Visit Boscastle and Tintagel: Places to stay, things to do

Hazel Tanner reveals why autumn is the perfect time of year for Boscastle and Tintagel to take your breath away

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Brave the coastal paths along the North Cornish Coast in autumn to see them at their most impressive. As every trace of ‘scented summer’ is stripped away, keen walkers can experience unparalleled raw gnarled beauty and stomach-turning sheer drops. Marvel at the 20ft high Pentargon waterfall, breathe in the past at the ruins of Tintagel Castle, the alleged birthplace of King Arthur, and listen to the echo of breaking waves deep in Merlin’s Cave below. Pick up a walk leaflet at one of the friendly Visitor Centres, where staff will be happy to help you choose an appropriate route.

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Shelter from the cold and learn more about Arthurian legend at King Arthur’s Great Halls, where 72 stunning stained glass windows designed by a pupil of William Morris illustrate the legend in what is the only indoor attraction in the world dedicated to it. Alternatively, take a stroll along Boscastle harbour and discover what is reportedly the world’s largest collection of witchcraft related artefacts and regalia at the Museum of Witchcraft. Look out for the tarot machine, which after being damaged in the 2004 floods was repaired and adapted to take modern coinage, so you can now slip in two pence and have your fortune told. If that whets your appetite for the paranormal, head over to Tintagel Old Post Office and take a Torchlit Spooky Tour of the 600 year old manor house this October.

Nearby attractions such as Lanhydrock also have plenty going on this autumn, including Halloween events and a ‘Nature’s Food’ exhibition; an exploration of the historical uses, health benefits and recipes associated with a collection of local wild edible plants.

Where to eat
The Cobweb Inn, Boscastle, and The King Arthur Arms, Tintagel, are great places to go for a hearty pie to warm the cockles after a day of walking in the crisp autumn air. The Cobweb, a favourite with locals, also has a family area and a pool table. As the name might suggest, however, this might not be the first choice for those who aren’t the biggest fans of our eight legged friends! If you fancy some fine dining, The Riverside Restaurant will not disappoint.

Where to stay
Best Location
In Boscastle, The Riverside is judged by enjoyEngland.com to offer 5 Star Guest Accommodation, conveniently situated just minutes away from the harbour, Museum of Witchcraft, visitor centre, restaurants and pubs. Over in Tintagel, The King Arthur Arms is an enjoyEngland.com 4 Star Inn located directly opposite the Old Post Office.

Most Luxurious
Rated by enjoyEngland.com as 5 Star Guest Accommodation, with a Gold Award and a breakfast award, and beauty therapy treatments available, you’ll be pampered at Boscastle House. In Tintagel, The Avalon comes highly recommended, rated by enjoyEngland.com as a 5 Star Guest House, with a Breakfast Award and Silver Award.

Best Value
Relax in comfort after a busy day at The Old Coach House, Boscastle, 4 Star Guest Accommodation as rated by AA and enjoyEngland.com, with a Silver Award, from £32 per person per night. Eco-retreat Bosayne Bed and Breakfast, Tintagel, has a Gold Green Tourism Award, with prices from just £25 per person per night.

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Tell us a local secret
The looming ‘chasmal beauty’ of Beeny Cliff along the coastal path was the inspiration for Thomas Hardy’s poem of the same name.