Cornwall Cottages Holiday UK, Tintagel Walks, Boscastle Walking On Southwest Coast Path
Cornwall Cottages Holiday UK, Tintagel Walks, Boscastle Walking On Southwest Coast Path was a circular day walk taking in Tintagel and Boscastle with a distance of approximately 9 miles.
It was done on day 5 of a cottage based Cornwall hiking holiday close to the South West Coastal Path during the month of May 2011 with my partner Anne.
Setting off from our self catering accommodation in St Teath, we drove our car to the start of the walk in Tintagel.
We parked in a pay and display car park off the main street.
If you want further details of the walking, visit our Tintagel & Boscastle Day Walk post by clicking here.
For information about cottage holidays read our cottage holidays guide here.
For a description of a variety of holiday cottage types look in our holiday cottages guide here.
Cornwall Cottages Holiday, Tintagel, Boscastle Video
This video slideshow shows a summary of Cornwall Cottages Holiday UK, Tintagel Walks, Boscastle Walking On Southwest Coast Path.
Tintagel and Boscastle Local Info
Tintagel or “Dintagell” in Cornish was known as Trevena up to the 1850’s, or in Cornish “Tre war Venydh”. It is a village located on the north Cornwall coastline between Boscastle to the north east and Port Isaac to the south west. As with Tintagel Castle, the village is linked to King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table legend and was made famous by the inspiration of Alfred Lord Tennyson. These days it is an attractive tourist destination for day visitors. In fact it is one of Britain’s most visited attractions with people visiting from many parts of the world.
Tintagel Haven is the small cove or inlet between Tintagel Island to the west and Barras Nose headland to the east. There is a small sheltered pebble beach which reveals a little sand at low tide. It is a fine place to swim or snorkel and you may see a grey seal. On the north east side are two waterfalls from the end of the stream that runs down from Tintagel village. To the western side is Merlin’s Cave which can be walked all the way through to the other side at low tide.
Tintagel Island is the peninsula positioned on the western side of Tintagel Haven, just north west of Tintagel Village. It has the Medieval Tintagel Castle and Monastery ruins located on top. The ruins of the castle are in fact partially on the mainland and partially on the island, being connected to the mainland by a short narrow stretch of land.
Tintagel Castle is positioned mainly on Tintagel Island but also partially on the mainland. Evidence shows that it may have been occupied as far back as the Late Roman era. In the Early Medieval era it may have been the seasonal home of the regional Dumnonia king.
During the 13th century or the Later Medieval era, a castle was constructed when Cornwall was part England by Richard the Earl of Cornwall in 1233. However, the castle later fell into disrepair and ruin.
The castle became a tourist attraction during the middle of the 19th century when people came to view Richard’s castle ruins. The castle is said to be the place of birth and fortress of King Arthur. These days the owners are the Duchy of Cornwall, with English Heritage being responsible for its operation and maintenance.
Tintagel Castle is in a magnificent setting, high on the rugged North Cornwall coastline. It provides visitors with spectacular views and the ruins are captivating. There is a Land Rover service to the castle for visitors not wanting, or not able to walk all the way down to it.
Barras Nose headland lies to the north east of Tintagel Haven. There are great views from here back to Tintagel Island and Tintagel Haven to the south west and Willapark and The Sisters to the north east. Barras Nose is renowned for its depressing cave on the south western side and was one of the first properties acquired by the National Trust’s 1896.
Willapark is an imposing headland about half a mile north east along the coast from Tintagel Island and is National Trust Property which may have been an ancient settlement.
From the Iron Age with the defence of the cliff castle being a 48 metre long bitch and bank. Just off its northern end lies The Sisters rock and just off its eastern side is Lye Rock.
The Sisters are two rocks close together off the northern edge of the Tintagel Willapark headland.
Lye Rock is a large rock just off the eastern edge of the Tintagel Willapark headland. It is sometimes called a small island and used to be a famous site for the biggest Puffin colony in Cornwall. Unfortunately, there are not many to be seen these days. However, a number of other types of birds still use Lye Rock for breeding.
Bossiney Haven is a sheltered little cove with a golden sandy beach just a short distance east of the Tintagel Willapark headland. There is no beach when the tide is high but it is a charming location for a swim or a paddle when the tide is out. There is some fine snorkelling to be had over on the far left side of the beach. Access is via some steep steps down, so is not great for youngsters or less inactive people.
Rocky Valley is a small and stunning rugged valley about half way between Boscastle to the north east and Tintagel to the south west. It is a delightful valley with small waterfalls and swirlholes that disrupt the flow of the small stream coming down the narrow glen-like valley. It is actually at the seaward end of St Nectan’s Glen. The National Trust own the valley and the South West Coast Path goes through it a short distance inland as the cliffs are so steep near the coast. Note that if can be quite dangerous by the rocks close to the sea as people have been swept away by freak waves.
Trevalge Cliff lies about half way between Boscastle to the north east and Tintagel to the south west, just north of Rocky Valley. It gets its name from the small hamlet of Trevalga which lies a short distance inland. The coastline below Trevalga is especially stunning with several rock stacks, the most prominent of which is Long Island.
Long Island is the most prominent of a number of rock stacks that lie just off the coast at Travalga Cliff and is one of the few places in Cornwall that the atlantic puffin still nests.
Willapark is an imposing headland just south west of the entrance to Boscastle Harbour. On top of the headland is a whitewashed Coastguard lookout station.
Meachard is a large rock or small island opposite the entrance to Boscastle Harbour.
Eastern Blackapit is a stunning chasm with a narrow sea entrance on the southern side of Boscastle Harbour entrance below Willapark headland.
Penally Point & Penally Hill
Penally Point is the imposing rocky headland at the northern end of the entrance to Boscastle Harbour and Penally Hill lies behind it to the north east.
Boscastle is both a fishing port and a village on the South West Coast Path of North Cornwall. It lies between Bude about 14 miles north east and Tintagel about 5 miles to the south west. Boscastle or “Kastell Boterel” in Cornish derives its name from Bottreaux Castle which was a 12th century fortress. There are few remains of the fortress ruin today. The harbour of Boscastle is a natural inlet and stone harbour walls built on both sides by Sir Richard Grenville in 1584. In addition to being a harbour for fishing, Boscastle, like many local ports, used to import coal and limestone whilst exporting local products, including slate. Both the village and the harbour are picturesque and very popular with tourists with other attractions including the shop of Boscastle pottery and the Museum of Witchcraft. The National Trust own most of the land within and surrounding Boscastle including the two harbour sides.
The Wellington Hotel is located an the base of Old Hill, overlooking Boscastle harbour. It dates back as far as the 16th Century and is amongst the oldest Coaching Inns in Cornwall. The original name was Bos Castle Hotel and the name was changed the Duke Of Wellington, the “iron Duke” died. It has been host to royalty like King Edward VII and also celebrities like Thomas Hardy and Sir Henry Irving.
Old Road as the name suggests is the old main road heading north out of Boscastle up a steep hill.
Paradise Road is a pretty street of old houses including the famous Napoleon Inn, which dates from the 16th century; a century or so ago, when the fortunes of the harbour were at their zenith and the village had 18 alehouses.
Tredole Farm lies inland about 1.5 miles south of Boscastle and runs a trekking and riding stables, offering riding holidays, pub treks and sunset rides.
St Nectan’s Glen
Saint Nectan’s Glen is a narrow wooded valley about 1.5 miles east of Tintagel and about half a mile south of Trethevey. It is about a one mile in length beside both banks of the Trevillet River. The river runs through it from the east and curves in a clockwise direction, eventually running through Rocky Valley on the northern coastline. The most outstanding feature of the glen is St Nectan’s Kieve (or basin), which is a fabulous waterfall 60 feet high. St Nectan did not actually exist as the name is a Christianised version of the Cornish god of water called Nechtan. The Keive also used to be viewed as a symbol of potency symbol of Gaia by Pagans and has been a location of veneration since before the time of Christ. Access down to the water is on foot only and is both steep and slippery but worth seeing.
Hermitage Tea Gardens
The Hermitage is a half-timbered building above the waterfall and is the entry point for the Tea Gardens and the waterfall. It is believed to have been built over the remains of a Celtic chapel. It was most likely a summerhouse built in the 18th century. However, information supplied by the owners suggests it was a cottage built during the 1860s with the ruins of the original chapel forming the lower part of the walls. It was also extended around 1900. There is a charge to enter the Hermitage grounds, which are open between April and October.