Spring Saunters in West Cornwall

Warmed by the Gulf Stream, the famously bright, clear light around West Penwith – so inspirational to generations of artists – is especially colourful in the spring. As well as the lavish exotic blooms in the many tropical gardens and parks in town and country around this part of the coast, there are great swathes of daffodils in commercial plantations, as well as hosts of them 'tossing their heads in sprightly dance' beneath every tumbledown stone wall, in the orchards, under the hedges, even out on the most exposed of coastal heathlands.

Around the granite boulders and monuments on the moorland areas, soft bracken unfurls between clumps of primroses and delicate heads of violets, and the thorn bushes with their sharp new leaves and their tumbling blossom ring with the song of newly-arrived wheatears and warblers. Hen harriers and buzzards hunt over the high ground, while on the cliffs kittiwakes and fulmars nest in noisy colonies above turquoise seas striped like mackerel by the fresh winds that whip the waves to white froth as they roll in on the sandy beaches.