When Cornwall has its 'shimmer', in the liminal times of dawn and dusk, spirits walk and stones talk. One can see why so many saints, mystics and artists were drawn to this truly magical land.
Secret Landscape Tours takes us to the west of Cornwall, known as Penwith, where there is the greatest concentration of stone circles, standing stones and holy wells. We will be staying in comfortable bed and breakfast accommodation in the beautiful coastal town of Penzance [map].
Our first day starts at Madron Well, a holy well still revered today as a curing well. We can see the petitions that people have left, in the form of rags tied to the branches of trees. We walk a few yards up the lane to view an ancient stone cross.
Fairy-haunted Madron Cairn is close by and as we walk amongst the rocks, heather and gorse, above an impenetrable wooded valley, it is easy to feel the eyes of 'the little folk' upon us.
A few miles up the road is Lanyon Quoit, a distinctive Neolithic burial chamber. After a pub lunch at the coastal village of Zennor we move on to an area of moorland where there are many ancient sites.
We visit the Men-an-Tol, a Neolithic holed-stone complex used in historical times for healing rites. We see the enigmatic Maenscryfa, an inscribed standing stone and we see other ancient standing stones in the area. We walk in the Nine Maidens Stone Circle and feel the uniquely transforming energy which ebbs and flows there.
We finish the day on Trevowhan Cliff. The sea crashes on to the rocks below, the moors spread about us and we imbibe some of the elemental grandeur that so gifts Cornwall.
Our second day starts at Sancreed Holy Well, one of the most exquisite of all the Cornish wells. A short drive away is the Iron Age settlement site of Carn Euny. The stone ruins of the small round dwellings can still be seen.
Here is also the holy well of St Euny and the site of the ancient Chapel of St Euny. Nearby is the Iron Age fort, Caer Bran. After a pub lunch we visit the mysterious Boscawen-un stone circle. This is seen by many as being a particularly potent site.
We move on to Alsia Well, guarded by a sacred thorn tree and a very lovely fae place. We drive a short distance to the uplifting Merry Maidens stone circle. On our way here, we pass the early Christian Boscenna Cross. We end our day with a visit to the magnificent Pipers standing stones, two large megalithic monuments not far from the Merry Maidens.
Our last day starts with a visit to Trencom Hill, a fairy haunted hill near St Ives. This hill has many legends attached to it and has a wonderful atmosphere. From here we drive near to Bodrifty Iron Age Settlement. This is a little-known settlement site where one can really get a 'feel' for the age-old people who used to live here. We walk from here to the Neolithic burial site, Mulfra Quoit, from which we have a superb view of Mounts Bay.
We drive a few miles down the scenic coastal road to the little-visited holy well and fogou at Lower Boscaswell. From this simple place we can be reminded of the grace of humility. Our last visit is to Tregeseal stone circle and Carn Kenidjack, This is a hugely important area which once contained three stone circles. As we stand amongst the huge rocks of Carn Kenidjack and gaze at the wild moor surrounding us, we can touch an awesome power, both spiritual and elemental. This wonderful place fittingly ends our tour.
Based in the attractive and historical sea-side town of Penzance [map]. Comfortable bed and breakfast accommodation for three nights.
Car - From London take the M5 travelling west. Keep on it until it nearly ends. A mile or before it finishes take the A30 signposted Oakhampton. Continue on the A30 until you reach Penzance. Travel time from London 4 - 5 hours.
Train - There are regular trains for Penzance leaving from London Paddington. Train times can be accessed via the National Rail website.
Coach - There are regular coaches from London Victoria Coach Station. Check coaches and times via the National Express website.
To book this tour, please advise us of your preferred location & dates and check availability using our contact form.