I just love getting out and about at Easter time when the countryside is bursting into life. Trees are cloaking themselves with leaves of the brightest green, primroses, celandines and bluebells carpet the woodland floors and the wild creatures are scurrying around building homes for their next generation.
Tehidy near Camborne is a country park owned by Cornwall Council and is a place where you can wander on way marked paths for hours, surrounded by all of the above!
Originally it was home to the famous Bassett mining family who made their fortunes from tin and copper mining and built the port at Portreath nearby to export the minerals and import coal from South Wales to power the mine engines. The Bassetts feature in the Poldark novels and the tall cross on Carn Brea near Redruth, visible for miles around is a memorial to Sir Francis Bassett built in 1836. Like many of the famous Cornish landowners who made fortunes from mining, they also left us a legacy of beautiful homes, parks and gardens to marvel at and enjoy.
The house has been developed as private homes and the formal gardens have faded into the past but specimen trees still remain in certain areas. The paths through the woods are all way marked with arrows in different colours. I suggest you head for the South entrance nearest to Redruth where you will find the cafe stocked with free pocket guides and a really useful map. The cafe sells great coffee and a range of meals which looked good but I did not sample as we had taken a packed lunch which we ate at a very convenient picnic spot with seats and tables nearby.
There are many paths to choose from, varying from a level half a mile circuit of the lake teeming with waterfowl, suitable for wheelchair users to a 4 mile track suitable for all, including cyclists and horses. You can even link up to the SW coast path and do a longer circular walk from the North Cliffs entrance.
This place is truly inclusive, there is something for everyone and I saw runners doing fitness training, people walking their dogs, and babies in strollers feeding the ducks. I took my grandchildren and they loved every minute, there were trees to climb, logs to balance on, a rope swing over a river, and good, hard paths to walk on. We spotted wildflowers galore, interesting fungi and squirrels and birds busy making their nests. Some trees such as the famous Dancing Tree (an ancient twisted beech) are specially protected and familiar to generations of visitors. The highlight for me was watching a swan making her nest around her whilst her mate stood guard, it reminded the children of ‘Stick Man’ when he unwittingly becomes part of a swan’s nest!
There is something here all year round and sometimes there are events such as nighttime bat watching or the wonderful Rogue theatre, www.roguetheatre.co.uk
who present different shows 4 times a year outside in these woods.
Enjoy a break in Cornwall
If you would like to enjoy a break in Cornwall, we’ve got a range of cottages which sleep 4-12 people – find out more and check availability.
Which are your favourite Cornish woodlands? Share your thoughts below, post on our Facebook page, or tweet @ActionNan.