GOOD ENOUGH FOR BETJAMAN, A TRUE CLASSIC.
Polzeath is a small village situated on the North coast of Cornwall; it is home to a fantastic beach and village and is also one of the world’s most renowned surfing destinations. Polzeath, is split into two parts – the old and the new, both overlooking a magnificent stretch of golden sand between Pentire Head to the north and Highcliff to the west.
It was a favourite haunt of the late poet laureate, Sir John Betjeman and is celebrated in some of his verse. There are many local shops, providing everything required for the holidaymaker. Within the village are a number of pubs, cafés and restaurants. Why not dine at The Cracking Crab, a beach chic seaside restaurant with the best view of the surf in Polzeath and serving everything from breakfast butties to seafood platters and all the bits in between.
There are also several camping sites and the fabulous Valley Caravan Park situated in a valley leading down to the sea, with the entrance only 200 yards from Polzeath’s sandy beach.
Polzeath is a haven for surfers and beach lovers alike. There are lifeguards on the beach during the daytime in the summer season. Although generally a safe beach, there can be large surf with rips and care should be taken at all times. There is a sand and shingle beach, situated at the mouth of a river and backed by interesting cliffs. There is also a nature reserve and some interesting rock pools on the beach. Dolphins may sometimes be spotted and this is a good area for many types of coastal bird including puffins. The beach more or less disappears at high tide and the car park may disappear too in very stormy conditions!
The coastal path passes through Polzeath in one direction to Daymer Bay and Rock, and in the other through New Polzeath, Pentire Point and along miles of stunning coastline. Past a large slate seat is the sheer cliff west of The Rumps. Looking back to the left is Newlands Rock. On the unusually shaped double headland of The Rumps is the Iron-Age cliff castle. This promontory fort with superb coastal vistas has a massive triple rampart and ditch system protecting an area of around 6 acres at the tip of the headland. Several hut circles lie within the enclosure. Excavations have unearthed pottery from the 1st century BC and indicate trade with the Mediterranean area. Near the promontory, may be seen signs of the caves at Guglane, just below the ramparts. The large offshore rock behind the eastern headland is The Mouls, a breeding site for puffins, gannets and kittiwakes. Further on, there is a 19th century folly at Doyden castle. It is possible to walk to Port Quin, where there is a car park.
The coastal footpath between Polzeath and St Enodoc is suitable for wheelchair users, www.walkswithwheelchairs.com, offering an opportunity for all to appreciate the stunning scenery of the estuary. Follow the coastal path West from the beach and a beautiful walk awaits. Greenaway beach is the first stop, big rock pools and plenty of pebbles, loads of fun for the kids. Daymer bay is around the next corner, another fantastic beach which normally has calmer waves, ideal for swimmers and wind surfers.
There are many sports and leisure facilities in the area, including a couple of golf courses.