Narrow streets and steep valley sides lead you down to the centre of the old Mevagissey, where the distinctive twin harbour provides a safe haven for the fishing boats that land their daily catch of skate, lobster, plaice and sole. Mevagissey was built on fish, in the 1800s and early 1900s it prospered on the back of the abundant source of pilchards (sardines) caught in local waters.
The River Tamar divides Cornwall from the rest of England for all but three miles between the source and the north Cornish coast. It runs for 60 miles down to Plymouth Sound, winding its way through rich farmland and areas of industrial history, now with World Heritage Status. Much of the area is also part of the Tamar Valley AONB (Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty).
In these difficult days we have been spending more time on-line dreaming about where we would rather be than at home. Even for those of us based in Cornwall, we have been limited to where we can go until recently.
Which is why webcams have become so popular. I for one, had my second screen fixed on Mullion Cove for a few weeks at the start of lockdown, watching the tide roll out and roll in, the sun catching the island, or setting behind it, the occasional dog walker joining the lonely gull on the beach.
Trethevy Quoit, nr Liskeard
We start with one of the first man-made structures in Cornwall (and possibly the British Isles) still standing. Known as a quoit, this structure is believed to be a Neolithic burial site, dating back 6000 years. We don’t know too much about what happened here, but from similar sites in other parts of the UK, it is thought quoits were used to store the bones of people after they had been given a ‘sky burial’. Other quoits can be found dotted around Cornwall, especially in West Penwith.
The curve of St Austell Bay with its many sandy beaches is a haven for watersports and family holidays and is also fantastic for walking and cycling, with many woodlands and trails through a variety of landscapes. At its centre, the town of St Austell, has grown from the riches of the China Clay industry. Walk along Fore Street and you will discover the fine Holy Trinity Parish Church and opposite, the Italianate facade of the Market House. The town centre also has a cinema, restaurants, cafes and shops.