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Walking is a popular activity in Cornwall, and the South West Coast Path is a great place to start. The South West Coast Path is the longest waymarked footpath in England, running from Minehead in Somerset to Poole Harbour in Dorset, covering the whole of the Cornish coastline. It has often been named as one of the top walking routes in Britain and the world!

Gribbin Head coastal walk near Fowey

If you are looking for hotels in Fowey area as a base for a walking holiday, look no further than The Cormorant Hotel. A boutique hotel by the River Fowey, it is a short distance from the harbour town of Fowey, and the peaceful location is ideal for when you want to relax in the evening after a day out walking. Call 01726 83346 to book your stay now and find out what offers we have available. In the meantime, read on to see what walks you should check out on the South West Coast Path.

Bodinnick, Polruan and Fowey - 5.8 miles, Challenging

This walk takes in countryside, creeks and the coast. There is historical and literary interest along the way, and plenty of places to stop at for refreshments. If you add in two ferry rides over the River Fowey, you can make it a great day out. Spring is a great time to tackle this walk, as the heathland is a rainbow of colour with gorse and wildflowers, the sea is a stunning turquoise and hedges are decked with primroses, violets, and you can spot bluebells and wild garlic in the woodland. It is also a great walk to return to in autumn when the leaves are turning red, and gold and the heather starts to bloom.

The walk starts at Bodinnick car park, follows part of the Fowey Hall Walk, and takes you through woodland, up the cliffs over Lantic Bay and offers you incredible views of the sea. A circular walk, you will end up at the car park and gives you a chance to explore much of Fowey too, from the harbour to the Town Quay.

Par to Polperro - 13.9 miles, Challenging

If you want sand, sea, cliffs and countryside, the Par to Polperro section of the Coast Path has it all. There are easy stretches and sections that uphill and difficult, but you are awarded with amazing views of the coastline. The walk takes you from the dunes at Par Sands to Polkerris, through Fowey where you can find refreshments before catching the ferry across to Polruan. From there, the path zigzags over cliffs and rocky coves and is the harder stretch of the walk. Take regular rests to enjoy the scenery before you, before finishing at the village of Polperro.

Highlights include Polridmouth, the ruins of St Catherine's Castle, Readymoney Cove and breathtaking views from Pencarrow Head. A shorter option that goes from Fowey to Polperro is only 6.8miles, but you can also extend the walk all the way to Looe, adding five more miles. To start from Par, you need to catch the bus to the town from Fowey, and there are also buses back to Fowey from Polperro.

Gribbin Head - 4.4 miles, Moderate

The area to the west of Fowey has a variety of landscapes, gorgeous views, historic features and wildlife to watch for. Gribbin Head is managed by the National Trust and is marked by the large navigation tower, Gribbin Tower is a Grade II listed building, originally built in 1832 to help ships safely access St Austell Bay and the Fowey Estuary. If you head inland, you pass the Menabilly estate which was a source of inspiration for the author Daphne du Maurier.

The Gribbin Head walk is circular, beginning and finishing at the National Trust Coombe car park, but there is an option to extend it by taking the Gribbin Head and Saints Way route. This starts and ends at Polkerris, following the coast path around Gribbin Head before crossing over the headland on the Saints Way, which follows quiet lanes, fields and woodlands.

You can find out more information about the walks along the South West Coast Path on their website where you can also find out more about the Coast Path and what to bring with you when out for a day's walk. If you want to know more about things to do around Fowey, take a look at our blog:

Four spectacular Fowey River walks

Cornwall wildlife to see in spring

Image credit: Chris J Dixon

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