Saturday, 22 April 2017

Hayle Estuary to St. Ives

One of my 10 recommendations for spending some time in Falmouth (posting of 11th March 2015) was a train ride from Falmouth to Penzance (via Truro) and maybe then on to St. Ives (via the branch line at St. Erth).
If you enjoy a beautiful coastal walk, then another option is to take the train from St. Erth to St. Ives, but alight at the first stop, Lelant Saltings, which is on the estuary of the River Hayle.
Estuary of the River Hayle at Lelant
From here it is a relatively easy 4 mile walk to St. Ives, the coast path being accessed by crossing the West Cornwall golf course, and passing the 15th century St. Uny's church, where Richard Mozley is interred.
Crossing the golf course to the coastal path
Once on the coast path there are great views across the estuary to Godrevy lighthouse and then the huge and lovely Porthkidney Sands.
The Hayle estuary and distant Godrevy lighthouse
Porthkidney Sands

Once past Carbis Bay it is a gentle stroll to St. Ives, which can be extremely crowded in the summer months (a good reason for taking the train, as driving in the narrow streets can be a nightmare!). If you wish to linger, there are many fine restaurants, but you might wish to sample a Cornish pasty from one of the many "award winning" pasty shops, but be careful if you eat outdoors- the very large herring gulls here can be vicious and opportunistic- no wonder the original short story "The Birds" was set in Cornwall, not California as in the famous film. 
Carbis Bay
Approaching St. Ives
From St. Ives station take the short trip back to St. Erth, wait for the mainline train to Truro, and then change for Falmouth- a great day out!

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