133a Tintagel to Boscastle

After my lazy day yesterday, I feel full of energy and am keen to make good progress along the coast from Tintagel. My first stop is Boscastle, for lunch.

Ahead is an easy amble along Smith’s Cliff. The promontory of Willapark is ahead with the two rocks, The Sisters, just visible on the other side.

01 walking towards Willapark, from Tintagel, Ruth's coast walk

In less than 20 minutes I am standing on Willapark, another piece of coastline managed by the National Trust, and the site of an ancient settlement. sheep with black wool, Willapark, Ruth

I see no sign of ancient earthworks, just  some fine-looking sheep  with black wool and curly horns.

Looking back, the imposing Camelot Castle Hotel is still dominating the skyline. Beyond is the hump of Tintagel Head with Barra’s Nose in front. I can see the rock where I sat and ate my chocolate bar yesterday.

02 looking back to Tintagel from Willapark, Ruth on the SWCP

The next bay has an indented coastline. Bossiney Haven, Benoath Cove, Trewethet Gut, Trambley Cove – the names read like a foreign language. The low line of rocks in the water are the Saddle Rocks. The tallest rock is also an island, prosaically called “Long Island”.

03 Long Island, Trevalga, Ruth walking the coast in Cornwall

But first there is a steep cleft in the coastline, where the Trevillit River has carved a mini-canyon through the rocks.

National Trust, Rocky Valley, Ruth's coast walk in CornwallThis is Rocky Valley,  another piece of National Trust land, purchased with funds given in memory of a lady called Mary. [Sadly, I can’t find out anything about Mary on the NT website.]

I hadn’t checked my map properly and so this deep gorge is a surprise and an unexpected bonus.

 Rocky Valley, Ruth on the South West Coast Path, near TintagelI look down the steep path.

Far below is the floor of the valley, where a stream falls in a series of waterfalls towards the sea.

This is obviously a popular spot. Despite the greyness of the day, several other groups of people are out walking.

The walk down is easier than the walk back up. On the way I stop and take photographs. This one captures two walkers resting with their dog on a ledge. Beyond is the tower of Long Island.

06 View up Rocky Valley, to Trevalga Cliff, Ruth Livingstone

The climb down and up again takes me half an hour. Once on higher ground, I make good progress. Ahead is another rocky tower, Grower Rock. The far headland is Willapark with its white lookout station perched on top.

07 view from Firebeacon Hill, Grower Rock, Ruths coast walking

Coming round the cove I get a better view ahead.

In the distance, aross Bude Bay, is the hazy line of distant shore and the largish town I can just see must be Bude itself. In front is a long finger of headland ending in Cambeak. Just around the corner from Cambeak, hidden from view is Craklington Haven, where I hope to end my walk this afternoon.

But, turning my attention to nearer landmarks, I can see tall Grower Rock in front and the flatter Meachard Rock behind. Meachard Rock marks the entrance to Boscastle and lunch.

08 Across bay to Cambeak and Bude, Ruth walking the coast path

I walk onwards, past another medley of interestingly named coves and rocks and cliffs and common land. Foot Cove, the arch of Ladies Window, Grower Gut, Western Blackapit, Forrabury Stitches and Forrabury Common. Above looms Willapark and the Boscastle Lookout Station.

Lookout Station on Willapark, Boscastle, Ruth's coastal walk

Coming down from the Lookout Station, I see the narrow entrance to Boscastle Harbour, guarded by Penally Point.

10 entrance to Boscastle, Ruth walking the South West Coast Path

This section of walk, from the Lookout Station into Boscastle, is popular and I meet a few strollers.

11 walking into Boscastle, Ruth walking the coast in Cornwall

Following the inlet round the corner and I get a lovely view of Boscastle. There are a fair number of tourists milling about and I would imagine this pretty place gets very crowded in the height of summer.

12 Boscastle village, Ruth on the SWCP

Boscastle (Tim Baynes painting for Ruth Livingstone)[I sent a similar photo of Boscastle to my artist in residence, Tim Baynes, and he sent me this beautiful painting to include on my blog. The original photo and a larger version of the painting is on this page.]

For some reason, the village is dominated by a Witchcraft Museum. I begin to wonder what type of magic happened here. Was this a female competitor to the wizard Merlin, based nearby in Tintagel?

Witches of Boscastle, Ruth walking in CornwallI walk down into the village and head for the little bridge that crosses the stream.

[Later, I discover that Boscastle is not famous for witches. It is simply an un-protesting place in which to site a controversial attraction.]

Thinking of witches, I find my mother-in-law and my husband in a tea shop. We hadn’t planned to meet up for lunch, so this is happy coincidence.

Ruth with mother-in-law Boscastle, CornwallHubby takes a photo of us sitting together.

I still have an allergic rash on my face. In fact, it is worse today than it was yesterday. My swollen skin covers up any wrinkles and I look as though I have had a Botox session.

My mother-in-law looks extraordinarily young for her age. It would be rude to disclose this exactly – but she is somewhere in the second half of her eighties.

Miles walked = 5
Total distance travelled = 1,303


About Ruth Livingstone

Walker, writer, photographer, blogger, doctor, woman, etc.
This entry was posted in 10 Cornwall and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to 133a Tintagel to Boscastle

  1. mariekeates says:

    Lovely views as ever and another nice walk. I’m sure I would find it hard not to get distracted and visit some of those interesting places. I bet the witchcraft museum would be great fun.

  2. Ice Witch says:

    The Museum is a very interesting store of information about the way of life many years ago, that way is still followed my many who like My wife and I ( yes, witches are male or female) understand and respect the old ways of a REAL witch. Hundreds of years ago, a Witch is the one who you would have wanted to see about your ailments.. the one who knew about mushrooms and herbs. The one who may well have delivered your children. Who would cast spells to make your crops grow and provide objects and spells to protect your home . Real Witches were in no way evil or harmful, they may very well have used a small cauldron to cook up their herbs for spells and cures. Your Life in old times may well have been all the better for the services of a local Witch.
    But. Eventually, the church branded Witches as being satanists, now THAT is different ! A satanist is a very evil person, and follows a very different path to that of a witch, but some how the church (Roman Catholic mainly) have managed to discredit Witches into being satanises and a huge amount of knowledge has been lost that may well have contributed a lot to medicine today. I read in one report that as many as 3 million innocent people were murdered over Europe during the age of the which hunters.
    The Spanish and Roman inquisitions doing the most damage. In fact the Roman inqusition changed its name around 1956 ish, but was not finally ended until 2005 !!
    So to sum up, the Museum of Wichcraft is for the most part just that… the craft of the old Witches.. NOT the craft of the Satanist… after all, an English Witch is not that different from an African Witch Doctor…. ( nothing whatsoever to do with Merlin! ) We have visited the museum several years ago and want to visit again sometime.. I expect we will spend several hours learning more about our history.


  3. Karen White says:

    I’d like to visit the Museum of Witchcraft, I’m sure it would be fascinating.

I welcome your views

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 )

Connecting to %s