Penzance is an ideal town from which to explore West Cornwall. The town itself is a bustling centre with a variety of shops ranging from the usual multiples to the unusual boutiques, alongside local crafts and jewellery. There are numerous art galleries and specialist antique shops nestled along the cobbled streets. It is worth taking time to stroll through the Georgian terraces and squares, along the winding ‘cuts’ to the beautiful gardens and museums.
Fresh local seafood is a feature on the menu of many local restaurants, bistros, pubs and cafés. The options for eating out range from traditional Cornish to truly international cuisine. There are also a variety of takeaways available should you want to eat at home or even on the beach.
Penzance is ideally situated for all beaches in South West Cornwall. Fishing boats including seal and dolphin watching trips run daily from the harbour. The Scillonian sails from the harbour to the Isles of Scilly. There are many National Trust properties and exotic sub tropical gardens within easy reach including the beautiful St Michael’s Mount.
If you want a break from the car, there are buses running to local villages and beaches or trains to historic towns such as St Austell, Falmouth, Truro and St Ives. A particularly enjoyable and picturesque train journey is from Penzance via St Erth to St Ives. Once a small fishing village, St Ives has grown to become one of the most famous & popular seaside towns in Cornwall. Its attraction lies in its unique position overlooking St Ives Bay with far reaching views towards Godrevy Lighthouse which is believed to have inspired Virginia Woolf’s work ‘To The Lighthouse’.
For those who enjoy walking, all parts of the South West coastal path are easily accessible, either on foot or by bus or car. The country lanes, tracks and cycle ways also offer fantastic challenges to those more interested in two-wheeled travel. The local leisure centre has a well-equipped gym and an indoor pool with flumes, offering a crèche for babies and toddlers.
Cornwall has an abundance of enchanting gardens to explore and the area is often described as the ‘garden capital of the world’. Cornwall’s magical gardens are home to a wealth of exciting, rare and beautiful plants and trees, from wild woodland to neatly manicured lawns and from the small and unusual to the large and famous. Visit the exotic trees of Trengwainton Gardens, the intimate woodland of Trewidden Garden or indulge your sights and senses in the dramatic Chygurno Garden carved into the cliff edge teetering over the stunning Lamorna Cove.