Discover challenging and dramatic walking trails shaped by the footsteps of traders, smugglers, saints and pirates. Cornish walking trails will reveal ancient tin mines, clifftop castles, timeless fishing villages and wild moors as you travel through a landscape of huge cliffs and hidden coves that goes back to the depths of time itself. In between the coastal drama, iconic harbours such as St Ives and Padstow give walkers access to some of the UK‘s best restaurants and coastal hotels. A county encircled by the wild Atlantic ocean, there is over 330 miles of spectacular world class coast path here taking you around the farthest corners of England - put simply it feels like walking on the edge of the world.
Stretching from coast to coast across the southwest of England, Devon is a richly diverse county with rugged shores and cliffs in the north, and classic Victorian seaside resorts in the south. In between you'll find tranquil green pastures, wooded gorges and the two dramatic wild moors in the National Parks of Dartmoor and Exmoor. Choose Devon for its walking variety, and you'll find that the popular image of cream teas and thatched cottages is true - but that Devon is so much more once you explore it on two feet. Coast to coast routes like the Two Moors Way will offer a journey through it all from the wild northern shores that inspired the Romantic poets to the maritime ports of the south coast.
Free your soul and clear your mind! Walking on the wild moors of these National Parks is a wonderful antidote to modern living. England's last true wilderness, Dartmoor offers 365 square miles of virtually uninhabited freedom with high moors and twisted dramatic granite tors a land of myths, ghosts and legends. Exmoor, its smaller and more gentle neighour, is 250 Square miles of near perfect and unique beauty, with high uplands swathed in heather and steep, wooded gorges and rushing streams. See Dartmoor ponies and Exmoor stags in these wildlife rich areas, home to 30 species of mammals and over 240 types of bird. The moors offer a unique opportunity for more challenging walking where the only human sound you will hear is the rhythm of your own breath.
Avoid the crowds and discover “Secret Somerset” missed by so many rushing headlong for the far South West. The 'land of the summer people' was named in a time when this area could only be visited in the summer months as the sea receded. Today its a rich, fertile and 'for real' landscape crowned by the fine walking ridges of the Mendip and Quantock Hills both protected areas of outstanding natural beauty. Rising up over King Arthur‘s Vale of Avalon along with the magical Tor at Glastonbury, walkers will find hidden gorges, wooded combes and the best inland panoramas of the South West. Also boasting its own Jurassic Coast Path, providing a gateway into the wilds of Exmoor National Park, Somerset offers walking routes without the crowds for those who want to find..... what the rest miss.
Dorset has a comfortable old world “English” feel to it and its walking routes traverse a rather more green and agricultural land of thatched cottages, cream teas.... and fossils ! Walkers here will find the more gentle rolling farmland, pretty villages and chalk ridges beloved by Thomas Hardy that sweep down to end abruptly at the World Heritage Jurassic Coast. Here, alongside the sea, those after more challenging routes can take a walking holiday through time itself amongst the dramatic chalk stacks, cliffs and arches of the Dorsetshire fossil coast. An area that can be very busy in high season but often suits walkers looking for more gentle and less exposed walking than the far west of the region.
Wales offers some of the best walking and outdoor activities to be had anywhere in the world. The 870-mile Welsh Coast Path was only fully opened in 2012 and is the world's first walk along the entire coast of a nation. The terrain is on an equally grand scale with towering cliffs, vast stretches of unspoilt golden sands, imposing castles, offshore islands and to the north there is the backdrop of Snowdonia National Park with its stunning mountains. Wales in general offers walkers great value for money compared to more popular areas like Cornwall with walking options to suit everyone, from those who want the cosmopolitan restaurants and facilities of towns like Tenby and St Davids, through to isolated and remote forests and coastal hills that sit on the very cusp of the Snowdonian Peaks. Bursting with confidence and pride in its “Welshness”, its Celtic history, language and culture there has never been a better time for walkers to enter Wales.
The South West Coast Path is the UK's longest National Trail and one of the top ten walking routes in the world. It snakes, dips and rises continuously on its way through a staggering 1014km (630 miles) of pristine coastline, 450 miles of which is through nationally protected areas. It's a challenge too; walking the entire South West Coast Path is the equivalent to scaling Mount Everest four times! From towering cliffs to hidden coves, ghostly tin mines to lush subtropical wooded creeks. One minute a dramatic rock theatre hewn out of the cliffs, the next a prehistoric fossilized forest or a 20thC Art Deco Island Hotel. What sets The South West Coast Path apart from other trails is that around almost every corner is yet another surprise as you retrace the footsteps and histories of the tin miners, fisherman, smugglers, wreckers and the customs men who chased them.
Distance 14 miles - Grade Moderate - what these grades mean
Leaving Porthleven trek across the impressive 2.5 miles of Porthleven Sands to reach the unique Loe Bar where Cornwall’s largest natural lake (Loe Pool) sits separated from the ocean by only a narrow shingle bar. With water on both sides a bizarre sight said to have been formed when the giant Tregeagle dropped some sand from a sack he was carrying along the shore, damming the steam to form the lake.
Loe Pool makes an outstanding inland diversion in great contrast to the scenery on the Cornwall Coast Path. Protected as a Site of Special Scientific Interest, the National trust maintain an fascinating 5 mile inland trail circling the lake taking in viewing hides over marshland which holds a notable array of birdlife amid patches of tropical looking willow and alder swamp.
On route pass through the impressive estate, grounds and woodland drives of Penrose House along with the stunning remote and idyllic Carminowe Creek. A place of legend its claimed that this is the spot where King Arthurs Excalibur was returned to its watery home in a lake that takes a victim every seven years…. maybe....but we thinks it’s worth the risk!.
It’s easy to build in a circuit of this impressive water to your days walk finishing in Mullion rather than Lizard Town - just let us know !
After tacking Halzephron (or Hells) Cliffs pass through a succession of striking coves to reach the 15th C Gunwalloe Church virtually on the beach with its odd detached bell tower cut into the cliffs and usually half-buried in the very fine blown sand. A Spanish boat laden with silver dollars was wrecked here and has so far resisted various attempts to bring up the treasure to what is now known as Dollar Cove.
At Poldhu Cove “black pool” the route passes the Marconi Monument a lonely obelisk celebrating the first transatlantic telegraph signals made from this spot. A Steep descent passing the old canon to Mullion Cove reveals a dramatic fishing hamlet seemingly hewn out of the cliffs.
Enter areas of Serpentine now, the marble like red and green veined rock named after its resemblance to Snake Skin when wet and present throughout the craggy precipitous cliffs that now surrounds your walking. Exmoor Ponies, fulmar and Kittiwake look on as you climb and drop passing The Rill where the Spanish armada was first sighted in 1588, fires lit from here saved the nation by alerting Drake in Plymouth to the 120 ships heading his way.
Overnight stops at Mullion on the South West Coast Path
At Pistil meadow a waterfall cascades over the cliff edge at a point where you can still make out the mounds of 200 drowned sailors buried in a mass grave in the meadow on the valley floor. There were only 3 survivors. You end the day staring out to sea having reached Lizard Point - mainland Britain’s most southerly bit of land the turning point for one of the busiest shipping lanes in the world and your signal to head inland to Lizard Town.
Overnight stops in Lizard Town on the South West Coast Path
Map of all
for this walk
Go to top
Company Registered in England No: 8227323
VAT Registration No: 138 8656 68