Why you should visit Cornwall
- Explore picturesque Cornish harbours like Port Isaac and Mousehole
- Visit the world's largest greenhouse and miniature ecosystems at the Eden Project
- Cross the causeway to St Michael's Mount
- Step back in time at Lanhydrock and Trelissick Houses
- Discover the seat of Cornwall's Celtic kings at Tintagel Castle
- Visit St Ives with its Tate and arty vibe
- Eat fresh seafood at Rick Stein's restaurant in Padstow
- Explore beautiful sandy coves and endless beaches
- Drink real ale in a Cornish pub and listen to live renditions of sea shanties
Our specialist's 'must do'
For sights – then it has to be The Eden Project and St Michael's Mount – both iconic symbols of Cornwall. St Ives is glorious, but there are so many other beautiful harbour towns and beaches that you could equally enjoy.
A little more about Cornwall
You cannot get further west in England than the ancient Celtic kingdom of Cornwall, situated on its rugged southwestern tip. The county forms a peninsula encompassing wild moorland and hundreds of sandy beaches culminating at the promontory, Land's End. Blessed with the Southwest's wildest coastline and most breathtakingly beautiful beaches, the north coast is lined with towering cliffs and seaside resorts like Newquay, known for surfing, while the south, dubbed the Cornish Riviera, is home to picturesque harbour villages such as Fowey and Falmouth.
The staple industries of old – mining, fishing and farming – have all but disappeared, but Cornwall has since reinvented itself as one of the nation's creative corners. Here you can explore the space-age domes of the Eden Project, sample the culinary creations of a celebrity chef in Padstow or soak up the arty vibe in St Ives.
The best things to do in Cornwall, an extensive list indeed, should include St Michael's Mount. The abbey sits on an island in Mount Bay and is only accessible by ferry or causeway at low tide. Built by Benedictine monks during the 12th century, highlights include the rococo drawing room, the armoury and the 14th-century church, but it's the amazing cliff-top gardens that really steal the show.
The Eden Project is another must see. The Project's giant biomes form the largest greenhouses in the world and maintain miniature ecosystems that enable all kinds of weird and wonderful plants to flourish. If beautiful houses and gardens are what you are looking for, then look no further than the National Trust properties of Trelissik and Lanhydrock, or for something a little older, Tintagel's epic cliff-top castle, the supposed birthplace of King Arthur, has been occupied since Roman times and once served as a residence for Cornwall's Celtic kings. More recently, Tintagel and Boscastle has provided much inspiration for the works of the English poet and novelist Thomas Hardy.
Base yourself at one of the many beautiful harbour towns and villages along Cornwall's stunning coastline to enjoy bobbing fishing boats, fresh local seafood and the chance to explore boutiques shops for local arts and crafts. If total relaxation is on your agenda, head to one of the infinite sandy beaches to soak up beach-life Cornish style, the choice is yours.