Fowey and Gribbin Head

Back to the coast today and a walk I looked at when I was I was in Polruan on my walk from Polperro. This walk is from Fowey to Par Sands and gives you plenty to see, with the focal point being Gribbin Head. I will say that when you make these walks up on a map that you can make mistakes, mine was walking along the A3082, its far too busy for a walker and instead I should have followed the Saints Way down towards Polkerris. Apart from that small error, this is a great walk. The views over Fowey, Gribbin Head and the walk towards Par Sands are fantastic and well worth a look. If you fancied doing this walk by train then there is a train station in Par, which would be your starting point and then use the same route to loop around.

Start – Coombe National Trust parking
Route – Fowey Castle – South West Coastal Path –  Polridmouth Beach – Gribbin Head – Polkerris – Par Sands – Par – Saints Way – A3082 – Trenant – Fowey – Coombe parking
Distance – 9.5 miles    Start time – 9.30am    Time taken – 5hrs 10mins    Highest Point – A3082 100metres
Weather – Sunny and some clouds, but not many

© Crown copyright 2020 Ordnance Survey FL 2020 SF

The parking was at another National Trust car park, donation if you are not a member and almost straight away you get sea views and a look across to Gribbin Head with the tower on it (daymark)

Part of this walk is on the Saints Way, which is a 27 mile walk from Padstow down to Fowey. The good part for this walk is the Way gives a great route across the farmland linking it nicely with the coastal path

Red Admiral next to the sign

Fowey Castle with Polruan on the other side of the estuary. I was in Polruan a few weeks back

Fowey estuary with Fowey town on the left

On the coastal path now a couple of miles to Gribbin Head. Dodman Point is away in the distance beyond Gribbin Head

The entrance to Fowey estuary

The daymark on Gribbin Head is clear from here as the coastline becomes more spectacular

Polridmouth beach is below Gribbin Head

The birds quite liked this lake down at Polridmouth

Turning around to look at the beach, a huge trawler was out fishing off the coast here

Polridmouth beach down on the left and the coastline of south Cornwall stretching away. If you zoom in you can see Rame Head in the far, far distance

Gribbin Head daymark

St Austell Bay, Dodman Point is far left. The beach across the bay, top middle of the photo is Pentewan Sands. Now I spent pretty much every holiday as a kid (Easter, May bank holiday and summer) at the caravan park there. We would drive down from St Helens to spend at least a week there.

Looking in towards Par Sands. St Austell to the left with the clay working beyond, there is also a huge clay factory just to the left of the beach, which is a bit of an eyesore but marks the end of my coastal path walk today

Farms inland from the coastal path

Lots of coves along this stretch of path and plenty of butterflies as well

Meadow Brown being the most common

A small copper on some blackberry bushes. I’d also seen a Common Blue but he was too quick for me to catch

The huge clay waste mounds at St Austell

A Speckled Wood

Wall Brown, lots of these of the paths

A bit of sea kayaking in St Austell Bay

A Small White on some ferns

Dodman Point across St Austell Bay

Polkerris, another lovely little village with a nice pub and place to buy ice cream

Par Sands, the sea goes out a fair bit here, with Killyvarder Rock on the left of photo. The clay works can be seen on the right across the beach

Par Sands

Behind Par Sands is a little lake. An oasis for birds and these Canadian geese

Looking out across Par Sands

From beside the clay works they have actually made some trails from here up to St Blazey and near to the Eden Project

The village/town of Par, on the edge of St Austell, there a Co op behind me here if you need to restock. The coastal path leaves the beach here and comes inland to this road to get around the clay works and the docks. But I’m turning back in the direction of the car from here.

Had some chips and a coke in this nice little pub before joining the Saints Way back towards Fowey. The Saints Way is that path on the left next to the house

Par on the right, the lake and on the left is Par Sands as I climb away up the Saints Way

St Austell Bay

This was a mountain bike track. I could see the bikes scooting down the track from here and they weren’t slow

Back inland on the A3082 and I stop for a bit to avoid the cars zooming along this road. I made a mistake coming along this bit and should have stuck to the Saints Way which heads down near to Polkerris

I joined a lane off the A3082 which took me back to the Saints Way and some sanctuary. I crossed the road which would take me back to the car park, however I didn’t want to finish yet so I carried on to Fowey and saw this little Cornish scene in a garden as I reached Fowey

This bus stop was decorated as well

Wise advice on one of the walls

But on the other they haven’t a clue about scones!!! The Devon way is the right way

Down in Fowey. You get little glimpses to the estuary through the houses but its not until you get near to the castle end that the views open up. I popped in a shop along here and bought some beer for later on and an ice cream for now. Doing my bit to keep the local businesses open

Polruan across Fowey estuary

I’d asked them not to bring my boat around from my mooring. So I sent them home!!!

Readymoney beach, more ice cream places here for refreshments

All that is left is the short climb up to the coastal path and then the path back Coombe car park. This is a fine seat with a view

One last view to Gribbin Head from pretty much the same spot as the first photo on this walk, looks like they have cut the grass in the 5 hours since I was here earlier. Another great coastal path walk here


9 thoughts on “Fowey and Gribbin Head

    • Its my new favourite place. I’m not a boat or sea person if I’m honest but the coastal path was my saviour in lockdown. Being so close from my door it was the only place I could get to, now the South West Coastal Path deserves some recognition as arguably the best walk in these isles. And I’m happy to have a good look at it!!

      Liked by 1 person

    • This one is a nice little walk, its a nice point of headland that makes the circular quite easy and Par Sands is a popular beach. I’m planning on a few more coastal adventures before the summer is out hopefully

      Liked by 1 person

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