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  • Writer's pictureClaire

North Cornwall Break: Part 1 - Shipwreck Beaches to Stunning Harbours

Updated: Sep 19, 2022

Wow, quick as a flash a year has passed and Mum and I are back, girls only tour to North Cornwall. This year we craved the dramatic coastlines and heritage of North Cornwall. This year I booked us in a cabin near Crackington Haven, which had the best views of any place I have ever stayed in. "The Weekender" at Cleave Farm Cottages was everything we wanted for a base. The only downside is that the views were so great that I did not pick up my book in the evening as I luxuriated in the view alone. On arrival we just set up home and took a wander locally as there was a footpath next to the farm. This took us to the South West Coast Path immediately and we took in the sea air and had a wonder along the cliffs. The next day we were walking from Crackington Haven to the the Cambeak Headland to the Strangles and back. This walk promised us the best coastal scenery of anywhere in England, it did not disappoint. This walk was amazing, plenty of breathtaking picnic spots along the way.

The rock formations at Crackington Haven are so distinctive that geologists have named the rock type after the cove. The Crackington Formation is a brittle shale whose layers were folded under enormous pressure during Earth movements some 300 million years ago. It makes some excellent rock pooling in and amongst the sandy beach. The climb to the Cambeak looks daunting but navigating the zigzag path makes it less perilous and there are breaking points along the way to catch your breath and look at the vista beyond. The top made the most excellent picnic point and you can view the Strangles beyond, where often there are seals basking on the rocks, or dolphins or basking sharks in the bay.

The walk leads back through a woodland path home to a stream leading back into Crackington Haven, apparently in spring this is full of bluebells. At the end of the walk is a pub to which you can grab some refreshment and take in the views of the beach. That evening I had booked us a restaurant in Boscastle. All I remember from Boscastle is the terrible flooding it faced back in 2004; I was floored, watching the footage on TV; so it was great to see it thriving once more as it really is the most beautiful harbour. Children were playing on the harbour walls and jumping into the sea which acted like their own private swimming pool, whilst canoeists where out for an early evening row, it was nothing short of idyllic.

I chose the Rocket Store to have our evening meal. It was a really funky establishment with good music where you sit watching the chef prepare fish tapas style dishes from the catches that have come in that morning. What an excellent idea. The fish cookery was some of the best we have ever head, the dish of the day for me was the Monkfish in curry butter. I am still thinking about that now.

We still got home to see the beautiful sunset, excited to spend another day at the beautiful North Cornish coast.

The Strangles and Cambeak Walk is found in this Cicerone Guide

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