Witches, Walking and Pasties – A week in Boscastle

So, we finally managed to get away in 2021…..to a holiday cottage in Boscastle in North Cornwall.

This was what I am calling an ‘inherited’ holiday. By ‘inherited’ I mean, it was what we were supposed to have done last year in May but as it was the first lockdown and everyone thought Covid would be over in a week because it was just flu, the cottage company were reluctant to refund and told us we had to rebook, so we rebooked for May 2021.

As fate would have it – we got the timing right.

And yay we got to Boscastle!

Interesting things to see and do around the town:

The Museum of Witchcraft and Magic – a bit of a strange place to have this museum but this was once a part of the world considered to be a hotbed of witches. Sadly, many innocent women were persecuted and eventually killed as suspected witches following the witch hunt of King James 1 in late 1500s. Something similar to what happened in Salem in the US.

The entrance to the Museum of Witchcraft and Magic, Boscastle

Ironically, we never got to visit this museum – well inside it anyway – on both times we have been to Boscastle it’s been closed.

The first time we visited a few years back, we arrived on 31 October and didn’t realise that the museum closed at midnight..…for the season….and only reopened in April. Missed opportunity one.

And for our second visit – well, Covid restrictions are in place so the museum is officially re-opening on the 17th of May. Missed opportunity 2.

Next time…..

The National Trust visitors centre, shop and café. The small visitors centre is worth a visit as there is a video showing the Boscastle floods in August 2004, where 75 mm of rain fell in about 2 hours, causing the river to burst its banks. Residents had virtually no time to react. Cars were swept out to sea and buildings were badly damaged. Fortunately, there were no casualties.

Look out for the markers on the buildings in town that show the height that the water reached during the flood. Makes you realise that the sheer power of nature is just astounding….

The Boscastle Blowhole – about an hour before and after low tide – a horizontal waterspout shoots across the harbour from Penally Point. It’s also called the Devil’s Bellows.

The entrance to Boscastle Harbour with Penally Point on the right.

Boscastle Pottery – beautiful locally crafted pottery. Shop is located in the high street, next to the Cobweb Inn

The National Coastwatch Station – on the headland about a mile down the coastal path to Willapark. It looks like a small white castle from a distance…take note of the plea for the ponies. Details are on the noticeboard at the gate.

Boscastle Farm Shop – about a mile up the South West Coastal path towards the Pentargon waterfall – great place for breakfasts and to stock up on local products as well as some Poldark branded items like biscuits.  Although, I would wait until after 17 May when the Covid restrictions lift and you can eat inside– sitting outside having breakfast when its blowing an icy gale is not great! I think it’s the fastest I have ever eaten a bacon sandwich…..!

South West Coastal Path walking  – in either direction – more info can be found at the National Trust visitors centre or check out the South West Coastal Path website.  (I’ll be telling you about the Boscastle to Tintagel walk in the next blog)

The Wellington Hotel – apparently this is the most haunted hotel in the UK. It appeared on the TV show ‘Most Haunted’ in 2004. A famous guest who stayed at this hotel was Thomas Hardy (the author – not the actor!) and the town of Boscastle features in some of his literary works. We just know it as a nice place to have drink and a pub meal.

The Wellington Hotel, Boscastle

Cornwall Produce – cyder, clotted cream ice cream (oh yeah!), cream teas, spicy biscuits and of course, the traditional pasty!

Overall, our week in Boscastle was fantastic, just maybe a bit ill- timed as some of the Covid restrictions were still in place but a hey, a sign of the times.

We were still able to enjoy our time nevertheless.

A beautiful part of North Cornwall.

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