Love settling down on a Sunday to watch Poldark? It’s time to leave that sofa and head out for a walking holiday in Cornwall that lets you see the stunning locations for yourself…
With around 6 million regular viewers and a fifth series on the way later in 2019, the love for BBC’s latest adaptation Poldark shows no sign of slowing down. As well as smouldering Cap’n Ross, his stoic Doctor friend, and the admirably spirited Demelza, the series has another star: Cornwall itself.
Filmed on location around the county, Poldark has introduced Cornwall’s beauty to a wider audience – many of whom come down here in search of the stunning landscapes they’ve seen from their sitting rooms.
The Best way – and indeed, only way – to see many of these beautiful locations is on foot. Here are some of our favourite Cornish walks that take in Poldark’s most famous places.
St Ives to St Just, 2 days, 19m/29km
This is one of the most beautiful stretches of the South West Coast Path, with the dramatic Atlantic to your right, and the windswept moors to the left. The former tin coast is scattered with “Cornish Castles”, the ruins of old engine houses that scar the Penwith landscape. If ever a walk summed up the wildness of West Cornwall, this is it.
Happily for Poldark’s production company, it’s also home to a couple of restored mines, both managed by the National Trust. The part of Ross Poldark’s Wheal Grace Mine is played by Botallack Mine, while Levant Mine doubles as Tresidders Rolling Mill. Both give a fascinating insight into nineteenth-century mining life. Geevor Mine in Pendeen doesn’t feature in the series; however, if you want a sense of life “below grass”, the underground tour here is a must.
St Just to Porthleven, 3 days, 39m/63km
This walk takes you along the rugged paths around Land’s End, before curving round to the gentler sweep of Mount’s Bay. On the way, you’ll pass through Sennen with its stunning sandy beach, and encounter some of the loveliest coves in Cornwall. Landmarks include the Minack Theatre and St Michael’s Mount.
For the Poldark fan, there are plenty of other places of interest to spot. Porthgwarra is the location for THAT bathing scene and a must-see location (although sights of Cap’n Ross taking a dip are, sadly, rare). The tunnels at Porthgwarra also hid the fugitive Mark Daniels. Pretty Penberth Cove sets the scene for village net-mending, gossiping and fighting, and the beautiful beach at Porthcurno stars as Nampara Cove.
Marazion to Coverack, 4 days, 36m/58km
Leave the rocky coast of Penwith behind, and follow the curve of Mounts Bay towards The Lizard peninsula. This is a really popular Cornish walk, as it takes in so many gorgeous beaches and pretty towns and villages. Highlights include St Michael’s Mount and the lighthouse at Lizard Point (with the added bonus of Ann’s Pasties!).
Poldark fans will recognise some of the flatter stretches of coast path, which are used for horse-riding scenes. Other recognisable places include Gunwalloe Church Cove where the dramatic wrecking action took place, and sandy Kynance Cove features in the starting titles.
St Ives to Coverack, 7 days, 80m/128km
Possibly the ultimate in Cornish walking holidays for Poldark fans, this tour is a wonderful journey along some of the country’s best coastal paths. Starting in the bustling streets of art-loving St Ives, you’ll walk the rocky trails of West Penwith, around Land’s End, then along the gentler paths of the south coast. Then, follow Mount’s Bay to the verdant clifftops of the Lizard Peninsula, ending up in pretty Coverack.
You’ll encounter all the locations we’ve mentioned above on this real scene-spotting odyssey. You’ll also get plenty of opportunities for Ross and Demelza selfies against ocean and mining backdrops (get that far-away look ready).
St Ives to Padstow, 6 days, 68m/110km
This is another fabulous Poldarkian walking holiday in Cornwall. This time, the walk takes you east from St Ives (towards “upcountry”, as we say down here) and you’ll stride out towards the Cornish culinary capital of Padstow. You’ll dot between clifftops and long sandy beaches, taking in villages and inns on the way.
Again, there are so many famous Poldark locations to discover on this walk. St Agnes Head is the scene for many a sea-gazing shot, as well as being the site of Captain Poldark’s cliff-hanger arrest. If a scene needs a long sweep of sand, filming often takes place in Holywell Bay near Newquay. You’ll spot the distinctive twin islands known as Gull Rocks just off the shore. Porthcothnan Bay and Park Head also feature as evocative coastal backgrounds.
So, grab your walking boots, your tricorn hat (optional), and get in touch with us at Western Discoveries. We’ll introduce you to the beautiful real-life locations.
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