Family days out in Cornwall: Spotty Dog Trails

Child on a rope swing in Cornwall, with a coastal town in the background.

Nanny Pat’s latest adventure took her to Flushing with grandchildren Wilfred and Megan, where they followed a Spotty Dog Trail along the Fal Estuary to Mylor Harbour.

We had such fun when we did our last Spotty Dog Trail at Prussia Cove that there was nothing but enthusiasm when I suggested going for a four mile walk armed with a different trail guide! It was a gloomy January day but we were in high spirits and dressed for the weather with wellies to combat the muddy trails.

The walk began at Flushing along Trefusis Road, where there is usually plenty of roadside parking. Keeping the houses and river on your left, walk along the road and turn right at the last house down to Kiln Quay and the beach. In the Spotty Dog pack along with the map and directions are a list of things to spot and tally sheets to record your findings. We checked the list at the car and spotted a pine cone on the way to the beach where we easily ticked off a yellow shell. As we walked along the beach whoops of delight echoed as the children spotted (and used) another item on the list – a rope swing!


When I finally managed to drag them off the swing we carried on to an ancient set of steps leading up into the field and the clearly defined coastal footpath around the headland. Keeping their eyes open for items on their list distracted them from the distance and, as ever, brought up discussions about such things as port and starboard buoys for navigation, identifying trees in winter and bird spotting.

I love spending time with the children outdoors, they are truly in their element, running, jumping, playing, splashing in puddles, happily getting muddy and never moaning and groaning. It is a great sadness to me to witness the lack of outside play spaces in areas where most children live these days – parking, shopping and roads all seem to take priority over children’s basic need for free play spaces in modern housing developments.



We passed Penarrow Point and the granite Truro boundary marker then turned the corner to see the boat masts of Mylor harbour come into view. Cafe Mylor beckoned us in and did not disappoint. It has a funky interior – we opted for the sofas and enjoyed bacon sandwiches, juices and the obligatory cappacino for Nanny Pat. The children were made very welcome and the toilets are good (note: the cafe is open all year during the day but closes at 3.30pm in the winter).

We were on a mission in the churchyard to find the grave of Joseph Crapp, which amused Wilfred no end. Luckily we were told to look under a holly tree which helped locate it. We left the churchyard and crossed the road to follow the edge of Mylor Creek to Trelew and then a public footpath on the left taking us up through the woods to a road junction. Turn left at the road and take the road to Trefusis Barton B&B, turning right at a yellow sign before the house following the hedge line to your right with glorious views of Falmouth and the sea beyond.

Follow the path down beside the houses and turn right into Coventry Road then left towards the Bowling Green where there is a small playground. Alternatively head down into Flushing for the pub and shop (we did this to go down the slip to wash our muddy wellies), then turned left past Flushing Sailing Club and back along Trefusis Road to the car.

The walk took us about three hours and all of us enjoyed walking, playing, learning and being outside having fun!


More information

Spotty Dog Trails give you things to find and activities to do while you’re out on a walk. There are several different walks in Cornwall to choose from. Each is thoroughly researched, includes an illustrated map and directions, a guide to things to spot and do in the area. There’s also a scorecard in each pack, for those who enjoy a little competition!

You can find out more about the trails on Spotty Dog Trails Facebook page.

From Bosinver, it’s approximately 45 minutes’ drive to the start of the walk in Flushing. Postcode for SatNavs: TR11 5TY.

What are your favourite family days out in Cornwall? We’d love to hear what you’ve enjoyed doing as a family. Why not write a comment below, post on our Facebook page or tweet @bosinver and join the conversation?

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