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It was August bank holiday and my family and I decided on a spontaneous getaway in Cornwall. We packed up our camping gear and drove down towards Penzance, Cornwall, we towed a camping trailer with tents and camping gear and our second eldest son and his fiancée followed behind in their car.  A weekend of camping, of gorgeous beaches, tin mines and coves, oh and pirates, lots of pirates!

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The drive to Cornwall from Nottinghamshire was roughly 320 miles which by rights should have taken (According to Google) 5hrs 30mins, but on a Friday before the bank holiday weekend, a total nightmare, so much congestion! We arrived and camped up our tents, gazebo and made beds. Once we’d paid our way, it was most definitely time for a walk to the beach with the dogs. The sea was such a welcome sight after our long drive! It’s such a peaceful stretch of beach with lovely views of St Michael’s Mount in the distance to the left and the town of Penzance to the right, even the dogs were delighted to be on the beach. Time to chill, the weekend had started! Shoes off and barefoot walking along the sandy beach, the three dogs were in the sea before you could blink and everybody doing their own thing, we even managed some very nice sea glass finds along the beach.   

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Saturday, the first full day in Cornwall and we took a wander into Penzance, a short 10-15-minute stroll with Penzance train station coming into view as a train arrived at the platform, since we were looking out for an arrival ourselves we stopped a while to see who was arriving at the station, quite surprisingly, pirates in full regalia were getting off the train, well what did we expect, it’s Penzance after all.

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We took a slow pace winding our way through the town, in and out of the shops taking in the atmosphere and stopping for a minute to listen to a couple of young buskers wearing pirate hats and playing a pirate’s sea shanty next to a Cornish bakery that sold Cornish pasties. Did you know that the oldest Cornish pasty bakery in the world, Warrens bakery, is in Penzance? (Just a little trivia for you.)   

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Eventually after a tour of the town, a wander around the harbour and heading back toward camp, we discovered the real reason behind the mass influx of pirates, there was a Guinness world record attempt taking place on bank holiday Sunday for the most pirates on the promenade at Penzance, now it all made sense!  

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On this bank holiday weekend, we decided to discover new places, so what better way to explore than a Saturday afternoon drive out to scout a few locations, tin mines, coves and generally recce some peaceful spots. We definitely found what we were looking for plus a bonus discovery of a fish and chip shop for Saturday fish and chip tea. (What no Cornish pasty I hear you cry. Oh, we had our share!) 😊 

Saturday night was a relaxed affair, sitting around a camp fire toasting marshmallows, telling tales, having a laugh, a glass of wine and a mellow mood.  

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Sunday was upon us so soon and our last day in Cornwall, we had to make the most of this beautiful location. It was decided that a good walk was in order to see some stunning views and give the dogs a good run. My son and fiancée stayed more local to the camp and relaxed on the beach, our cliff walk and circular would be much too far for a heavily pregnant young lady, so they both had a chilled-out beach day with their dog, Smokey, whilst we explored. 

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We discovered a gorgeous little circular at a village called Rinsey, Parking however is a difficult task unless you arrive quite early and bag yourself a parking spot in the National Trust car park. Straight out of the car park and the views are just spectacular! Good sturdy footwear is a good idea and the route is not suitable for pushchairs, but is absolutely gorgeous, my kind of walk, rugged, quiet and with memorable views all around. We took a picnic along and stopped to eat in a wonderful spot overlooking the sea, to the right of us and way below us a small sandy cove, to our left we had picturesque views of an old Cornish tin mine and a rocky shoreline beneath, the sea was amazingly clear and blue, as was the sky, which was only broken by the odd scattering of billowing cloud, the weather was quite sublime, we couldn’t have wished for more.  

We walked Bandit and Max, the dogs down toward one of the old tin mines to get a better look once we’d finished our lazy, relaxed picnic. This was the Cornwall I came to see and experience, tranquil, rugged walks with picture perfect views, I could almost imagine Poldark scenes here!  

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The tin mines have been abandoned many moons ago, but they add so much to the scenery here and we couldn’t help imagining the endurance and hard work that would have once been common place here, especially in the harsh weather with storms rolling in from the sea on these exposed cliffs, while on this fine day we basked in the summer heat and wander at leisure.  

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The coastal path began to get a little more uneven and tricky underfoot for a way and led us closer to the cliffs, not that I minded one bit, coastal cliff walks are gorgeous, up high with views out to sea and the wind blowing in your face, so refreshing and exhilarating. The dogs did need to go back on a lead for a while just for safety sake since we were so close to the edge. I could have stayed on the cliffs for hours just looking out over the rocks admiring the scenery, but I don’t think the dogs had that in mind, they were eager to move on and explore as were the kids.  

Upwards and onwards with amazing views all the way, and if you manage to follow in my footsteps, look out for the camel! Yes, a camel indeed, there’s a rocky formation which I doubt you could miss on the journey along the cliffs, if you look at it one way it’s a camel or look at it another way and it’s a meerkat, others see a hooded priest stood at an alter! Half way point and headed back, the path returns whence we came along a higher path and through a field of cows. The sights are still lovely on the return path and soon it was time to say goodbye to Trewavas cliffs and go back to the car. 

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The day wasn’t over yet and being our final day, we returned to the beach local to the campsite at Gulval for a splash in the sea and had a good laugh paddling with the dogs while the sounds of pirate music carried on the wind from Penzance across the bay, kind of a surreal experience really if you hadn’t realized the Pirates on the prom world record attempt taking place at Penzance was the source of the pirates of the Caribbean theme tune on the wind. We later discovered that the attempt at the world record for the most pirates on the promenade, sadly wasn’t successful on that occasion due to three would be pirates staying too long in the pub. We were busy making our own fun, even letting little Smokey the terrier sit on my back as I drifted along the shallows on a body board. It had been a fun filled and satisfying weekend, and with a hungry family at the end of our last evening in Cornwall it was decided to finish the weekend off with a Chinese takeaway. Yummy! The following morning was a busy one, up early packed up and a long drive home. I look forward to returning to the beautiful land of Cornwall another time for another adventure.

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