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The county of Cornwall is located in one of the most glorious corners of the British Isles. With its miles of unspoiled coastline, beautiful rolling moors and charming villages, Cornwall is a wonderful place to enjoy a relaxing camping holiday. Situated at the far south-west of England, this historic and romantic county offers a balmy climate and long summers, which make it the perfect place to pitch up and get some sun. Read on to find out more about the unique charms of camping in Cornwall and why it's the ideal location for your holiday.
Location and Landscape
The peninsula of Cornwall forms the south-west tip of England, the Irish Sea laps against its north shore and the English Channel against the south; it offers a varied coastline that ranges between golden sandy beaches, sweeping cliffs and great surfing. Campsites in Cornwall offer the chance to enjoy all of the different moods of this magnificent coast. Hill walking, surfing and lazy days slurping ice cream in your deck chair are all within easy reach. There are dozens of wonderful camp sites dotted along the entire coast, many of which allow direct access to the sea. Designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, Cornwall offers campers the chance to have one of the most beautiful coastlines on their doorstep. Whether you're looking for adventure, relaxation or an insight into England's mythic past, Cornwall won't disappoint.
An Unusual Heritage
Though its location means that it has strong ties to both the Celtic nations and France, as well as England, Cornwall retains its own very strong cultural identity. Cornwall has its own constitutional status, meaning that it has a degree of self-governing power that is similar to that of Scotland and Wales. This mix of influences gives Cornwall a truly unique flavour. Whether you're strolling through a picture-perfect fishing village or hiking across the wild terrain of Bodmin Moor, Camping in Cornwall with Eurocampings offers easy, comfortable access to all the many beautiful and unique attractions that make this fascinating part of England so special.
A Short History of Cornwall
The history of Cornwall goes all the way back to the Iron Age, but it really starts rolling with the arrival of the Romans in the 1st Century AD. Cornwall's location has always been an attractive and useful spot for all kinds of foreign powers who had their eyes on the British mainland – the Romans used the town of Essex as a base for its operations for the whole of southern England. Tin mining later became a very important part of the local economy and brought great wealth to the area. Cornwall was also once a hotspot for pirates, who would lure ships to their doom on the jagged rocks by using fake 'lighthouses'. Smugglers, meanwhile, used Cornwall's many small, hidden bays to bring cargoes of illicit goods ashore.
The Cornish Capital
Cornwall's county town is Truro, and although it's a port and a city, it retains all the charm and calm of a well-appointed market town – dominated by a towering Gothic Revival cathedral. The city's winding streets, delightful little shops and lovely harbour guarantee a great day out. Whether you're looking for quaint tea rooms, old-fashioned pubs or welcoming restaurants, Truro is where you need to be. And if you're visiting in the summer months, you won't be able to miss the riot of colour that is Truro's annual entry into the Britain in Bloom festival (2014 winner).
Its romantic history and lush landscape has long made Cornwall a haven for artists. Tate St. Ives (an offshoot of the Tate Gallery in London) houses works of the area's best-known artists and sculptors in a striking modern gallery that overlooks the beautiful sands of Porthmeor Beach. Cornwall is also well known for its vibrant folk music tradition. Many festivals and events are held throughout the year celebrating this rich musical heritage. Every year on May 8th, the town of Helston holds the Furry Dance, which is an unusual pageant with songs that salute the passing of winter. Songs are also to be heard during May in Padstow, where the 'Obby 'Oss festival takes place. Get ready to see two processions led by hobby horses (hence the festival's name) battling it out through the town!
What to Eat in Cornwall
The 'national' dish of Cornwall is, of course, the Cornish Pasty. Meat, potato, swede and onion slathered in pepper and encased in pastry may not sound like a mouth-watering feast, but when prepared correctly, the Cornish Pasty transforms into a real treat. Originally produced as an easily transportable meal for farm workers, the pasty has lasted the test of time and is still hugely popular in Cornwall. One particularly odd pasty-based tradition involves a giant pasty being passed over the goalposts of the Cornish Pirates rugby team every St Piran's Day!
Days Out In Cornwall
No visit to Cornwall is complete without a visit to Tintagel, on the county's north coast. The legendary birthplace of King Arthur, the Tintagel was later the site of a castle built by the 1st Earl of Cornwall in the 13th century. Ruins of the castle still remain and the island where it stands can be reached by a footbridge from the mainland. It truly is a special place, and it takes a hard heart not to feel a shiver or two as you stand on such a fabled spot and take in the breathtaking scenery.
St. Michael's Mount
There are some beautiful, unique and memorable sights along the Cornish coast but none of them quite match St. Michael's Mount. Once an island near the town of Penzance, the Mount is now connected to the mainland by a man-made causeway. Well, it's sometimes connected. The construction of the causeway means that the island can only be reached during periods of low tide. After that, you'll have to wait for the next tide to get back to land. Once you do reach the island, you'll find a wonderland of castles, gardens and a picturesque port, as well as cafes and restaurants.
Sail and Steam
One of the most eye-catching events in the Cornish calendar is the Fowey Regatta, which takes place every August. Fireworks and fancy dress fill the town of Fowey for a full week. But all of this comes second to the yachts of all sizes, shapes and colours that fill the harbour and sea beyond. And yes, there's a giant Cornish Pasty procession here too! Another great day out is to be found at the Trevithick Day in Camborne. Taking place in April, the festival celebrates local engineer Richard Trevithick with a parade of 18th century steam engines.
Quiet Corners and Hotspots
Camping in Cornwall is easy with Eurocampings. There is a wide variety of spots to choose from, and Eurocampings helps you make your decision much easier. Whether you're looking for lively family hotspots or quiet, out-of-the-way retreats, Cornwall offers enough options for you to find the perfect site for you. Those looking to escape the crowds and enjoy a basic but comfortable camping experience should head to Gwithian Farm Campsite in Hayle, just a few miles outside St. Ives, a well-maintained site that's only a few minutes stroll from the beach, there's also a charming little village nearby that boasts the family-friendly Red River Inn. Another quiet option is Beacon Cottage Farm in St Agnes, which offers a clifftop view of coastline below. Be aware though – it can get a bit breezy here.
Different Ways to Camp in Cornwall
You'll find a whole host of different camping options right along the Cornish coast. Why not try out the luxury of Cornish Tipi Holidays in St. Kew? With only 40 tipis set amongst 16 hectares of beautiful woodland surrounding a private lake, this is real camping. You'll need to chop your own logs and build your own fires though as the site does not have any electricity. You can also further embrace you inner mountain man by kayaking on the lake. Now and again, it's nice to hit the town. Whilst Cornwall doesn't really 'do' touristy places, there are a few attractions and locations that can get very busy indeed. St. Ives is a beautiful little town, but sometimes it can be hard to move – let alone find a quiet cafe or bar. Likewise, the surfing heaven of Newquay is also very popular, especially with younger people.
Driving in Cornwall can be a challenge. The roads are designed to serve the local population, but during the holiday months they become a little overburdened. Larger roads should still be manageable, but as soon as you start taking side roads, be prepared for some tight situations. Two cars going in different directions on a single lane road can sometimes take some doing. The same applies to seaside towns. It's tempting to take a spin through a charming little fishing village but the narrow lanes can turn a minor detour into a bit of an adventure. You might be better off parking up outside the town and taking a wander in.
Camping in Cornwall is extremely popular with families during the summer months. When the school holidays begin, the county – and the camp sites – starts filling up fast. With that in mind, it might be wise for those without children to consider coming just before or after the holiday period. The mild Cornish climate means that September can be a glorious month to visit. Everything has calmed down a little, the weather's still very pleasant and there's a little more room to move.
Come Camping in Cornwall!
Campsites in Cornwall makes for a delightful holiday. The variety of camping options, the beautiful weather, the diversity of the coastline and the many unique attractions mean that you are all-but guaranteed a great time. And when you book your campsite with Eurocampings, you're sure to find the site that fits your needs perfectly. There's nothing worse than pulling into a random site that you know immediately is not for you, so it pays to learn as much as you can about your chosen location and book before you arrive.
Don't Miss ...
In Cornwell, there are a wide variety of sightseeing nevertheless there are some unique ones that you cannot miss. St. Ives is truly one of the most delightful seaside towns. If you want a tip, try visiting early in the morning before all the crowds start turning up. Tintagel and St. Michael's Mount are also must-sees. And we haven't even talked about Land's End - the most south-westerly point in England!
Top 5 Things to do in Cornwall
The Cornwall Aviation Heritage Museum in Newquay allows you to take a close look into the history of jet fighters, light aircraft and even bombers.
Pirate's Quest, also in Newquay, is an immersive trip through Cornwall's piratical past. Your Jack Sparrow-esque guide will take you through a thrilling hour-long history of sea-based banditry.
Padstow Brewing Company offers tours around their brewery that make a for a full day out. They'll take you through a complete batch of ale from hops to glass.
Tintagel is very popular, but for very good reason. You will find the famous Tintagel Castle here, linked with the legend of King Arthur. You simply have to work this historic spot into your holiday. Go early or go late, but make sure you go!