What a summer we have had, July and August actually acted like July and August this year…and if you are anything like me, you will be clinging on to those summer feels over the next few weeks!
Here at Cornwall Discovered the peak months of July and August are fairly quiet in comparison to the rest of the year – as many of you may know, we tend to operate our larger group tours and events throughout Cornwall in the shoulder and off seasons. This is mainly down to our sustainability pledge; we choose to only handle a few small tours and bespoke events during the peak season when we feel that Kernow is a little too busy already. That said, we have had a fun variety of bespoke events this summer – from organising sea shanties on the high seas to designing a Cornish mini-moon!
And now, suddenly it’s the last day of August!
September has always been a firm favourite for many regulars who visit Cornwall – the crowds of the high summer have started to disperse with beaches and roads resembling some kind of normality again, but in many ways, Cornwall doesn’t seem to get the memo that summer is nearly over! There’s a lot to be excited about and here are a few of our favourite recommendations for the September traveller
Perhaps the most well-known festival this month is the St Ives September Festival (10th September -24th September 2022) which attracts arts, culture and music lovers far and wide. With lots of music planned (some highlights including an opening performance from folk-rock group Lindisfarne, the 60-strong Cornwall Concert Orchestra in St Ia Church and a final night performance from The Fleetwood Mac Songbook) this festival appeals to all ages.
Another popular September music festival is The Little Orchard Cider and Music Festival (9th – 11th September) so typically and wonderfully Cornish with camping, live music and cider galore! This festival has always attracted some big names so is definitely one to watch!
For book worms and literature lovers, there is also the North Cornwall Book Festival to look forward to at the end of the month (23rd – 26th September) which takes place between Polzeath and Port Isaac on the north coast. Cornwall has inspired so many writers and what better place to bring together local, national and international authors for talks, performances and workshops.
While on the subject of books, I was recently given the book The Salt Path by Raynor Winn by a friend who had just moved to Cornwall and was exploring sections of the coastal path. I highly recommend it – so incredibly inspirational on many levels. After reading Winn’s very real descriptions, it will certainly make you want to don the walking boots and perhaps not walk the whole 630 mile route (!) but a section at least! With Cornwall being quieter in September and with a breeze often accompanying you along the coast, it’s the perfect time to explore some of this well-loved trail. Plus, when you get to your destination, the ice cream queue will not be as long!!
It’s not just Cornish ice cream that should be sampled. September is a great time for food and wine lovers to visit Cornwall in general – and we think nothing beats an early-mid September visit to a Cornish vineyard. The mild climate and favourable soil have meant that Cornwall has developed as one of the finest wine regions in the UK. This year, the hot, dry summer has excited English winemakers with the conditions set to make 2022 one of the best years on record for English wine. The buzz in vineyards as the winemakers approach harvest season makes for a very enjoyable time to visit, chat to the winemakers, and walk amongst the vines to see the nearly developed crop.
Cornwall now has plenty of vineyards to visit, with most of them keeping their doors open for individual tours and tastings until October. Perhaps the most well-known vineyard is Camel Valley nestled near Wadebridge on the north coast which has won many awards and was the first English wine producer to the granted a royal warrant. Trevibban Mill Vineyard near Padstow has also been awarded a number of awards in recent years and boasts one of the most beautiful terraces where you can sit and enjoy a glass of wine. Other favourites of ours are the boutique Knightor Winery nestled in countryside just above St Austell which has a great rustic feel to it and often has food events going on as well (including the winery kitchen itself and a variety of pop-up food vans) and stunning Looe Valley Vineyard – a small, off-the-beaten track artisan vineyard with one of the most informative winemaker tours around.
Here at Cornwall Discovered we are currently designing a new Taste of Cornwall escorted tour for next September – why not register interest here.
Foraging courses have become a big thing in Cornwall with many visitors wanting to get back to nature and learn about the wild foods available to them – from the hedgerows, woodlands and on the coast. To be able to tell the difference between what is poisonous and what is safe to eat in our hedgerows is quite a skill and one that I can’t say I possess yet! But I think I can safely identify a blackberry! In September the coastal paths and countryside walks are lined with these sweet black berries – and picking them is such a simple pleasure! Especially if they can be turned into blackberry and apple crumble afterwards! Yum!
I think I probably mention Cornwall’s sunrises and sunsets in too many of our blogs….but they’re just too good to not mention! With the days starting to become slightly shorter in September, this has a couple of positives…
With sunrise now happening after 6:30am, why not start the day with an exhilarating sunrise swim on the south coast? We’ve talked about the benefits of sea swimming in previous blogs and doing this first thing in the morning is a sure way to set you up for the day ahead. When it comes to sunsets, spectacular sunsets on the north coast can be found around 8pm – the perfect time to team with an evening picnic on the coast, a (sustainable of course) beach BBQ or some good old Cornish fish and chips!
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