Coastal walks, surfing, foraging and the power of Poldark – it’s time for a Cornwall autumn getaway
Autumn may well be the best time to explore Cornwall. The summer crowds have subsided, enabling visitors to walk along deserted beaches or meander through rolling countryside. A much warmer sea and the return of the Atlantic swells create perfect conditions for learning to surf. And, of course, BBC drama Poldark is back on screen, with ten brand-new and long-awaited episodes.
Here are some of the best Autumnal breaks…
BEST FOR WILD WALKERS
Muddy boots walking break in Newquay with The Headland Hotel & Spa
Autumn is one of the most beautiful times to discover the South West Coast Path, with its beautiful coastline and sheltered coves. It’s also the perfect time to spot the famous Cribbar. Unique to Newquay, the rarely-seen reef surf break can reach heady heights of 20-25ft (over 8m). The Muddy Boots Walking Break costs from £85 pp per night (two sharing) including breakfast each morning, a picnic with a flask of coffee, a three-course dinner, access to the hotel’s walking guides and use of the spa facilities. Valid 4 September – 25 November. Minimum two-night stay applies. Bring your four-legged friend for just £20 per night including a welcome pack with a bowl, blanket, food and tasty treats. Call Pride of Britain Hotels on 0800 089 3929 (www.prideofbritainhotels.com).
BEST FOR HISTORY (AND POLDARK) BUFFS
Drama-tick Cornish stays in Poldark country with Aspects Holidays
This autumn, why not explore some of the soul-stirring settings featured in BBC drama Poldark? The scenic stretch of coastline linking Botallack and Levant continues to be a popular Poldark filming location owing to its rich mining heritage. The restored engine houses at Levant Mine, near St Just, play the role of the fictional Tressiders Rolling Mill, while Owles and Crowns near Botallack stars as Ross Poldark’s Wheal Leisure. Stay at Pleasant Cottage (sleeps five) in the heart of St Just, a traditional Cornish village with a rich history of mining, fishing and farming. A week’s stay this autumn costs from £81 pp (£403 total for five guests).
Another top Poldark spot is Church Cove, Gunwalloe, on The Lizard peninsula – the country’s most southern tip – which you’ll recognise as the setting for Aidan Turner’s dramatic late-night shipwreck scene. Neighbouring Dollar Cove has a similar past, named after the silver coins that washed ashore when ships met their fate on the rocks. Stay at Condurrow Cottage (sleeps six) a 17th century, characterful Cornish cottage close to the Helford River. A week’s stay this autumn costs from £95 pp (£472 total for six guests). Call Aspects Holidays on 01736 754 242 (aspects-holidays.co.uk).
BEST FOR FOODIES
Learn to forage with the Wild Food School
Did you know that Britain has 160 plus native and indigenous edible wild plants? Get back to nature and forage in the hedgerows of Cornwall at the Wild Food School, based in the picturesque town of Lostwithiel. Learn from Marcus Harrison, a UK authority and specialist on wild foods, how to identify and safely prepare and cook edible wild plants. Introductory and day foraging courses cost between £30 and £90 pp; weekend & two-day courses cost from £140 pp. Call the Wild Food School on 01208 873 788 (www.wildfoodschool.co.uk).
BEST FOR ADRENALIN JUNKIES
Surf’s up in St Ives with Aspects Holidays
The sea has been warming up all summer long and the best swells are found from late Autumn, so what are you waiting for? Learn to surf with trained instructors on Porthmeor Beach (a blue-flag beach) with St Ives Surf School or take a boat to Seal Island and visit a rocky outcrop near Zennor, home to a colony of Grey Atlantic Seals, which often swim up to the boat inquisitively. Make the most of these activities and stay at Beach Break House (sleeps six), just five minutes’ walk to Porthmeor Beach, famed for its surf. The vibrant harbour, shops, cafés and restaurants are also close by. Beach Break House is a light, spacious and comfortable property with far-reaching views of the harbour, an enclosed south-facing garden and three bedrooms. A week’s stay during October costs from £110 pp (£658 total for six guests). Call Aspects Holiday on 01736 754 242 (aspects-holidays.co.uk).
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