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Pleasures of a Cornish Port
Fowey in General
Member Name: grogling
Fowey in General
Date: 24/03/02, updated on 24/03/02 (127 review reads)
Advantages: Beautiful Scenery, Interesting shops
Disadvantages: Slightly out of the way
From its beginning as a meandering trickle of water heading southward off Bodmin moor, the river Fowey gently flows past magnificent Cornish scenery on its way to the sea. Near the mouth lies the ancient port of the same name.
Fowey is an ideal retreat to those wishing for a refreshing, peaceful change from today?s hectic life. Although considered out of the way by many visitors to Cornwall, it is easily accessible by land or sea. The roads are well signposted and there is a daily bus from St. Austell, which can lead you into one of Daphne du Maurier?s most beloved communities.
Besides the stunning views, a noticeable thing this small town has to offer is the enormous variety in architecture. Examples of these can be found by strolling down Fore Street. Like most of old Fowey, it is a narrow road gently twisting through what seems to be a randomly assorted selection of buildings. On one side is ?Noah?s Ark?, one of the oldest constructions here, dating long before the invading French caused the fire of 1457. In contrast, the bank opposite is a structure of uniform granite blocks built with grand precision. It stands to attention as if trying to set a good example for its crooked neighbour.
The local shops and businesses show the true nature of this idyllic place. Naturally for a port there are chandlers and marine shops but there is also a selection of art and craft shops. An abundance of seafood restaurants, tea rooms and fudge shops make it easy for visitors to overindulge.
For those who enjoy a short walk, Bull Hill is a must. On one side, an overhanging wall is home to a collection of persistant flora. The other side looks toward the river, allowing a bird?s eye view of the town rooftops.
If you are still feeling energetic, there are plenty of other paths to follow. The most obvious is around the harbour itself, sometimes known as ?Kings Walk?, for it was along here that King Charles I was fired upon by a Puritan in 1
664. If you are really keen you could always take the ?Saints Way? wich is a 26 mile trek to Padstow on the North coast.
If all this sound too tiring, you could just enjoy a drink in the black and white ?Lugger Inn?, formerly a private residence which began selling alcohol in 1782. In contrast, the ?King of Prussia?, with it?s distinctly pink colour, is the probable sight of an Elizabethan poor house. Finally, the ?Ship Inn? was built in 1570 and named after the ?Frances of Fowey; which, crewed by 70 local men, helped Drake?s fleet to repel the Spanish Armada.
Other places of interest include the Church of St. Fimbarus; an impressive castle-like structure partially destroyed by the French but rebuilt in 1460. It is named after St. Finn Barr who passed through Fowey in the 6th century. Above this is a fortified mansion built in 1260.
You can also visit St. Catherines castle overlooking Ready Money Cove. Built in 1540 it was used in anger against a Dutch fleet of some 50 ships when they tried to damage the Virginian Fleet in Fowey harbour.
Overall a day in Fowey is a pleasurable trip back through time, well worth a visit when travelling around Cornwall.