Newest Review: ... this all year round as I visited in chilly February! There are numerous shops, hotels, eateries all which seems to be themed on the King A... more
Beautiful scenery, but not for the faint of heart!
Tintagel in General
Member Name: Russ1973
Tintagel in General
Advantages: Amazing views & walks
Disadvantages: Hard work if you're not healthy or have a fear of heights
I had great memories of visiting Tintagel with my parents when I was a child, and when we holidayed in Devon recently I wanted to revisit it, despite it being in the next county (Cornwall)
We drove (well, my missus did) into Tintagel via Boscastle and she didn't thank me for taking her round a hairpin at the bottom of a fairly steep hill! ;)
Anyway, we pulled into Tintagel and spotted a car park with a visitor/tourist information centre so we pulled in and paid £5 for a day's parking. When we walked through the village though we spotted that we could have parked for less than half that price.
The visitor centre appeared to be very interesting if you are interested in the history and legend of Tintagel and it's castle with lots of free information as well as guide books for sale.
Personally, for me though, I wasn't interested in the history, I just love the village and the amazing views and walks in the area. There are many gift shops in the village selling Arthurian tat and other tourist souvenirs. There was one shop there selling locally made pottery that I wanted to shop at, but it was closed on the day we visited.
So, onto the castle...we walked through the village and down a very steep path towards the castle with several English Heritage information signs on the way. None of these signs though declared that you have to pay to get access to the hill/island that the ruins are on.
When I visited as a child there was no charge, but I guess fair's fair, someone has to pay for the upkeep/cleaning/safety of the area, so I can't complain there. However, I did object to being expected to pay again for a guide book to tell you what you are looking at in the ruins, there is very little information provided up there.
A word of warning, if you have mobility issues you will have extreme difficulty climbing the steps to the ruins and there is no wheelchair access. I am fairly fit, however, I also have a strong fear of heights and I had forgotton how steep and how high some parts were. It was also fairly windy on the day we went which didn't help.
We have a 2 and a half year old son who went with us, he loved it, but another word of warning...it's not easy getting a toddler up the tight, steep steps and you do have to keep hold of them at ALL times, there are some very steep, unprotected drops around the ruins.
However, despite the bad stuff (mostly due to my fear of heights) it is well worth the effort and cost to get up there and take in the views, they really are amazing and you can see for miles!
On the return trip my missus decided she didn't want to climb back up the path to the village so she took our toddler in the land rover, it cost £1.50 for adults and 75p for kids each way. I was stubborn and called her names and I started climbing....but boy, it didn't seem that steep walking downwards! That climb nearly killed me and I headed straight to the nearest pub at the top for a well earned rest and a pint!
Besides the village and castle there are also miles of coastal/cliff paths to explore that do not cost anything and offer equally impressive views.
Summary: Still as beautiful as I remember it from my childhood