Glorious gardens & wild woodland walks in Cornwall for Autumn days
Crunching through fallen leaves, crisp autumnal weather, vivid hues of orange and red lighting up the countryside….
The shifting colours of Autumn look beautiful in Cornwall’s countryside, woodland, moorland and coastal pathways. We are spoilt for choice with spectacular scenery in Cornwall and the changing season is the perfect opportunity to get amidst nature and enjoy the outdoors. Read on to discover some of the glorious gardens and wild woodland walks in Cornwall for those cool and bright Autumn days.
Autumn colours at Trengwainton Garden, Penzance
Enjoy the Autumn sunshine at Trengwainton Garden near Penzance. Explore the winding wooded paths and admire the pretty colours and changing leaves in these exotic gardens. Trengwainton is a lovely sheltered garden which is surrounded by mainly beech trees, providing protection from the wind and making the gardens feel a bit milder on cold days.
During the Autumn, the leaves shift from green, to yellow, to a gorgeous rusty colour. In amongst the various shades of red and gold, you’ll also be able to spot some more vibrant colours such as late flowering camellias, and hydrangeas in various shades of pink, purple and blue. From the terrace at the very top of the garden, you can also enjoy stunning sea views.
After your outdoor adventure, why not warm up with a drink or hearty dish from the cosy tearoom? There’s a scarecrow exhibition in the walled kitchen garden until the 28th of October, there are two silent spaces within the garden for quiet contemplation, and dogs are welcome in the gardens on a lead.
Woodland walks in Cornwall: Tehidy Woods, Portreath
Tehidy is one of the best woodland walks in Cornwall, and is the largest area of woodland in West Cornwall with 250 acres of delightful wooded pathways to explore. Lose yourself inside the 9 miles of beautiful pathways and immerse yourself in nature. There are pretty lakes to discover, with designated areas to feed ducks and swans. It’s a popular place for families and dog walkers all year round, and particularly enchanting during the Autumnal months.
Crunch through fallen leaves and splash through puddles in your wellies and embrace the changing of the seasons. See how many squirrels you can spot scurrying up the trees! There are different length trails to follow highlighted by different colours, or you can just create your own route through the woods.
You can access Tehidy Woods from the North along North cliffs just outside of Portreath. Alternatively, you can head to the South car park, past the Tehidy golf course. There’s also a cafe and facilities by the South Drive.
Woodland walks in Cornwall: Kennall Vale Woods, Penryn
Kennall Vale is a peaceful area of woodland in Ponsanooth, in an idyllic valley between Redruth and Penryn, which has the ruins of an abandoned gunpowder factory. It’s a nature reserve with historical ruins, making it an extra special place to explore. The history of the vale is fascinating. Kennall Mills were a great producer of gunpowder for the mining industry from 1812 and were one of only two gunpowder works operating in Cornwall at the time.
Experience total tranquility as you wander through the beautiful woods, listening to the sound of the birds above you and the rushing of water as your meander alongside the river. It’s a wonderful place for children to explore and play hide and seek and for dogs to paddle in and out of the stream.
The site is managed by the Cornwall Wildlife Trust and is a haven for woodland life. Discover interesting flora and fauna, look out for woodland birds, and seek out ruins of old water-wheel houses from the gunpowder works. You can park in the village of Ponsanooth and begin a circular walk from there. Bare in mind that the woodland and nature reserve can be muddy and slippery, so wear suitable footwear. This is one of the most idyllic and tranquil woodland walks in Cornwall.
Exploring the countryside & coast at Loe Pool & the Penrose Estate, Helston
Loe Pool is Cornwall’s largest natural lake which is found within the Penrose Country Estate. The combination of wooded tracks, the peaceful lake and vast stretches of nearby coastline make this a fantastic place to walk to appreciate Cornwall in the Autumn.
Loe Bar was originally the mouth of the River Cober which led to a harbour in Helston. However, by the 13th century the bar had cut Helston off from the sea and formed the pool. Ramble through wild woodland, Victorian parkland, rugged wetland and marshland and along the spectacular Cornish coastline. Loe Bar beach is half a mile long and separates the loe (lake) from the sea. During the Autumn you may be able to spot roosting starlings and otters in the water during your adventure through the estate.
The Stables Cafe is ideally positioned half way between Porthleven and Helston and is a great place to refuel after a long walk exploring some of Cornwall’s finest countryside and coast. In the winter of 2017, a large part of the much loved coast path near Penrose and Porthleven fell into the sea and money is currently being raised to restore it. It’s best to follow signs at all times and to stay out of the water as the Loe Pool isn’t safe for bathing.
Autumn at Trebah Gardens
A gentle stroll at Trebah Gardens is a lovely way to experience the colours of Autumn. There are over four miles of pathways to explore which lead you through the sub-tropical gardens with an amazing coastal backdrop. The vibrant garden pathways eventually lead down to a secluded beach on the Helford River called Polgwidden Cove, the perfect place to enjoy a flask of coffee and break from your walk.
During the Autumn, the Hydrangea Valley around the Mallard Pond is particularly stunning as well as the changing leaves in the towering trees, including rusty leaves on the maple trees. October is also the month when some of the plants from the southern hemisphere begin to bloom, including grevillea victoriae (silver foliage & apricot coloured flowers) and trobilanthus attenuata from Nepal, which has rich purple hooded flowers and grows well in shade. There’s a plethora of other vibrant colours to be found throughout the gardens.
There are adventure play areas and children’s trails to explore and dogs are welcome too. The Sunday lunches in the Trebah Kitchen are popular during the Autumn and Winter, with different locally reared meat available each week, fresh vegetables and homemade Yorkshire puddings. There’s also a great gift shop and plant centre to explore.
Experience the magic of Cornwall during the Autumn and see the spectacular countryside colours in all their autumnal glory. We are spoilt for choice with glorious gardens, fantastic coastal walks and wild woodland walks in Cornwall, to make the most of cold bright days before cosy evenings in your St Ives holiday cottage.