Muddy Walks: Bluebell Woods
Are your local bluebells featured in our list? If so, now is the time to get out and enjoy them.
Half the world’s population of bluebells can be found in the UK and there are loads of gorgeous places to admire them in Cornwall – while we can’t travel too far, there should be some local enough to you so that you can make it out and enjoy them before they disappear for the summer.
Here are 7 beautiful bluebell walks in Kernow — do share your favourites in the comments below… (note, some of these places may not be open this year due to Covid, but bookmark for next year)
The historic Enys Gardens are famous for their incredible display of bluebells but you’ll have to plan this one a bit and make a contribution (£5 adults, £2 kids) but its well worth it. The gardens are open on Tues, Thurs and Sun, from 2-5pm — although during the annual Bluebell Festival (29 Apr – 7 May), you can visit every day, from 11am-5pm. If you fancy grabbing a beer with a killer Cornish view afterwards, you’re just a 10-minute drive from Muddy favourite, The Pandora Inn.
Really popular with families, this beautiful woodland near Bodmin is a great place to walk or cycle and is carpeted with bluebells at this time of year. Feeling peckish? I like a walk with a café me – and in Cardinham Woods you’ll find one of the most idyllic little woodland cafés anywhere – with delicious lunches and tea and cake galore.
Managed by the National Trust, Godolphin is a big-old estate, with a rich mining heritage and acres of glorious gardens and countryside to explore. For bluebells, make a beeline for the peaceful woodland, which will be a swaying sea of blue from April to May.
Just outside Truro, down the sort of very narrow roads that have grass growing down the middle, is the pretty little village of Idless, with its watermill and ancient woodland. Idless was chosen by the Forestry Commission as one of the ten best places in the UK to see bluebells growing wild – so despite the hairy roads, you really ought to go. It’s also popular with mountain bikers, if you prefer to speed past the bluebells on two wheels.
I was out with the kids at Rogue Theatre’s Wild Woodland Hare when the bluebells began blooming in Tehidy Woods, making the enchanting performance all the more magical. This is the biggest area of woodland in West Cornwall with several different entry points and nine miles of trails. There’s also a café and pond in the middle where you can feed the ducks and a few bold-as-brass squirrels.
Another gorgeous National Trust property, Penrose has it all – woodland, coastline, open countryside and Cornwall’s largest natural lake – Loe Pool (where you may even spot an otter). There’s lots of accessible cycling paths here and it’s one of the places you can join a Park Run in Cornwall, if you care to puff your way through the bluebells. Time your visit for the penultimate weekend in April and you could also swing past nearby Porthleven for the brilliant annual food festival – another highlight of spring in Cornwall.
I’m not quite sure why Antony is one of the less well known of the Cornish gardens – it’s bloomin’ gorgeous and especially in spring. This woodland garden is divided into two parts: the smart landscaped bit and ‘The Wilderness’, which is where you’ll find the wild garlic and bluebell-filled woodland, stretching down to the River Lynher. It’s also one of just a few International Camellia Gardens of Excellence in the UK, with more than 600 varieties to feast your eyes on.