An interest in The Isles Of Scilly has brought us to Cornwall - that funny little finger of land pointing into the Celtic Sea. This is our second visit but last time we only stuck around Fowey and did a trip to Padstow. This time we took the train from Paddington to Penzance immediately after landing at Heathrow. Our two night lodging was one at The Dock Inn and the next night at The Dolphin Tavern. Both right on the harbour entrance which was easy walking distance to board the Scillonian boat to the Scilly Isles.
Mural on pub wall courtyard of The Dock Inn. Can you guess some the characters in the picture?
Freddie Mercury, Tina Turner, Dolly Parton, The Queen, Ray Charles, Bob Marly, Mick Jagger.....to name a few.
A walk along the sea wall found us looking at the most amazing sight. A man was creating a temporary art sculpture in balancing rocks - temporary because everyday the tide would come and wash them away. It was wonderful to watch him create these almost unbelievable rocks each balancing on the one below.
Before I left South Africa I had a problem with my left knee. Twice went to Dr. for intravenous cortisone etc. It felt sore but not desperate until I donned my support hose two hours before leaving for the airport. By the time I got there I was unable to walk. What to do? Just the best I could and vowing to seek medical help when I arrived in Penzance. So after a nights rest I got the address of a doctor from the hotel receptionist and off I went for my appointment. Upon arrival I was told NO credit cards and before I saw doctor, please hand over 50 pounds. (This equates to around R2,000 bearing in mind a consultation here is about R300). All he did was give me a script for pain tablets. No injection, no aspiration of the joint - nothing.
Our intention was to hire a car for the day but meeting some of the friendly Cornish people in the town center, we found out there is a regular bus service right to Lands End. Thank goodness we took the bus....the roads are too scarey for country bumkins like us!
When we got back in the late afternoon we took a stroll to watch the Scillonian come into harbour.
The evening is warm and balmy - to nice to be tucked up in bed, so we stay around the sea wall and watch a perfect sunset on a perfect day full of exciting travel experiences!
I looks like that coach was ready to run everybody else off the road! I drove on roads like that when I went to Jersey and I kept brushing the bushes along the side of the road just trying to stay on my side when there was any traffic.
I always like seaside scenes and even more when they are in symbolic places like Land's End. I have of course been to the French version in the region with basically the same name -- Finistère. (The actual point is the "Pointe du Raz.") And I also have been to Cape d'Aguilar in South Africa and the Pointe des Almadies in Senegal, so that makes two extremities of the continent, south and west!
Oh, once a cop, always a cop....always on guard! Please let me get away with flattery!
Kerouac - I am so pleased to see someone not coming out with a condemnation for going on the very very well known tourist track! I heard so many negatives about Lands End and even watched it several times on that Fool Brittania TV series. Well, what do you do when exploring a new region... you go with the flow!
Thank you htmb - It's always nice when the day ends with a beautiful sunset! Too true Kerouac - The guide books don't always get it right.
OFF TO THE ISLANDS. What a relief to find the morning bright and sunny with no wind. This meant the sea was calm and we should have a pleasant journey to Tresco. The Scillonian crew have the loading of suitcases done in a most efficient way. Several large containers are standing on the dock with doors open wide. Each island destination has it's own container, so as you present your suitcase, they immediately take it to the correct one.
Welcome to rip-off Britain, you found out our health service is not the miracle boasted about.
Lands End is well worth visiting, and thanks for the tour of the Scilly Isles. I suppose our country lanes take a bit of adapting to by people from a country with wide open spaces and roads not designed solely for a horse and cart.
Man is not lost, only temporarily uncertain of his position
Thanks Mossie - My tour of Tresco is just beginning so standby! Yes indeed, I did feel ripped-off by the private doctor. Going to the local hospital was out of the question....far too much red-tape. Makes you clap long and loud for the health care in Paris. They did their very best for me. (Except pump me full of cortisone).
You are quite right Lizzy. It's hard to believe the islands are so tropical. I come from the land of sunshine but did not reckon on the sun in the Scilly's - got burned quite severely around my neck and chest. That'll learn me!
You must remember that the Scilly Isles are the nearest thing to tropical in Britain. They lay on 50 North, Cape Town is about 35, South roughly equal to the Med. Just to cheer up our American friends, the main U.S. / Canada border is 49 North so the Scilly Isles are roughly 60 miles north of that, it does not snow there.
Man is not lost, only temporarily uncertain of his position
Mossie, the climate in Western Europe, (British Isles, Ireland, nearby continental Europe) is nothing like that in northeastern North America. Paris is considerably north of Montréal; I think we are at about the same latitude as Bordeaux or Lyon, and Milan, as I see.
Montreal, Canada (72) – Milan, Italy (84) – Venice, Italy (103) – Zagreb, Croatia (53) – Queenstown, New Zealand (83)
One way this DOES make sense, despite very different climates, is sunrise and sunset. I've spent several November-December periods working in Amsterdam, and while it was usually much milder than the same period here (with some important recent exceptions of almost snowless winters here when there was a big dump in Northwestern Europe), the gloom was noticeable, despite the elation of being able to go on nice rambles without trudging through @#$%?€* snow and slush.
Mossie, remember that the main central and Eastern Canadian cities are considerably south of 49 north!
Yes indeed, Europeans tend to think the big Canadian cities are at about the same latitude as Helsinki. Toronto is at the level of Bordeaux or Milan, but is continental and not influenced by the Gulf Stream. Daylight is also affected by your position within the time zone. I notice that when we go west to the ocean, dusk is later in summer even though it's less than 300 km from here.
Actually, I believe it is Montréal that is at that level; Toronto is farther south, and west of course. Vancouver, which gets little snow, is well north of Montréal.
To recover from the threadjack, perhaps someone who knows more about vegetation in places with a more clement growing zone than mine could comment about some of the lovely plants in these photos of Cornwall and its isles?
Oh Tod, all fabulous so far! I have never been to any of these places but do hope to now. That lunch you put together is one of my favourite meals, we have taken the same on many excursions out on the lake or dining on the dock.
Your second photo of the rock art is stunning in proportions for me and I would print, frame and hang proudly. I also enjoy the photo of the white painted stone triplex.
I love taking buses, even better if they have some commentary or leaflets to read about the ride. One of the best experiences we had on our travels was when we hired a guide, his knowledge and personal reflections provided us with facts and accounts we would never have known on our own.
Yes , that was my second slice of brie-de-Meaux all buckled and squiged a bit(the end part is doubled back) from being kept in a packet overnight. With all the other stuff we struggled to finish it. My surprise was even finding such a superb cheese on that remote little island....seeing we had made a train journey to Meaux only a few years ago to buy that very cheese( just a fun day out thing to do instead of getting it in a cheese shop or market stall in Paris).
Nycgirl - Is that what those balancing stones are called? Cairns? I thought cairns were those buriel places underground Yes, Cornwall is very quaint and we really enjoyed our visit.
Our holiday on the islands has ended but we have to spend the day on St.Mary's, the largest Scilly isle, so we can board the boat once again back to Penzance. The tide is a long way out so we are informed the Firethorn will pick us up from another pier on Tresco. This narrow, very slippery path was green with slime and seaweed. Besides walking this gauntlet we had suitcases too! Some folks got off and I was sure an elderly man would slip and break something as he slowly shuffled up the wet concrete.