The Canyack – National Trust

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September, 2015

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A bright warm morning in late September saw us heading to our beloved Cornwall once again, but this time to uncharted territory as far as we were concerned. The Lands End area was a new destination for us.

Following the National Trust’s excellent directions led us easily to the NT holiday cottage known as ‘The Canyack ‘, some two hours after leaving Plymouth. A parking spot by the hedgerow was big enough to accommodate my Hyundai Santa Fe, and we arrived at the cottage itself after following the well-lit track for around 300ft (Tip: pack a few light bags rather than one or two heavy ones!)

This former miners cottage simply took my breath away from the very first glimpse; set in sunny lawned gardens ringed by cedars, laden with cones, and invisible from the Cot Valley road, The Canyack is a delight. The views of the surrounding countryside and the sea in the near distance are quite spectacular, and the peace and tranquility washed over me. There is little that I enjoy more than the sound of near-silence, broken only by birdsong, the wind in the trees, and just a hint of the sea murmuring at nearby Porthnanven Cove.

The Canyack is equipped to the NT’s usual high standards, and has everything that is expected from a traditional Cornish cottage: deep silled windows set in the 2ft thick granite walls; a steep wooden staircase, it’s steps worn by generations of footfalls; the sun glancing in through the pained sash windows; a wood burner with crackling logs dying into red-orange embers; a deep Belfast sink in the kitchen, and granite flagstones across the ground floor rooms. Modern comforts – tv, washer/dryer, radiators, bath with shower, games & books, ironing board, radio/cd player, huge fluffy white towels, BBQ – are thoughtfully provided to ensure that your stay is comfortable. At night I luxuriated in a steaming hot bath, before sinking into our large double bed, cocooned by fresh cotton linen and a cosy duvet and bedspread, lulled to sleep by the whispers of the wind and the haunting lullaby of owls calling back and forth.

St Just is an easy 15 minute walk, or a 5 minute drive, and has everything you might need – pubs, restaurants, butchers & delicatessen, bakers, fish & chips, convenience stores, a lovely church, and plenty of parking. This town has a real ‘village feel’, and we were welcomed warmly. Our dog seemed to captivate everyone she met – this is the most dog-friendly area I have visited – and she received lots of attention wherever we took her!

Walks are plentiful and delightful. This is Poldark country, and a World Heritage area; from the majestic Cape Cornwall (the only ‘cape’ in England), to the expanse of white sand at Sennen Cove, dolphin watching on Scillonian III to the magic of a seal taking a leisurely swim at Porthnanven Cove, from the almost tropical feel of the magical Porthcurno Beach to the awe-inspiring amphitheatre of Minack, each day gave us new and wonderful memories.

The holiday would suit those who, like myself, have restricted mobility, but would not be right for those who require a wheelchair due to the steep staircase – there are no ground floor bedrooms.

Did I enjoy it? Oh, yes! Would I recommend it? Unreservedly. Will I return? Just try to stop me!!!


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