Cornwall

September 1 – 15 2016

London had been a wonderful experience and we had enjoyed some of the best weather so far on our ‘adventure’, but we were looking forward to getting far away from the “madding crowd”.

img_0838

We chose Callington as being central to both the north and south coasts of Cornwall.  Also, the pictures of this Airbnb looked like something out of a designer magazine. That should have rung alarm bells!  The building was a former Coach House & our entrance is the 1 st door on the right in the above photo.

We thought it would be charming , but reality was something else.

The photo on the left shows the stairs going up and the photo on the right are the same stairs going down: steep and narrow.  Jouko had to get our suitcases up there…….

img_0820

These are the 2nd set of stairs leading to our bedroom on the 3rd floor.  One had to lean into them as one climbed, or else you would fall backwards.  Oh well, some places are better than others!

dsc_7014

It was a beautiful afternoon, so after spreading ourselves out, we hopped back into the car and headed to PORT ISAAC to see the village where “Doc Martin” was filmed.

dsc_6976

It was late, but we still enjoyed meandering around the village and recognized corners and buildings from the hit TV show.

img_0799

dsc_6990

His “surgery” is actually 2nd from the right in this picture.

dsc_7021

But is was close to sundown, so we needed to head on back to our new abode and climb those stairs 😵

dsc_7023

We left the northern coast behind, bathed in the evening golden light.

dsc_7028

Besides being located between the northern and southern coasts, we were also between Bodmin Moor and Dartmoor and the Tamar Valley.

dsc_7030

So we started by exploring the valley, and we found ourselves in the small, sleepy village of CALSTOCK.

dsc_7034

dsc_7042

The tide was out as we walked along the river and then returned through the woods.

img_0850

For my non British friends, ‘solicitor’ is a play on words. This is like saying “no beggars”.  A Solicitor can also mean someone who is a chief law officer in a city or government department.  They can also draw up Wills for instance.  A ‘Barrister’ is the same as an Attorney.

img_0856

The villagers certainly had a sense of humour!

dsc_7050

They posted sentries to keep a lookout for the occasional offender.

img_0890

One of the top places to visit on our list was POLPERRO, situated on the south coast.  47 yrs ago it turned into the most romantic place in our courtship/dating experience (our children probably find both words old fashioned).  It certainly deserved a visit, but of course nothing is ever ” like it used to be “.  One now has to park outside the village and get a quaint little bus into the center.

img_0956

We made our way through the village, heading for the cliffs and the walk that we had made so long ago along the ocean. Back then we had walked from LOOE, through the fields and along the cliffs (5.5 miles or 8.8 km).

img_0904

On the left is the path leading up to the Ocean Path.

img_0918

img_0920

All those years ago we had hitch-hiked from Newbold College in Berkeshire with about 14 other people during our Easter break, staying in youth hostels along the way.

img_0923

This was as far as we could go now; there was a sign telling us it was PRIVATE land,

img_0922

so we turned back and

img_3592

 took a “selfie”!

img_0944

img_0936

The tide was out but the village still looks beautiful from up here.

img_0907

One more view of the coastline from the other side of the bay.

img_0982

Since Jouko had only played golf twice in the past 7 months, he deserved to get in at least one round.  So while he played nearby, I went into PLYMOUTH to do some shopping and wander around.  I didn’t take my ‘big’ camera, so all these photos are with my phone – which has an amazing camera.

img_0984

After getting the few things I needed, I made my way to Hoe Park overlooking Plymouth Sound.  It was a glorious, balmy day. There are quite a few war memorials here as well as a statue of Sir Francis Drake who sailed from Plymouth to defeat the Spanish Armada.

img_0990

I had probably been to Plymouth as a child but certainly had not paid any attention to it.

img_0996

Walking along the front I came across this commemorative stone.

img_0995

I’m sorry I cut off part of it; he died in 1821.  At the bottom it reads, “May our hearts be open to friendship and our arms reach across the sea to unite our two nations.”

Later I will point out Dartmoor Prison.

img_1028

It has several natural bays, packed full of fishing boats, sail boats and yachts.

Processed with Snapseed.

When Jouko had finished his game, he picked me up and I brought him back to the front where we got a bite to eat.

img_1034

img_1036

It had been a delightful afternoon.

In between though, the weather was not very co-operative, so we took advantage of those days to rest and I caught up with my blogging.

dsc_7160

The day we chose to visit BOSCASTLE on the north coast could not have been prettier.

In this picture, right in the middle, one can barely make out a church sitting in a field. We will visit it after our visit to the village.

dsc_7167

The village is located way down deep inside a ravine where the river Valency flows out into the ocean.

dsc_7222

After parking the car, one can walk to the ocean along this path. In 2004 the village suffered extensive damage from floods and mud.  People had to be rescued by helicopter from rooftops.

dsc_7220

Just the perfect place for a morning coffee!

dsc_7173

A natural harbour.

The curvaceous turns of the inlet.

dsc_7184

Once on top of the rocks one can look up and down to see the rugged beauty of the coastline.

dsc_7192

dsc_7187

dsc_7209

So we set out to walk along part of the Southwest Coastal Path, before making a loop back to the village.

dsc_7218

Before leaving I wanted to visit that church…

dsc_7234

Forrabury Church

It wasn’t that easy to find, but once there, it was such a beautifully peaceful corner of the world.

dsc_7228

I was so glad to find it open, too.

I just love these hand made prayer cushions and these ancient tombstones can really get one’s imagination going.

dsc_7364

Even though the weather was not bright, it was dry, so we ventured out again, to visit CHARLESTOWN.

dsc_7387

dsc_7374

Situated on the south coast, it is charming.

dsc_7392

But we had made reservations to have a Cream Tea, so we headed to…

dsc_7396

…Fowey Hall, which sits high up on the side of the hill overlooking Polruan.

dsc_7400

Just the right spot for the occasion.

dsc_7395

The Hall commands a beautiful view over-looking the mouth of the river Fowey.

dsc_7407

We then walked around the village down by the river.

dsc_7430

It was time to explore Bodmin Moor.  It is also home to the famous book, JAMACA INN, written by Daphne du Maurier

dsc_7273At the Hurlers, we followed the sounds of a beating drum…

dsc_7275

and saw a gathering of people holding a ceremony….

 with crystals and chanting.

dsc_7326

The vast vistas of the Moors.

dsc_7323

The wild ponies are protected.

dsc_7303

The granite formations, “tors”,  dotted around the Moor date back to Bronze Age and Neolithic times.

dsc_7317

dsc_7308

The Cheesering  stands guard over the Moor.  Legend has it that perhaps it is the result of “an epic struggle between the giants and the saints”.

dsc_7314

We plodded back through the soggy ground.

dsc_7240

On the edge of the Moor, a typical Cornish farmhouse made from local stone.

dsc_7249

We walked to a little pub we had found to have something to eat.

Now that smoking is no longer allowed in public buildings, many pubs have turned to providing meals to attract folk back.

img_1074

This one kind of became our ‘local’!

dsc_7514

My cousin Vanessa and her husband Peter (standing here outside the 2nd church we visited) live in Devon and were staying in the area to meet with their Cornish History Society  friends.  It was lovely to see them again and they gave us an in-depth guide to a couple of local churches with rich histories.

dsc_7462

What an idyllic location for a church!  St Winnow Parish Church is located on the River Fowey, and is where the 1970s series of Poldark was filmed.

St Winnow was mentioned in the Doomsday Book of 1086 and during the plague, almost all of the villagers died. Although the foundation of the church is certainly from the Norman period, most of the present structure dates to the 15th century.

dsc_7432

The 16th century, hand carved rood screen is one of the finest in Cornwall and is very rare.  Unfortunately it was a cloudy day and the interior was very dark, so I did not get many good shots.

Version 2

dsc_7445

These hand carved pew ends are also very rare.  Most of them of course depict Biblical scenes.

dsc_7441

This one is unusual in that it depicts a sail boat and the connection with the sea.

dsc_7452

The font dates from the 14th C.  Here one can see the carving of smiling angels holding hands.  Inscribed in Latin is, “Behold, the beloved of the true God shall be baptised with the Holy Spirit”.  I was feeling somewhat overwhelmed with richness of it all!

dsc_7456

dsc_7476

They then led us through the lanes to LERRYN where we had lunch.

img_1184

Oh, I’m glad he didn’t chose to go down there!

dsc_7474

Lerryn.

dsc_7468

I just love the British “understatement”!

fullsizerender

While we ate, someone kept a close eye on us.

dsc_7472

Then it was time to move on to visit the next church.

To get there we had to cross the river, to the little town of Fowey where we had been the other day.  In the photo on the right, one can see Daphne du Maurier’s house on the extreme right.

St Sampson Parish Church.

dsc_7493

Note the two areas divided by columns down the middle with two arched ceilings.

dsc_7510

dsc_7501

The carved pulpit details are intricate.

dsc_7506

I loved the bench ends.  Exclusive or inclusive?  A throwback to times past……

dsc_7519

Too soon it was time to say a fond farewell.  They had blessed us with their depth of knowledge and certainly opened our eyes to details we would never have noticed.

We had one more place we wanted to visit – DARTMOOR.

dsc_7062

We had to go down into the Tamar Valley again,

dsc_7080

and then drive through Tavistock, to get to the Moor.

dsc_7531

dsc_7557

Fairly soon, between the small villages dotted around, one only sees the occasional farmhouse.

dsc_7553

dsc_7538

Lots of sheep dot the open moors.

dsc_7572

And, as on Bodmin, the wild ponies roam freely.

dsc_7540

 

One of the beauties of the moors is in their ever changing colours, according to what the weather is at the time.  dsc_7549

OOPPS!  Watch out!

dsc_7630

We stopped for tea at Two Bridges.

dsc_7631

dsc_7624

It looked as though the weather was turning brighter.

dsc_7579

There were these same kind of granite formations here, too.

dsc_7584

Hiking paths are everywhere, but they do warn one to be careful.  Bad weather can suddenly descend and one becomes disorientated, cold and lost.

dsc_7639

There, in passing, is the notorious Dartmoor Prison, where Napoleon’s men were held and as a child I still heard of people being held there.  Now it is a museum.

dsc_7659

As we arrived on the crest of a hill on our way home,  we saw the valley before us cloaked in stormy clouds. But the sheep weren’t worried!

dsc_7662

I loved the light and drama it was creating.

dsc_7666

But then we had to make the plunge – that is where ‘home’ was!

We packed up our bags once again and the next day headed back to London for one more night.  On the way, we stopped to visit with a childhood friend of mine, Angela.

img_1221

We met her for lunch at this beautiful Manor (unfortunately her husband couldn’t join us).

img_1225

We had a lovely time catching up with each other and our family members.  Thank goodness for social media, so that we can continue to stay in touch.

dsc_6176

It was time to bid a fond farewell to England and her beauties – until next time.

-♦-♦-♦-

Next:  Greece

Submit a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s