Walk - The Cove - Gwennap Head - Bosistow, St Levan & Porthcurno

Walk information provided with help from Natural England. Map reproduced by permission of Ordnance Survey on behalf of HMSO. © Crown copyright and database right 2019. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100022021.

Route Description

A longer loop westwards around the coast, crossing inland to Porthcurno before returning along the South West Coast Path above the sandy cove at Porth Chapel. At Porthcurno the Submarine Telegraphy Museum celebrates a century of international communications centred on this tiny hamlet, after the first undersea cables connecting Britain with her Empire were run from here in 1870. The Minack Theatre is perched dramatically on the cliffs above, with Treryn Dinas and the Logan Rock a spectacular backdrop to the open-air performances that have been taking place here since the first production, 'The Tempest', was put on in 1932. At Porth Chapel the fifth century hermit St Levan built himself a tiny hermitage on the hillside, with a holy well nearby, and a hamlet grew up around the medieval church on the top of the hill.

From The Cove Cornwall take the Lamorna Valley road inland. At the junction with the B3315 turn left signposted Lands End. Follow this road for over 5 miles. After the turning to Porthcurno look for the minor road on the left as the B3315 turns sharp right at Polrigga. Take the turning signposted Porthgwarra 1½ miles. Continue on this road winding past Roskestal Farm until you reach Porthgwarra. Follow the signs to the Pay and Display car park.

  1. From the Porthgwarra car park turn left to drop down the road towards the sea and pick up the South West Coast Path on your right above the tiny beach. Follow the path around Gwennap Head to carry on around the cove at Porth Loe. Stay with the Coast Path as it pulls out around Pellitras Point and Black Carn, carrying on above Folly Cove and cutting across the headland Carn Barra to walk above Zawn Kellys and on to Pendower Coves.
  2. When the path starts to pull out around the far side of the cove and the open heathland on your right gives way to fields, take the path leading inland to a grassy lane.Carry on along the lane and then the road, ignoring the track from the left a short way on, to bear right around Bosistow Farmhouse.
  3. Take the footpath on the right before the farmhouse, going through the left-hand hedge of the first field and crossing the next two diagonally to turn left on the road before Arden-Sawah ('Silver Stream') Farm. Fork right at the junction and walk past a footpath along a lane on your left to take the next footpath on the left, on a gentle right-hand bend. Follow the hedge through two fields, carrying on ahead through the third and fourth to follow the hedges again to come out by St Levan's Church.
  4. For a shortcut follow the road seawards from the church, bearing right to drop down to the South West Coast Path and then turning right to return to Gwennap Head. For the full route to Porthcurno, however, take the footpath leading to the north-east from the churchyard, coming out between the farm buildings at Rospletha. Turn right on the road and follow the dog-leg around to the left to pick up the footpath on the right. On the Coast Path turn right and follow the acorn waymarkers back to the car park at Gwennap Head.
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