This autumn we’ve set out to explore the beautiful hidden beaches of West Cornwall that are within easy reach of Ednovean Farm. This week we visited the secret sandy bay just beyond Prussia cove, known as Kennegy Beach a beautiful cove of pristine golden sands framed by heathland with farmland dipping down to the cliffs edge
As we scrambled across the rock to the great sweep of golden sands, ours were the only footprints on the beach and our only company the seagulls preening at the waters edge.
South facing Kennegy Beach, is a softer gentler place than the raw wild beauty of Portheras cove that we visited last week but if I half closed my eyes I could still imagine sailing boats lying at anchor a little way from the beach in this timeless place.
Finding Kennegy Beach
To reach Kennegy beach via road from Rosudgeon there’s parking where the lane ends and then a delightful walk down through Prussia Cove along the coast footpath or by walking westwards along the coastal footpath from the popular sandy beach at Praa Sands.
It was low tide when we reached Prussia cove so instead of visiting our favourite Bessie’s Cove where we sometimes picnic; we walked down towards Porth-an Als house. The footpath passes through the big circle of this lovely mysterious house set on the waters edge. I always wonder what lies beyond the imposing front door and who used to live there. These days it plays host to the young musicians and maestri for the International Musicians seminar in the spring and the autumn and somehow the haunting chamber music that echoes around the circle then only adds to the intrigue!
As we emerged from under the shade of the pine trees to cross the stream it is impossible not to see the imposing orderly row of Coastguard cottage, dominating the hillside above us. These were built to put an end to the smuggling at Prussia Cove by the Carter brothers – the coves here were concealed from the excise men in Penzance way across Mounts bay by Cudden Point
We took the narrow path down to Coules Cove where it is still possible to see the bricked up smugglers cellars and then clambered across the rocks to Kennegy Beach, testing our balance as we hopped and clambered from rock to rock.
I must admit to a secret thrill as we stepped on to the pristine sands and carefully skirted the sea bird colony on the tide line – how often do you have a beach all to yourself on a sunny autumn day in Cornwall!
A word of warning about access!
Kennegy Beach should always be visited with an eye to the tide table as it is completed submerged by the sea at high tide with no access to the cliffs above. Years ago there were some steps with the final descent down a rope form a rock platform but coastal erosion has claimed this and the subsequent trapeze like ladder. In my youth I used to worry that my nerve would fail me for the climb back up the rope and later I blanched at the very sight of the rope ladder that replaced this, so my choice and now the only option, is to clamber across the rocks from Coules cove at Prussia Cove. Much later as we were leaving we met a chap intent on reaching the sands too and we pointed out the route we’d taken “Come along Catharine” he said to his wife still teetering on a rock some way behind him. Somehow I think Catharine didn’t join him!
Explore more hidden beaches in West Cornwall
You might enjoy one of these blogs to explore more of Cornwall’s hidden beaches