Things to do

Things to do

There's so much to do in this part of Cornwall alone that it's difficult to know where to start?

Spend a day exploring St Ives with its twisty streets and cobbled alleys, reminders of its fishing and smuggling past. Tate St Ives is above Porthmeor Beach, the surfing beach. While you're here, visit the Beach Café or get a taste of surfing action at the St Ives Surf School. They run regular lessons for children and adults. You'll see surfers out all year round. Honestly ? not making it up.

St Ives Surf School

Along the beach to your right, you'll see The Island. It's not really an island but it acts like one. Walk up to the top to see the tiny chapel and the National Coastguard station for St Ives, which is staffed by volunteers. Drop down onto the lovely Porthgwidden Beach, with its double row of brightly-painted beach huts, and another great beach café.

Porthgwidden Beach Godrevy Lighthouse

Walk back into town, either through downalong, the oldest part of St Ives, or along the sea wall, taking in the fabulous view of Godrevy Lighthouse (the inspiration for Virginia Woolf's 'To the Lighthouse'). There are loads of galleries and shops to explore, and plenty of pubs, cafés and restaurants to keep you fed and watered. Or get a pasty and stroll along the harbour, making sure you keep it out of sight of the gulls.

Porthminster Beach is the St Ives beach closest to An Dyji. If you take the bus to St Ives, this is where the bus terminates. It's also the terminus of the St Ives branch railway, one of the loveliest lines in the country. It hugs the coastline from St Ives to St Erth, and has featured in many documentaries, as well as doing service in a number of period piece fiction series. It's worth taking the trip just for fun, and you can always get off at Lelant Saltings, the closest station to the holiday village.

The Lizard

If you feel like a trip further out, the Lizard is the most southerly point in the UK mainland. Lizard Point and Kynance Cove are owned by the National Trust and you couldn't wish for more dramatic scenery, fascinating fauna and flora.

There are plenty of top visitor attractions in the area. In Hayle, only five minutes or so from An Dyji, visit Paradise Park, wildlife sanctuary and indoor play area. Also at the Hayle Estuary is an RSPB reserve if you prefer your wildlife a little wilder.

Within 30 minutes you can be in Truro, a lovely cathedral city and the administrative centre for Cornwall. They refer to the most southern city in the UK as a place of 'culture, countryside and cobbles'. Wander through the city spotting Georgian architecture, visiting art galleries and sampling good food.

Head south to Falmouth, a town on the River Fal with an impressive maritime heritage, and which has now become a centre for the creative industries in the region.

Falmouth

In between, explore Mousehole, Mevagissey, Newlyn and all the tiny villages and hamlets which make up this part of the Cornish peninsula.

Want to go back in time? A winding single-track road takes you off the Penzance road and across Cornish countryside to Chysauster Ancient Village, a fine example of an Iron Age settlement .

The weather in St Ives

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