Autumn in Cornwall
Autumn in Cornwall can be wonderful, much less crowded than the summer months but the weather can still be lovely. We were so lucky for our half term break at Seashells last week - this is the view from the sofa when we arrived last Sunday, and the sun carried on shining on us for most of the week.
We couldn't help but go straight out for a walk on the beach...the tide was out and we got almost all the way to neighbouring Chapel Porth, although we had to scramble over the rocks in places, which the children really enjoyed. Then it was back to Porthtowan for an ice-cream at the wonderful Moomaid of Zennor ice-cream parlour - strawberry sorbet went down a treat.
On Monday the children were keen to go and see the new Maleficent film, so we headed to Truro for a bit of shopping, lunch and then to the cinema. It's so convenient to use the Langarth park and ride, just a 10 min drive from Seashells - parking was easy and the bus ride into the city centre was cheap and convenient. Much more relaxing than braving the traffic in the city centre. Truro is a lovely city, with the cathedral towering over the characterful lanes and streets, and lots of good shops to explore. It was handy to catch up on some shopping in such a relaxing and convenient way, and the film was a great way to finish the day.
Our son had insisted on bringing his bike to Seashells, so on Tuesday he headed to The Track - the Portreath bike park for mountain bikers, bmx-ers, scooters and anything else visitors might like to ride on the tracks! He had a fab time, while the rest of the family walked the coastpath from Porthtowan to Portreath to meet him there. It's a lovely walk with spectacular views westwards towards Godrevy lighthouse and St Ives bay beyond, mostly flat but with a couple of steep up and downs along the way. We felt like we had earned our ice-creams at the Atlantic in Portreath when we got there!
On Wednesday we had a lazy day - the surf was great and the village was busy so we stayed at Seashells to just listen to the sea and watch the world go by from the sofa. We had a quick walk on the beach in the afternoon - and another ice-cream of course! The sunset was beautiful on Wednesday evening and caught the sea spray perfectly, although it was hard to capture in a photo.
On Thursday we headed a bit further afield to Levant Mine, on the north coast west of St Ives. The terrain out there has an untouched wildness about it which we love, and the mine is spectacularly sited right on the coast, with fabulous views up towards Pendeen lighthouse (you can just about make this out in the picture). The tunnels stretch out for over a mile under the sea, which was amazing to imagine. We took a very interesting tour which explained the history of the mine and culminated in a trip down the tunnel to the head of the grated mineshaft, which you could stand on and look down into the depths. Strange to imagine the mineworkers going down there day after day - it's so deep it took them almost half an hour to reach the bottom apparently.
From Levant it is only a 20 minute walk apparently, over the cliffs to Botallack and the engine house where Poldark was filmed. We were a bit disappointed that we ran out of time to do that but I'm sure we'll be back another time.
On Friday our luck ran out and the rain came in - but it was still lovely to sit on the sofa and listen to the waves and the rain against the window. We are thinking of having a new bathroom installed this winter so took the opportunity to visit B&Q and Wickes for inspiration, and got ourselves all excited about our plans. In the afternoon we took advantage of a dry couple of hours to try a new circular walk - over the coastpath to Chapel Porth, then up the lovely wooded Chapel Coombe valley to Towan, then back across the cliffs to Porthtowan via Wheal Charlotte. It was really lovely and I can see it becoming a new favourite walk.
Friday was our last evening at Seashells so we finished the week as we ususally do, with a meal at Porthtowan beach cafe's friday burger night - it's always a treat, there are a range of burgers and everyone really enjoyed their meal. The children tucked into cheeseburgers while hubby went for jerk chicken and I went for a change with a haloumi burger with a roasted cauliflower steak and sweet chilli sauce - delicious.
We were sad to leave as always but reluctantly packed up on Saturday morning and headed home after making our holiday home lovely for our next guests - we really hope they enjoy their week as much as we have and I'm sure we'll be back soon.