Tours > England's West Country > Tintagel |
Tintagel - Cornwall
Vying with Clovelly for the highest number of visitors, Tintagel can be reached by rail from London (change at Bodmin, then take a 30 minute taxi ride: by road, M5 to Exeter, then A30 west to Launceston, and A 395 to Camelford before joining the minor road through Trewarmett: or A39 from Barnstaple and B3263 via Boscastle). It is well worth your patience, for perhaps nowhere in Britain is the spirit of Arthur so profoundly felt (or capitalized upon).
>Built on a site of an early Celtic monastery, the 13th century ruins of what is popularly known as King Arthur's Castle are perched precariously on a rocky promontory, 300 ft above the sea. Visitors have to make a long, steep walk from the parking lot. Merlin's Cave and Arthur's Lair also provide fascinating glimpses into an imaginative medieval past.
A more modern reminder is King Arthur's Hall, dating from 1933, the headquarters of the Fellowship of the Round Table, with 73 stained glass windows depicting Arthur's knights. Be sure to visit the old manor house, built in the 14th century, and used as the villages' post office from 1844 to 1892. The wild, rocky coastline in the area has been designated as one of Britain's Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, much of it thankfully in the care of the National Trust.
Next Stop: Camelford