SWCP – Port Isaac to Padstow (Day 19)

After dragging myself out of bed this morning, I left my B&B refreshed and made my way down into the nearby village of Port Isaac.

Stopping in a local shop for a few provisions, I learnt that the village is the setting of the fictional village of Port Wenn in the ITV series Doc Martin. According to the shop owner, this brings a lot of ‘nosy tourists with cameras’ to the area, and as I left and made my way out of the village, I passed the cottage which is home to Doc Martin (Martin Clunes) in the show. Exciting stuff.

Heading towards the cliffs, I made my way up a steep flight of granite steps, with a great overview of the harbour when I made it to the top.

From here I skirted around Lobber Point (offering some fine views ahead) and made a stiff climb out of Pine Haven and towards Varley Head.

After a good while walking, along various other points, havens and heads, I reached the well-protected natural harbour of Portquin. Local folklore recounts that the entire fishing fleet of Portquin was destroyed at sea one stormy night, leaving no survivors. The women of the village tried to carry on without their men but, eventually, the hardship became intolerable and Portquin was left deserted, with the fishermen’s cottages falling into disrepair and ruin. Today, there is little here (a couple of holiday cottages and converted fish warehouses), leaving a quite eerie atmosphere.

Moving on I walked along the headland immediately west of Portquin, known as Doyden Point, with Doyden Castle purched on top (which looked nothing of the sort up close). Following the Coast Path from here, I passed the unusual Lundy Hole (which was once a cave, the roof of which has collapsed leaving only the entrance arch still standing) on my way to The Rumps of Pentire, a magnificent headland with amazing views in all directions, and over to The Mouls especially, a rugged island just offshore.

I stopped for dinner at the top of Rumps Point, with my back against some giant rocks to keep me out of the south-westerley wind. After eating a large quantity of doritos, I left and continued to Pentire Point, with the pretty town of Polzeath coming in to view.

Reaching Polzeath a little while later, and with the tide out, I walked the 3 miles along Daymer Bay to Rock where I caught a ferry over the River Camel to my destination – Padstow.

Padstow marks a quarter of the way around the South West Coast Path. With 160 miles clocked up, its a little daunting to think I have to do another 3 of what iv already done. However, the first quarter is supposedly the most difficult part so hopefully I won’t have as much trouble to get to halfway!

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One thought on “SWCP – Port Isaac to Padstow (Day 19)”

  1. Enjoyed watching Doc Martin just for the scenery, what a lovely little place. I can remember asking my friend Dave where it was filmed, he knew what area but i can't remember him saying the exact place.
    Love the pics.
    Well done Chris!


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