Social distance is almost guaranteed in Cornwall, whether it’s a national guideline or not. Pre-Covid, it has always been one of the main reasons why tourists have flocked here for decades: the promise of picture postcard wide-open spaces and a sense of unbridled freedom that you simply don’t get elsewhere in the country, or world, for that matter.
Being almost an island, the Duchy’s geography is replete with natural space. With over 400 miles of unspoilt coastline – 158 of which are designated as Heritage Coast, visitors can lose themself to the South West Coast Path to discover hidden coves, picturesque harbours and endless sands. If you visit during the off-season, there will be days and stretches of coastline where you’ll barely even glimpse another soul.
Then there’s the rural hinterland and its vast spaciousness. Moorlands, farmlands, riverlands and rolling countryside provide the perfect landscapes to lose yourself (and others) to.
So if you’re wanting ideas for socially distanced days out, or to simply escape the crowds and find a sense of solace, here’s our top ten ideas for starters...
The coast path presents prime walking territory and oodles of space to separate yourself from the herd. Otherwise, a country ramble, woodland walk or moorland hike will also do the trick.
One of the easiest and most fun ways to people-dodge is cycling, whether you prefer the lazy kind or more bracing mountain-bike style of wheel spinning. The Camel Trail, Mineral Tramways, The Cornish Way and Bodmin Beast trail are all fabulous options.
Being surrounded by the sea, there are plenty of aquatic spoils for everyone. Simply pick your pursuit – be it surfing, supping, kayaking, sailing, open-water swimming, kite surfing or wind surfing – and a body of water (lake, river, ocean) and lavish in the fluid sense of space.
Visit a garden
From the Eden Project to a plethora of gorgeous green spaces such as the Lost Gardens of Heligan, Trelissick, Trebah, Tregothnan, Trengwainton, Tremenheere Sculpture Gardens and Glendurgan, you can socially distance in breath-takingly sublime style.
Ancient monuments also happen to be in Cornwall’s most remote locales. Lanyon Quoit, the Merry Maidens and Men-an-Tol can all be discovered on foot in west Cornwall, while Bodmin Moor is home to the Trippet Stones and Trethevy Quoit. Meanwhile, Cornwall’s World Mining Heritage Site covers thousands of hectares sprawled across ten distinct sites.
Whether you prefer climbing up or abseiling down, Cornwall’s peaks provide an ideal playground, with over 2000 mapped climbs dotted across the Duchy, from sea cliff climbing at Sennen to Wicca Pillar and Bodmin Moor’s granite tor, The Cheesewring.
Nothing beats a day at the beach, whatever the time of year. Sunbathe and swim to your heart’s content in the summertime before tucking into a picnic or barbecue; or take the kids for a spot of rock pooling, beach cleaning and beachcombing during off-season months.
Book an outdoor event
Pick an outdoor arena such as The Minack Theatre or Eden Project to enjoy some alfresco and socially distanced entertainment, or book tickets to an open-air or drive-in cinema such as Mr Pineapple’s, Dairyland, Watergate Bay, Skylight Outdoor Cinema at Caerhays Beach, and Open Air Cinemas at Porthminster Beach.
A virtual treasure hunt will deliver all kinds of gold as you explore the county afoot, solving puzzles with a competitive and community spirit for an interactive and super fun socially distanced day out.
Put your feet up, enjoy time together and relax in style at your holiday cottage of choice. By being creative in the comfort of your own accommodation you can relish some quality down time and togetherness in the beauty of your social bubble.
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