows, accompanied by calves, arrived at the top of the field they were joined by a big bull! Both our nerves and the bull became a bit ‘frisky’! So, we diverted in the dying light of day, to cross several barbed wire fences and navigate a safer way home!

All in all a magnificent vacation spent with good friends and family at an astounding venue with truly spectacular weather 🙂

Some of the photos below were provided by Betty Corbett and Danny Corbs.

The walks…

St Agnes and Poldark Country

Hendra Farm, Holywell beach and Perrantporth 11 miles

To the pub (The Smugglers Den Inn)