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Magical Fowey! Visit and fall under it's spell
Fowey in General
Member Name: Karael
Fowey in General
Date: 08/02/01, updated on 08/02/01 (138 review reads)
Advantages: Wonderful scenary
Disadvantages: Sometimes too many people in the high season
Now if you don't want to be considered an emmet by the locals you must pronounce Fowey as 'Foy. But, however you say the name of the town, you are in for a treat if you pay a visit. On a sunny day, and there are a few sometimes, you won't find a more wonderful place in Cornwall or England or anywhere else for that matter.
Fowey is full of history. During the Hundred Years War the fierce Fowey seaman raided the coast of France constantly and continued to do so even after Edward IV had made peace with the French King. But I'm getting a bit ahead of myself.
I'll start as if you are visiting for the first time. You are heading down the hill towards the town. There isn't any parking in Fowey so you will have to turn right and follow the signs to the Car Parks. Don't, however, park in the main car park that you will see on your right - keep driving. You'll come to a wonderful spot where you will be able to look left over the river and out to sea one way and see Polruan on the opposite side of the river. It really is something special. Unfortunately there is a single yellow line on the road so you can't stay too long. But do take a photo!
Get back in the car, keep driving and you will see another car park. This time park and when you have done so start walking. Turn right out of the car park and head for the Esplanade, turn left and continue walking down into the town. It's quite high at first, with lovely views over the river. There will be plenty of boats to look at and maybe some larger ships heading up the river with various goods.
If you don't want to head for the town straight away turn in the opposite direction when you get to the Esplanade and you will reach a small cove called Ready Money Beach. It is sign posted. It's small and sandy if you want a rest. Alongside the cove there is a footpath leading up to the ruins of St. Catherine's castle. Again great views
. The castle was built in 1536 on the instructions of Henry VIII by the local Treffrys family.
Getting back to walking down the hill to the town - it's quite magical. You will pass the house that was owned by Q or Sir Arthur Quiller Couch (1863-1944). There is a plaque on the wall. He wrote several tales based on Fowey including Troy Town. He was also the local mayor for a while. Next to this house is a slip way leading to an open top passenger ferry that will take you across the river to Polruan, the village on the opposite side of the river. It's only 25p and there are some interesting walks starting from Polruan. You can walk to Polperro - about 7 miles.
If you keep walking past the ferry eventually you will reach the town and harbour. From the harbour you can get a boat trip up the river in the holiday season. Or just sit and take in the atmosphere.
The town itself is a network of narrow streets that climb the surrounding hills. The appearance hasn't altered much for centuries, other than new developments on the outskirts of the town. The church, St. Fimbarrus, dates back to the 14th century.
The shops are mostly condensed into one road and there are a couple of fine pubs and a selection of restaurants overlooking the river scenary. Seafood is excellent but there is also the normal pasties, chips and ice-cream.
If you walk through the shops and keep walking you'll reach another ferry. This time it is a car ferry (passengers as well) and goes across the river to the hamlet of Bodinnick - nice pub! Again 25p if you are on foot.
Fowey is a lovely place with some great walks. My favourite starts at the passenger ferry and is about 5 miles of river views and peace - but I'd better not give details here.
As I hope you may have gathered I think Fowey is special. I live about six miles away and lived there for about two months while I was waiting to move into my house. They a
re memories I'll never forget.
Do give Fowey a visit - and try to do so on a sunny day - and you'll see what I mean, you won't be disappointed.
P.S. I forgot to mention (along with much more) that Daphne du Maurier set several of her novels in the area and there is now a Daphne du Maurier festival held every year in Fowey.
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