Places of interest near Porthleven
Published: Thursday 14th Aug 2014
Written by: The Niche Retreats Team
One of the most breathtaking elements of Cornwall’s natural beauty is its immense coastline. The Cornish coast stretches around the county for about 422 miles, and features a huge array of rugged, windswept and daunting cliffs, as well as stacks, coves and bays. There are also many beautiful and historic towns along the coast of Cornwall, including our very own Porthleven.
If you’re holidaying at a Niche Retreat self catering cottage in Porthleven, then you’re in the perfect position to get out there and enjoy Cornwall’s fantastic coastal areas. If you’ve brought the car with you, or have hired one, then a Cornwall road trip has to be in order! A great place to start is the nearby town of Helston, home of the Flambards Experience, which is a fun day out for the family with exciting rides and equally interesting aeronautical exhibits. Helston is also a great place to sample wonderful Cornish delicacies like the famous pasties, as well as get a taste of all things Cornish, including locally made arts and handicrafts.
Travel a little further to the west, and you’ll find Penzance, setting for the famous Gilbert & Sullivan musical “The Pirates of Penzance.” Life in Penzance may not be as fast paced as the lyrics in the famous “Major-General’s Song” but it is absolutely as fun-filled and exciting. It is the most westerly town in Cornwall, and the birthplace of renowned chemist Sir Humphrey Davy. The town boasts a historic market house, a beautiful harbour and an array of modern and traditional art galleries. What’s more, Penzance is but a stone’s throw from Land’s end, where one is left awe-struck by the windswept cliffs, the Longships Lighthouse, and as far as the eye can see lies the vast, daunting Atlantic ocean with her waves crashing onto the stony shore. It’s the perfect setting to enjoy a relaxing break far from the hustle, bustle and stress of modern Britain.
Porthleven is a beautiful seaside spot, but heading a short while north to the town of St. Ives, which was voted “Best Seaside Town” in both 2010 and 2011 by the British Travel Awards, is also well worth it. St. Ives has often been described as an artists’ haven, having attracted many big names in the art world over the years, who were often seduced by its stunning natural beauty. Renowned potter, Bernard Leach, opened his famous pottery there in the 1920s, and it is now open to the public. The town is also home to the St. Ives September Festival, which has been running for more than 35 years. The festival is a grand celebration of fine art, film, poetry, books and much more.
You’ll see differences in Cornwall’s coast as you travel around it. The north coast is fully exposed to the prevailing Atlantic winds, making it rougher, more jagged and much more sheer and unforgiving than the south coast. But what all parts of it have in common is that the coastline is not a barrier to keep us in, but rather a doorway to some of the most incredible offshore locations, which are reachable by boat, or even by car! The most famous example is St. Michael’s Mount in Marazion, reachable by car or on foot. It is one of the most recognizable landmarks in the region, and well worth a visit. If you’ve got more time, and are willing to depart the coast a little further, then how about the Isles of Scilly? This English archipelago is truly a jewel in the crown of English tourism, and is one of Cornwall’s many National Character Areas. The Isles of Scilly Steamship Company operates regular services from Penzance to St. Mary’s Port on St. Mary’s (the largest of the Isles of Scilly), so accessing the islands isn’t especially difficult. Summer is the main tourist season, when the area experiences beautiful warm weather, amazing amounts of sunshine and bedazzling blue water; an excellent way to explore a “path less travelled” in UK travel.
Cornwall — county of coastline. Any holiday goer will be impressed and left in awe of the stunning beauty of this unbelievable stretch of scenic splendor. Soak up some sun on the Isles of Scilly; explore the “Graveyard of Ships” near the Lizard Lighthouse; visit the southern most point of the British mainland at Lizard Point, and the western most point at Land’s End.