Penzance before lectures begin!

The summer holiday period is now over, but we decided to go on holiday in the UK anyway. You never really know when to expect warm weather in the UK, even in the summer! This didn’t put us off our trip though, as the area of Cornwall we decided to visit is well known for its natural beauty and landmarks, so we thought it was definitely worth visiting.

Day 1 started off very early (a 6:30am train to be specific), but this was necessary to get there in time for our trip, which was unfortunately cut short by poor weather conditions. Now you may be wondering “what kind of trip is she talking about?”, and the answer to that lies in the course that I do. So for those of you that haven’t been following my blogs (why haven’t you been?!) I do marine biology, and our trip was a boat trip to see the wildlife of the Cornish seas. Having been informed of the possible sightings on the trip, we were hyped to get some snaps and videos of the wildlife, only to be disappointed by a lack of sightings other than some grey seals (Halichoerus grypus) towards the end of the trip.

We didn’t let this ruin our mood though, and we spent all of day 2 at St Michael’s Mount’s castle and gardens. This attraction is connected to the mainland via a causeway (a path that is available to use only when the tide is out) that we managed to use on our way in, conveniently close to the opening time of the attraction. Firstly, we headed up to the castle located on the top of the mount, which offered vast panoramic views over Penzance, as well as other towns and villages, and the castle was equally impressive inside. After this we made our way to the immaculately maintained gardens, which exhibited many varieties of plants and gave us numerous photo opportunities, the only downside was some very changeable weather that meant one of us had to hold the umbrella whilst the other took the photo.

Day 3 took us east towards Lizard Point - the most Southerly point in the UK. We stopped at a cove on the way that we chose as a potential snorkelling destination, but all it took was for the water to touch our feet before we decided against it. We continued our journey to Lizard Point and were greeted by views of cliffs covered in greenery, coupled with some rock formations...oh and a lot of wind!

Speaking of bad weather, day 4 was due to be a day of coastal walking around Lands’ End, but this actually turned into a half day of battling our way through wind and rain and walking very little. We probably spent just as much time in the souvenir shops sheltering from the weather! So after a slightly disappointing day of wet weather, we made our way back to the accommodation to get into the covers with a warm cup of tea - classic!

Day 5 was the final full day and was filled with animals! We went to a “Paradise Park” that predominantly house birds, but also keep other animals, exotic and ’normal’. The various feeding events offered throughout the day were eclipsed by the Lorikeet (a colourful parrot-like bird) feeding session that took place in an open aviary with birds flying freely in our presence. The session involved buying a cup (or many in my case) of nectar and waiting for birds to fly onto your outstretched hand to feed. At one point, I had three birds on my hand and one on my head! Although slightly scary at first, it was definitely the highlight of the day along with having a bird say “hello” to us. The late afternoon and evening was then spent in the seaside town of St Ives, where the waves were crashing and so were the surfers! Apart from doing some sightseeing in the town, our main aim that evening was eating, starting off with a Ferrero Rocher ice cream as you do - it was amazing and totally worth having it before dinner! We went on to have dinner at a restaurant called the Crab Shack (because when in St Ives you HAVE to have seafood) where we ordered a seafood platter, it was absolutely delicious!

 
 

So, despite some spells of bad weather, we were able to see the main attractions offered by South West Cornwall and have a blast of a time!