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This guidebook includes routes to 40 day walks in Cornwall. From short, easy strolls to longer, wilder routes, there is plenty to appeal to both families and experienced walkers. The walks explore the interior and coasts, including walks through picturesque villages, old tin-mining areas and the Lizard and Land's End Peninsulas.
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|Buy your choice of routes or chapters to read online, on your mobile device or to download as a PDF to print or read.||Browse Routes|
40 half to full day rambles on the coasts and inland hills of Cornwall are explored in this guidebook. Routes range from short, 2 mile strolls to long, wild walks of over 8 miles. With plenty of opportunities to combine routes together, this guide provides a wealth of variety for walkers of all abilities.
The guidebook is divided into 6 sections, including walks on Bodmin Moor (for which good navigational skills are required), the North Coast, Penwith and West Cornwall, the Inland Mining Districts, Land's End and the Lizard and Roseland Peninsulas.
Cornwall has a lot to offer walkers; stunning coastal scenery and long stretches of wild moorland, with quiet estuaries cutting through high and rocky headlands. Birdlife and wildlife, from choughs to falcons to seals are found throughout the county, as are historical sites from the neolithic, to Iron Age hill forts and a long history of mining. The towns and villages of Cornwall, from the popular spots such as St Ives, Newquay and Padstow, to quiet inland hamlets and tucked away fishing villages are also included and provide perfect bases for going out to explore the country.
Alongside the 40 walking routes, this guidebook also includes plenty of practical information on getting to and around Cornwall, as well as details on each walk's distance, timing, terrain, ascent and nearest town. Throughout the walk descriptions, there are details of places of interest along the way, as well as annotated OS maps and stunning photography. The result is an ideal companion to stepping out and exploring the best of Cornwall.
We are always grateful to readers for information about any discrepancies between a guidebook and the facts on the ground. If you would like to send some information to us then please use our Feedback form. They will be published here following review by the author(s).
|When to go|
|Using this guide|
|Walk 1 The Hurlers and the Cheesewring|
|Walk 2 Twelve Men’s Moor and Trewortha Village|
|Walk 3 Brown Willy from Priddacombe Downs|
|Walk 4 Brown Willy from Garrow Downs|
|Walk 5 Brown Willy and the source of the River Fowey|
|Walk 6 Rough Tor and Brown Willy from the north|
|Walk 7 Bray Down and Leskernick Hill|
|The North Coast|
|Walk 8 Sharpnose Point from Coombe|
|Walk 9 Crackington Haven to Dizzard Point|
|Walk 10 The Strangles and Cambeak|
|Walk 11 Boscastle|
|Walk 12 Tintagel and Willapark|
|Walk 13 Around Port Isaac Bay|
|Walk 14 Pentire Point|
|Walk 15 Stepper Point|
|Walk 16 Trevose Head|
|Walk 17 Kelsey Head and Cubert Common|
|Walk 18 St Agnes Head and Beacon|
|Walk 19 Godrevy Point, Navax Point and Hudder Down|
|Penwith and West Cornwall|
|Walk 20 The Hayle Estuary Nature Reserves|
|Walk 21 Wicca Pool and Zennor Head|
|Walk 22 Zennor Hill|
|Walk 23 Gurnard’s Head|
|Walk 24 Hannibal’s Carn, the Nine Maidens and Mên-an-Tol|
|Walk 25 Chûn Quoit and Castle|
|Walk 26 Pendeen Watch and the Levant Mines|
|Walk 27 The Kenidjack Valley and Cape Cornwall|
|Walk 28 The Cot Valley from St Just|
|The Inland Mining Districts|
|Walk 29 The Porkellis Engine Houses|
|Walk 30 Carn Brea and Piece|
|Walk 31 Redruth and Gwennap Pit|
|Walk 32 Carn Brea, Carn Euny, and Bartinney Downs|
|Walk 33 Sennen Cove and Land’s End|
|Walk 34 Around Gwennap Head and Porthcurno|
|Walk 35 Lamorna Cove and Valley from Mousehole|
|The Lizard and Roseland Peninsulas|
|Walk 36 Porthleven and Trewavas Head|
|Walk 37 Halzephron Cliffs from Cury|
|Walk 38 Mullion Cove and Predannack Head|
|Walk 39 Around the Lizard from Cadgwith|
|Walk 40 Zone Point|
|Appendix A Route summary table|
|Appendix B Useful contacts|
|Start/finish||Park by the Penpont Water just south of Bowithick hamlet (SX 183 826)|
|Terrain||Rough pathless moorland, very boggy in places; good navigation skills essential|
|Map||OS Explorer 109 Bodmin Moor|
This walk is ideal for those who really want to get into the wildest parts of Bodmin Moor. Note that the route is pathless throughout, and so is only really suitable for those who know how to take and follow compass bearings.
Start from the bend in the road on the south side of the Penpont Water, from where a track heads southwest through some marshy ground towards Buttern Hill. Follow this track to where it passes through an old boundary and bears sharply left. At this point you should abandon the comfort of the track and head just south of west above a spring and some old mine adits. To your left you’ll see a broad gully, from which the spring emerges; climb round the northwest side of this, then head more directly towards the summit of Buttern Hill at 346m.
If you’re finding the going wet and difficult at this stage, it is probably wise to turn back. To continue westwards to Brown Willy and the source of the Fowey is to get further into the wildest parts of the moor. If the ground underfoot is reasonably dry, and your navigation skills are up to the task, soak up the views from Buttern Hill then head west down to a broad (and occasionally damp) col at spot height 298m (SX 168 815).
The ground rises to the southwest in a gentle gradient, and you should aim for the cairns on High Moor at 354m, then descend just 12m (in altitude) to the southwest to gain the northern slopes of Brown Willy. Climb steeply but easily up the north ridge of Brown Willy to the summit cairn and triangulation pillar.
The route on from the summit lies to the east. You may want to divert from the route slightly to explore the summit ridge to the south, and the second ancient cairn. Take a bearing down to Fowey Well, and then follow a compass bearing to the northeast across the moor to the source of the River Fowey.
The Upper Fowey is a Site of Special Scientific Interest for its wet heath vegetation and herbaceous valley mires. Plants to look out for here are sundews and butterworts, both of which are fascinating to find and thrive in very poor soils. Plants that do well in our uplands have evolved to cope with the typically acidic, nutrient-poor soils, so that for the most part only those species that can tolerate these conditions live there. The exceptions are sundews and butterworts, which take their nutrients from insects. They catch tiny insects on their leaves by attracting them with a sweet, sticky substance. Once the insect is caught, the plant slowly devours it.
As you approach the source of the Fowey, predictably the ground is going to get a bit wetter. Pick a careful way through the bog and you’ll find a little pool, seemingly among many others, where this major Cornish river begins its life. Cross to the east side of the valley, and walk around the southern slopes of Buttern Hill (or climb back over the hill if you prefer). Once you have made it safely around to the east side of Buttern Hill walk north down the broad valley that lies between Buttern Hill to the west and Bray Down to the east (see Walk 11). At the bottom of the valley you will reach the road where your car is parked.