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Kingsand/Cawsand
The two villages of Cawsand and Kingsand on the Rame Peninsula may seem like one settlement today, but a tiny stream behind the Halfway House Inn was, until the 1840s, the boundary between Devon and Cornwall; further back in history this sliver of water in effect separated Celtic Cornwall from Saxon England. The deep water of Cawsand Bay was the chief anchorage for ships in Plymouth Sound until the breakwater was built in 1841 and many great expeditions, led by such figures as Gilbert, Drake and Hawkins, gathered here before setting off for distant lands. Pilchard fishing and smuggling were the main occupations of the villagers until the mid-nineteenth century and there is a string of old pilchard cellars along the water’s edge beyond Kingsand.

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Kynance Cove
One of the most famous of Cornwall’s coastal beauty spots, Kynance has been a attraction for excursionists since the 18th century. Brilliant turquoise water and white sand, with islands, caves and unexpected views are still a powerful draw today. The rock here is serpentine, so named because of its gloriously variegated colours, particularly when wet, which resemble the skin of a snake. There is a National Trust car park on the downs above, and the surrounding area is noted for its botanical rarities.

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Lamorna
The tiny harbour in wild Lamorna Cove, at the seaward end of a bosky, tumbling valley, was built to serve the granite quarries which flourished here in the last century. The harbour suffered badly from its exposure to heavy seas and, more often than not, the granite had to be laboriously transported overland to Penzance for shipment. The old quarries and their dumps are eerily overgrown now, but the high-quality stone from here once went to build many great public buildings in London as well as the Bishop Rock, Wolf Rock and Longships lighthouses.

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Land’s End
The most westerly point in England, 870 miles from John O’Groats, Land’s End is one of the most celebrated places in the country. The coastline is dramatic, and features some curious names such as the Armed Knight, Kettle’s Bottom and Dr. Syntax’s Head. The rock known as Dr. Johnson’s Head was looked on askance by Wilkie Collins when he came to Land’s End in 1850; he could see nothing of Johnson in it but instead found, ‘in violent exaggeration, the worst physiognomical peculiarities of Nero and Henry the Eighth, combined in one face!’ The present lighthouse on the Longships rocks, 1.25 miles west of Land’s End, was built between 1870 and 1873; the Wolf Rock lighthouse, eight miles away, should also be visible and on a clear day it is possible to see the Isles of Scilly, some 28 miles distant.

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Lanlivery
With its lofty church tower a landmark for miles around, the village of Lanlivery stands tall upon a windy hilltop. Here is the renowned Churchtown Farm Field Studies Centre, which offers environmental studies and outdoor adventures for people of all ages with a wide variety of disabilities. To the north is the mysterious, powerful landscape of Redmoor and Breney Common, part of which is protected as a nature reserve, with the great granite mass of Helman Tor isolated in its midst. To the south is the Luxulyan valley, full of rushing water and industrial remains and spanned by the monumental Treffry viaduct/aqueduct built in 1839.

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Click here for Cornish Towns, here for Myths and Legends and here for Cornish History.

Coming soon, the Cornish Accommodation Directory......

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