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Local Walks

A winter evening in Durgan on the Helford River

January 20, 2020 No Comments

As a winters day draws to a close, a hush envelops the Helford. The only sounds are those of waves rocking pebbles on the shore and a cormorant splashing as he catches dinner in the last of the light.

All year round, the hamlet of Durgan on the Helford River has an enchanting draw- nestled as it is against the water, cocooned by woodland. Durgan was originally a collection of fisherman’s cottages, and protected from over development by the hard work of the National Trust, it timelessly remains one of the most idyllic waterside villages in Cornwall with just 17 properties.

Guests staying at our cottages in Durgan often regale us with stories of swims before bed or of taking their morning coffee down to the water, enjoying the peace and quiet before the day ahead.

Upriver from Durgan you’ll find the villages of Helford Passage and Helford, along with various inlets and creeks like Frenchman’s Creek, made famous by Daphne Du Maurier in her novel of the same name.

On a clear evening the crisp light that you only see in winter makes marvels out of the everyday, and even things like lobster-pots become beautiful. The waters of the Helford River run clear even in the winter.

The occasional walker will pass by with a nod and a smile as if to say ‘we are both here, both so lucky’… and aren’t we just.

Holidays on the Helford River are inspiring and rejuvenating all year round. To see our cottages in Durgan, click here and start planning your holiday to this beautiful and secluded part of Cornwall.

Ideas for dog friendly days out in Cornwall

June 21, 2019 No Comments

The Falmouth and Helford River area of Cornwall is the perfect place for a day out with your dog and these tips are bound to get tails wagging. In celebration of today being ‘bring your dog to work day’, we’re championing everyday as bring your dog on holiday day! With over 50 dog-friendly properties in the portfolio of Cornish Holiday Cottages and with our resident doggy experts on duty, we’re well qualified to advise you on the very best days out with you and your beloved pet in Cornwall!

Beaches

We are spoilt for choice with beautiful beaches in Cornwall. Long stretches of golden sand with clear waters line the coast. But come the summer, many of them become off limits to our hairy companions.

Luckily, the waters of the Helford are full of little coves and beaches which are dog-friendly all year round. You and your dog can scamper to your hearts content along the 2,000 foot long stretch of sand at Prisk Cove, or the sheltered cove of Port Saxon. Grebe Beach near Mawnan Smith is perfect for a spot of sunbathing, and for a swim with your pet.

Pubs

We Cornish folk have a soft spot for our dogs and our pubs, so we love being able to combine the two with the welcoming dog-friendly places to eat and drink in Cornwall. We love the Pandora Inn outside Mylor near Falmouth, where dogs are welcome to sit outside with owners on a pontoon stretching out onto the water.
The Ferryboat on the banks of the River Helford in the village of Helford Passage is another marvelous option for drinking and dining with your dog in tow. Dogs are allowed inside and outside of the restaurant.
If looking out onto the ocean and the beautiful Gyllyngvase beach in Falmouth at sunset appeals, dinner on the terrace at the award winning Gylly Beach café is an absolute must. With outdoor heating and blankets on standby, it’s cosy for everyone even as dusk settles and the moon rises over the ocean.

Walks

The South West coast path. Need we say a single word more? So much of beautiful Cornwall is accessible to walkers via the footpath that hugs the coastline, taking in all of what makes this part of the world truly magic. Walk with your dog along the Roseland Heritage Coast for wonderful views of the sea, or along the Lizard peninsular for dramatic cliffs. The Penwith Heritage Coast provides all the drama and mystery of Poldark country. Not to mention the gentle lanes and pretty paths that criss-cross all along the Helford and Falmouth area. You and your dog will find that there is so much scenery to explore, you’ll simply have to come back year after year to see it all!

Shopping

Sometimes we just need a bit of retail therapy. Here is where the harbourside market town of Falmouth comes into its own. A farmers market on Falmouth Moor every Tuesday, and a market on a Saturday provide ample opportunity. Browse for music at Jam in Falmouth, or search through tomes for a ‘tail’ to read at the dog-friendly Beerwolf Books.

On the Water

Visitors come from far and wide to Cornwall in order to delight in being on the water. With ferries to get from A to B in leisurely style or for a scenic sightseeing trip with your dog, catch one of the many boats departing from Falmouth pier. Perhaps you’ll be bound for a beautiful trip up the Helford river, or set for a lovely day out in beautiful St Mawes for ice cream and fish and chips.

Attractions

Trelissick House and Garden is a dream day out for dogs and owners. Whilst our four-legged friends might not be permitted within the main House and Gardens of this spectacular historical estate on the banks of the River Fal just outside of Falmouth, there are dog walking opportunities aplenty in the acres and acres of historical woodland and meadows. After a scamper around, the wonderful courtyard café has sheltered seating outdoors for you and your best friend to enjoy a cream tea.
The Cornish Seal Sanctuary on the Helford in Gweek allows dogs on leads, so curious pooches can finally get a glimpse of the marine life within the blue waters of the Cornish coast.
Pendennis Castle in Falmouth is run by English Heritage, and allows dogs on leads both indoors and outdoors. With exhibitions on the Tudor history of Cornwall, along with fascinating insights into our maritime past. Great views are to be found from over the battlements to Falmouth bay and the mouth of the river Fal (smaller dogs might need to be picked up to appreciate the views!)

We hope this gives you some idea of just a few wonderful things you and your dog can get up to on your holiday in Cornwall. Don’t forget to browse our pet friendly properties to find a place to snuggle up after your busy days out!

Exploring the Helford on foot

August 25, 2017 No Comments

Grebe beach - helford river - august 2016

Come rain or shine the Helford amplifies all the brilliance of a perfect Cornish walk.

This is the county’s coastal scenic splendour at its best. All routes are well-signed and lead to picture-perfect locations, whether woodland or by the water.

Tiny hamlets, time almost at a standstill, pebbly beaches and sandy shoreline, plus rockpools and rocky outcrops to explore. Shells and all manner of splendid distractions, it’s a feast for the eyes, picturesque and easy on the foot.

Take your time, stop, look and listen. You’ll see, hear and feel the natural beauty, the sweeping curves, the treeline edges of the Helford River and the glistening seascape. Calm or storm, there’s nothing to compare with a walk by the sea.

Fascinating houses in picturesque, ‘chocolate box’ villages like Durgan and wildlife in abundance. Tiny tracks and trails giving hints of the plentiful nocturnal activity.

Durgan.Helford.Cornwall-11

Sweeping to the shoreline, natural garden mixed with planted perfection of Trebah and Glendurgan.

And always a buzz, put-put of tiny boat engines, yachts and boats at anchor dotted about. In the creeks at higher tide all’s awash with hustle and bustle. Fish jumping, boats bobbing and waves lapping. Low tide brings its wealth of wonder too. Perfect for ‘Swallows and Amazons’ playtime as children skim stones and small dogs pant as barbecues sizzle at the waterside.

Mostly sheltered from the ravages of wind and tide, it’s an excellent place and space for on and off the water. There’s nothing like walking round then taking a boat trip to see the ‘other side’.

This is postcard-perfect Cornwall, where holiday memories are made. This makes all the things we have do to get here… worthwhile.

Here’s one of our favourite Helford River walks:

Mawnan Church to the Ferry Boat Inn, Helford Passage

Park at the pretty church at the end of Church Lane just outside the village of Mawnan Smith. From here walk through the kissing gate and into the sweeping field down towards the Helford River onto Parson’s Beach. A gentle stroll for about an hour along the coast path pass Porth Saxon, Grebe Rock and on to the tiny fishing village of Durgan, like stepping back in time. Carry on along the coastpath past Trebah Gardens and onto the Helford Passage.

Here, you can reward yourself at the family run Ferry Boat Inn. Take a seat in the pub’s outside terrace and enjoy homemade pub classics, whilst drinking in the view, ready for your return journey back.

View Helford River Cottages.

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