Another great place to go if you like surfing and watersports, is Lusty Glaze, also in Newquay. They have a good surf school there and you can try out the coastering, or zip wire, which believe me, is quite an experience! However, if you just want to enjoy the surf and have a relaxing day on the beach, head towards Padstow and try out Polzeath, Harlyn Bay or Booby’s Bay. Situated at the north of Constantine Bay and separated from it by a small headland point. This beautiful beach boasts fantastic scenery with Trevose Head to the north. With fine golden sand and many small rock pools, it is a beach worth stopping to explore. The coastal path winds its way up to Trevose lighthouse and beyond provide fantastic views of coast to the north and the south. All these popular beaches have an almost guaranteed surf. You can rent boards and wet suits at all these beaches. The journey by car is about an hour.
- Riverside gardens with great seasonal variety
- Ghostly goings on: hazy figures, music and a strange herbal smell
- Full events programme
- Take a boat trip on the River Tamar from Cotehele Quay
Lanhydrock House is near Bodmin. It is a magnificent late Victorian country house with extensive servants’ quarters, gardens and wooded estate
- Stunning 17th-century gatehouse and long gallery
- The ultimate 19th-century ‘Upstairs/Downstairs’ experience
- Fabulous collection of spring-flowering magnolias and bluebell woods
- Adventure playground, with wobbly bridge, scramble nets and animal sculptures
- Successful dormouse monitoring programme
- Film location for “The Three Musketeers” (1993) and “Twelfth Night” (1996)
The lost Gardens of Helegan
These gardens, near Mevagissy in Cornwall, have been restored and well marketed by Tim Smit. They have had a four part TV series on channel 4 in 1997, there is a best selling book on the “Heligan story”, and there have been countless newspaper articles. They comprise eighty acres of pleasure grounds plus a complex of walled gardens and a huge vegetable garden. The house, built by William Tremayne in 1603, was the seat of the Tremayne family who controlled over 1000 acres in the area from Pentewan to Gorran. This Estate was totally self sufficient, having a number of quarries, woods, farms, a brickworks (the earliest in Cornwall in 1681), a flour mill, a sawmill, a brewery, and productive orchards and gardens. It is the gardens that are now claimed to be the site of the largest garden restoration in Europe. Heligan House (meaning “the willows” in Cornish ), was the Tremayne’s seat, but is not part of the gardens project.
The Eden Project
The ultimate Garden of all time. You cannot leave Cornwall without visiting this inspirational place, transformed by the genius of Tim Smit. Ten years ago it was a barren, exhausted china clay pit. Now its massive Biomes (one of which is the biggest greenhouse in the world) and millions of plants bear witness to what can be achieved by a can-do attitude and the tenacity of the human spirit. Eden is as potent a symbol of hope for the future as you could find anywhere on earth. There are lots of other Gardens worth visiting in Cornwall – see ‘Guide to Cornwall’.
Golitha Falls refers to an area of ancient woodlands that sit alongside the river Fowey as it cascades its way through a steep valley gorge. The scenery here is beautiful at any time of the year, but the falls are best appreciated after a bout of rain.
From the car park, the first half-a-mile of walks are on fairly level ground and are suitable for all. If you wish to explore further down the valley, then good boots and nimble limbs are recommended.
The Falls are now managed by English Nature and although they have a ’hands-off’ approach, there is evidence of coppicing which reflect previous uses of the wood. There is also evidence of a more industrial past as there are several large stonework structures down-stream.
Explore the nooks and crannies of Cardinham Woods. Great Cycling trails.
- Walking, cycling and horse riding trails
- Wildlife includes deer, buzzards, otters and kingfisher
- Woodland Cafe and static BBQ areas-take your own
Cardinham contains over 250 hectares of mixed woodland set within a complex series of impressive steep valleys and narrow ravines. Ideal area for walking, cycling and horse-riding.
At Cardinham Woods there is a car park and an all ability trail together with a woodland cafe that provides excellent refreshments. A new woodland play area has just opened too, offering a great day out for all the family.
Activities include walking, cycling and horse riding trails. Cardinham is also a wildlife refuge for deer, buzzard, otter and even kingfisher.
Cawsand and Kingsand
On the Rame Peninsula – 30 mins by car
Kingsand and Cawsand are 17th Century Cornish fishing villages. They comprise of coloured sandstone cottages, a maze of small lanes, a few small shops and some excellent pubs, restaurants and bistros. Fortifications from Tudor to Napoleonic times guard the sea approaches. There are also the remains of 97 other fortifications around Plymouth Sound. It is safe to swim off the village beaches – Sailing; windsurfing, water-skiing and fishing are also available. Just in case you need to venture back into the 21st century during the summer a passenger ferry operates between the village and the historic Mayflower Steps at the Barbican in Plymouth.
Mount Edgcumbe House and Country Park
5 mins by car from Cawsand and Kingsand
Mount Edgcumbe House is the former home of the Earls of Mount Edgcumbe. Set in Grade I Cornish Gardens within 865 acres Country Park on the Rame Peninsula, South East Cornwall.
There are magnificent Grade I Cornish gardens and the famous historic house. You can combining your visit with a cruise of the River Tamar or view the national collection of camellias. Mount Edgcumbe House was first built in the 1500s and was restored after World War Two. It is jointly owned by Cornwall Council and Plymouth City Council and is one of the regions most popular historic tourist destinations. The House and Earl’s Garden (admission charged) is open Sunday to Thursday and Bank Holiday Monday between 11am and 4.30pm, 1 April to 30 September 2009. Group bookings can also be arranged in March and October. The country park is free and there are lots of walking trails and tracks to explore.
Fowey has a population of over 2,000 and lies in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Rows of pastel-coloured terraced houses sit on the west bank of the River Fowey and cling to the steep hillside that looks out over the bay. These buildings are divided by a warren of narrow streets which are home to a number of antique shops, bistros and restaurants. Most of these can be found in the flatter areas of the town, away from the slopes. Visitors will also find a collection of historical buildings around the town including Noah’s Ark, which is a timbered Elizabethan merchant’s house that dates back to the 15th century.
10 mins by Car
Aimed at older children or teenagers seeking a thrill. This extreme zip wire is every adrenalin junkies dream. Also at the same location there is a quad centre with a track
If you are looking for fun activities or family days out, here are a few ideas that you might like to try out.
The Monkey Sanctuary
The Monkey Sanctuary has been home to a colony of Amazonian woolly monkeys since 1964. It was established to provide a stable setting for woolly monkeys rescued from lives of isolation as pets. Today the monkeys live in a beautiful setting on the Cornish coast, in an extensive territory formed of several grassed enclosures linked together with heated indoor rooms.
Visitors can watch the monkeys forage and play in the trees and listen to their keepers describing the monkeys lives and explaining their behaviour. This allows visitors to gain a true insight into the personality and social life of these amazing creatures
There are plenty of things to see and do in the immediate area.
Horse riding at Lower Tokenbury Equestrian Centre [01579 362747] based in the village of Caradon Town only 10 mins up the road. They will take you out on the moors and through wooded areas.
Canoeing on the Tamar River early on a summer morning or even in the cool of the evening with Canoe Tamar – Enjoy the river’s bird life, heron, water fowl and kingfisher, see a salmon leaping, perhaps a seal or an otter. For more information call them on 01822 833409 about trips currently available and for details of how to book. Or email them on firstname.lastname@example.org
Siblyback Lake, just 10 mins by car from LCY [Outdoor + Active Centre: 01579 346522] is surrounded by the striking Bodmin Moor and offers a wide range of activities beside or on the water, rowing boat hire is a popular family activity. The Outdoor Activity Centre offers sailing, windsurfing and canoeing and provides top quality rainbow trout fishing. Courses for beginners and improvers are readily available, as is self-launch for the more experienced. There is also a very nice cycle track round the reservoir which is about three and a half miles long. A recent new addition to the Siblyback facilities is a ‘Hire Wire Course’ due to open in the Summer 2011.
Morwelham Quay – An award-winning, evocative museum and visitor centre in the heart of the newly inscribed World Heritage Site and Tamar Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Just four miles west of Tavistock the historic port, mine workings and Estate, border the beautiful River Tamar. Amidst towering cliffs and gently rolling farmland, a lost world lives again.
Purely Cornish, 18 Fore Street,
They cater for families, singles, couples & groups and have found the very best Cornish holiday adventure activities that are fully approved with qualified instructors, insurance cover and risk assessments. Rugged coastline, stunning beaches, wild moors, Cornwall is the place to come and re-charge your batteries whatever the time of year.
Coasteering- Wet & Wild or Multi Activities
Squeeze into a wetsuit then scramble, climb, swim and cliff jump your way around Cornwall’s spectacular rocky coastline. There are lots of other activities offered by Adventure 8….check out their web-site. http://www.activecornwall.co.uk/activities-in-cornwall/family.php
Tree Surfers Gulworthy near Tavistock about 20 mins by car from Little Fursdon
For Woodland and Water Adventure Days please ring to book on 01822 833409 Adventure for all the Family, a fun day out with the kids High ropes course, zip wires, archery, mountain biking and the Tree Jump!
High-Octane Adrenaline fuelled Tree Surfing
Tree surfing is an adrenaline-pumping, heart-thumping bird’s eye experience. With treetop eco-trail that transports you to the truly awesome canopy of one of Britain’s prized woodlands. Test your limits, and get a natural high. A complex of ladders, rope bridges, zip wires and walkways gives you the freedom to explore our astounding native broadleaf trees from the top down… and all in a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Don’t just get close to nature. Be part of it.
The Barbara Hepworth Museum and Sculpture Garden is a unique experience, offering a remarkable insight into the work and outlook of one of Britain’s most important twentieth century artists. Sculptures in bronze, stone and wood are on display in the Museum and Garden, along with paintings, drawings and archive material.