Train ride to Penzance

Penzance Travel Blog

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Bath, pic taken from the train

As mentioned in the summary, Cornwall and Devon were 2 places I always toyed of visiting simply because they looked so 'different' to the rest of the UK. I first heard about Newquay being the surfing capital of the UK at the Earl's Court YHA, and on google-imag'ing them, the pictures showed a whole different side of the country. I remember hearing the phrase "English Riveria" in some other brochure, and thinking "oxymoron?!". The south west England did intrigue me - no straight forward Castles or museums that get their place on the Kodak Moments, but just scattered pictures of rugged coastlines and tiny fishing villages, each of these villages seemed to have their own identity and seemed in no hurry to promote themselves as touristy destinations, but rather, places where life just goes on.

random shot
And then there's Land's End - everyone's heard of Land's End. Cheesy. But a must see eitherways.

The planning for this trip started as early as March when I knew I'd be going in May. All the books and people said "base yourself in Penzance" which I did... and once I got a handle on how things work there (in terms of distances, and trains), it was quite easy. Choosing a hostel again was very easy - only 3 hostels in the neighbourhood with the one I chose (The Blue Dolphin Backpackers) being the closest to the city centre/train station. And then came the places themselves - the area is filled with tons of tiny fishing villages, TONS of them. To pick one over the other is unfair because they're all unique, yet all do have an air of "seen one, you've seen them all".

One of my favourite random pictures again, this one was taken as we were approaching Exeter
Thanks to some great advice from both Tripadvisor and friends of mine from our own community on the Internet, I came up with an itenerary.

The best part about this trip was the ticket fare! Almost all people I know kept telling me to "shell out quite a bit" to travel from London Paddington to Penzance. The jouney is 6 hours after all... but I managed to get a return fare for just 41 GBP! The train left paddington on time, and I had the company of a engineer till Bristol. It was quite nice listening to his experience of India, the United States, etc... the journey was really beautiful. When looking at it through the map, I realised how much one travels through England on this route. The scenery, rather changing sceneries was proof enough. I'll let the pictures do the talking.

Truro, the "capital" of Cornwall

The train arrived on time - at about 120pm and now began my walk to the hostel. It's not AS easy as the hostel's website said. The road took forever and I finally made it at about 150pm, ten minutes before they close. The hostel was located in a very residential area (seperate review to follow) and I knew I'd like it the minute I walked in. Very safe and very very backpacker friendly.

And what about my opinion on the town? Looks good. I knew at the get-go this would be a relaxed holiday as there were no touristy traps (the oft- appearing museums), and the weather along with long sunlight hours meant I could stroll for as long as I wanted to. The town has a huge promenade by the sea with people sitting by the benches, people walking their kids or dogs, very idyllic coastal town.

Penzance
... I really liked what I saw of it. The views were breathtaking. On one end you see St. Michael's Mount and on the other, you see tons of small houses and establishments up a hill by the ocean. The beauty here lies in the simplicity, and the knowledge that tourists descend on this area for what it has to offer, without dressing itself as a silly sunny holiday resort having tons of souvenir stores along the coastline.

I had eaten a cheese sandwich for lunch so i was really all set to hit the street... and get underway with the Part One of my trip - visit the tiny fishing villages of Mousehole (pronounced Mow-sel) and Newlyn. Report continues in the next blog entry....

monkeymia79 says:
The train network in England is great.

Your photos are beautiful, especially the ones taken on the train.
Posted on: Feb 05, 2016
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Bath, pic taken from the train
Bath, pic taken from the train
random shot
random shot
One of my favourite random picture…
One of my favourite random pictur…
Truro, the capital of Cornwall
Truro, the "capital" of Cornwall
Penzance
Penzance
View of the promenade
View of the promenade
Lovely view of Newlyn from the Pen…
Lovely view of Newlyn from the Pe…
Penzance Hostels review
Home away from home - except your mum didn't charge you this much for laundry!
I stayed in this hostel for a total of 4 nights and I'm impressed. The place is run by a South African - Stuart and is very neatly maintained. He obvi… read entire review
Penzance
photo by: Vikram