Walking the West Coast

- June 17, 2020 -

Head west to Penzance and keep on going until you can’t go any further. This is Cornwall’s west coast, a wave-lashed landscape of sweeping bays and majestic cliffs, exposed to 3000 miles of open Atlantic. Next stop after Cornwall’s Isles of Scilly is Newfoundland, Canada.

Hiking along Cornwall’s west coast is superb from Pendeen Watch at its northern end, past the UK’s most westerly staging post at Land’s End to the golden sands of Porthcurno.  The hills are plentiful, the drama intense and the scenery really is as good as it gets.

To catch this coastline at its best, try walking the coast path here in May, June and September.  Wild flowers cover entire meadows, hedgerows and splashes of pink and yellow can be seen clinging to the orange-hued granite cliffs.

heather and surf on the west coast
Land's End cliff tops
Walker waving on the coast path
Land's End sea arch
Steps at Gwenver beach, Cornwall

There are a lot, and I mean a lot, of beautiful places along the Land’s End Peninsula’s west coast. Most of these require a little walking to get to and are missed by the summer time crowds that visit the region. But follow the coast path as it winds along wind-swept cliff tops and you get to see them all. It’s a good walk, so take a day or two cover the distance and you won’t regret it.


Some of the West Coast’s better known scenes

Crown's mines at Botallack

On the wild Tin Coast, the famed Crowns engine houses cling to the foot of the cliffs. Part of the Cornish Mining World Heritage Site and Poldark filming location.


Source: National Trust

Sennen Cove harbour with boats
Sennen Cove

Boasting one of Cornwall’s loveliest beaches, Whitesands Beach, is a big hit with beach-goers, surfers and walkers and still clings onto its traditional fishing village atmosphere.

Land's End sea arch
Land’s End

Okay, so the complex at Land’s End leaves a lot to be desired, in fact it can be an eye-sore for walkers, but the cliff top scenery either side is fabulous. Get past the tourist hotspot as quickly as possible and then back to enjoying sea arches, stacks and magnificent cliffs.

Blue seas at porthcurno beach

Described by some as being a paradise, Porthcurno, located in the far west of Cornwall has won many awards and it’s easy to see why. With gorgeous fine soft white sand washed by a sea that turns turquoise in the sun and high cliffs on both sides providing shelter, it’s an oasis of stunning natural beauty.


Source: Good Beach Guide (2015)

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