Family Walking Adventure at St Ives
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Difficulty is measured on many factors such as distance, ascent/descent, terrain, weather and more. There's no magic formula, but from our experience we use yellow for easy, orange for medium and red for hard. Challenger holidays require a high level of fitness and stamina.
Kids will love picturesque St Ives, and the facilities at our Country House, Chy Morvah, will keep them even more entertained. Its seaside location makes a great base for our guided family walking holidays. Our walks along the coast path take in Sennen Cove, Land's End and Kynance Cove. with plenty of opportunities for paddling, rockpooling and spotting seals.
Chy Morvah, meaning 'house by the sea' in Cornish, is an appropriate name for this characteristic seaside property. Situated within walking distance of the centre of St Ives, it enjoys wonderful views along the north Cornwall coast.
Chy Morvah has 39 bedrooms, either located in the main building or in the adjacent Lanyons House.
Choose your room
• Check-in from 2:30pm
• Comfortable accommodation
• En-suite bathroom with bath or shower
• Tea and coffee-making facilities
• Single rooms are available at no extra charge
• Check-in from 1:30pm
• Enjoy extra space or exceptional views
• Toweling robe, complimentary slippers
• Same facilities as our classic rooms
• Available from an extra £10 per person per night
• Check-in from 2:30pm
• 3 or 4 beds
• Same facilities as our classic rooms
• Full sized twin or double beds for adults and bunk or occasional beds for children
|• Excellent boot and drying rooms
• Laundry facilities
• Chy Morvah has a splendid elevated position with sea views
• The main lounges enjoy views across St Ives bay
• Dining room
|• Conservatory front
• Free WiFi is available in some public rooms
• Range of board games and books
• Attractive gardens with sea views
| • Heated outdoor swimming pool (Open April to September, weather permitting)
• Table football
|All holidays at our Country Houses are full board accommodation including evening meal on arrival to breakfast on the day of your departure. All of our Country Houses have a well-stocked bar serving local beers, wine and spirits.
√ Start your day with our extensive breakfast.
All of our bars are stocked with locally sourced drinks so you can really soak up your surroundings.
Due to the layout of Chy Morvah, it is not recommended for wheelchair users and guests with restricted mobility.
- Fire procedure is displayed in each room and explained to guests on arrival. Guests requiring assistance at an evacuation are identified at this time and door hanger cards are issued
- Mobile phone reception is generally good from the main building
- Assistance dogs accompanying visually or hearing impaired guests are welcome; dogs must be kept on a lead or harness at all times
- Information can be provided in large print
- Staff have received disability awareness training
- Special diets can be catered for. Specialist food can be obtained with prior notice
- Fridge for medication can be supplied
Our family holidays offer the choice of up to 4 guided walks each day – you can choose an Easier Walk one day and switch to a Harder Walk the next. Our routes range from short strolls that are ideal for little legs, to longer walks that will appeal to active teenagers.
Sunday: Fields and coasts around St Ives
Family Walk: Walking from Chy Morvah along lanes and fields, we head towards the sea at Carbis Bay, east of St Ives. There are great views from the coast path and a brilliant ending at Porthminster Beach in St Ives. 3 miles (5km) with 600 feet (180m) of ascent.
Easier Walk: We walk from St Ives to Knill’s Monument and the promontory of Carrick Gladden, before following the South West Coast Path to Carbis Bay and back into St Ives, via the Balking House used by the long extinct Cornish pilchard fishing industry. 5 miles (8km) with 800 feet (240m) of ascent.
Medium Walk: From St Ives we head up to Knill’s Monument, then drop to join the coast near Lelant church. We follow the South West Coast Path back to St Ives through the dunes along the side of the St Erth railway, then around Carrick Gladden and Carbis Bay. 7 miles (11km) with 1,000 feet (300m) of ascent.
Harder Walk: Today we walk St Michael’s Way, part of the European network of the ways of St James – pilgrim routes dating back to early Christianity. Starting from St Michael’s Mount and Marazion, we walk inland then swing east to the Hayle estuary to finish at Lelant Church before picking up the train for the short trip back to St Ives. 11 miles (17.5km) with 1,300 feet (390m) of ascent.
Monday: Coast and Cliffs of The Land’s End Peninsula
Family Walk: Today’s highlight is the fabulous beach at Sennen Cove, which we reach across fields from Trevescan. After making the most of the huge white sand beach with its safe swimming, pretty village with working fishing boats and lifeboat station, we walk the short distance along the cliffs to one of Britain’s best loved landmarks, Land’s End. There is a playground here to keep everyone happy. 3 miles (5 km) with 300 feet (90m) of ascent.
Easier Walk: From an inland start at Polgigga, we walk across tracks and field paths to Mill Bay, then cross the peninsula to the fantastic beach at Sennen Cove. After plenty of time at the beach we continue along the granite cliffs to Land’s End. 5 miles (8km) with 600 feet (180m) of ascent.
Medium Walk: Starting at Treen, we follow the coast path via the National Trust’s Penberth Cove, the Iron Age remains of Treryn Dinas castle, Porthcurno and Rowena Cade’s remarkable open-air Minack Theatre to finish at Land’s End. 7 miles (11km) with 1,000 feet (300m) of ascent.
Harder Walk: Walking from St Loy, we follow the coast path to Land’s End, taking in many of the same sights as the Medium Walk. 8 miles (13km) with 1,300 feet (390m) of ascent.
Tuesday: Coast Path West of St Ives
Family Walk: Walking from Chy Morvah, we head out through the town, before crossing the fields and descending to the South West Coast Path near Clodgy Point. We return along the coast, with opportunities to stop at Porthmeor Beach or St Ives harbour. 3 miles (5km) with 600 feet (180m) of ascent.
Easier Walk: From St Ives we walk to Clodgy Point, turning inland at Pen Enys Point and returning along the 18th century packhorse route of the Tinners’ Way as it crosses a prehistoric field system. 6 miles (9.5km) with 600 feet (180m) of ascent.
Medium Walk: Crossing prehistoric fields from St Ives, we pass the farming and mining hamlets of Trevega, Boscubben and Treveal; then on to Mussel Point and River Cove where we may see seals before returning to St Ives on the South West Coast Path. 9 miles (14.5km) with 1,200 (360m) feet of ascent.
Harder Walk: Following the Tinners’ Way from St Ives, we head for the picturesque village of Zennor with its medieval church and Tinners Arms pub before returning along the coast via River Cove to St Ives. 11 miles (17.5km) with 1,400 feet (420m) of ascent.
Thursday: The Lizard Peninsula and Kynance Cove
Family Walk: From Lizard Green we walk down to England’s most southerly point at Polpeor Cove, passing the many small shops selling objects made out of the Lizard’s famous serpentine stone. We then walk to Lizard Point and follow the cliff path to the beautiful National Trust-owned beach at Kynance Cove, with perhaps time for a swim before returning to Lizard Green. 4 miles (6.5km) with 400 feet (120m) of ascent.
Easier Walk: Walking from Lizard Green, we take the cliff path around Bass Point and high above Polpeor Cove. We return to Lizard Green along a ‘Cornish hedge’ footpath. 5 miles (8km) with 400 feet (120m) of ascent.
Medium Walk: From Mullion we follow the coast path to the picturesque harbour of Mullion Cove and along the cliffs to Kynance. We continue on to Lizard Green. 8 miles (13km) with 900 feet (270m) of ascent.
Harder Walk: Today we take a circular walk from Lizard Green – tracking along the coast to the quaint fishing village of Cadgwith, the collapsed caves of the Devil’s Frying Pan, Lizard Head and Kynance Cove. 9 miles (14.5km) with 900 feet (270m) of ascent.
Friday: Shipwrecks, Smuggling and St Michael’s Mount
Family Walk: From the small Cornish harbour town of Porthleven with its fishing boats and beach (great for paddling and rockpooling) we walk along the coast and through the Penrose estate to end at Helston at a pleasant park and café. 4 miles (6.5km) with 200 feet (60m) of ascent.
Easier Walk: Starting at the beach of Praa Sands on the west side of the Lizard peninsula, we take the undulating coast path to Prussia Cove and Perranuthnoe, with stunning views of St Michael’s Mount. Finishing at Marazion, there may be time to walk the causeway to the Mount, tide permitting. 6 miles (9.5km) with 800 feet (240m) of ascent.
Medium Walk: From the mine buildings of Wheal Prosper (made famous by the BBC’s Poldark series) at Rinsey Head, we join the coast path to the mile long beach of Praa Sands, and then on to the ancient town of Marazion via Prussia Cove and Perranuthnoe. 8 miles (13km) with 900 feet (270m) of ascent.
Harder Walk: From the picturesque fishing and one-time industrial harbour of Porthleven we follow an outstanding coastline to Trewavas Head – with dramatic views of lovingly restored mine buildings – before walking to Marazion via Praa Sands, Prussia Cove and Perranuthnoe. 11 miles (17.5km) with 1,600 feet (480m) of ascent.
Little-legs friendly: designed for younger families, as well as our usual selection of up to 3 walks, these holidays also offer an extra-short, part-day walking option
- Child friendly: the part-day walks leave the afternoons to check out local family attractions, before dinner at 6.30pm to keep the little ones happy
- Expert leaders: our friendly walks leaders will ensure that families get the most out of the walks
- Activity leaders: our activity leaders organise children’s activities and games for younger children before dinner, and for the whole family after dinner
- Peace of mind: only families can book on our dedicated Family Holidays - the kids get the run of the Country House in a safe environment
- Free day: on our 7 night holidays, enjoy a day without walks to get out and make the most of the nearby family-friendly attractions. Working in partnership with Oates Travel we are able to offer a day trip to The Eden Project on the free day. These run after Easter until October. A supplementary cost is payable for this trip.
Terrain: Family Walks finish earlier in the afternoon to suit little legs - walks are not suitable for pushchairs. Easier Walks have some short, steep ascents on the coastal path. Medium Walks follow the undulating, sometimes rocky coastal path. Harder Walks have some steeper and rougher sections on the coastal path.
Transport: On some days the walks start or finish at Chy Morvah; on other days we use hired transport at the start and/or end of the walks. The cost of all transport to and from the walks is included in the price of your holiday.
In the evenings: Your leaders will talk about the choice of walks for the next day and answer any questions you may have. Before dinner the activity leaders will run an activity suitable for the younger children. After a sociable evening meal you could join in an evening activity created specifically for all the family or use the Country House facilities.
See our Family Adventure Guide for more information about our holidays and accommodation.
Chy Morvah is situated in the attractive seaside town of St Ives. A 10 minute downhill walk will take you to the harbour and old town; a maze of narrow streets and shops. The harbour front is always bustling with activity, and there are numerous artists’ galleries to enjoy. There are also two excellent sandy beaches. Nearby Porthminster Beach (5 to 10 minutes' walk) is very sheltered and very popular with families. Porthmeor Beach on the far side of town (15 to 20 minutes' walk) is more exposed and excellent for surfing. There are several surf schools if you want to give this a go – a popular option for all ages! St Ives has a full range of facilities including shops, banks, chemists, pubs and cafés.
During your stay at Chy Morvah you may enjoy visiting the following places of interest:
Tate Gallery & Barbara Hepworth Gallery
Opened in 1993, this branch of the Tate Gallery celebrates Cornwall’s rich artistic legacy. Tate St Ives also manages the Barbara Hepworth Museum and Sculpture Garden, which gives a remarkable insight into the work and outlook of one of Britain's most important 20th century artists. Both galleries are within easy walking distance of Chy Morvah. www.tate.org.uk
Justifiably popular with visitors, the fascinating ‘Biomes’ of the Eden Project house a flamboyant collection of plants from around the world. Explore the two gigantic geodesic conservatories – one a majestic rainforest, the other is host to the fruits and flowers of the Mediterranean, South Africa and California. Outside the extensive grounds are landscaped and produce tea, lavender, sunflowers and hemp. The Eden Project is just over an hour's drive from St Ives. Between May and September guests staying at Chy Morvah are able to book a coach excursion each Wedneday, organised by Oates Travel. www.edenproject.com
St Michael’s Mount
The jewel in Cornwall's crown, a fairytale island with an exotic garden, ancient harbour, a church and a medieval castle. Access from Marazion is by foot along the causeway, or by ferry at high water. Marazion is about 20 minutes' drive from St Ives, and can also be reached by regular local buses. www.stmichaelsmount.co.uk
National Maritime Museum
Cornwall's £21 million attraction in Falmouth is housed in an award winning building on the harbour-side. The museum transports you into the world of small boats and Cornish maritime history. Falmouth is about 50 minutes' drive from St Ives, and a day here could include visits to Pendennis Castle, or a delightful boat trip up the River Fal to Truro. www.nmmc.co.uk
National Seal Sanctuary
Situated at Gweek beside the Helford estuary, the seal sanctuary cares for injured or abandoned seals, before returning them to the wild. The seal sanctuary is about 40 minutes' drive from St Ives. www.sealsanctuary.co.uk
Geevor Tin Min
Discover Cornwall's mining heritage at this excellent museum. Guided underground trips as well as surface tours are available. The musem is about 30 minutes' drive from St Ives, and can also be reached using the 300 open-top bus. www.geevor.com
Lost Gardens of Heligan
Created in the mid 18th century, the gardens at Heligan are one of the best examples in Britain, famed for displays of rhododendrons and camellias. Following years of neglect they have been subject to extensive restoration work over the last 20 years. The gardens, located near Mevagissey are just over an hour's drive from St Ives. www.heligan.com
This uniquely situated open-air theatre is cut into the cliffs at Porthcurno, near Lands End. Performances take place most evenings with some afternoon matinees. The Rowena Cade Exhibition Centre tells the story of its creation. An evening theatre visit is offered on most weeks to guests staying at Chy Morvah (May to September). www.minack.com
St Michaels Mount image credited to Mike Newman, Eden Project image ©Hufton+Crow,
Travel to St Ives
Our address is: Chy Morvah, Bishops Road, The Belyars, St Ives, Cornwall TR26 2DB
The nearest railway station is St Ives, however you may find the journey to St Erth on the main line more convenient. For train times and general rail enquiries visit www.nationalrail.co.uk or call 03457 484950 (from outside the UK call +44 20 7278 5240).
St Ives station is only ½ mile from Chy Morvah, but it is rather a steep uphill walk. Taxis cost approx £4 for this short transfer. Details of our current recommended taxi company and rates will be sent to you with your booking. The return taxi journey can be arranged on your behalf by the Chy Morvah Manager.
Head to Cornwall via the A30. At a large roundabout take the A3074 signposted to St Ives (2nd Exit). You will now come to 2 small roundabouts, go straight across the first and take a right at the second heading towards the village of Lelant. Pass through Lelant and Carbis Bay on the same road.
Pass Tescos and the Treganna Castle hotel on your left hand side, then as you approach St Ives take the left fork which heads slightly up hill, following signs to visitor parking and the leisure centre. Follow the road and turn left up the steep hill. Almost immediately the road turns left again but instead of following the road around to the left you need to turn off the road and head directly up the hill on Porthminster Terrace.
Chy Morvah is right in front of you at the top of the hill. To reach the car park drive left past the front of Chy Morvah and turn immediately right behind the back of the building. The car park is on the right 15 yards along the lane called Bishops road.
Travelling from overseas
For most guests, travelling to London Heathrow airport is the most convenient option.
From Heathrow first take the train to London Paddington station. From here there are direct trains to St Erth, and finally a short branch line train to St Ives.This is a relatively straightforward, if lengthy journey - allow 6½ hours, so a morning arrival into Heathrow would be preferable.
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Dates & Prices
We're sorry, there are no dates available for this holiday at the moment. Please check out our other tours and breaks or call our team on 0345 470 8558 to be notified of new dates as soon as they become available.
Prices are per person
- All child prices are based on sharing with an adult. Children not sharing an adult's room will be subject to a £50 surcharge per child per stay. A single room charge of £5 per child per night will be made where applicable.
- Non-member associate fee: £10 per person