When visiting Cornwall a) don’t go in peak season, you will spend most of your time in a car trying to get to somewhere and then not be able to park. B) Venture further from the most well known tourist spots and you may just find a true gem. Today I found just that, Zennor Hamlet & the best mackerel pate I have ever tasted.
Where is Zennor Hamlet?
Zennor Hamlet it only about 5 miles south of St Ives and also will not take you down any truly tiny lanes which are everywhere in Cornwall. However during peak season I imagine this tiny place gets swamped and is gridlocked! Turn off the main road and you will see the car park sign just ahead of you. It’s fairly large but as I have just mentioned I would not want to be here if it was really busy. Please be respectful and pay the voluntary £1 fee to park here, you can stay all day, plus it’s a bargain!
There is an approximately 8 mile loop around Zennor and you can choose to start by heading straight for the coastal path or begin up high on the fields. We chose the fields to begin with and had grand plans for a figure of 8 walk with a spot of lunch half way around. We partially achieved but I digress.
Beware, these are working fields and you will come across cattle. We had timed our walk perfectly as just as we were passing one farm with over 100 cows in it, they were waiting to release them. They were all mooing at the gate ready to walk down the road to goodness knows which field. We got a wriggle on as I didn’t fancy being trampled by the herd!
Thinking I was only going to be surrounded by cattle I was really surprised at the diversity of the scenery before getting to the coast. Beautiful yellows and whites lined the hedges and we walked down this gorgeous ‘corridor’ all the way to the cliffs.
Granite boulders are everywhere, little, large and humungous! Make sure you have your wits about you as you will be clambering up, over and around these the whole way. At one point the path in my opinion was an up hill waterfall which was the only route available. Luckily it had not rained for a while and it was not too slippy. I also now own appropriate footwear so I was good to go!
The Tinners Arms
This 4 mile up and down section of the route bought us back towards Zennor, so at the appropriate point we headed up hill as it was ‘lunch o’clock’. The sun was out so we sat in a lush beer garden of the Tinners Arms, part of which faces out to sea. Our refreshing pints of cider in hand, we got a chance to check out the menu.
Wanting to pick something that was not available back home I went for the Mackerel pate. This was honestly the best thing I have tasted in a long time, I could have eaten it all again! Mr C went for the fish & chips, declaring starvation and exhaustion, he was equally as impressed.
We had thought we would head back out the other side of Zennor to complete the 2nd half of our figure of 8, but as this was day 3 of many many miles we got another pint instead and called it a day….for the moment. What this does mean is that we can come back, do another stunning (and hard) walk and eat more mackerel! Winners!
Whilst you are here pop across the road (quite literally) and find the mermaid chair which comes with a local legend. Enter the church and it’s in the alcove on the right with an information plaque above it. The church itself is very pretty, traditional and has many lovely stained glass windows in it. Definitely worth a little look as you are here already. It was our 2nd day of Mermaids, we spotted some swimming in Porthleven the day before! Yes really, have a look.
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