Walks in the Woods, Cornwall Style

Published: Monday 7th Oct 2019

If you are ready to unleash your inner Bill Bryson but think that walking in the woods is reserved for our Eastern Seaboard cousins, think again. Well-known for its jaw-dropping coastal routes, Cornwall is actually home to large swathes of ancient woodland too just waiting to be explored. Shrouded by tangled canopies, veined by gushing rivers and home to all manner of birds and animals (not to mention history, myth and legend), you can discover each of these wonderful natural playgrounds in turn and fall in love with Cornwall’s softer side.

Top Walks in the Woods, Cornwall Style

Tehidy Woods

No list of top woodland walks in Cornwall would be complete without mentioning Tehidy Woods. The biggest area of woodland in West Cornwall, this emerald sprawl covers 250 acres of beautiful woodland and boasts nearly 10 miles of paths to explore. Wander beside lakes, unwind to the lilting melodies of birdsong and lose yourself (metaphorically speaking) to this wooded paradise.

St Nectan’s Glen

One of the most magical settings in the country, St Nectan’s Glen near Tintagel is one of those places that exudes orphic energy. Ethereal, captivating and awash with myth and legend, it’s impossible not to fall for the setting’s allure. Trace your way through piskie-peppered woodland, past ivy-clad trees and follow the banks of the River Trevillet before visiting St Nectan's Kieve, a 60-foot waterfall thundering through a hole in towering rocks.

Cardinham Woods

Woodlands are enchanting places to explore and Cardinham Woods near Bodmin provide no exception. Excellent for nature-lovers and dog-walkers looking for peace and serenity amongst a leafy embrace, these woods are also a great playground for cyclists and horse-riders seeking a novel way to explore the terrain. Choose from the four walking trails and three cycle trails before pit-stopping at one of the picnic areas for some well-deserved treats.

Kennall Vale

Kennall Vale nature reserve is located between Redruth and Penryn and is a tranquil haven hiding an all but forgotten secret. With its luscious façade belying an unusual past, a walk within its wooded belly reveals evidence of the area’s industrial past: the remains of the old Kennall Gunpowder Company. Wander through the trees and spy the walls of the former factories, slowly being reclaimed by nature.

Draynes Wood

On the outer fringes of Bodmin Moor, the verdant reaches of Draynes Wood provide the perfect arena for woodland walks. Definitely worth incorporating into your walk, the woods are also home to the stunning Golitha Falls: a series of gushing cascades powering through a steep-sided valley gorge. Offering plenty of choice, there are several well-marked trails in the nature reserve, as beautiful in spring when bluebells flood the woodland floor as in winter when the falls rev up their display.

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