Thursday, 23 July 2015

Roadtrip Part 2 - Cornwall, Cream Tea, and Camping

Grab a cuppa before you start, it's a long one!

Out of everything we had planned I was looking forward to Cornwall the most. We were there for the longest time, we were going to be camping, it's a beautiful part of this country...I just couldn't wait!

For the first time since we'd set off we had seen and done everything that we wanted from where we were in Street, so after a hearty breakfast we were straight on the road. You'll hear all kinds of horror stories if you ask people about Cornwall as there's one road in and the same road out. Oooh I once sat in a traffic queue for 10 hours, oh it took 7 hours to move one mile, and so on. I reckon we must have been very lucky as we only got stuck once and that was in a set of road works. It certainly didn't take us 10 hours (more like 2) and our major concern was which petrol station was going to give us the last Costa coffee before we exited normal civilisation.

Our first stop was in Pentewan Sands, conveniently located for both the Eden Project and the Lost Gardens of Heligan. We were pretty chuffed to get the tent up without too much hassle/snapping (something about putting up tents that causes snippiness amongst our generally laid back selves...) and safe to say we relaxed right into it:

Can't really say the same about our first overnight experience as the wind buffeted the tent almost out of the ground and the rain lashed down (I don't need the loo, I don't need the loo, gah I need the loo!) so it was two tired people who were up and about the next day for some serious amounts of walking!

We decided to try and do the Eden Project and the Lost Gardens of Heligan in the same day, in case we missed out on one of them. We did it, and my FitBit recorded that we walked 20,000 steps which was a whole lot of miles. It was very tiring but well worth it, however if you have more time I'd take a day for each to allow yourself a slightly more relaxing visit.

First up, Eden. Dave had been here before, many moons ago, but it was the first time for me; it was the opposite for Heligan. There was so much to see and do but we did our usual thing of picking a route and heading that way. We meandered along the passing of time walkway (I can't remember the exact name) before heading to the Rainforest dome. It's hot, that kind of steamy hot that makes my hair go frizzy from root to tip (side note: I pretty much gave up on trying to make my hair do anything other than frizz the whole time we were in Cornwall, at one with the elements and all that jazz) but pretty awe inspiring. Everything is huge! The plants are huge and the leaves are enormous! The other dome is not as steamy but everything is equally as large. Take these giant lemons for example (snort!):

I found the domes fascinating, but I equally enjoyed mooching around the grounds. We had a good chat with the gardener in the allotment about leeks, and I bravely took the barefoot challenge through all kinds of different things underfoot.

I also started seeing this succulent everywhere and became slightly obsessed with having one (side note: we bought one)

From one garden to another. Heligan was a whole other ball game. Being slightly later in the day the crowds were much less and the whole thing just seemed more relaxing and at holiday pace than the bustling Eden. Once again we wandered around woodland paths and through fields of wild flowers, stopping to say hello to some very greedy piglets along the way. The garden is now famous for its sculptures and these two were a delight to stumble across, and the maid particularly felt very peaceful and serene.

I would highly recommend both gardens, if you're into that kind of thing, and who wouldn't be fascinated by giant leaves and gently dappling light?

Our final destination in Cornwall was The Lizard, home of Henry's Campsite which would be our home for the next 6 nights. What can I say about Henry's? Unique, quirky, not at all for the faint hearted (ducks and chickens roam freely, toilets are unisex and generally in falling down sheds with piped music, showers cost 20p so don't be afraid to share the cubicle with your tent buddy and jump right in when they're done) but if you can get past all that it's bloody brilliant and we had the best time! We had a sea view, our very own palm tree, and warm croissants and yummy coffee were available every day, along with jugs of cider and marshmallows for melting over your BBQ.

The Lizard? The Lizard was special. Very special. Every day was a new adventure, with turquoise seas, cream teas, delicious local ice cream, beer and cider, blue skies, hot sun, and sheer joy. If you ever find yourself there head to Coverack (beautiful), Roskilly's Farm (best ice cream ever), take a walk to the most Southerly part of England, enjoy a cream tea, a Sunday lunch at the Top House, and an evening stroll in the last of the sun. Magical days.

We have a rule that when the rain starts it's time for us to go, but if the sun had stayed shining, I would have had a really hard time to pull myself away. I think I fell in love with Cornwall a teensy bit...

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