The grandeur of the Cornish cliffs – a coastal walk from Zennor to St Ives

The north coast of CornwallMy thoughts turned to the grandeur of the Cornish cliffs this week. Perhaps with the screening of the hotly anticipated new Poldark series on television tonight in mind! So a flick through our photo album brought back memories of a dramatic walk we took one autumn day along the wild untamed coastline. We started from the picture perfect Cornish village of Zennor to finally finish in the artists colony of St Ives.

We drove over the top of the hills to park in Zennor near the church before setting off towards the cliffs with a picnic and excited Dog (sadly no longer with us) Zennor was once described by on of my American guest as “just how as she imagined a Cornish village should be, with the huddle of traditional granite cottages backed by the high moors and then the lush tiny fields rolling down to the sea”


Walking from Zennor

We followed the footpath from Zennor towards the scent of the sea and so began our journey, almost through time as we stepped away from civilisation and immersed ourselves in the wild coastal scenery, claimed by nature and untouched and unspoilt by man.

The coastal path twisted up and down on our journey, sometimes circling the granite outcrops but more often than not delving through the crevices in a way that I thought it safest (as a total wimp!) to slide on my bottom. Occasionally we plunged into deep coves that had me almost believing in the tales of knockers and pixies as we skirted their deep shaded depths – surely no one had ever set foot here before!


Photographs taken from the Zennor to St Ives coast path

Still with a packed lunch to consume tucked under the shelter of a bank and blue sea below us the day and the path slid away beneath our feet as we passed landmarks with wonderful names Wicca Pool, Mussel Point, The Carracks, Carn Naun Poin, Pen Enys Point, Hor Point, Clodgy Point, Carn Everis before St Ives came into view framed by the sweep of St Ives bay with the golden sands of Hayle Towans on the horizon.

Arriving at St Ives

It was the end of an adventure as we looked at St Ives below us gentle and sophisticated after the rugged coast that we had left behind us. I must admit we took a taxi back to Zennor though much to the dog’s relief.

The following week we had some keen walkers in their seventies to stay at Ednovean Farm and not only did they complete the walk but they took the coffin path* across the fields back to their car – cough cough maybe we should walk more!!

*The dead from St Ives were traditionally carried along the coffin path to be laid to rest in the Zennor churchyard. Coffin paths are usually straight paths connecting communities

St Ives & Tate Gallery

More walks along the north coast

The walk from Zennor to Gurnards Head is much shorter and a little easier terrain than the path from Zennor to St Ives but no less enjoyable!

My suggestions for Three winter walks plunge inland to the high cairns at times for a different perspective before returning to the sea or for the feel of purely sand between your toes you’ll love Three Beach walks to blow the cobwebs away



About Christine Taylor

Christine has written a weekly blog about life at Ednovean Farm and interesting places to visit in West Cornwall for over ten years now, concentrating on those off the beaten track places that only the locals find. Charles and Christine Taylor have hosted Luxury Bed and Breakfast at Ednovean Farm Nr Penzance in West Cornwall since 1991 and live there with three cats and five horses, including a Spanish Stallion called Danni. Ednovean Farm has been awarded AA five star gold for Bed and breakfast and is included in The Michelin Guide and The Alastair Sawday Guide . The Farmhouse and gardens has been featured in BBC Homes and Antiques, Homes and Gardens. Period Living and 25 Beautiful Homes as well as being used as a film and photo shoot location.

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