So finally, lockdown is starting to lift here in England and there’s hope in the air that life is going to return to some sort of normality – whatever that is! This means we are able to get out and about a little bit more and explore which we could not be more pleased about. Whilst it’s still all a bit up in the air with regards to foreign travel, we are pleased that we are now able to eat meals al fresco in the spring sunshine, meet up with friends and start to visit lots of outdoor attractions opening across the country. Lots of places and attractions currently require people to book in advance to limited numbers to ensure social distancing so you do have to plan ahead when going out exploring these days but we don’t mind that – I do love doing my research! Lots of restaurants are currently operating in the same way and only having sit-down waiter service but we don’t mind this as it ensures we can get a table at our favourite eateries and know everything is as Covid safe as possible (plus no pesky queuing at the bar!).
With masses of tourists set to descend on Cornwall this summer and lots of locals keen to get back out to explore their beautiful backyard (me included!) I thought it was time I did my research and came up with a list of exciting events and places I’m keen to visit this summer. Whether you’re planning to visit or live nearby then I hope you find something on the list that takes your fancy- our small businesses and local attractions need us having been closed for so long so do show your support where you can!
Something a bit different and something we haven’t done before is see a film whilst in an underground cave! Well, that’s what’s on offer at the cool Carnglaze Caverns this summer. Here is the chance to see a classic film such as The Goonies, Jurassic Park and Pulp Fiction whilst deep underground and immersed in one of the best acoustic settings in Cornwall. It’s sure to be cold though whilst watching this film as it is 10 degrees in the cave so if you visit, make sure to wrap up warm and take blankets! Tickets cost £12 per person with a £2.40 booking fee per ticket (I hate it when they do that!) which doesn’t seem to bad given this unique experience. I think Nathan and I fancy seeing Shawshank Redemption.
Skylight Cinema are also offering summer movie nights including drive-in films at Scorrier House, Redruth and outdoor shows at Great Western Beach and Jubilee Open Air Pool in Penzance. We rathe fancy seeing the Joker at Scorrier House (tickets £20 per car) and Jaws at the outdoor pool (tickets £12.50 per person). More info is available on the Skylight Cinema website.
Anyone who knows Nathan and I will know we love a spot of mini-golf and can get rather competitive when playing! After all, we always agree that the loser buys the ice creams so it’s all to play for! Now we are back in Cornwall I am sure it won’t be long till we re-visits the recently refurbished crazy golf course at Greens of Padstow. Located overlooking the beautiful harbour of Padstow this lovely restaurant and golf course is a great place to spend an afternoon. The course has 18 holes with various sculptures and challenges along the course and costs £7.50 per person. Family tickets are also available for families for 4 (£22) and children under 16 can play for £5.50. After a spot of golf, you can enjoy a lovely meal at the restaurant and enjoy breathtaking views over the harbour out to sea.
Whilst we are talking about golf, something we haven’t tried yet but has been on our list for a while is Cornwall Football Golf Park. Located in St Austell the football golf course uses the same rules as golf but instead of using a club you kick a football into the hole! Sounds simple enough but I bet it’s much trickier than it sounds! The park offers two 18 hole courses and is open all year round. It costs £10 for an adult and £7 for a child (under 18) for one course or you can go for unlimited play on both the Parkland and Hillside courses for £15 for adults / £12 for children.
I love a good garden visit and have been keen to visit the Japanese Garden located in St Mawgan. These stunning gardens combine the natural beauty of Cornwall with Japanese traditions and look super pretty. Admission costs £5 for adults, £2.50 for children and the gardens are open from March to October 10am-6pm. At the moment due to Covid-19 tickets need to be booked in advance on their website.
Another beautiful looking garden that has recently re-opened after the lockdown restrictions is Hidden Valley Gardens. These three-acre gardens are scheduled in a hidden valley and are themed around the Mediterranean, Japanese gardens, cottage beds and an iris garden. Entrance costs £5 for adults and children go free. The gardens are located at Treesmill, near Fowey and pre-booking is not required. I am keen to visit soon whilst everything is in bloom!
Miracle Theatre are back and planning to put on a production called ‘Starcrazy’. The show sounds great and is billed as a “classic comedy about obsession and the rekindling of love, hope and possibility” – just what we all need after this last year+. Miracle Theatre is a lovely local theatre group that tours venues around the southwest. This summer the show will be shown at various places in Cornwall including Enys Garden, Penryn, Tregrehan Gardens, St Austell and the unmissable Minack Theatre, Porthcurno. The tour across the South West runs from 29th June to 28th August and tickets cost £13 for children and £15 for adults. I really enjoy theatre but theatre outdoors is a whole other level of fun so I will defo be booking tickets.
It may not be open just yet but I am avidly awaiting the re-opening of the newly designed Hall For Cornwall in Truro. With its modernly transformed ‘ Cornwall Playhouse’ auditorium the £93 million transformation is set to impress and I for one can’t wait to see it and get back to theatre-going. Whilst not technically scheduled for the summer I already booked for us and some friends tickets to see ‘Fisherman’s Friends The Musical’ which is due to debut in October.
Guys Butterfly House
One unique place we have pre-booked tickets to visit in the summer is Guys Butterfly House in Penzance. For £10, up to four people can visit Guy’s exotic collection of butterflies which he has been growing for the last ten years. The butterflies are housed in a huge polytunnel and visitors can enjoy seeing the butterflies all around them. We are hoping to see some wonderfully pretty butterflies and get some great photos. For more information and to book head to the Guys Butterfly House Facebook page.
Callestick Farm Ice Cream
One of the best places to get ice cream in Cornwall has to be Callestick Ice Cream Parlour – we love it! Situated in Callestick, Truro, not far from the A30 it’s the perfect place to head for ice cream on a sunny day and admire the farm animals too. You can even have see the ice cream is produced in the factory from a little viewing platform and there’s a video too telling you all about the farm. There is a nice café and always tonnes of homemade ice creams to try – we guarantee you will want to try more than one! Callestick Farm is very near to Healey’s Cornish Cyder Farm and we recommend popping in there too either for a guided tour or tasting experience or simply a mooch around their well-stocked cyder shop! We have been a few times and have always enjoyed seeing the farm animals and enjoying some free cyder, gin and rum samples! You can’t beat their fresh apple juice either!
Cycling the Camel Trail
We love country and coastal walks and recently got ourselves some bicycles. We are planning one weekend when the weather is nice to head to Bodmin to cycle the Camel Trail. The trail is 18 miles long in total and runs from Bodmin to Padstow. It’s mostly a flat and off road trail ideal for all ages and abilities. Having walked some of it from Bodmin to Wadebridge before (in the rain), I am keen to cycle and see if we can go a little bit further and quicker on our bikes!
Paradise Park Wildlife Sanctuary
My sister and her husband are planning to visit in August and with them come my gorgeous little niece and nephew. They are big on exploring and family fun and so I am hoping they will be keen for a trip to Paradise Park Wildlife Sanctuary as I have always wanted to go as I’m such a big kid! Situated in Hayle, the park offers visitors the chance to meet amazing wildlife including many rare birds, red pandas, red squirrels, penguins and otters. There’s also a huge Jungle Barn indoor play area and exotic summer gardens. There’s lots of daily events including feeding times and free flying macaws. Prices for the park cost £14.45 for adults and £10/75 for children aged 3-15 years. There’s senior and family tickets available too. It costs a little bit more to add entry to the jungle barn play area to your ticket with adult prices being £16.95 and children being £13.25.
St Michael’s Mount
One of my absolute favourite places in Cornwall is the very special St Michael’s Mount. Down in the west of Cornwall on its own tidal island just off the coast of Marazion stands the magnificent castle which is owned by the National Trust and only reachable via a pathway through the sea (or boat when the tide is in!).
A castle and garden combi ticket cost £24 for adults and £13 for a child over the age of 5 . It’s a little cheaper to visit just the castle or the gardens on their own and family tickets are also available. National Trust members, like Nathan and I, can visit as part of their membership. If you plan on visiting when it’s high tide meaning the path is underwater, then a short boat ride will be needed. This costs £2.50 for adults and £1.50 for under 18’s (National Trust members need to pay also). Nathan’s never been here so I am keen for us to visit this summer, maybe before the hordes of tourists start to arrive!
Finally, of course, Cornwall is known for its gorgeous coastline and there are plenty of beaches to explore when in Cornwall and so this summer we plan to do just that! Some of our favourites in which I am sure we will visit and show off to our friends and family will be Porthtowan, Portreath, Godrevy and Holywell Bay. In the summer holidays the beaches can get very busy and parking often a nightmare so plan to arrive early for a good spot or visit later in the evening when everyone’s gone home for tea! Cornwall is great for some stunning beachfront sunsets so I am keen to get some of these in this summer!
Are any of you planning to visit Cornwall this summer? If so what are you hoping to get up to? Any recommendations, let us know in the comments below!