Walking Portreath to Porthtowan
Distance 3.9 miles (6.2 km).
Grid reference SW652453 to SW690481.
Starting at the car park in Portreath, walk along the road about 400 metres east towards the hamlet of Bridge, turn left in the square passing the 'Carnforth Flats' and follow the steepening incline up Lighthouse Hill towards the Ministry of Defence Establishment at Nancekuke.
Approximately 100 metres before the perimeter fence take the path (Godrevy 8¼ miles / Porthtowan 2¾ miles) as signed to your left - by an unmade lay-by - towards the cliffs. The path here is quite level and walking is easy, CARE SHOULD BE TAKEN AS THE CLIFF EDGE IS NEVER ALL THAT FAR AWAY...Update March 2005: Follow the diversion up the road due to recent cliff falls!!. Walk around the horseshoe cliff above Gooden Heane Cove. Continue eastwards along the path for about 10 minutes until you reach a fence stating "DANGER MINE SHAFT & MOD PROPERTY".
Pass through the wooden gate and continue above Hayle Ulla. Next pause above quite a steep valley. Look seaward to see the picturesque triangular rock - this area is well known to anglers as 'Diamond Rock'. Descent has been made easier in recent years by the inclusion of wooden fronted steps. Cross the stream at the base of the valley by a simple wooden footbridge consisting of little more than two railway sleepers. Take a deep breath here before attempting your ascent up the 70 or so steps out of the valley. THE LESS ABLE MAY WISH TO TAKE FREQUENT RESTS ON THEIR WAY UP
On reaching the top, walk along the relatively flat path eastwards towards a white cube-shaped building - this could be used as shelter for 3 or 4 walkers if the weather turns nasty, although it is not all that large or inviting. Shortly after passing the shelter, the cliffs and beaches at Porthtowan and St. Agnes come into view. The undulating path now continues eastwards for about another 30 minutes before reaching a Coast Path post marked with the customary acorn sign. KEEP RIGHT HERE. Another valley opens up ahead of you at 'Sally's Bottom' - grid reference SW677469. what at first seems to be quite a steep valley descent is made easier as the man-made steps are cut into the path at a zig-zag, before you know it you are standing at the base of the valley looking seaward at a tiny waterfall.
After another short rest here it is time to ascend once again up the steps on the eastern side of the valley. About halfway up the slope, the steps begin to be fronted by granite slabs and one's confidence to attempt the last few steps grows. At the rather windswept top the walker is greeted by another welcome 'acorn marker' and a flat path. A capped mineshaft to your left now takes your attention. This is 'Kite's Shaft - West Wheal Towan'. Here may be a suitable place for a quick snack depending on weather and time constraints.
A wide track now ambles gently down into Porthtowan (Porth - Cove, Towan - Dunes) where all normal amenities are to be found - including 2 public phone boxes (very useful as mobile phone carriers will find it hard to get a satisfactory signal down in the valley!)
Stay at a nearby Holiday Park and keep the kids amused all day! Parks in the vicinity include those at:
Plenty of hotels are available locally. Consider those in the local towns:
There's plenty more to explore in this area, too! Find more attractions and things to do nearby: