People come for Cornwall for many different reasons. Some people come for the fabulous beaches; other comes to walk the coast path along the spectacular coastline. Some people come to surf; other come to explore the superb art on offer from Cornwall’s home grown artists. Some people come to sale; while other simply come to soak up the atmosphere and eat find food in the many great restaurants the county has to offer.
Whatever people to visit for they are in for a great treat as Cornwall is a truly fantastic place for a holiday or well-earned break.
The Telegraph newspaper put together a fantastic guide to Cornwall, which is available online at: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/destination/uk/60431/Cornwall-travel-guide.html
Here’s an excerpt detailing the why, when and how to visit Cornwall.
Cornwall is defined by its magnificent coastline with 300 miles of dunes and cliffs, medieval harbours and oak-forested creeks – and every mile accessible on foot.
The coast – and coastal communities – took a battering last winter but nearly all the storm damage has been repaired and it is business as usual beside the peninsula’s Grecian blue sea.
Surfing is big draw, for all ages – bodyboarding too.
Many coastal estates have been in the same ownership for generations, their owners refusing to sell out to developers or cash in on tourism. Such an unspoilt coastline inspires Enid Blyton-style adventures: take a picnic and the dog through fields fringed in wildflowers to a remote beach; clamber down stepping-stone cliffs to rockpools that are works of marine art; swim with seals and harmless basking sharks.
Surfing is big draw, for all ages – bodyboarding too – and lessons are available on most north-coast beaches. The cold sea is no deterrent as the new generation of super-stretchy wetsuits fit like second skins.
Cornwall is also known for its artistic heritage. Painters, sculptors and potters of international renown come for the big skies, the rugged beauty of the boulder-strewn moorland, and the intense light that turns the sea cerulean blue even in mid-winter.
Ignore that black cloud that the BBC weather people slap so readily on the county. According to the locals, the sun always shines in Cornwall – at least once a day, anyway.
When to go
Spring comes early here. Daffodils bloom in January and camellias and magnolias in mid-February, when many gardens open to the public. Himalayan azaleas, rhododendrons and daphnes are at their best in April and May is the peak month for hedgerow flowers and edible plants.
Such an unspoilt coastline inspires Enid Blyton-style adventures.
June and July are usually dry and warm, never hot. August can be wet and the roads clogged with traffic. September and October are usually glorious. The water is at its warmest and the surf’s up. Winters are mild and damp, perfect for exploring the sheltered valleys with their own micro-climate on the Land’s End and Lizard peninsulas.
Newquay Airport is a five-minute drive down a country lane from Watergate Bay (and Jamie Oliver’s restaurant, Fifteen). It is served by Flybe (0845 675 0681; flybe.com), which operates year-round services from London Gatwick, London Southend and Manchester, and summer services from Belfast, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Newcastle, Birmingham and Cardiff. EasyJet (easyjet.com) is flying from Liverpool over the summer.
East Cornwall is only an hour from Flybe’s base at Exeter Airport, which offers a bigger choice of regional and European flights.
If you are driving, stay on the A30 to get anywhere fast. The alternative A38 via Plymouth and Liskeard is a much slower route into the county. Don’t use the “shortest route” option on your sat-nav. It will take you off faster A roads and down lanes no wider than a car.
Trains take more than three hours to chug from Exeter around the coast of Devon and Cornwall to Penzance, the end of the line. That said, it’s a very scenic ride, in places just feet from the sea. Fares reflect the slow service, with London-Penzance returns from £48 through First Great Western (firstgreatwestern.co.uk).
Reached on foot at low tide across a causeway, St Michael’s Mount, now home to the St Aubyn family, has been sensitively restored and de-cluttered to show life on the Mount in the 17th century.
For the cheapest advance fares, keep an eye the booking calendar at firstgreatwestern.co.uk. Booking usually opens about 10 weeks ahead of travel when first-class London-Penzance fares can be found for under £100 return.
There is a reasonably good bus service county-wide, with extra summer services in tourist areas. Routes and timetables are easy to find on cornwallpublictransport.info or phone the Traveline on 0871 200 2233.
The 300 bus runs a summer open-top hop-on-hop-off service from St Ives to Land’s End perfect for getting back to the car after a coast path walk.
Fal River Links, a network of ferries, boats, buses and trains, is a great way to explore the River Fal between Falmouth, St Mawes and Truro. See: kingharryscornwall.co.uk.
To reach the Isles of Scilly, which lie 30 miles offshore, take the daily ferry from Penzance or light aircraft from Newquay or Land’s End. The helicopter service from Penzance has closed. For online booking for the Scillonian ferry and Skybus flights see islesofscilly-travel.co.uk or call 01736334220.
Most towns and larger villages have a metered taxi service. Ask in the pub or village shop for a taxi number.
In high summer, taking the park-and-ride option saves a lot of frustration. It’s a must for St Ives; park at Lelant Station and take the train.
Know before you go
Don’t talk about Cornwall being part of England – even though Land’s End is littered with signs saying: “Last house/pub/farm… in England”. The locals regard the Tamar as the border between Celtic Cornwall and Anglo-Saxon England – an idea reinforced by the government’s recent decision to grant the Cornish ethnic minority status.
Avoid driving down from Bristol, London and points north on Bank Holiday Weekends (down Friday, up Monday). The traffic is always dreadful – often compounded by accidents on the M5 and A303.
There are dangerous rip currents on many beaches, especially around low tide. Swim and surf on guarded beaches or take local advice. If you get caught in a rip, don’t fight it. Instead try to swim across it to a place where you can swim to shore again.
To read the full article with plenty of other hand-picked tips on where to go and what to do in Cornwall follow this link: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/destination/uk/60431/Cornwall-travel-guide.html
That’s what the professional journalists suggest for a visit to Cornwall. They’ve done a fine job. But on this website we aim to bring you some real insider tips on great places to see and things to do on a holiday in Cornwall.