Cornwall 2020 - Trip Itinerary

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The following proposed itinerary may be subject to change due to weather or local conditions beyond the control of the trip leader. Included meals shown by B - breakfast, L - lunch, D - dinner.

Day 1 May 9 Arrive Penzance

We meet late afternoon at our 4-star boutique hotel located in the historic old town Penzance for our trip orientation and to answer last minute questions before dinner, our first meal on the trip. D

Day 2 May 10 The Loe 4½ miles

The Loe is the largest freshwater lake in Cornwall separated from the sea, Mount Bay, by a bank of shingle known as Loe Bar. The area is a site of Special Scientific Interest and an important overwintering site for migrating birds. A mix of undulating paths and country lanes takes us through wooded areas, past fields and farms to Loe Bar where we join the coastal path at Porthleven Sands. Dinner tonight is at harbor-side restaurant developed by acclaimed British Chef, Rick Stein, and with a special feature on locally caught fish and local produce. B/L/D

Day 3 May 11 Echos from the Past 5 miles 500 feet elevation gain

One hundred fifty years ago this sleepy village had a very different feel. It was the British hub of undersea cable communications until 1970. A high speed undersea connection was established when a telegraph cable connecting Cornwall and Bombay was laid in 1870. During our visit at the original site, now a museum, we will learn of the history and epic endeavours to bring such a feat into reality. Afterwards, our circular walk takes us past St Levan church onto Porthgwarra where we join the coastal path leading to The Minack Theater, acclaimed open-air amphitheater perched on the cliffs high above the Atlantic Ocean. We’ll tour the theater grounds before returning to our hotel to freshen up before dinner at a small pub owned and operated by celebrated Michelin Star, multi award winning Cornish Chef, Ben Tunnicliffe. B/L/D

Day 4 May 12 St Michael’s Mount 6 miles

In 1066, St Michael’s Mount was owned by the monks of its sister isle, Mont St Michel in Normandy. In the 12th century these same monks built the church and priory at the heart of the castle today. Since the 1650s, the castle has been home to the St Aubyn family and remained their sole home until 1954 when it was gifted to the National Trust. After our morning tour of the castle and gardens, the rest of the day is yours to explore freely. With your supplied Cornwall Art Pass in hand, consider a visit to Penlee House - Gallery & Museum and a tour of the Newlyn Art Gallery and The Exchange, both located in Penzance. Evening free. B

Day 5 May 13 The Tin Coast 6 miles 300 feet elevation gain

Today we take a deep dive into the tin mining history of Cornwall. We start at Geevor Tin Mine, 1780-1991, with an underground tunnel walk (optional), then we walk onto Levant Mine established in 1840 with its unique example of a beam engine used to pump sea water out of the submarine mine tunnels. Records of mining at Botallack date from the 1500’s with some archaeological evidence suggesting earlier workings in the mid-Roman era, about 200 AD. Here we will see the teetering cliff-side Crowns Mine engine houses featured in the film series, Poldark. Passing the ruins of Iron Age promontory fort, Kenidjack Cliff Castle, we continue onto Cape Cornwall, oftentimes referenced as the Connoisseur’s Land’s End. At the end of the day we head back to our hotel to change before dinner at a 2019 Michelin Guide, 2017 Gold Award - Taste of the West, inn renowned for fresh ingredients and tasty puddings. B/L/D

Day 6 May 14 Daffodils and Granite 5 miles 400 feet elevation gain

We are in for a treat today! In the morning, we have a lesson, including tasters, on wild food foraging with Rachel, a forager and award winning author and guide. Rachel has a background in education and health and has been teaching foraging since 2007. One of her foraging and cooking books won a National Gourmand Cookbook Award. In the afternoon, our private minibus takes us to Lamorna Cove where we start our walk to Mousehole. A wealth of history abounds in this area. Tin-streaming was happening in the Lamorna valley in 1380. Starting in 1849 through to 1911, granite was quarried on the eastern slopes of the cove and used to build the Thames Embankment in central London. The valley, now wooded, was grazed by livestock until the 1950s and the slopes used for growing daffodils and early potatoes with the flowers shipped to market at Covent Garden, London. The first mention of the village of Mousehole is in 1283. Records show that pilchards were exported to France as early as 1302. It remains a fishing village but its glory-days as a principle port for Mounts Bay, ended in the 16th century. We will enjoy dinner in Mousehole before returning to our hotel. B/L/D

Day 7 May 15 Exploring Ancient Villages and St Ives

This morning we start with a coach tour of two ancient villages. The first dates back to the Iron Age and features a stone-walled underground passage known as a fogou - a type of Iron Age monument found only in the far west of Cornwall. Our second stop is at a Romano-British settlement occupied over 2000 years ago. Our minibus then transports us to the Tate, in St Ives. Touring galleries and museums is best done at one’s own speed so clutching your Cornwall Art Pass, you are free to wander and explore; we have access to the Tate Museum, the Barbara Hepworth Museum and Garden and The Leach Pottery. For those who prefer hiking there will be an optional hike along the coast. We meet up again as a group for dinner at another fine restaurant with views across Porthminster Beach. B/L/D

Day 8 May 16 The Lizard 4 miles 700 feet elevation gain

Lizard Point is geographically the furthest southern point in Britain - somehow it missed out on securing the world famous epithet. Much of this coastal area is managed by the National Trust meaning it remains unspoilt and retains a feeling and look of being wild and untamed. After a visit to the Lizard Heritage Center & Lighthouse and admiring the views from Lizard Point and the disused lifeboat station, our destination is a cliff top view of acclaimed Kynance Cove. Our return inland route includes passage atop a Cornish hedge. Boarding our minibus we return to Penzance for our farewell dinner. B/L/D

Day 9 May 17 Departure

Our Cornish adventure ends after breakfast at our hotel when you are free to make your onward travel arrangements perhaps to further explore Cornwall? B

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