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Clovelly: the trek is worth it!

We were going to have a rest day after arriving in Boscastle but due to the forecast later in the week, decided to bring forward a day trip to Devon. Primarily, Clovelly.

This was such a unique place to visit. The main reason for that is its location, and I don’t mean the northern part of Devon. It’s built into a cleft in a 400 foot high cliff and from there continues on down to a small harbour.

Access into the village is by a steep cobblestone path best suited to able-bodied-ish people, and donkeys.

On the walk down to the village you pass Mount Pleasant which remembers men from the village who died in WWI

Due to vehicles not being able to enter the village, Clovelly has a long association with donkeys. You can see them in paddocks on the way down/up, if not actually on the path itself.

For a donation you could stop on your descent or ascent and say hi to a donkey. (Donkey is the furry one on the left.) This is Noah – he looks a bit over it but he was lovely all the same

The harbour meant that Clovelly used to be a fishing village. They still catch seafood but tourism is I’m sure the biggest earner. This has been made possible by the efforts of the founding families, another interesting aspect being that the village is privately owned.

It was another gorgeous day and yes it was hot down in the village – my clothes for that cool wind up higher were not required here!

Such a quaint place to wander through. Intrusive, probably, but tourism is an everyday part of life for them and helps enable the village to continue thriving

A good indication of the steep path is the great view it gives you over the harbour. At left is the Red Lion Hotel where you can stay and apparently there is another road down so you don’t have to haul your suitcases over the long cobblestone path! At the bottom is an old lime kiln that back in the day was used to convert limestone into stuff for reducing soil acidity in fields

Down by the harbour

Clovelly from the pier off the drystone quay

There was a comfortable number of people around on our visit but the place must get chokka in summer. The entrance fee charged at the top would generate a pretty good revenue. That is used in part to help maintain the village.

Part of me felt like just another cookie cutter tourist doing the expected thing in this part of the country; but getting over that, it is a very picturesque and unique place to spend time in. The all important history of it gives it substance.

Enjoying a breather!

A boat tour leaves the harbour

On the quay are bollards which were once cannon barrels, believed to be from Spanish Armada ships

There is plenty to occupy your time, even just sitting at the bottom admiring the view. Several shops and eating establishments provide a good excuse to stop and rest.

Mum and dad embracing that ascent

Pit stop on the way back up. We were in Devon, hence mum had to have a Devonshire tea. The cream (clotted) is spread on the scone first, followed by the jam

The climb back up didn’t seem as long but then again the trip down was interrupted with much photo phaffing

This looks suspiciously like Noah again. He’d knocked off his fundraising work and was getting down to business in the paddock. Well the eating kind of business anyway

So that was a great little outing. And happily, mum and dad’s respective knees/ankles/dodgy leg parts held up well. There would be a few grumbles the next day though!

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3 Comments Post a comment
  1. Hey Hayley
    Can’t believe you’re visiting my part of the world now – glad you’re enjoying my home county in sunny Devon. Been showing my Dad your Gallipoli pictures and you have a new fan! Take care

    30 May 2012
    • You’ve made my day :) And that’s a coincidence – we stayed in Cornwall but ventured to and through Devon a few times. Loved those parts of England. Sadly I’m typing this from Heathrow about to head home. Got tonnes of blog to catch up on.

      30 May 2012

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