Day 8: Monday, October 1

We’re Off To See The Lizard!

Today’s Shooting Locations:

  • Mullion Cove
  • Cadgwith Cove
  • Kynance Cove
  • St. Michael’s Mount / Marazion

As you read the title above you’re probably wondering… huh??? A little explanation for those not familiar with the southwest of England: The Lizard is the name of the peninsula in southern Cornwall that contains some of the most beautiful and characteristic landscapes in the area. The Lizard measures about 14 by 14 miles and is known for its geology and rare plants. It lies within another Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) in Cornwall and is a protected environment.

The Lizard - map

This is going to be another very long day with a lot of ground to cover (literally). There is no dawn shoot today as we are to get an early start for our all-day photo tour of parts of The Lizard.

So, on to  our first stop of the day…

Mullion Cove

Mullion Cove (a.k.a. Porth Mellin) is a small community on the west coast of the Lizard Peninsula in Cornwall. The Cove forms part of the parish of Mullion, and is accessible by road from Mullion village and by the popular South West coast path. It lies within another English AONB (Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty).

The first thing you see when arriving is the somewhat stately Mullion Cove Hotel. On the one hand, the design of this hotel really appeals to me; on the other, it gives me the creeps because it looks similar to The Overlook Hotel in Stephen King’s The Shining (which, I might add, still gives me the willies some 35 years after watching Jack Nicholson terrorize poor little Shelley Duvall):

As you walk away from the hotel and toward the cliff, guess what you see? Why, it’s another dramatic Cornwall vista of cliffs, rocks, waves and ocean:

The lonely bench on the cliff: I imagine this would be a very contemplative place to sit – alas I did not try it.
I’m not really sure what this thing is but I’d wager it probably has something to do with fishing – a crank for hauling in the nets, perhaps? If anyone out there knows, please email me. Whatever it is, it’s quite photogenic.
This guy wasn’t having much luck today
Kayaking is extremely popular all over Cornwall. These two had just come in to the Cove from the sea.
Cute window display in “The Potters Wheel” store
This is a very friendly and playful resident dog. Apparently his owners bring him to the cove frequently and he loves to entice the humans to join him in play.
More dogs – Phil and I got chatting with a friendly local regarding his new dog. This pup was 12 weeks old and his owner was bringing him out that day to aid with the dog’s socialization skills. He was a very friendly pup and was moving so fast I had to take a whole series of shots before I could get a clear one.

And now, on to our next location…

Cadgwith Cove

Of all the location shoots we’ve done so far, this one and Cape Cornwall are my favourites. Like Cape Cornwall on Sunday, there is so much character and charm in Cadgwith; it’s an actual, real-life, working fishing village where the residents make their living from the sea.

The pub where most of our group had lunch
All of Cornwall is extremely pro-dog. Dogs are allowed in many of the restaurants, hotels, transit and trains.
I love the charm of these thatched-roof cottages

Clive let us know that we should be on the shore at 1:00PM for a great photo opportunity as that is when the fishermen come in with their boats and start unloading their catches of the day. Just before 1:00 we saw the boats starting to come in from the sea and many of us swarmed the beach to get shots, all the while doing our best to not get in the way of the fisherman. Here, the men are bringing their boats in from a morning of fishing in the ocean:

I got to chat briefly with this fisherman. He said he did not mind at all that there were photographers swarming the beach, in fact he was flattered. I won big points when I told him how I was there documenting a way of life that has almost disappeared in today’s culture.

There were several of these kayakers on the shore making ready to push off on a group expedition. They were pretty serious about this sport, dressing and acting the part. The one fellow asked me if I would help him get his kayak into the water, so off I went:

We were starting to run out of time to explore Cadgwith, but I was still able to grab a few more shots on the way out of the village:

More thatched roofs
This walkway was pretty but very hard on the feet

Our time in Cadgwith has run out and we must now be on our way to…

Kynance Cove

Kynance Cove is situated on the Lizard peninsula approximately three kilometres north of Lizard Point. The cove became popular in the early Victorian era, with many distinguished visitors including Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, and the poet Alfred Tennyson. The BBC has described Kynance Cove as “one of the most beautiful stretches of coastline in the South West”. The South West Coast Path, which follows the coast of south west England from Somerset to Dorset passes by on the cliffs over-looking Kynance Cove.

And yes, there are roving cows high atop the cliffs
My inspiration for scrambling down these perilous rocks was not to get a great shot, but for the delicious homemade Cornish ice cream I’d heard my colleagues talk about in the cafe on the right. Good to know I have my priorities in order.
My goal is in sight! (By the way, the ice cream actually was worth the journey down the cliff.)
On the beach
Cafe where said ice cream was enjoyed
I spotted some rustic buildings prior to my journey back up the cliff

And now, on to the next shoot…

St. Michael’s Mount / Marazion

St. Michael’s Mount is a rocky island crowned by a medieval church and castle, just off the village of Marazion. The Mount is still home to the St. Aubyn family as well as a small community. This iconic rocky island contains the oldest buildings in the area, dating from the 12th century.

At low tide a causeway of stone is available from the mainland out to the mount. When the tide comes in the causeway disappears beneath the water, so if you are on the Mount when this happens you just have to wait for the tide to go back or swim back!

Our visit to St. Michael’s Mount was the last stop of the day, and our sunset shoot.

This is the causeway (left) that is only available at low tide
One of my colleagues out on an outcrop of rock, trying to get a good shot of St. Michael’s Mount
Nice sunset over the Mount
Penzance is in the far right distance. It was easier to see in person and does not translate well to an image, unfortunately.

And that is it for today! It was a really long day and we are all exhausted, but it was well worth it as I feel I captured some great images today.

Tomorrow is the last day of the tour, and I will be very sad to see it end and to see all my new friends go their separate ways.

Over and out from Cornwall for Monday.

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