I Know What You Did in Cornwall: St. Michael’s Mount, Tregenna Castle

Yes, I know this post is seriously overdue, as it’s almost been a month since we got back from our Easter Cornwall trip, but in my world it’s never too late to brag about amazing holidays.

Since our move to London, V and I have always spent Easter with our families in Romania. But this year, we were already planning a May/June trip home for V’s ten years high school reunion (it seems now it’s not going to happen, sigh), so we decided we’d save a little money and just stay in UK for Easter (don’t even get me started on how expensive Easter flights to Romania are!), then tick his reunion and visiting our families all in one go, a month or so later. My mother was, of course, outraged at our spending Easter among strangers, but countless phone debates, threats and promises later, she accepted the unacceptable, and V and I allowed ourselves to finally be giddy with excitement at trying a British Easter for the first time ever.

We decided we’d leave London for what would be our first proper road trip since we got the car, and settled for Cornwall, where neither of us had been before. We booked a three night stay at a hotel in St Ives, and V spent about a week prior to our leaving setting up itineraries, testing his new camera lens an inch away from my face, and ignoring my attention seeking somersaults and twirls.

We set off early in the morning on Good Friday, keen to beat the holiday traffic out of London, and I was so tired that I repeatedly dozed off during the first part of the ride, only to wake up terrified that V would crash us into a tree. For some reason, trees growing on motorways is common thing in my deranged sleepy brain. Fortunately, Red Bull injected  V was in much better shape than me, and we made it to our lunch pit stop safely, where the super duper combination of indecent quantities of junk food and delightfully fizzy hydration brought me back to life.

Our main destination for the day was St. Michael’s Mount, a tidal island (I’d read this on Wikipedia the day before our trip, and believe me, I’d given absolutely no thought to what tidal island actually meant until it was too late. But more on that later.) off Mount’s Bay coast, crowned by a priory and medieval castle.

The weather was absolutely beautiful so the beach was full of people flying kites, building sand castles and playing frisbee, as well as tourists making their way to the island, maps and cameras in tow. The tide was out so we walked to St. Michael’s Mount across a dry, algae strewn sand path.

St Michael's Mount

Hey there, island!

Legend says a giant used to live on the island, and had this nasty habit of making his way to the shore village and eating people’s cows and sheep. Until one night, when a local boy named Jack rowed to the island and dug a really deep pit. Then, when the sun was up, he blew a horn to wake up the giant, who, blinded by the sun light, fell into the pit and was lost. A guide was telling the story as we were walking up the rocky path to the castle, in between stops to admire the beautiful view of the coast, with its white painted, terraced holiday houses the likes of which V and I fantasize of raising kids in one day.

We spent a couple of hours strolling through the castle and its lovely terraces from which you could admire the tropical gardens, and of course, the amazing coast. My favourite was the Map Room (turns out that’s pretty much always my favourite room, whether we’re in the Palazzo Ducale in Venice or in Winston Churchill’s bunker in London), but warrior-at-heart V liked the Garrison best. On our way back, I bought a framed print of the Mount to hang in our new home (No congratulations are in order, we still haven’t found anything yet, but I can’t help nesting.) and almost caved in front of a white ceramic seashell shaped fruit bowl way too expensive for my hey-we’re-saving-for-a-house-here budget.

St. Michael's Mount

Castle invasion

Remember how I had no idea what tidal island really meant? Well…

St. Michael's Mount

I’m not cold. I’m not cold. I’m not.. Okay you guys, who’s carrying me to shore?

By the time we were finally ready to part with St. Michael’s Mount, the tide was in and the sand path we’d taken to the island earlier was under water. Plenty of brave people had started making their way through the freezing, ankle high waves, and I’d have definitely been up for it, but as V and I bickered about it (he’s really a scared, don’t-you-dare-get-my-toes-wet little man) the water reached people’s thighs and that was a bit too much even for super duper adventurous me. So we took the boat back (Yay! Boat! I luuuuurve boats!), and after a sunset themed photo session on the beach, we started on our way to St Ives and the hotel we’d be staying at for the weekend.

We’d chosen Tregenna Castle because we’d found a really good weekend stay deal on Groupon, but also because we really really liked the look of it. (Never stayed anywhere castle-ish before so yeah, ok!)

Tregenna Castle

What? Castle-ish is a most definitely a word!

Our stay included a three course dinner on the night of arrival, and since we’d spent so much time bickering about the St. Michael’s Mount tide adventure, we decided there wasn’t enough time to visit anything else before said dinner, and we just went for a walk around the hotel instead. Oh, was it worth it! The Tregenna Castle grounds include a humongous, beautiful Mediterranean garden, golf and tennis courts and absolutely outstanding views of St Ives. So we just walked around until it got too dark for photos and our food centered fantasies became too vivid to ignore.

St Ives

Wouldn’t mind living here.

We actually dressed up for dinner, which we rarely do, savage as we are. So I wore a dress (very grownup-ladylike, I know!), heels and a touch of red lipstick, and go figure, the waiter didn’t ask to see my driving license before pouring the wine, which always comes as a nice surprise. I’m not a good culinary chronicler,  so I’ll let this risotto closeup speak for itself.


Nom nom nom!

Yum, right?

So that pretty much sums up our Good Friday. Now, this post has already turned out longer than I’d planned, so I’ll leave the rest of our Easter adventures for part two and three of this Cornwall themed chronicle. Everybody loves a trilogy, am I right?

Until then though, I hope you’ve all got amazing plans for the coming weekend, and if you’re planning a trip or have just returned from one, do tell, I’m a sucker for other people’s traveling adventures!

5 thoughts on “I Know What You Did in Cornwall: St. Michael’s Mount, Tregenna Castle

  1. Pingback: I Still Know What You Did in Cornwall: Land’s End, Minack Theatre, St Ives | London Geek

  2. Pingback: I’ll Always Know What You Did in Cornwall: St Ives | London Geek

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